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Registered 2005 SLK280
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56 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hi,

Had the car for more than a few months now and love it. Had a bit of work done here and there and enjoying the odd bits of DIY that I can manage on it.

I’ve spotted at the very front ‘tip’ of the nearside wing (where it comes to a point near the headlight) two very small bubbles of paintwork, which is clearly the start of a possible rust issue. The paint isn’t broken.

I wonder whats the best way to nip this in the bud now? Does anyone know if the mobile paint ‘touch-up’ companies in the UK do rust treatment at this early stage? (I’ve used them previously on other cars for paint scuffs and scratches and found the work to be excellent). I don’t really want to attempt a DIY as I know I will make things very much worse. I could just drop it into a bodywork repair place, but wondered if there are other options?
 

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Super Moderator UK SLK 55 AMG 2007
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27,303 Posts
If the pro's say the whole panel needs doing then you have nothing to lose trying touch up for yourself.
Some excellent you tube clips on how to do this.
 

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Registered 2007 SLK350
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655 Posts
If there is rust on the surface, you can be fairly sure there is more lurking underneath, out of sight.


If you start poking at it, be prepared :crying:
 

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Premium Member 2007 SLK55 AMG
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3,559 Posts
If the paint isn't broken and it's coming from the inside/under the paint, there is a 30 year warranty.

You will need to make sure there are no chips near the rust, the car is sold as premium quality but you will not get premium quality care...:grin:

Always worth a go..:x
 

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Premium Member 2007 SLK55 AMG
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3,559 Posts
I had a rust issue with my 2007 Octavia. A laser weld across the rear hatch area. The car had been serviced and inspected by Skoda around 6 months prior to me noticing it. They initially said it was nothing to do with them as it had not been reported early enough, I pointed out that they had ticked and passed off the rust inspection at every service.

When you here a dealer 'Doh' it's a wonderful thing :grin:
 

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Registered 2004 SLK200
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23 Posts
I've just had this exact issue on our 2004.


I fixed this and combined the job with fixing some U/S parking sensors and also replacing the totally rotten collapsed wing/bumper/headlight support brackets (curiously this front wing and bracket are the only rust on the car) with some absolutely pristine examples from a breaker in Florida!


I ground the rust out on the surface very carefully with a dremel, the underside bit of the lip was almost gone in places. Very carefully build the surface up again by using carefully brushed on primer as filler and sanding back, blended the repaired area carefully and the lacquering and again blending in by sanding using 2000 and 3000 grit wet and dry, them mopping and polishing. It's not a perfect match - that's pretty well impossible - but it's not noticeable unless you are really looking.



The car will need new wings - but that is certainly something that can wait at least a year now.
 

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Registered 2005 SLK280
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56 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
OK -

I've been to a recommended body repair shop and their advice (having dealt with hundreds of SLK wings) is to replace the wing and have it colour matched. About £450 plus VAT.
I did ask them how much to simply 'repair' the rust and paint to match but they pointed out that at best, that kind of work would last about 18 months. £150 plus VAT but the rust will come back.

I'm really (really) struggling to find an aftermarket wing for the r171 I own, however, I have found a supplier of any wing, painted up in advance. The price looks likely to be in the region of £255, supply only.

Next question is -
Is it a DIY job to take off the old wing and replace with a new painted wing?
(yes I know the colour match will likely be slightly off).
 

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Registered
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29 Posts
I was also looking for replacement wings but struggled. Can you share details of where you managed to get them.

One of the biggest issues I had was removing the front bumper as the bolts from the wing to the bumper had seized solid and wouldn’t budge. My local garage used an angle grinder to take the bolt heads off but it still made a bit of a mess of the brackets.

Mark
 

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DAS/STAR Premium Member 2005 SLK 55 AMG
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4,024 Posts
.. one of mine has started to bubble too ..


BUT .. it's a 14yr old car, lives outside and gets driven pretty much every day, regardless of weather.


Whilst not ideal, I kind of accept these things may happen! - there's a few wings on ebay, and I'm sure Dronsfields will have one ....
 

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Registered 2004 SLK200
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23 Posts
I accept that my repair will last a year, at best. You will never ever stop rust and the only way to solve this is to replace the entire wing.


I did take the car to a couple of bodyshops and they simply declined to repair the rust point blank - they just didn't want any repercussions when the rust comes through again.



As to the brackets - they are often in a very sorry state indeed - I got a pair of replacements from a breaker in Naples, Florida. The condition of them reflects the condition of the undersides of the US based cars I see in pictures on this forum; the UK cars are always such a mess from our salt laden roads.
 

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Registered 2005 SLK55 AMG
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1,697 Posts
This thread makes me cringe - but it's useful. Thanks guys.

Rust saw off my otherwise pristine 126. Front wings, rear arches, bulkhead, bumpers....
 

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Registered 2008 SLK350
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67 Posts
Rust on mine too....

Have rust bubbles on nearside front wing in front of the wheel where it meets the bumper - none anywhere else.

Guy delivering stuff yesterday also has an SLK - exactly the same issue - only on nearside and no other problems (visible!).

Seems to be somewhat of a pattern going here and along with comments on this thread and elsewhere it does seem as if MB have a problem with one specific area of the bodywork. Currently as I have a full MB service history I am pursuing them for a bodywork warranty (30 year anti perforation) claim. So far am with the Motor Ombudsman as MB have quoted just over £1200 for a repair (new wing etc) and say its not their problem.

Anyone had any joy with MB (UK) and bodywork warranty claims?? In the US I would be hearing a class action lawyer starting to get involved........
 

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Premium Member 2007 SLK55 AMG
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3,559 Posts
Ok
So I believe that enough people report the same problem it can persuade the manufacturer to accept some liability?
A large number of cars with the same issue can't be the same stone chip....
As I mentioned in an earlier post the cars do come with a 30 year warranty.
 

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Registered 2005 SLK280
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56 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
Couple of updates -

Bodyshop almost split themselves laughing when I suggested I might get MB to cover the rust repair under warranty. To be fair, I'd be almost embarrassed to ask on a car with 3 or 4 previous owners, 15 years old and not even close to a full MB service history - let alone the likely bodywork inspections required.

Secondly - wings for the R171 are like hens teeth - there are just virtually none in the UK on the aftermarket. I did find a UK based supplier Home Page who will deliver fully painted wings - quoted £400 plus delivery. Thats actually a reasonable price I'm guessing, but by the sounds of previous posts, getting the old wing off clean will be pretty difficult.

I'm going to just monitor the rust and see how quickly it develops. At the same time, keep an eye on Ebay etc for aftermarket wings. Might even get lucky with an online breakers with a wing in the same colour - who knows. Thanks for all the replies.
 

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Registered 2004 SLK350
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102 Posts
The wings are around the £250 mark from Mercedes Edinburgh. Ask nicely and they should chop off 10%. Don't go down the pre-painted route ... it will probably look awful and you'll then need to get the painted blended by your local bodyshop.
 

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Registered 2008 SLK280
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546 Posts
The wings are around the £250 mark from Mercedes Edinburgh. Ask nicely and they should chop off 10%. Don't go down the pre-painted route ... it will probably look awful and you'll then need to get the painted blended by your local bodyshop.
Quite, the wing may need a little work to fit properly - the dies producing them wear as each wing is produced hence work required and this needs being done prior to painting.

If the car is a keeper then to my mind it would make sense to fit a new MB wing...£250 + paint does not seem too expensive.
 
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