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adam525i Reader
10/9/18 11:30 a.m.

I use the temporary foam click together play flooring that you can buy at Walmart etc. for when I'm rolling around underneath a car as my garage is too tight for a creeper or I'm outside. It might make life a little easier for you. 


Keep up the good work!


Doc Brown
Doc Brown Dork
10/9/18 4:15 p.m.

I really envy the manual transmission conversion you are doing.    I need to start collecting parts to do this to my diesel 190.

Rocambolesque New Reader
10/9/18 9:20 p.m.

In reply to adam525i :

Thanks for the tip. Right now my back if full of 1000 little stings from all the rocks. Also, when forcing on the wrenches it's real painful sometimes. A couple soft puzzle ties might make this more comfortable.

TED_fiestaHP Reader
10/10/18 6:33 a.m.

    One of the things I have learned to make life easier, cheap moving blanket from our favorite tool store.  Might not be enough over gravel, but sure helps on any surface I have used it one, it's like the best $4 I have spent.   Fold it over so you have about 4 layers, makes pavement almost comfortable.

Rocambolesque New Reader
10/14/18 8:56 p.m.

My plan for the weekend was to install the new transmission in the car. I succeeded!

Lifting it up there was tough. The tunnel in the 190E is TINY. There's not a lot of room to move! Since the input shaft extends further than the transmission mounting surface, you have no choice to lift the transmission and move it forward after the shaft clears the clutch's fingers. Only thing is that the tunnel is so narrow that my cool custom clutch line was in the way. I had to remove the bracket and move it out of the way. But that didn't give me all the clearance I needed. In the end, I had to jack the front of the engine a couple of inches to pivot it down like 10-15 degrees. After that, the transmission could be slipped into place.

Now I'm kinda scared since the transmission didn't go in all the way by hand. I started putting some bolts in and as I tightened them, the transmission got closer to the engine. I'm just scared that maybe the dowels weren't aligned and that I pushed the dowels back... Not sure if the holes were stepped to prevent that or not. However no excessive torque was required on the screws, so it's probably fine.

After that the transmission and engine were mated, I had to bolt the rear crossmember in place. That wasn't easy! If you look at the final picture below (I didn't stop to take pictures at that point, sorry), you'll see that the crossmember bolts each side into some sort of rails.

Those rails have many holes, but only one hole has a nut behind. Since the manual is shorter than the auto, I had to try and slide the nuts to other holes in the rail, closer to the engine (by seeing the shape of those rails, you can probably imagine the condition of the nuts in them. Remember how the floors were rusty). One nut was stuck and the other was free. I extracted the old nut from the rail and made new ones (I had only one piece of flatbar, and lucky me it was the right dimensions; 1"x1/8")

Warning: crappy welds ahead

After those 2 were installed, I noticed the rails weren't parallel (the closer you go to the engine, the more spaced they are) and that the slotted holes on the crossmember weren't slotted enough to reach the new holes. Since the perimeter of the crossmember has a bulge, I had to make custom washers to make sure the bolts sit level. Also, I had to slot the longitudinal holes that the mount bolts into. 

I test fitted it and noticed that I slotted the longitudinal holes the wrong side... Out it came again for more modification:

Finally I managed to bolt it and support the transmission. You can see that now the bolt sits level

Now all of this could have been avoided if I had the manual-specific crossmember. I never found any, and from the info I could gather from the people doing this swap, the automatic crossmember could be modified to fit. But there seems to be 2 models of automatic crossmembers, one with 2 holes like I have, and one with 4 holes. Maybe the 2nd version was more adapted... I don't know if I'll leave it like this. I fear that the heavy slotting of the longitudinal holes might have weakened it. Also the custom washers... Not sure if it's that good.

After bolting everything I really wanted to see how the shifter felt so I installed the 1-2 shift rod. The throw is very long, but no play. I expected that, a lot of people say the shift feel isn't very good in those cars. But at least with the delrin bushings I have, it doesn't feel sloppy. Next time I'll sort out the rest of the linkage and I'll find out how the rest of the shifts are.

Now there is one more manual 190E in the world smiley

Mezzanine Dork
10/15/18 11:09 a.m.

I'm not sure why everyone is so critical of shifter feel in these cars - due to the general rarity of manual transmission 190e, I'm inclined to believe it's a result of people parroting what they read on the internet. Mine shifts very nicely, with no play to speak of. So much so that I haven't even bothered to replace my shifter bushings.


badwaytolive Reader
10/15/18 2:04 p.m.

Very exciting! 

