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Dr. Hamman
Dr. Hamman, Technician
Category: Classic Car
Satisfied Customers: 2436
Experience:  I have 30 years experience repairing, restoring, and customizing cars, and pickup trucks.
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I own a 1966 230sl mbz. 2 comprehensive checks from two

Customer Question

I own a 1966 230sl mbz. 2 comprehensive checks from two different classic auto repair shops both stated my #2 cylinder needs to be repaired . One quote was $15,000. and the other was $7,900. I need to know what is specifically involved in the repair and what is the typical cost of repairing this. I have spent more than quite a bit to repair this car and the engine has been seen and repaired by two classic auto shops. Simply, I have been screwed for several years and need to know as much as possible about this current problem. By the way, the first quote was the shop I put most of my money into. Found out the owner is trying to sell it.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Classic Car
Expert:  Don replied 1 year ago.

hi there my name is Don i will try to help you on this

What did they tell you that was wrong with number 2 cylinder ?

what problems are you having with the car

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Don, I was told that the number 2 cylinder is not functioning at the level that is required for all.The compression check indicated that it is not on the same ratio as the others. That it will need to be replaced, if that makes sense. Wish I could be more specific but am out of town with no docs. to reference. The problem is that the car has very little power. I was fortunate that it could be driven into the garage after being unloaded off the flatbed. It was able to be driven onto the flatbed when at a 45 degree angle.
Expert:  Don replied 1 year ago.

Hi there thanks for your quick response .

one cylinder in a cylinder would give you a miss if it was weak or burning oil you mentioned a 4 cylinder but when i look it says a 6 cylinder what do you have ?

did you experience any of those

can you supply me with the compression results in all cylinders

how many miles on the car



Expert:  Don replied 1 year ago.

SymptomsPoor Idle Quality, Hesitation, Cuts Out, Stall

Expert:  Don replied 1 year ago.

does it do that ?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
What happened initially is that the car just stopped while I was driving it. Called AAA. The AAA technician said it appears to be the alternator. Had it towed to the guy that had been doing a lot of work on it . Got a call from his new manager and was told it was the battery. Ha a new battery put in and had the lines flushed. Got it back. It died on me in Hollywood, just like the time before. After about 10 minutes, it started but misfired, roared, and barely made it to my house(about 10 miles away). When braked, it would die so I would have to periodically put to use the handbrake and keep my foot on the accelerator when at a stoplight. Had it towed to one classic auto repair in Newport Beach. They had it for 4 months and concluded it was the #2 cylinder. After talking to the owner of the shop that misdiagnosed the problem, I had it towed to them. They also said it was the number two cylinder and would cost 15,000. As I said, the other gave me a price of 7,900. I don't recall the comprehension results of the others as I shelved this problem for months as a hard lesson to learn but what I do recall is, without recalling the numbers, is that 3 cylinders were at the normal level for a 4cyl. 66 230mbz but the # ***** wasn't. 20 percent stays in my mind. Believe or not, if you asked me a few months ago the same question, I could tell you with no problem.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
If one cylinder is not giving the ratio power than the other 3 that I was told are working fine, why the high cost and what is involved to make that cost so high. Does the head have to be replaced?
Expert:  Don replied 1 year ago.

thanks for the response

after the battery was replaced did it run ok ?

7900.00 or 15000.00 is an out rages price for a rebuild you can buy a new engine for that

but having said that loosing one cylinder will give you a power loss but if all others are ok it should run anyway on to a couple more questions

did you see blue smoke coming out of the tail pipe ? was the car using oil ?

did it happen all of a sudden or get worse over time

Expert:  Don replied 1 year ago.

i need to ask more questions to determine that

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
With the new battery, ran fine for 2 miles.
No blue smoke.
To my knowledge, wasn't using oil.
Prior, to his problem, the car sat in the garage for about 8 months but ran fine before. That's when I drove it about 2 miles, than it died unexpectedly. I was driving great before it died.
After the new battery, went about 1 mile, drove fine, then died like the first time. When finally started to get out of traffic(about 10 minutes), things got really bad.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Made a mistake. After sitting in the garage for 8 months, it ran fine for 2 miles. Not with the new battery.
Expert:  Don replied 1 year ago.

i have checked the specs on this car from different sources

they all tell me you have a 2.3 L 2308 CC L6 six cylinder engine

Expert:  Don replied 1 year ago.

ok thanks

is there or was there old gas in it by chance

when was a tune up done last

Expert:  Don replied 1 year ago.

