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Marty, Mercedes Technician
Category: Mercedes
Satisfied Customers: 53899
Experience:  Bosch Certified Master Tech. Over 35 years experience.
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380sl: 1982 380sl. key won't turn ignition. trying to remove

Customer Question

1982 380sl. key won't turn ignition. trying to remove tumbler...hard to drill out...suggestion?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Mercedes
Expert:  Marty replied 2 years ago.
Hi, I'm pretty sure I replied to you on this the other day. I've copied and pasted my reply below.
Hi Larry, welcome to Just Answer. My name is***** don't drill the lock you have to use a large Dremel to grind the lock cylinder away. This makes a huge mess so you need to lay a large sheet under the steering column to catch all of the metal. Personally I do not remove the cylinder this way. When the key will not turn the problem is usually not the lock cylinder the problem is the steering lock mechanism itself. I prefer to replace the steering lock along with the lock cylinder if necessary. The lock cylinders are becoming more and more difficult to find so if you can save the cylinder you are better off. You will need to work under the dash and through the instrument cluster opening to cut the steering lock shaft where it enters the steering column. I use a mini sawzall for this purpose. Once you cut the lock you can more than likely turn the key and remove the lock cylinder from the lock using the conventional method and reuse it. I've attached the instructions below. Also, I have had good success vibrating the lock cylinder with an air hammer from under the dash while trying to turn the key at the same time. The vibration jiggles the pieces around enough to allow the key to turn and you can avoid cutting the steering lock.
Copy and paste the links below:
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