Mercedes Clubs National Rally 2022 – Day 5 Scenic drive to Lady bay

Today was the second and final day of the actual Rally.   The two official events were a scenic drive down the coast to Lady Bay, and a dinner and farewell event.    Start time for the drive was 10AM, so today was the only chance to a sleep in on our entire trip.

The drive was really good.  Not only did we see some really nice coast roads, it was interesting to see some of the houses built by the beach.   There were also many cars (mostly 4x4s) on the sand, something that you don’t really see in NSW.    In addition, we stopped for a break at a dam which had great views of the surrounding area.    The road was really good and it was a great showcase of the drives available in the region.

Lady bayFrom that point we continued down the coast to the lunch destination, a golf resort with great views over the water.    There were probably about 60 cars on the drive, so the organizers split us up into groups.   That was probably a good idea as it would have been hard to stay together.   They had one local car heading each group, which was nice.    Throughout this event I have found the local club members to be very friendly and welcoming.  The grouping is a good example of that.


On the way back from the event I had hoped to catch up with an old friend, but unfortunately the times didn’t work out.   We were only in the area for two days so it was a pretty packed schedule.

Before I even left on the drive to Lady Bay, I had to make some repairs to my car.    Yesterday, one of my friends noticed that my front left indicator was not working.   I bought a new bulb during the visit to Repco, but an indicator bulb change on a 107 is fiddly.    It requires the removal of some of the front trim and the whole headlight assembly from the front.    Had it been a rear bulb I could have swapped it in seconds in the Repco parking lot. Luckily these bulbs don’t go out often – It must be 15 years since I’ve had to change one.  I’ve found the trick is to push the piece of trim that goes below the lights into the cavity behind the bumper bar.  This should stop it getting scratched.

Bulb changeAs well as the indicator globe, I had one more repair for my 450SLC.   The shredded fan belt had taken out the A/C compressor belt. This repair was beyond a roadside fix, but I had an offer of help with this job if I could locate the required tool.   The tool in question was a 150mm thin adjustable spanner.   This was small enough to get down onto the belt tensioner for the A/C but had a wide enough mouth to actually grip it.  There is very little room down there, so a longer for fatter tool makes this job very hard without more disassembly than is feasible in a hotel parking lot.

In the end, our whole group took a six-pack of beer up to the parking lot to do the belt change. My car is now ready for the 2,000KM drive home.

Belt change

The great thing about the tool we needed was that it was readily available at Bunnings warehouse.   I was able to purchase it on the way back from the scenic drive.   While there, the owner of the white 280CE purchased a new battery for his car.   The old one was kind of old and it wasn’t performing well at idle.   Better to have one than not in the remote areas we are traveling tomorrow.

As a group we also discussed our plan for tomorrow.   We agreed that it was better to leave very early to allow more time to actually see Broken Hill.   If we leave at 4:30AM, we should be able to get out of Adelaide without hitting any traffic and be ready to drive on the open road once the sun comes out.   We do need to be careful at dawn of Kangaroos, as they are most active at Dawn and Dusk.    We can try and time our breakfast stop for dawn if possible.

The final part of the day was the Gala Dinner and farewell.   Formal events are not really my cup of tea, but it was well managed, the food was quite good as was the musician.   We were able to chat a bit more with some of the local members before we went up for an early night.    They also had some bottles of wine as door prizes.  In addition, there were two modern Mercedes-Benz cars on display.  These were not door prizes.

As I look back on the rally, I have enjoyed my time in South Australia and at the Rally.   I’ve never traveled to Adelaide or South Australia before.  I would like to come back and see a bit more.  Perhaps with the family when I have more time.   The event was really well organized and a real credit to the Mercedes-Benz club of South Australia.   I thought the major events such as the Show and Shine, visit to the Cube and the scenic drive were all great.    The next event is Queensland in 2024.   Not sure if I will be able to make it, but I kind of hope its out of Brisbane so I can experience a new place.  I have been to Brisbane many times.

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