76 300D throws rod

This may seem like a silly question but I have a friend who's 76 300D threw a rod at 120,000k mi They drive the car only 5K/yr and have it serviced religiously by MB only!
Is this just the luck of the draw or is there some underlying problem with the crankshaft. Is it worth rebuilding the engine or should the engine be replaced? They are very attached to the car and would actually like to keep it longer if possible. Any thoughts or suggestions from this group? Thanks wolf
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It's very unusual for the 5 cylinder Mercedes 617 engines to throw a connecting rod. It's difficult to balance any 5 cylinder engine but Mercedes does a pretty good job of balancing those engines at the factory. The connecting rod bolts are 10 mm diameter which usually prevents them from breaking.
There is no special reason to think there was a problem with the crankshaft. It sounds like your friend was just very unlucky. Perhaps, a rod nut cracked or the rod itself. Rebuilding the engine may or may not be possible depending on the amount of damage caused by the rod. Rebuilt engines are available from Mercedes and aftermarket rebuilders like Metric Automotive. Used engines are available from salvage yards. The problem is that a rebuilt engine will cost more than the car is worth. A used salvage yard engine is one option. Another option is simply buying another 300D. The 1985 model for example was a better car, has a turbodiesel engine and many improvements. You can likely find one of those cars for less than the cost of replacing the engine.
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snipped-for-privacy@aol.com (VCopelan) wrote in

As a whole, the W115 series 300D is superior to any W123!
If the car is in good shape (no rust, good paint/body/interior/suspension and frame) then I would call metric and get an engine for it.
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Why? Are you a W115 owner? The 617 turbodiesel engine lasts longer than the non-turbo engine. I own cars with both engines. The engine oiling system is superior in the later turbo engine.

A rebuilt $5,000 engine in a sub $2,000 car doesn't make a lot of sense to me. Does the W115 chassis have a cult following? The W115 and the W123 chassis are not that different. Tell us why the W115 is superior.
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Writes:

the
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me.
chassis are

Well I cannot believe but my friends have decided to have the W115 rebuilt to the tune of over 5K (rough estimate) the number 2 rod broke. Clearly does not speak well for the W115 vs the W123.When does the 617 diesel start in terms of production years? I would have said to junk the car since it is almost 30 years old and has a lot of 30 year old rubber and plastic degradation. Bur what the hey it is their choice and decision. Thanks for all the good info. wolf
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good choice!
not economic...but sentimental but tell your friends to have some of that old rubber changed...as far as drivetrain and suspension goes
alex '69 230 w114 70k mi
Writes:

system
paint/body/interior/suspension
to
does
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snipped-for-privacy@aol.com (VCopelan) wrote in Writes:

I have owned and serviced both. The W114/115 series is the last and best of the true Mercedes in it's class!
The W123 was the first of the "downhill" models. Clearly a conpromised car in comparison with the former.
I haven't seen any concrete proof that the later engines outlast the originals, let alone outperform them.
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Nonsense. While the 115 had its plusses, wht 123 rusts less and has better engines and safety features. There are tons of half-million mile 123 Diesels on the road.
Bill Ditmire Ditmire Motorworks,Inc. 425 White Horse Pike Absecon,NJ 08201 http://www.ditmire.com 609-641-3392
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You really think the non-turbo 617 engine has the same performance as a turbodiesel engine? Apparently, you have not driven a 1982 - 1985 300D turbodiesel. Having driven both (my non turbo has 270,000 miles on it but the engine was rebuilt at 208,000). The turbo car is much faster up the hills, gets the same or better mileage and is quieter. On highways with many long hill, the non turbo car can barely maintain 55 mph. Mercedes has gone downhill but that was after the 123 chassis. The later 123 cars do everything the 115 chassis cars do but only better.
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snipped-for-privacy@aol.com (VCopelan) wrote in Writes:

I have driven all the diesels. Furthermore, I have never owned and rarely seen a W115 that failed to reach the half million mark with its original shortblock!

Although the W115 is not as fast on steep grades, it is nonetheless a better balanced performer across the board.

Keep dreaming!
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I'm not dreaming and you must really like to drive really slowly. What do you consider a better balanced performer? Slower, more noise, less safe? I've owned three 123 chassis cars. I gave one to a family member. Many mechanical parts are interchangable between the W115 and W123 bodies. By 1985, Mercedes had added insulation to the transmission tunnel and elsewhere to make the car quieter. The rear axle ratio was changed to allow the engine to run a lower rpm. Automatic seat belt tensioners were added to make the car safer in an accident. My 1980 300CD is slower and makes more noise. It's much like a W115 chassis. The only significant difference between the W115 and the later W123 is the addition of more complex climate control systems in the later cars.
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snipped-for-privacy@aol.com (VCopelan) wrote in Writes:

You have obviously never owned a W115!

Wrong again!

Which doesn't make it a better car.

And acceleration at lower RPM's suffers!

All 300D's have them!

You obviously have no idea what you are talking about!
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ok...i have followed this thread long enough and kept silent... i own a 114, a 123 and a 201 for daily driving
let me tell you...i love them all...just in different ways...
the 114 for its simplicity...the 123 240d for it being a tank and letting me add 300k mi to its chassis and the 201 for it being my daily driver, now and taking the beat
they are all great in their own way, so why argue...
but let me tell you this...i feel safe in alle 3 of them although there is 22 years parting my 114 and my 201
oh and...there is a 2003 audi a6 wagon 2,5 tdi, a 99 golf4 vw 1,9 tdi and there was a 97 jeep grand cherokee 5,2 also...but the most fun is the 69 w114 thats the one that actually turns heads
2cents alex
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No you're completely wrong once again. I'm not talking about the clutch in the seatbelt mechanism which locks under acceleration of the belt. The later Mercedes cars have a supplemental safety belt tensioner which uses a cable and an electrically ignited chemical charge/gas piston to remove all slack in the seat belts at the moment of impact. All 300D's don't have the device.

So your saying that the W115 has the same climate control system as a W123 chassis? The W123 had three different systems. Actually four if you count the bowden cable system in the 240. Tell me what was used in the W115?
And so there are no common parts between the W115 and W123 chassis? You are kidding. Almost all the brake system is the same. The 617 engine is the same as are so many other parts are in the two cars. Yes, the W115 does have a York A/C compressor and the later cars have a Delco R4 but I don't like either compressor.
I've driven several W115 chassis cars. They are nice but to say they are the last well made Mercedes is quite an overstatement. And since you seem to have such limited knowledge about either chassis, you're hardly in a position to render a meaningful opinion.
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threw
keep
For what its worth, I have been advised by a repairer who does warranty work that the W203 blows pistons if the car doesnt get a good workout. Something like a long trip or a spin on the freeway.
5K per year seems like a very small amount of travel and I cant help wondering if the same ethos applies.
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