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Probable new forum bike: Mercedes CLK convertible


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I thought I'd start a thread on this.  I presently love this car but history has proven me fickle and easily distracted, so I expect I'll want to move it on at some point.  Doing it this way also ensures no comeback from future owners when they find out I've attached the wheels with silicon sealer, etc.

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Lot of flash for a grand, I think you'll agree.  I picked it up from the pleasant Mr Xtriple last Tuesday, and have already put a thousand miles on it (including 500 in Norfolk at the weekend, and 200-odd around Gloucester yesterday).  As you'd imagine, wafting about in a convertible with a whispering V6 up front is absolutely awful,.  I did get a light metallic scraping noise from the NSR wheel for a bit, but the caliper wasn't sticking and it went after a while so meh.

There are a few issues to fix.  Most pressing was the passenger door, which wouldn't shut without a heavy slam.  I found the door glass was rising too high, and interfering with the A-pillar seal.  

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There's quite a lot of scope for things to get out of kilter on the windows and hood on these things, but thankfully it's all adjustable.  The stops for the window are adjusted by winding down the window, then removing 3 bungs on the underside of the door.  This exposes bolts to adjust the position of the front and rear stops, with the middle one adjusting the angle of the glass against the seal.  Getting it right is trial and error, it's not quite right but does now shut correctly.  There's also a fault with the rear window, a clip that stops it rising too high has broken so it can collide with the front window if you're not careful.  Not sorted that yet.

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The hood often needs a helping hand to retract it (and to prevent it slamming down on the windscreen frame when closing it).  The issue appears to be the tension cables on the front folded section - these are supposed to hold it in a raised position, to allow it to fold up.  This doesn't always work so the pump runs but is unable to draw the hood back.  The tension on these cables can be adjusted, and it's pretty straightforward job, but it does mean taking the roof down for a couple of hours and I've not been able to trust the weather recently.  If there's no adjustment left on the cables it's not too difficult to replace them, but they cost £80 each (and there are 2).

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The roof release handle is a bit broken too, this is a common problem.  Xtriple's mechanic has made a temporary repair but I may revisit it, there is a DIY fix using a C-clip apparently - else it's £700 for a new roof rail.

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Steering wheel is quite worn, and off-centre.  I find that very annoying and will get the alignment fixed soon.  Dunno what to do about the wheel, upholsterer perhaps?  The driver's seat bolster is also coming apart at the edge, again they all do this so finding a good used one is pretty much impossible.

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I was unimpressed by the factory audio, despite it having a fancy remote control.  Putting in my kit was easy though, standard ISO harness so took about 5 mins!  

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Unfortunately the speakers are shot, ruining Stuff Like That.  The forum bike Jag had the same issue, just age I suppose.  I've got speaker adaptors on order so I can fit some decent ones.

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This is the car's best feature, this engine is superb.  It absolutely makes just the noise you'd expect, a gentle whine yet gives brisk performance and an average of 29mpg.  It does leak a little oil though, enough to mark the drive but hasn't required a top up.  Will investigate.

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Pirate HQ is now well furnished with CLKs.  My wife has had this facelift one for a couple of years and I've always admired it, but not the raucous 2.3 supercharged motor.  It's slightly slower and slightly better on fuel  than the V6 but above 3000rpm it's horrible - it sounds like the CVH from a '80s Escort and ruins the whole experience.  Most of them seem to be blighted with that motor though, perhaps the cost difference was large when new.  Mrs Pirate now wants the wheels and engine transplanted into hers.

Final problem is the ABS/ASR/BAS light coming on at random.  Others have suggested this is the battery getting weak, which is a bit of a worry - I'm leaving it in an airport car park for a week tomorrow.

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42 minutes ago, Fat_Pirate said:

Final problem is the ABS/ASR/BAS light coming on at random.  Others have suggested this is the battery getting weak, which is a bit of a worry - I'm leaving it in an airport car park for a week tomorrow.

I'm no Merc expert but isn't that a common fault with the brake pedal switch. Easy fix and about a £10 for a new switch. I'd try that before a new battery.

