Front suspension dropped 320sl

jeremy r

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Hi! Just joined this site because I am in desperate need of all your brains out there! First and foremost me and the car are in Tenerife, the car being a 320SL with ADS and ride height adjustment. I uncovered the car this morning to find the body nearly sat on the wheels (front only). All lights and fluids are correct and have tried the usual, but the front will not come back up and I am not even sure that it should be driven. Forgot to mention rear end functioning correctly. I just hope that someone can point me in the right direction??? Thanks in advance!:)
 
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television

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Hello and welcome,, I will send a PM to the expert on ADS for you
 

Richard Moakes

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Hi Jeremy,

What year is your 320SL? Do you know the chassis number prefix? WDB129<xxx> I need the xxx bit.

Cheers,

Richard
 

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Not much help but I would guess at 129063,,it is something that very few of the later cars had
 
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jeremy r

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Hi Richard. Thanks for replying. The number you asked for is: WDB1290631F152570. Year is 1997. Malcolm was right!
 

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Hi Richard. Thanks for replying. The number you asked for is: WDB1290631F152570. Year is 1997. Malcolm was right!

Only just :D:D the model changed 6 months later :D
 

Richard Moakes

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So, it's ADS 2, I must confess I only have theoretical knowledge of ADS 2, all my practical knowledge is with ADS 1.

I doubt both spheres have failed at the same time, so it's probably a hydraulic problem. The front left and right struts are independently controlled in ADS2 by the main valve in response to the inputs from the ride height sensors.

Sadly I think you may have a problem in the main valve block, or the sensor/ecu is sending the wrong control signals to the valves.

Is there a MIL light for ADS lit up on the instrument panel?
 
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jeremy r

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hi richard there is no lights coming up,unless switch is activated,do you think the car could be moved or will it need to carried ? thanks jeremy
 

Richard Moakes

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I drove mine for 100's of miles with failed front spheres and no hydraulic pressure.

Not because I thought it was ok, but because at the time I didn't know better or what was wrong. I would advise taking it to somewhere that knows this system, however I have no idea what is available in Tenerife :-(

It would be worth checking the battery, ADS doesn't like low voltage, and if you have access to someone with STAR, then a full reset of the ADS system could be performed. If it were my car, I would be undoing hydraulic lines to see if fluid is flowing before handing over large sums of money to someone to component swap.
 
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jeremy r

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good morning richard its good to know you guys are out there. ishare your sentiments but i dont where the valve block is, or which lines to break,i am not afraid i just know nothing about the system or why its even there,i agree a reset of ads is next step,but on your advise iwould like to test hydraulics ,again thanks i miss the network in the uk
 

Richard Moakes

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Jeremy,

Take a look at the following, it shows the lines, valves and pump.

Cheers,

Richard
 

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jeremy r

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hi to you all through lack of choice i took the car in to main dealer,with the idea of a reset on electrics,they put it on the hoist first and then asked me to leave.anyhow 5 hours later the car came standing proud again,they say there was an open circuit on wiring between sensor and block ,being in spanglish thats about the gist of it. there was also abroken support bracket l.h.d nearside on roll bar,but that could have been taking the car in .im relieved anyway,but would love to know more about the system thanks
 

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Pleased that you have the car fixed,,though I have all of the info on these things,it is just too much to send out. You would learn more on a web search ADS
 
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jeremy r

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hi malcom you have proberly gathered this is my my first merc,ex jdc member.always been hands on,but been lazy this last ten years , so since then along came c.p.u/s.so its catch up time,i just have to know how things works, and im sure im in good company,i did try the net but i really didnt come up with anything to get my teeth into regarding ads 11.so please be patient ,when you have time just give me a start.im sorry but i just dont know why an sl should lifted up 2 stages thanks again.
 

Richard Moakes

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The real trick is that it lowers itself at speed to reduce drag and improve fuel consumption.

The height adjustment is just a convenience feature for getting over obstacles and difficult driveways, I end up using the increased height every time I visit my parents to avoid scraping the exhaust on his awful driveway.

Good news on getting the car sorted, you have added to the knowledge pool, I wasn't aware a break in the wiring to the sensor would end up lowering it. The broken roll bar bracket may have also been significant as the sensor is attached to the roll-bar.
 

Bolide

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This is the kind of repair a main dealer is good at - all the data is in their system and they have all the fault-finding tools

Those hidden wiring faults can be a swine to locate without the right tools

Nick Froome
www.w124.co.uk
 
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jeremy r

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hi richard the break in the wiring is what i was told? as i say the bracket could well have bust on the way in ,the front had dropped that low it really didnt feel right,so as for adding to the pool its great if it is correct ,but, because of climate etc. the underneath looks as new, would a wiring lume have gone ,i dont know, but would like to know more ,ps i wondered where the sensor was, this forum is great/ also the rear view mirror, tiny plastic clips bust any body got remedies.im glad your out there J R
 
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jeremy r

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HI NICK i agree with you absolute ,used to be involved with this very thing in industry, different voltage though.but i really would not have felt confident in tackling this,but i would love to see a schematic drawing of the whole thing.but as you can imagine giving up and trotting down to the main dealer is like pulling a rib out ,but as you say, good job they are there. thanks
 

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This is the kind of repair a main dealer is good at - all the data is in their system and they have all the fault-finding tools

Those hidden wiring faults can be a swine to locate without the right tools

Nick Froome
www.w124.co.uk

This is not quite 100% the data for this car was all on HHT and they were thrown away and very little data was moved over on to wis,,and STAR is not nuch use on this car
Perhaps overseas they kept hold of their HHT testers
 
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jeremy r

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malcom could you just expand a bit on hht and wis,thanks
 


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