Rearing the Rear

Nate Lander (left) and Michael Kunz (right) guide the 250SL parts car out of its resting spot so we can put it on the lift at Mercedes-Benz Classic Center to remove the differential.
The trick to safely removing the rear compensator spring is to remove only one of the two bolts holding the mount in place and let the spring slowly rotate the mount, controlling it with a crowbar.
Nat looks over the differential unit and concludes that it’s all in good shape. He knows these units well and set us up with every part we needed in order to serve and rebuild it when we got it home.

Previously, we explained how we pulled out the differential from a 250SL Mercedes. This was going to get us rear disc brakes and a taller final drive ratio for better highway cruising.

Our friends at Mercedes-Benz Classic Center grouped, crated and shipped the differential with other parts we had ordered, which saved us some money on shipping.

When we disassembled this rear end, we were pleasantly surprised to find that it was in exceptional condition with little to no wear to the gears and bearings.

With the Pinehurst Concours just weeks away, we decided to postpone rebuilding our Benz’s rear end until after the big event.

We would certainly benefit from the disc brakes and taller highway gears when we head for the Going to the Sun Rally in September.

That would also give us time to send out the differential to our buddy, Steve Eckerich, who’d built and installed a custom limited-slip unit into the Mercedes differential. Eckerich has built limited-slips for the Honda, Mazda and Triumph racer crowd for years and was surprised that our Mercedes differential was the most overbuilt one he’d ever worked on.

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