Thanks for sharing.


buzzboy Reader
10/15/18 8:08 p.m.
Mezzanine said:

I'm not sure why everyone is so critical of shifter feel in these cars - due to the general rarity of manual transmission 190e, I'm inclined to believe it's a result of people parroting what they read on the internet. Mine shifts very nicely, with no play to speak of. So much so that I haven't even bothered to replace my shifter bushings.


I've only driven one and it was absolutely garbage. My roommate had an 84 190D 2.2 5 speed, cool/rare car. That shifter was HOT garbage. Front front to rear it's a very long throw. Side to side was super tight to the point it was tough to know if you'd gone to 3rd or 5th. I'd equate it to driving a pudding stick mini.  He cleaned, lube and re-bushinged which gave it more feel, but didn't change the weird throws.


Rocambolesque New Reader
10/25/18 8:52 p.m.

I had to move the car the other day because the landlady told me she needed to install a temporary garage for the winter. She bought an SUV because she needed AWD, but soon after she found out that she cannot remove the snow on the roof... Anyways, now I need to park somewhere else in the gravel, but it's kinda on a slope (one side of the car would be lower) and I don't wanna risk doing jackstands on a slope like that. This means I'll have to wait until spring to finish the driveshaft and shift linkages. I'll do the engine compartment during the winter instead. 

I found out that I hooked up the linkage wrong the last time. I attached the 1-2 rod on the shifter to the 3-4 rod on the transmission. I corrected that and I tried to install the 1-2 rod, but it seems like I'll need to uninstall the 3-4 rod to do so because everything is so cramped in the tunnel! Also the 1-2 rod I have seems too short! And one of the shifter's arm rubs on the tunnel on the 3-4 shift? I think I might have a W202 shifter... After installing the right rod at the right place, I tested the shift and honestly it feels fine with the delrin bushings.

I also found a garage for sale locally, but it got sold too quick.crying The price was in my budget, it had heated floors and 2 spaces. It was the dream shop. I could already picture the 190E in one bay and my future 944 LS swap in the other bay... Or a XJS V12 manual swap. One day I'll find something and say goodbye to the gravel pit.

Maybe I'll do another update after the weekend.


PS: that hack crossmember won't cut it. It's fine for now to hold the transmission up there, but I found out that the manual version of the car (and certain autos) had a much beefier, 4 bolt crossmember. The part is still available new for about 50$. I'll buy one I think.

Rocambolesque New Reader
11/11/18 9:46 p.m.

Like I said las time, I'm going to focus on the engine and Megasquirt install for the winter and leave the last bits of the manual swap for spring.

So I started on the header. Stock cracked piece from 2.3-16:

To my surprise and amazement, it seems to fit on the stock downpipe:

Therefore, I will try to use it.

Gotta fit the tubes on that flange (16V is oval ports, 8V is round)

I went to the pawn shop, they had a 2015 DeWalt sawzall for 60$. Bought it and cut the tubes off. Then, I started to make them round again:

Very difficult because the header is stainless steel. I tried putting the end of the tubes in a vise to compress them. Everytime it would make a square because the flat sections of the ovals wouldn't move. In the end, crushing them in muffler clamps seemed to work OK. Not perfect, but it will be ok for what I am trying to achieve.

Next time I will try to tack the tubes to the new flange and see if it wants to fit on the car.


Rocambolesque New Reader
12/1/18 5:39 p.m.

Not much time to post today, but I have to say I did a few tacks and tried many settings on the machine...


Finally I managed to test fit it on the car. It fits like a glove and I think it looks really cool. I put the coils on there to give the full effect.


Rocambolesque New Reader
1/6/19 4:55 p.m.

I did not work on the car much since last update because of the holidays... Today I did a couple things.

I finally received the 90-degree countersinks I ordered like a month ago. I countersank the backside of the holes for the coil bracket so I could use flat head screws for valve cover clearance:

Then I assembled everything. Looks good, now I only need to do paint. The assembly weights about 3.5 lbs.

I also did some welding on my header. It's not easy! But I think I'm still too cold? Sometimes it'll lay good beads with the same settings, sometimes it does this. 


Goober89 None
4/11/19 8:11 p.m.

Any progress? I just read through this whole thread and I'm loving it!

adam525i Reader
4/12/19 4:17 p.m.

I think they're still shoveling snow in Quebec sadly.

Looking forward to updates when they happen though.


Goober89 New Reader
4/13/19 1:41 p.m.

In reply to adam525i :

It's hard to remember the rest of the world doesn't have summer and slightly colder summer like houston

Rocambolesque New Reader
4/15/19 10:45 p.m.