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2 hours ago, gadgetgricey said:

I'm no Merc expert but isn't that a common fault with the brake pedal switch. Easy fix and about a £10 for a new switch. I'd try that before a new battery.

Yes, the brake pedal switch is the common problem. Go to the dealership and get a genuine one. You have to get into the footwell which is a little awkward, but not too much of a pain.

If you do swap the battery or disconnect it you need to reset the windows by lowering them and keeping the switch depressed  for five seconds. Then raise them and depress the switch for another five. Plus you have to turn the steering from lock to lock to clear dashboard warning lights. Details here:

http://www.mercedesmedic.com/bas-esp-abs-mercedes-benz/

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10 hours ago, Fat_Pirate said:

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The roof release handle is a bit broken too, this is a common problem.  Xtriple's mechanic has made a temporary repair but I may revisit it, there is a DIY fix using a C-clip apparently - else it's £700 for a new roof rail. 

 

The C-Clip repair works.  Its fiddly but lasted years without having to revisit it on my old one.

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Really like these Merc's and that one looks very straight, aside from the wheel.

If I had one I probably wouldn't bother with the roof down, just think they look nice as they are tbh.

My plan is to let it go through a couple of reputable shiters and sort the minor issues and then buy it. / win it in a roffle.

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The brake switch on these is a simple two pin on off type. It’s nothing special, unless they made them more complex on later models.

the battery problem came on mine and it caused loads of problems like cruise control, ABS and not changing gear. It’s not a dead battery thing, it’s just not 100% and the cars electronics don’t seem to handle it well.

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The roof has always worked fine, yes you have to hold it up for the first step but I thought it was supposed to be like that! IfI had known it was a fault I would have investigated, maybe. Possibly. The battery is fine: possably getting old but will hold its charge for two - three weeks no bother though it does go flat if left longer than that but I think that's the alarm? I am led to believe that the ABS etc lights come on if the battery drops below 12volts which it may do when first started or it could be the switch. I tried to buy a new one but MB don't currently have one and none in the UK warehouse or even Germany was the message I was told a few weeks ago.

Oil leak?

Sorry it's not giving satisfaction.

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4 hours ago, xtriple said:

The roof has always worked fine, yes you have to hold it up for the first step but I thought it was supposed to be like that! IfI had known it was a fault I would have investigated, maybe. Possibly. The battery is fine: possably getting old but will hold its charge for two - three weeks no bother though it does go flat if left longer than that but I think that's the alarm? I am led to believe that the ABS etc lights come on if the battery drops below 12volts which it may do when first started or it could be the switch. I tried to buy a new one but MB don't currently have one and none in the UK warehouse or even Germany was the message I was told a few weeks ago.

Oil leak?

Sorry it's not giving satisfaction.

No criticism intended, sorry if it came over like that - it was a huge bargain and I'm very pleased with it.  

6cylinder, interest noted but somebody has already called dibs.  

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Sorry FP, I was in a BAD mood and I thought your were critiscising my beloved old Merc! Yes, the passengers window did foul slightly, but as I never used that door I had forgotten all about it. The interface is very slght... I genuinely had forgotten all about that, the simple fact that they all worked (windows) was a result as far as I was concerned. I suppose someone with a life/loved one may indeed want the door to open and close without fear of glass exploding. :)

I hope you do fettle her back to perfection, she's a good car and worthy of being a forum 'slag'.

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  • 1 month later...
1 hour ago, xtriple said:

Any updates on the old girl? Done any of the jobs on her?

I have indeed.

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 The roof is mostly fixed now - there's a tension cable on each side, and loosening that bolt allows you to push the metal cylinder forward to increase it a bit.  I've used all the slack now but 90% of the time it works properly, and doesn't just collapse onto the windscreen header.

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Also replaced the brake light switch, but still randomly getting the TC/ABS/BAS warning light.  I've discounted any issue with the battery, so maybe a wheel sensor?  There really is no pattern to when it comes on.  This car doesn't have an OBD port so no code reading available.  I just treat it as the "drift around the next roundabout" light now.

