MB Badging Conversions

Zach Woods

Super Moderator
The following is archival - originally found on the Yahoo Sprinter Westfalia Group.

This is most useful for the newer Sprinters which have the "dreaded black goo" adhesive. I did not have the black adhesive and found this process much easier than what is described here.

*****

MB grill conversion; Here's how I did it

Ok, it's finally done and I feel like I should share the process to hopefully make it easier for the next guy. This is how I did it on my 2005 Westy.

1) Pry off the the chrome plastic form the black plastic that's glued to the hood. This makes it easier to heat and grab the black backing.

2) I heated the plastic with a heat gun (think super duty hair dryer) with a wet towel protecting the paint. The corners you can kinda start working away. If you're lucky all you'll see is 2 strips of double sided tape. In my case there was an additional thick bead of hard black goo down the center with the tape above and below it. It sounds like Dodge started doing this with latter vans (As to make it impossible to do the conversion, HA! I'll
show you Dodge).

3) I really don't think the urethane black glue is affected by the heat but heating the plastic makes it easier the pull away. I pretty much just got a corner of the plastic up and grabbed it with vice grips and PULLED. The plastic would break away and leave the bead exposed. At no point did the glue come away from the paint.

4) At this point I used the "Smart Eraser Pad" made by Astro Pneumatic Tool Company. I got mine at Car Qwest. (Thanks to Scott for the tip.) It's like a 3 3/4" tan soft rubber wheel you put in a drill. It's really cool you can use it to take off the double sided tape easily. I used some 3M adhesive remover (from same place) to clean up the last of the goo.

5) Now the real fun starts. This urethane glue is really stuck to the paint. I guess you could use the wheel all the way but I cut as much of it away as possible first. I took an 8 in. piece of duct tape, in the middle on one edge I covered the thick "back" of a single edged razor blade then folded the tape over so you have an 8in x 1in strip with the blade sticking out in the middle. It makes it like a draw knife. You can rest the tape covered backbone on the paint and use the "handle" tape to make small sawing movements. That got the bead down to a more manageable thickness. You might be able to use this technique to cut the glue with the plastic backer attached, I'd already pulled it off.

6) From here it was the wheel all the way down to the paint. You have to use the wheel all the way, I couldn't find any solvent that would take off even the thinnest bit. This little sucker is amazing in that for the most part it gets the black stuff but doesn't seem to hurt the paint. I went thru 2 wheels and untold hours but I finally got it all off.

In the end I think the paint could use a little buffing and I nicked the paint once with the razor blade before I figured out the draw knife thing. All in all I think it was worth it, especially considering the mess I found myself in when I discovered the "horrible black goo". The guys at the body shop I talked to sounded like they were going to do the same thing, considering how long it took I'm glade I went for it.

Hope this helps

Ps. How do you put on the "Mercedes Benz" lettering for the back door thart comes with the grill conversion kit?
 

Zach Woods

Super Moderator
The following is archival. It is a follow-up to the previous post.

*****

Re: MB grill conversion; Here's how I did it

"Ps. How do you put on the "Mercedes Benz" lettering for the back door
that comes with the grill conversion kit?" - - - -

1) Remove the "Dodge" badge.

2) Clean the area well. The glue removal liquid you used on the hood will work well for this.

3) Determine where the new MB logo lettering will go. You may wish to put a little grease pencil mark on the paint where the "M" will be lined up.

4) Peal off the reverse side of the decal. Be a little careful as some of the lettering may try to lift off.

5) Line up the decal where you want it to be. Starting at one end, press, gently, the decal onto the paint.

6) Using a soft cloth or wax paper, or something of the sort, gently rub the face of the onto the paint. Work out any air bubbles that you might see.

7) Gently lift one corner of the tape facing and remove it slowly. The decal letter shoul remain in place.

8) After removing the tape facing, place a wax-like, or freezer bag, on top of the decal lettering and with a soft cloth or with your finger, rub over the lettering. This should effectively remove any bubbles and flatten any wrinkles.

Just take your time, and enjoy the project.

A note about the rubber "goo". I found that using my thumbnail, I was able peal most of the rubber foam on the goo. Finger hurt for a day or two, but I didn't injure the paint. With the foam rubber removed, the eraser wheel worked very well.
 

Don Horner

2012 Unity IB
Just an additional note for those with spare tire kits in the rear, like our Leisure Travel Van. If you put the M-B decal on the left door, above the license plate (where the Dodge or Freightlner badge was), no one will be able to see it. Since I made the conversion to M-B badging strictly for ego reasons, I mounted the decal on the right door, near the bottom, just above a stripe added by LTV. Looks fairly natural there.

What I would really like is a flat, glue-on M-B star for the rear, like all the sedans and M-B SUV's have. All of the stars I've found so far have 3 pegs for mounting, plus are ever-so-slightly curved to fit the contours of whatever car they're for.

I don't care if whatever I apply matches the German Sprinters or not; I figure that of the 12 people in the USA who have actually noticed a Sprinter in Germany, none remember exactly where the badging was located.
 

Zach Woods

Super Moderator
Hi Don -

Don't know if this will work (or if you have already tried it) or not, but . . .

You might ask about stars for the Gelandeswagen (G-Wagen / 4x4 SUV here in the States). They are very flat/ slab sided and even if they have pins to mount in holes for their stars they are likely not contoured and you can always shave the pins.