Yes we are still shoveling snow haha! Actually we got about 7 inches of snow last Monday. But it quickly melted and I finally managed to gain access to the car. I worked on it during the last 2 weeks. I got most of the CIS stuff out, intake manifold is on my workbench ready for a good cleanup and paint. The Saab fuel rail fits good, I need to fab up some mounts. The coilpacks clear the hood as I hoped. I will need your help for a TPS solution. I might have to swap the throttle body for something else. I also designed a cool aluminum fan shroud that I'll eventually send out to laser cutting. I'll post pictures tomorrow or Wednesday.

Goober89 New Reader
4/17/19 8:38 a.m.

In reply to Rocambolesque

I've heard of people using the e36 tb but i think that's for the 6 cylinder efi crowd. I could be wrong though

Rocambolesque New Reader
4/17/19 9:30 p.m.

As promised, here are some pictures.

The coilpack setup is completed. It bolts to the valve cover and it clears the hood. I only need to clean the plug wires and get resistor plugs as the 190E uses non-resistor plugs. Fun fact; Rock Auto lists the same plugs for a 2000 Silverado with a 4.8 than the 190E. I'll get 4 of them.

Intake manifold and all the CIS stuff is removed. Fun fact: the valve cover is magnesium (and needs to be repainted bad). That's so racing!!

Everything in that area needs a major cleaning.

Please help me with this:

The line I'm holding is the fuel supply from the tank. The line next to it goes to the CIS fuel distributor. The big line that runs vertically is a refrigerant line for A/C. Is this some sort of fuel cooler??

Manifold is on my workbench. Note the casting rib/bridge between runners 2 and 3 next to the throttle body. Also note that the return spring for the throttle is external.

This is the stock Rube Goldberg linkage. Normally it attaches to the CIS fuel distributor. At first, my plan was to make a steel bracket to hold the linkage. That way I could keep the stock cable and keep the cruise control. My plan is to run an air-cleaner style filter on top of the throttle directly. But then I realized the linkage would be in the way of the air cleaner. Also, the cruise control works only 70% of time. I don't mind removing it...

Apparently the stock TPS on this is not compatible with MS. I had a VW ABA 2.0 OBD1 throttle in my parts bin and I took the TPS off of it. It's too thick:

I could run the VW throttle, it just needs the holes enlarged a bit. I'd have to run the blade perpendicular to the plenum. I don't know if that would affect even air distribution across the cylinders (probably not...). I'd have to cut the rib/bridge on the upper intake:

But then the throttle cam is on the wrong side for the cable! I'll have to hit the yard soon to find a new throttle! Anybody knows a car that has a similar throttle orientation? TheE36 throttle doesn't seem like it would work! The inline-6 M103 manifold is not made the same way; the throttle is not a tight fit between 2 runners like this one! Or does anybody know a source for a ultra-slim TPS?


But th

TurnerX19 HalfDork
4/17/19 11:25 p.m.

Yes that is a fuel cooler in your plumbing. If it is hot enough to run the AC it is assumed to be hot enough to boil fuel in the engine room. CIS is particularly affected by such problems, but some carb and L-Jet Jaguars do a similar cooler too. Maybe some others I have not seen. I would not re-orient your throttle body for just the very thing you suspect. I have a Chrysler TPS on my megasquirt X1/9. It is pretty small, but not thin in the direction you needsad Consider putting the TPS on the linkage with a nod towards Rube...He was here for cruise control, why not make him useful!

Goober89 New Reader
4/18/19 11:37 a.m.


Did alil digging on the rev.. if the e36 solution doesn't suit you the stock tb can be modified. You can also run it on map w/ no tps but tps is better for drivability

Rocambolesque New Reader
4/30/19 8:52 p.m.

My old friend came to visit last weekend and we got stuff done. I used to wrench a lot with this guy back in the days. Back then I had my Mk2 Jetta and he had the meanest, stripped-down mk2 Golf. He had a ABA engine with a big Techtonics cam, race downpipe, gutted interior, and OMP bucket seat. Anyways it had been a long time since we wrenched on cars together so it was a cool weekend. He brought a complete arsenal of Milwaukee M12 power tools with him so we found excuses to try them all. We only had one day so I did not take much pictures. In short we managed to remove all the accessories off the engine, completely delete the A/C and remove the rest of the cooling system. It's funny looking at the engine bay now because you realize that the M102 is quite small when you remove that mega intake manifold... I put all the A/C stuff and the CIS-specific parts on a scale and they weighted a total of 55 pounds! Sure I will put EFI parts back on, but I'm pretty sure that this whole conversion will have allowed me to shed something like 50 lbs off the nose of the car! That's a good weight reduction right there!

Yesterday I used about 1L of Super Clean to degrease 27 years of dirt off my intake manifold:

Still not 100% and I will also paint it silver before re-installing. Now I need to repeat the process on the whole engine bay...

