If it's the std Hirschman, good chance it can be fixed. The antenna is
on a plastic cable that gets worn out, which is frequently the main
problem. You can get a new cable and antenna on Ebay. It can
usually be replaced without removing the unit from the car by pulling
the old one all the way out as it's running the antennna out. Have you
tried pulling on it while it's rrying to come out?
However, depending on how old the unit is, it may be a good idea to
take the whole unit out, remove the cover, see what's doing inside,
clean it up, etc. Over time, dirt/salt, gets inside and can be a
problem. A little oil/grease on the right spots may be needed too.
My original Hirschman is 26 years old and running fine. All I;ve
done is replace the mast once because the plastic cable had worn out
and clean/lube it. And the generic replacements aren't perfect either.
For example, you lose the ability for the dash switch to control the
antenna height on the MB models that have that control. Now, that's
not exactly the end of the world, but I'd prefer not to wind up with a
dash switch that is there but no longer does anything, unless it was
When I was looking into this a couple years ago for my 1980 300SD there
definitely were generic Hirschman replacements that fit many cars. But
as I recall, they came with different wiring connectors, the dash
switch that controlled it no longer worked, there were multiple fender
angle adaptors to fit diff models, etc. I'm not sure if a 100% direct
replacement was available. I tend to think it wasn't but it's possible
it was for $$$, while the generic type was affordable.
I wound up lubing the old one, putting in a new mast, and it's been
working perfectly ever since.
Maybe only three wires on your car, but on my 300SD the wiring
connector has 5 wires. And if it's not a generic antenna that's made
to fit many models, as opposed to a direct 100% replacement, then why
do you have to be concerned about the number or wires or using the old
All I am saying if you don't want to spend $220+ for a new antennae or
paying someone over $100 to fix it... generic Hirshmann antenna is the way
Old boot makes it factory appearance. and better seal.
Lastly, why do we need to have our antennae lowered halfway? Reception
stinks. Car wash? Well, why not just turn off your radio? You can't hear
radio when antennae is down too...
Note, I never said a generic wasn't OK, if you really need to replace
the whole antenna. What I said was there are some drawbacks that
people should be aware of, before they make that decision and there are
other options. Some people don't care about having dash switches that
no longer do anything in an old car that's seen better days. Others
have cars that are in great shape and as close to original as possible.
And for the latter, taking the time to take the cover off the original
unit, clean/lube it, put in a new mast that you can get for $20, can be
a better alternative. I've done exactly that with mine,
cleaning/lubing it twice, replacing the mast once and after 26 years,
it still works perfectly.
You are one of those lucky one... Of both MB I owned... both died... one
died of gear broke at the motor... The other one died of circuit board
failure. I suppose I can fix one antenne with the other one... but I don't
have that old car anymore.
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