The Lost World - Mercedes ML (W163) Montana project

Showcase your Jurassic Park vehicle, or build progress.
BoZ-ML
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Joined: March 7th, 2021, 1:38 am
Vehicle Make/Model: Mercedes ML320
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Re: The Lost World - Mercedes ML (W163) Montana project

Post by BoZ-ML » May 28th, 2022, 2:33 pm

nmlvaio101 wrote:
May 23rd, 2022, 12:24 pm
Looks amazing. I wish I can get you to build me one.
That's a great compliment! Thanks so much! I think however I need to let you down... It's so much work and there is so little information to go on about the ML's. I'm probably never doing this car again :lol: That's why I want to have it on this forum. I hope we can inspire others to take the job!

Update May 2022:
After last update we've welded everything together and smoothed it out as much and clean as possible. We're very happy with the results.

This (long) weekend the rear bumper was next on the list to tackle. Luckily we kept the cart board bumper template. It was very easy to create all parts needed to create the bumper. After cutting the holes, grinding them down and dimple die-ing/flairing the holes it could be tack welded into shape.

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From template to steel bumper (and it's great temporary setup :lol:).

Bracket:
Off course the steel bumper needs to be mounted in a good way. After we removed the bumper we happen to see some weird bolts. They go through and through the rear crash bar. I'm not exactly sure where they are for, but they could be removed and changed into exactly what we needed.

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The weird bracket that comes out when unbolted. We decided to extend these to make a bracket for the steel bumper.

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The temporary setup once the bumper cover was removed. Making sure it was exactly high enough.

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The OEM Mercedes brackets are no longer OEM. Welded solid.

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Cut the holes in the bumper. Once the bumper is black and the steel bumper goes over it you won't them anymore.

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Perfectly positioned between two of the flaired holes in the steel bumper. The bracket also has some margin to move the stee bumper in exactly the right spot.

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All other holes (electrical, tow hitch and exhaust) are cut, so we're still able to install the removable tow hitch.

Once the bumper and brackets were finished it was time to install all the created parts to see how it looks all together.

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Starting to look like it, right? :mrgreen:
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BoZ-ML
Posts: 32
Joined: March 7th, 2021, 1:38 am
Vehicle Make/Model: Mercedes ML320
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Re: The Lost World - Mercedes ML (W163) Montana project

Post by BoZ-ML » July 18th, 2022, 1:47 pm

Update on the Lost World ML class.

Rear brush guards:
We continued with the rear brush guards. They exist of a set of welding corners and bended tubes. They were pretty easy to create from scratch. The 'louvers' we cut out from 3mm thick sheet metal.The inside of the rear steel has 2 threated pieces of steel welded to it where the rear brush guard mounts to. The other mounts go right through the body of the car. We used rivet nuts as a mounting point.

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Temporary mounting with zip-ties. Determining the location of the mounts in the body.

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All tubes welded up.

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Louvres welded in place. Done! Other side next!

Front brush guard:
Now, the front brush guard was a whole different story. By far the most difficult piece of the car. What also didn't help was our tube-bending tool. Once there were a few bends in the tube it didn't fit the tool anymore. We had to cut up the brush guard/bull bar in a few places and weld it back together.

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First part bend and tacked. Rivet nuts in the fenders as mounting point and a temporary steel plate to hold the brush guard under the Mercedes logo.

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Result 1/2

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Result 2/2

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Off course the nose-detail can't be overlooked.
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MonsterTrac
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Re: The Lost World - Mercedes ML (W163) Montana project

Post by MonsterTrac » July 21st, 2022, 7:29 am

Impressive, most impressive! :!: :ugeek:

BoZ-ML
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Re: The Lost World - Mercedes ML (W163) Montana project

Post by BoZ-ML » August 23rd, 2022, 7:54 am

Update on the Lost World ML class. Paint time!!! :mrgreen:

So after putting the finishing touches to the ML's Jurassic Park parts we had to lay it all out to make an exploded view version of the ML. The parts than went off to the powder coaters (where they still are, by the way).

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Exploded view

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Everything fits on a Euro pallet.

Paint:

Rear bumper:
Finally, paint time! We started off with removable Mercedes parts. We ordered a buch of sprays, primers and top coats to try. The rear bumper came off (for the gazillioned time) and had to be repaired & prepared. A lot of sanding, some filling, sanding, primer-ing and applying 'base model bumper spray' (as we called it). The finish is perfect!