Also I need to tell you that the Magnaflow muffler I got last summer won't be installed on this car as it got stolen from my basement. I won't get into the details but it's very frustrating and there isn't much I can do. At least nothing else got stolen.

I'll use the stock TB to retain the cruise control and use the stock linkage. I still haven't figured out how to do the TPS but I made a steel bracked to hold the linkage:

Previously that linkage was mounted on the CIS fuel distributor. I mounted the bracket on the distributor's rubber mounts. They're too short and they're soft so I ordered 35mm long aluminum bushings to replace them.

We also figured out how to do the crank sensor and trigger wheel but I'll post pictures once I do it.

I'll give you an update during the weekend smiley


Rocambolesque New Reader
5/25/19 6:07 p.m.

Here's an update:

I received the 35 mm aluminum spacers, so I installed the bracket and the original linkage. Now I noticed that this moves the linkage outwards a few mm compared to its original position, but it still works perfectly. I just hope it won't contact something else in the engine bay...

The fuel rail fits perfectly. Now I just need to make some adapter blocks to mate the stock brackets to the Mercedes manifold mounting bosses. Big shout-out to the guy who figured out that a Saab 9-3 rail works on a M102.

I made a delete plate for the 5th injector:

I figured how to do a very cool remote-mounted TPS. I spent a day just making the 3-4 brackets below... 

First I made this bracket (note that all brackets made in this thread are made with an angle grinder and a cordless drill):

This allows the mounting of the TPS here (I later decided to flip the TPS around, placing the connector forwards of the car):

The inside of the TPS looks like this:

So I used an M8 bolt to make a shaft (again, with a grinder...):

Made another plate:

When you assemble everything with 1/4" alu spacers for the bolts, it looks like this:

Now I started cutting the arm out of aluminum but I realized I had nothing to cut aluminum except for a handsaw and I broke the blade trying to cut the part. I also went off line...

Basically, there will be another assembly similar to this one on the throttle body. That other arm will pull on a relay shaft made out of 2 rod ends and some #10-32 threaded rod, which will actuate that other arm I am making on the TPS. The rod ends I got are like this, with a sintered bronze layer inside for permanent lubrication:

In the end I think it will be pretty cool when it's all painted and finished.

Question for you people; where should I mount the air temperature sensor? I can either mount it in the metal pipe above the throttle body like so by welding in a 3/8 NPT bung:

Or I could use the old EGR port, which is right under the throttle on the plenum "floor":

The 2nd location would be more concealed and would allow me to lower the air cleaner a bit. But I don't know if it will still give me good temp readings? Also, when I opened the manifold (probably for the 1st time in 25 years), that area was full of oil from the PCV system. Putting a threaded sensor in that area might cause leaks too. What do you think?

Finally I received the air cleaner. I got a Mr Gasket because there is no way I'm paying 100$ for a K&N (which doesn't filter well according to this board). It looks small... There is a taller filter available, I think I'll install that if I have enough room under the hood. Also, I'll paint the chrome top black because it just screams "my other vehicle is a Can-Am Spyder" to me...


noddaz SuperDork
5/25/19 8:02 p.m.

That intake manifold plenum is interesting.  Air goes in the top and does a 180 degree turn to hit the runners.  I know this is a strange idea, how about a homemade plenum and put the throttle body somewhere else?  But make sure you don't change the operating parameters... 


Rocambolesque New Reader
5/26/19 2:52 p.m.

I made the arm that goes on the TPS today. Next week I'll do the one on the throttle itself and I'll be able to finish this sub-project:

Now I have to buy an allen key small enough for those 2 #6-32 set screws!

HundredDollarCar New Reader
5/30/19 9:46 p.m.
Rocambolesque said:

Question for you people; where should I mount the air temperature sensor? I can either mount it in the metal pipe above the throttle body like so by welding in a 3/8 NPT bung:

I would think the default position to use would be whatever the manufacturer of your EFI aftermarket system specifies.  I think you mentioned using MS.  Barring that (Caution: this is only my opinion and I'm not an engineer) most Bosch systems, whether pulsed or continuous, place the intake air temp sensor upstream of the throttle body and upstream of the flow sensor, be it a flapper or hot-wire mass flow arrangement.  I think this is to get a reading on ambient air temperature before any pressure drop, which for any gas flow will induce some degree of temperature drop.  I suspect the temp effect is greater at idle (large pressure differential) than at WOT (smaller press diff).  Whatever controller you are using should factor in the temp differential at various throttle openings using the fixed Inside Diameter of your intake track (usually the TB, the point of smallest ID).

Just my two cents...


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