Zach
 

Altered Sprinter

Happy Little Vegemite
Gee you guys sure spend a lot of time dumping poor old Dodge Badge work.
Wax and grease remover from K@H also helps to melt down that black Goo too as it's an acetone base, repeating is the Go.
PS the flat star is from the Vito correct size has one center mounting plug only... some of the four wheel drive jobs from the Mercedes range do fit, however they are the smaller critters of the illusive variety.
An interesting observation is the MB Rear Sticker this was deleted in 2002 and replaced on some models with a chrome Mercedes-Benz emblem looks better but hell, they are hard to clean the dirt out of the lettering once it starts to build up.
Richard
 

Don Horner

2012 Unity IB
Gee you guys sure spend a lot of time dumping poor old Dodge Badge work.
I resemble that remark. Actually, mine was Freightliner, and I only dumped it after the oval Freightliner emblem fell out of the front grill. I could have glued the FL emblem back in, but I took it as a sign from the heavans that the M-B badging was in my stars. Besides, my DW doesn't realize I could glue the FL emblem back in, and the empty space was the only way I was going to get her to agree to $300 for something absolutely non-essential.
 

Altered Sprinter

Happy Little Vegemite
Gee Don is your D.W. Blond too!
I get away with all the time, when I mumble it needs to be replaced or heck dear I really,, realllllllly need it for some work!Related excuse? Hum:bounce:
Even thought of buying another Sprinter, claiming I need a trailer, but I don't think she will believe me , My D.W knows where the engine is and a trailer does not have one, mind you I could paint the Block orange and tell her it's a gen-Set:lol:
Keep on Sprinting with the Star of Stars.
Richard
 

Altered Sprinter

Happy Little Vegemite
you guys are paying 300 bucks for those parts?
NO! But some of our US Folk are
Ours are the real thing and they cost more than three hundred too:thumbup:
Richard
 

chaozz

New member
NO! But some of our US Folk are
Ours are the real thing and they cost more than three hundred too:thumbup:
Richard
you lost me there.

i have not priced the whole kit
now the sticker for the steering wheel looks
pretty bad i need to find something better

hub caps 9.50 each
grill 44.00
grill cdi logo 40

i dont plan to put the logo on the hood
still looking for the big logo for rear door
the silver emblem

anyone that wants these items let me know i dont mind shipping them to you
in the USA .
 

chaozz

New member
2 body shops refused to remove the grill strip they did not want to be responsible if they
mess up the paint.."your a body shop?"
so had to go to a paint supply place and get the eraser
and 3m adhesive remover.
blah ..
 

mgameros

SprinterFest 2007
you lost me there.

i have not priced the whole kit
now the sticker for the steering wheel looks
pretty bad i need to find something better

hub caps 9.50 each
grill 44.00
grill cdi logo 40

i dont plan to put the logo on the hood
still looking for the big logo for rear door
the silver emblem

anyone that wants these items let me know i dont mind shipping them to you
in the USA .
Is the Grill the new one? i had one already but was told that its for the 2002 model.
 

Altered Sprinter

Happy Little Vegemite
Is the Grill the new one? i had one already but was told that its for the 2002 model.
mgameros
Let me explain the history of the Mercedes Sprinter, as you have the same but with a dodge front.
In 1995 the grill was flat 2000 grille slanted back slightly , 2003 the latest one which you are aware of, in the period from 1995 to March 2006 there were also three hood vents but that's not an issue
Photos included
1995 Mercedes Sprinter

1995 Sprinter.JPG

2000 Sprinter same grille but set on a slight angle towards the rear of the hood because of head light changes and dash configuration

2000 Mercedes Sprinter.jpg

2003 Mechanical upgrade heads injectors fuel pumps, front grille changed to honey comb small metal insert surround grille has the smooth European look to match up with the Baby Vito a model not sold in the U.S... rear tail lights changed plus all safety features
2003 Sprinter grille.JPG

In effect you have the 1995 grille on a 2006 Sprinter the only difference was the star being central, to be followed by one part of the star incorporated into the hood, along with the 1995 to 2003 tail lights.
Hope this helps
Richard
 

Attachments

Altered Sprinter

Happy Little Vegemite
The one you should have, as this is from 2oo3 the metal plate surround it the slight difference and the honey comb grill
Interesting van, English plates but uses the bumper chrome insert from the Dodge , this is a exclusive for the U.S.A along with the chrome number plate holder
Richard
 
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mgameros

SprinterFest 2007
chazoo do u have the part# for the grille or know where I can get one? Like the white one in the picture above. It that a metal trim, is it all one grille. How do you paint it?
 

chaozz

New member
not sure where to get the one that has that trim on it..
i can post the # for the other one in the AM
you also need to order the CDI logo if you want to
have that in the grill both should run you under $100 bucks
 

chaozz

New member
ok changed tail lights ..
you can use the same bulb holder just change the turn signal
bulb to a 1156 amber
ill get a better picture when its light outside
 

Zach Woods

Super Moderator
Howdy Folks -

Here are the MB part #'s that I have tracked down over time for MB Badging Conversions:

pre-2003 MB Grill = A 901 880 00 85

316 cdi Gill Badge = A 901 817 50 14 (has 3 mounting posts - pre-2003 grill has only 2 mount holes)

MB Hood Badge = A 638 817 01 16 (used by some on steering wheel also)

MB rear door text sticker
= A 901 817 06 16 (silver color for all non-silver vans)
= A 901 817 05 16 (grey color for silver vans)
 

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