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Preparations

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Finish with the already coated steel bumper brackets

Mirrors:
Next were the mirrors. As you can see below, once the mirror covers were painted it turned out the mirror bracket look like crap. So obviously we took them completely apart and painted those as well.

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Mirror covers painted. Brackets look... you know... crap

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Completely taken apart

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Finished product

Grille:
Off course now the grille also looked like crap. We took the thing apart (yes, apart, because it exists of 6.000 pieces for some reason). Everything got the same 'base model bumper spray'-look and it looks amazing!

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Front bumper:
For the front bumper we needed to cut the same sized hole as the 'old' bumper. Do you remember we had 2 bumpers. One broke one for cutting everything up and sizing it with the winch, etc. And one good one that was on the car while we drove it. It went through the same treatment as the rear bumper. Sanding, repairing, filling, sanding again, cleaning and eventually bumper-spray and coat. The ML begins to look like a cheap base model now.

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Cut up and finished to JP spec. The visible crash bar got a new look as well. Flat black.

Door sills and door jambs:
Now came the harder part. We decided to paint the door sills, door jambs and side skirts (and currently working on the trunk and bonnet) in flat black with matt 2K clear coat on top of it. If we wouldn't, the original color of the car would become visible in all the cracks and crannies.

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Prepped and ready for a flat black coating

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Finished

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Temporary paint booth removed. The new leather interior (for free, with compliments of a local) visible. I love the door-less looks! :mrgreen:

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The door jambs got the same make-over

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The new leather door cards installed

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Finished

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Some overspray, but that will be sanded down when the exterior of the ML gets the camo!


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BoZ-ML
Posts: 32
Joined: March 7th, 2021, 1:38 am
Vehicle Make/Model: Mercedes ML320
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Re: The Lost World - Mercedes ML (W163) Montana project

Post by BoZ-ML » September 12th, 2022, 10:21 am

Update:

We've received the parts back from the powder coater. Also a lot of small details are done on the ML, some TLC and restoring the head-lights. We couldn't help ourselves and just had to install the front bumper, brush guards and winch to see how it looks.

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Opinions? :mrgreen:


CAMO TIME!!
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BoZ-ML
Posts: 32
Joined: March 7th, 2021, 1:38 am
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Re: The Lost World - Mercedes ML (W163) Montana project

Post by BoZ-ML » October 10th, 2022, 6:55 am

Update:

This Friday we will travel to the Mercedes museum in Stuttgart to explore the world of the Jurassic Park ML. We've made a list of things we want to know and also asked other ML-builders (mainly Americans) to check what they would like to know. The main reason for us to go there is to determine the paint colors. We've seen a lot of suggestions and colors, but when I see those I'm not sure they are correct. Mercedes won't reply with an answer to the question (I can imagine, they probably have more important things to do :mrgreen: ), so the only way is to check out the real deal ;)

Wiring, lighting and control panel:
A few months ago we already installed the control panel for the lighting (overhead switches in the ceiling). Now that we had to wait to go to Germany we've tackled all the wiring for the (future) lights.

The idea:
- having the same spotlights in the bumper as on the mirrors. I just really don't like the ones used in the movies, sorry guys!
- adding roof mounted search lights (with remote control :roll: ) next to the roof rack (we still have to make that). It actually belongs to the ML model with the boxes on the sides (called Fontana), but I like those lights, so I want them :mrgreen: .
- maybe a light bar on the front of the future roof rack.

We already have all the lights, but the roof rack (which will come instead of the roof rails) still needs to be created. The only problem is that the car won't fit under the car lift anymore and I don't want to park it outside. Working on a solution for that. Until than, no roof rack, so no search lights.

We've wired the lights and the switches from the control panel to a switch-box (with fuses and relays) under the hood. From the mirror the wiring goes through the mirror housing into the door, through the rubber into the car (under dashboard) and to the switch box. The wiring for the search lights and light bar go over the cars ceiling-cover.

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The overhead control panel for the lights.

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A few feet/meters of extra wiring installed through the fire wall, dashboard and into the ceiling.

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The result for the spot ligths. I really like the looks 8-)

Next up are the fender flares:
There is no information to be found on the ML's movie-fender-flares. Had we known that we go to Stuttgart we probably would've waited with the fender flares for the exact dimensions. Anyhow, the result now is good enough. We also wanted to make sure we were able to remove them if needed, so there is a gap-line where the rear bumper and fender come together. They are made from fiberglass and painted to match the bumper spray-bumpers. I love how they turned out.

