This is my '02 300M Special, black-on-black.
This is my second 300M, my first was totalled in a car accident. After I was cut a check from my insurance, I went after this particular rust-free car. It was a corporate car in TX for the first 60K miles of it's existance, and had several owners before it was bought in an auction and shipped to PA, where I bought it in early '08.
This past winter, the car sat for a few months, and it needed some work. I recently had the timing belt and water pump done by a local shop, and thought that they had mis-sealed the pump, I was leaking coolant. I topped the coolant off and took my girl for a drive in the car - it started hard, threw a misfire code, then settled down - and I later noticed that the engine was making a tick-tick-tick sound. I parked the car until I could take a better look at it.
^ everybody's hungry!
It was around this time that I met Matt (mlasms08) at my local Chrysler dealership. I asked for a "guy that knew LH body cars" and they immediately thought of Matt! He agreed to stop by and take a look at the car. We thought it could have been the stuck lifter condition, so off came the valve covers.
Well... it wasn't a leaky water pump.
Couldn't believe what we found...
Sludge. Thick, black, brownie-mix sludge.
I sent the remaining oil out for analysis. The return letter wasn't very promising.
Ruh roh! So off come the bearing caps.
That is the source of the knocking... a scored crankshaft, pic doesn't show much more than a 1/8" notch, but it was quite deep.
FML. Now what? This engine, if it wasn't so completely gunked up, was eminently worth saving. But, with the amount of goo we found everywhere, we knew she was toast. So, we did what any red-blooded American would do, and drove to the partsyard.
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