this is what is supposed to be in the car did someone switch engines ?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Old gas.
The car was only driven about 100 miles total since I've had it. Had a lot of work done on it. The engine done twice to not have any problems. Always seemed to have problems even though I put in thousands to get it going. A lot of cosmetic work too.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I was told by the shop in Newport that it was not the original engine.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I did have a custom made cooling system put in, recommended by the shop I dealt with a lot , in order to avoid overheating so I could drive long distances. This was the last thing done before I left it garaged.
Expert:  Don replied 1 year ago.

its not there should be a 6 cylinder in there

Expert:  Don replied 1 year ago.

have a look at the link i sent you

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I could be mistaken and it may be a 6cyl. The owner I was dealing with would have told me if it was the wrong engine(4 rather than 6). Yet, the other shop manager who raved about the car initially said, after I told him to give me a quote to repair the cyl. problem, if the car was a salvage. It must be 6 then. He had a classic car dealer looking at it while it was in his shop. The dealer came twice. He said what I was asking for it was too high. And that was before it was repaired. The guy wanted to buy it as is. Was never told who the dealer was. Others were looking a it too. He put it in the front so it could be shown.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I'll be going back to the house on Monday. I'll know if it is a 4 or 6.
If it is a 4, what am I looking at. Put a new engine and what would be the cost?
If it is a 6 after all, and both shops say it is the #2 cyl. even though the repair in Newport had a hard time finding the problem, what is involved to fix it and the cost? I guess that is what I'm looking at.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
the worst scenario, would you happen to know about how much to put a new engine in. In the meantime, the car is in the garage. To keep it alive and avoid further problems with it, would turning it on once a week avoid future mechanical problems?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
This was from another posting and simply ask what I am seeking," I have a bad #2 cylinder in my 1966 230sl mbz. Need an answer as what to do and how much am I looking at?"
In the meantime, to keep it alive and avoid further problems with it, would turning it on once a week avoid future mechanical problems? That's it. Thanks for the link but answering these questions would be more helpful.
Expert:  Don replied 1 year ago.

Good Morning

i have read through your responses

let me put it to you in this i have had engines rebuilt over the years and have rebuilt 100s my self

the most it has ever cost me was 2500.00 and i had the heads redone for another 1200 but that was for a 396 for a ss chevelle

we need to confirm what indeed you have there a 6 cylinder or 4 cylinder i think you will find that you have a 6 cylinder

if only one cylinder has to be done it should not be that cost

it seems to me that someone really wants this car cheap so they can resell high

i have looked at the going prices for these cars and when restored they can get up to 75000.00 for it

i saw this on E-Bay which is usually a lot cheaper then Barrett -Jackson auction

i would suggest that you do this

1. verify that it is a 2.3 l six cylinder

2. have a compression done for each cylinder , the compression guages are not expensive at NAPA or auto zone and if you do not know how i can explain it to you

if compression is low that is usually because of ring wear (most common ) or head gasket or valve wear

you would have oil consumption ,or blue smoke coming out of the exhaust . if it is valves or valve seals there will be smoke at start up and none or very little after the oil is burnt off

3. as for starting the engine once in a while to run if the engine needs a rebuild then you are not really going to harm it much more than it is right now

3. once we verify what engine you have i can price out the cost of a rebuild and parts or a long block engine

please let me know how you wish to proceed

have a great day


Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Don, I want to thank-you for your patience for my layman knowledge about my car. Wish I could have talked to you months ago. Could've saved a lot of time, money, and eliminated a lot of stress. I am following your steps, one at a time. I will have the compression ck done by another repair shop, locally, who is rated 5 stars for integrity and honesty. After, I will be contacting you for further advice. Can't say thank-you enough. If all things work out, the thousands I already spent would be simply a lesson in "if you don't know, ask someone you can trust for advice." Thanks again!
Expert:  Don replied 1 year ago.

hi there again

thanks for your response and kind words

tell them to do a dry and wet test for compression this will eliminate any valve problem theories

and let me know please and the model of the engine as well as they told you it was not the original engine so i can effectively get a cost repair for you

i am thinking that it might m be a combination of fuel and fuel pump issues

thanks again

don i look forward to hearing for you

Expert:  Don replied 1 year ago.

Expert:  Don replied 1 year ago.

i have found a place that sells rebuilt engines

Call for turn key crate engines too. 1-***-***-****

Expert:  Don replied 1 year ago.

Mercedes2.3 4(###) ###-####- 93190E103$3,490 $800core deposit $132.50* the cost is this