Mercedes-Benz Ponton
Steering Wheel Removal

David VanDuzer

1959 Mercedes-Benz Type W180 220S Ponton sunroof coupé

I recently undertook the task of replacing the steering wheel in my 1959 Mercedes-Benz Type 220S Ponton coupé. Scott Gordon in San Francisco very kindly lent me his puller and requested that I post some photos and explanation to the website. 

The steering wheel puller tool allows the user to put a wrench on the large bit and hold it stationary while wrenching on the locked nuts.

Close-ups of tool courtesy: Scott Gordon / July 27, 2010

I have also attached two pages from a friend's workshop manual that clearly explain how to undertake this task. The photos clearly show the puller and the steps followed in removing and replacing the old steering wheel. In 37 years of owning Pontons I had never known the correct method for removing the the trademark plate from the horn ring (See step 2 in Job 46-2). The only surprise in the steering wheel removal was that it required many hammer blows on the puller as I incrementally tightened it before the wheel actually came free from the steering column. I hope these photos and instructions will prove helpful to others undertaking the same task.


Steering wheel puller (courtesy Scott Gordon)

The secret to removing the trademark plate (See step 2 in Job 46-2)

Addendum A / February 14, 2009
Courtesy: Jon Miller / Altadena, California

I recently borrowed Scott Gordon's steering wheel puller to swap wheels on my 1959 Mercedes-Benz Type 180a Ponton sedan. I read this helpful article before I started. I would add one minor clarification: The large steel cylinder part of the puller, visible in the photos, is round and slick. When you crank on the big nuts, everything wants to turn. That cylinder has to be held some way, or else the tool does not work. The solution in my case was to use a strap wrench, which held the cylinder in place without marring it. Channel locks would work just as well but would make a mess of the tool. Ideally, the cylinder should have flat surfaces so that it could be secured with a large adjustable wrench.

Addendum B / April 8, 2020
Courtesy: Ron Dwyer / San Leandro, California

Got the puller today and it is incredibly nice! Can’t wait to use it tonight.

I dressed up the top nut where folks had smashed it with a hammer. I just added more torque. Used a three foot extension on a crescent, and a breaker bar. Just kept adding a tiny bit more torque a little at a time until it popped. Hammering works, but it is not always effective on a morse taper. I showed it to a few of my millwrights, and they were impressed.

Reference: morse taper

Thanks for the use of the puller,

David Van Duzer
Arlington, Virginia
May 24, 2006

Created: May 24, 2006 / Jeff Miller
Last Update: April 08, 2020

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