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So, only thing left to do: CAMOUFLAGE (and the roof rack)

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DrewSmith007
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Re: The Lost World - Mercedes ML (W163) Montana project

Post by DrewSmith007 » November 19th, 2022, 12:04 am

I love your build so much...

kokopelli
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Re: The Lost World - Mercedes ML (W163) Montana project

Post by kokopelli » November 20th, 2022, 10:30 am

This continues to make me happy!!!

BoZ-ML
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Re: The Lost World - Mercedes ML (W163) Montana project

Post by BoZ-ML » November 30th, 2022, 6:17 am

DrewSmith007 wrote:
November 19th, 2022, 12:04 am
I love your build so much...
Thank you so much for the comment! We love it to, but it is so much work, haha, didn't expect that actually :mrgreen: It's coming together nicely and I love driving it 8-)
kokopelli wrote:
November 20th, 2022, 10:30 am
This continues to make me happy!!!
In that case it is time to give you an update! :mrgreen:


Update:
Last month we travelled to Stuttgart to visit the Mercedes-Benz museum. One of the screen used (although it was very, very short) ML's is on display there. In short, the biggest surprise was that the 'steel' bumpers actually where made out of fiberglass :mrgreen: I would like to thank Mercedes-Benz for making it possible for us to enter the platform, see the car so close and touch it to determine the correct colors (which was the goal of going to Stuttgart).

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Now that we've seen the car up close, we would maybe do a few things different (especially the fender flares).

In the ML320 Construction part of this forum I've added a few topics on specific items. If anyone ever has questions, please feel free to contact me via the forum or our instagram-page.

Colors:
Anyhow! The colors. I suspect they used colors Mercedes-Benz used in the past. We came across color-cards in the museum which had suspiciously recognizable colors on it. Unfortunately we couldn't match those cards to the colors we got from the car, so it's just a hunch.

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As you can see, the color cards with 3 suspected colors on it. Just a hunch.

Now that we got the correct colors scanned from the movie car, we went back to our local car paint supply-store to have them mixed.

Tan: Fleet HS - 118 - Dupont Enamel Finishes - Tan
Light Green: Fleet MS - GAT 6470 - MAN - MAN-Gruen M107
Dark Green: Fleet MS - CTS - Fleet France - Vert Boogie Tram No 5
Dark-Dark Green (almost black): Fleet MS - G5/G512 - Colour Selector Fleet - Newexco Green

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Whole lot of opportunity.

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Tan being mixed.

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4 out of 5 colors done, the fifth will be mixed when we need it (new color for the window bars).

A few months ago we already painted the door jambs, sills, etc. Before painting the camouflage we first had to sand the entire car down, which meant also sanding the matt black overspray away. We removed everything we could remove.

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Removed as many parts as needed. Sanding the body, removing some rust and filling some dents. Super smooth!

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Due to the size of the shop we need to do the painting in 3 separate parts. First the trunk and passenger side are done.

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It's important to have the right sequence of colors. First is tan, then light green, dark green and finally dark-dark green.

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Tan and light green are on.

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Dark green is done.

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We liked to do the engine cover as well as a nice detail.

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Dark-dark green is done.

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Off course we couldn't wait with installing some gear.

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Front and driver side's turn!

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Unpacked! Notice we also painted the B and D pillars + door handles in bumper spay to match the rest! It looks awesome.

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Sneak-peak :mrgreen:

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New bonnet logo installed.

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New turn signals and off course a few Jurassic Park logo's :mrgreen: .

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All together, ready for the school run 8-) My daughter and son love it and want to ride along all the time!

Weather:
Because of the car-lift in my garage we couldn't reach the roof. The idea was to use the barn of my father-in-law, but because of the cold weather that is currently not an option. Have to wait until we find a usable location or for the weather to improve. Anyhow, it drives and the roof is barely visible, so good enough for now.

Wheels:
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Off course the wheels need to be light green as well! We bought a nicer set of original 5-spoke alloys (ours are pretty damaged) to paint green and put the tires on.

Engine cover:
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The end-result for the engine cover. New star and hand-painted silver letters.

A step closer to being done. Painting the roof, painting the wheels and creating a roof rack still need to be done. Also we're talking with a party to create the bubble for the roof ;)
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JP Junkie
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Re: The Lost World - Mercedes ML (W163) Montana project

Post by JP Junkie » December 23rd, 2022, 8:12 pm

I'm also following your progress on Insta as well. Loving this build. The engine cover is a fantastic touch!
Jurassic Park Jeep 10: Completed - Location: Minnesota
https://www.facebook.com/JPMaintenanceJeep/
Remember... a correct font is as important as the correct paint color!
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