Had the tracking done so the wheel is straight.  Still leaking oil, still haven't investigated it properly - sump holds 8 litres so I've not had to top it up yet.  It managed nearly 40mpg on a run to Alton Towers last month, very pleased with that.  

Still got no intention of moving it on anytime soon, it really suits me - and the lucky ladies of Hampshire get to see my handsome face too :)  The roffle GTV will be joining it shortly though, will that shake things up?  

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That bloody light used to drive me mad: fix it and it would stay off for weeks/months and just when you thought it was properly fixed, it would come back on again! There are a few garages with the old plug for the obd, it's under the bonnet and big and round. I had the codes read and it showed, er, nothing about the brakes at all, just the usual 150 old codes from when time began.

 

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On 10/18/2019 at 12:06 AM, Fat_Pirate said:

  This car doesn't have an OBD port so no code reading available.   

I'm pretty sure it will have. 
If it's similar to the w203 then it's under a flap roughly above where the drivers right knee is.
If it's w202 I forget, it's been about 5 years since I last had one of those.

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    • By Zelandeth
      Well I've been meaning to sign up here in forever, but kept forgetting. Thanks to someone over on another forum I frequent poking me about it recently the subject was forced back into my very brief attention span for long enough to get me to act on the instruction.

      I figure that my little varied fleet might bring you lot some amusement...

      So...we've got:

      1993 Lada Riva 1.5E Estate (now fuel injected, as I reckon the later cars should have been from the factory...).
      1989 Saab 900i Automatic.
      1987 Skoda 120LX 21st Anniversary Special Edition.
      1985 Sinclair C5.
      2009 Peugeot 107 Verve.

      Now getting the photos together has taken me far longer than I'd expected...so you're gonna get a couple of photos of each car for now, and I'll come back with some more information tomorrow when I've got a bit more time...

      Firstly...The Lada. Before anyone asks - in response to the single question I get asked about this car: No, it is not for sale. Took me 13 years and my father's inheritance to find the thing.


      Yes, it's got the usual rusty wings...Hoping that will be resolved in the next couple of months.

       






      Next, a proper old Saab. One of the very last 8 valve cars apparently, and all the better for it. I've driven two 16v autos and they were horrible - the auto box works sooooo much better with the torque curve of the 8 valve engine. Just wish it had an overdrive for motorway cruising...









      Next up a *real* Skoda...back when they put the engine where it belongs, right out the back. In the best possible colour of course...eye-searingly bright orange.







      Seat covers have been added since that photo was taken as it suffers from the usual rotting seat cloth problem that affects virtually all Estelles.

      Then we have possibly the world's scruffiest Sinclair C5...



      Realised when looking for this that I really need to get some more photos of the thing...I use it often enough after all! We have a dog who's half husky, so this is a really good way of getting him some exercise.

      Finally - again, I really need to take more photos of - we have the little Pug 107.



      Included for the sake of variety even if it's a bit mainstream! First (and probably to be the only) new car I've bought, and has been a cracking little motor and has asked for very little in return for putting up with nearly three years of Oxford-Milton Keynes commuter traffic, before finally escaping that fate when my housemate moved to a new job. Now it doesn't do many miles and is my default car for "when I've managed to break everything else."

      I'll fill in some more details tomorrow - I warn you though that I do tend to ramble...
    • By strangeangel
      I thought I'd start a thread for this as I'll probably end up asking all sorts of questions, given that this is my first 'proper' Citroën.
       
      So... the ground clearance lever won't go all the way to the highest setting (all others work), which is bad 'cos the book says I need it to do that in order to check the LHM level. It feels like something's seized, so I don't want to force it. Any ideas for a plan of attack would be much appreciated.
       
      Next up are the wheels. I now have a set of 205 pepperpots that have just gone off for powder coating & I need to get some tyres for them. The handbook says the car should have 165/70R14s on, the wheels came with 185/65R14 on. Any thoughts about what size I should get please? Cheers.
       
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