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The restoration project of “Suzy Love ❤️”

Since I became the next keeper of this 1960 Mercedes-Benz R121.020 |190SL [a.k.a. Suzy Love ❤️], during November of 2018, I have gradually embarked on a multi step restoration process. For my Car Guys & Gals friends 👫 I post here the story as it unfolds in her timeline. For the introductory post of this historic vehicle click here: https://byronriginos.com/2018/12/06/my-dancing-with-the-best-or-nothing

I. Selecting the right partner for the mechanical jobs at hand

As an appetizer enjoy this short video 👏👌😍

Most of the suspension and engine mount rubbers needed replacement 😮

There was a positive talk within our www.3cg.gr ecosystem about the PAPAPANAGIOTOU Brothers, as being the good experts in all things Mercedes-Benz and classics in particular. Hence a visit to their establishment in Neos Kosmos was appropriate. Below some photos of our early encounters and getting to know each other (i.e. master mechanic and older brother Nikos, plus Vagias and Costas).

My SL during an early visit to PAPAPANAGIOTOU Brothers workshop
Another visiting time
Master mechanic Nikos PAPAPANAGIOTOU @work ✅🏁

II. Getting the jobs done

After a thorough inspection of the car, a list of spare parts was made. Flash back: Since my other “ground up” restoration project several years back, involving a 1967 Mercedes-Benz 250 SE Coupè [W111.020] , I had established a good relationship with one of Germany’s well known Mercedes spare parts supplier, the firm Niemöller . Hence sourcing spares for the R121.020 was not like rediscovering a wheel. To make a long story short, up to this writing ✍️, four Purchase Orders have been placed approximately for €4,500, not to mention about another €1,000 invested for spares and services from the local Greek market. Lest I forget, the €83 for the RetroSound accessories.

The bulk of these orders arrived just before Easter time while the pressure was on to have the car ready for our longtime planned adventure trip to Toscana, Italy 🇮🇹 commencing on 3rd May. More here: https://3cg.gr/2019/03/06/toscana-drive- may-2019/

One task which required immediate attention were the twin Solex carbs. Nikos required some fast & dirty solution, whereupon I asked an old friend and well known carb specialist to step in. John Palmos-The Motorman delivered the reconditioned carbs in a short notice and oversaw their refitting and final tuning 👏👌👍😎😍

The twin PHH Solex carbs before work is done ✅
The twin PHH Solex carbs before work is done ✅
The finished Solex’s refitted 👌😎
The twin PHH Solex carbs before work is done ✅
The finished Solex’s refitted 👌😎

After some negotiating with Nikos, we agreed that the car would be safe and reliable for the trip to Italy (added ca. 2,300 kilometers on the odometer, without a mechanical glitch), and upon my return the jobs would continue. Fast forward to today, the car is back in the shop for completion of the various jobs, which briefly include:

  • Front end, removal, reconditioning and fitting all new parts required
  • Rear end, removal, reconditioning and fitting all new parts required
  • Transmission, removal, reconditioning and fitting all new parts required
  • Propeller shaft, removal, reconditioning and fitting all new parts required
  • Differential, removal, reconditioning and fitting all new parts required
  • Realignment of the front end and checking the camber of the rear wheels
  • Fitting of the new & fun intake Wolf horn
The Wolf 🐺 whistle works on the vacuum that the engine creates. It’s a fun automotive accessory which I have installed in my 1931 Ford Model A 👍😉👌
  • Fitting of the new windshield rubber seals
  • Fitting of the new spark plug lead wires
  • Removing the corroded front cross tube and fitting a new part (see picture below).
  • Plus a number of other details…

    The front cross member (tube), a critical part which required a replacement.
    The corroded front cross member; one of the few nasty surprises of my 190SL ❗️

III. Some additional photos

All fittings are reconditioned and electrostatic-ally painted goldfish-yellow
A new set of Bilstein shock absorbers await their installation

Ready for refitting of the main front suspension member
The corroded front cross member tube 😢
The central anchoring point of the crossmember tube

Beracuda View All

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