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Author Topic: Hood Difficult to Open  (Read 3016 times)

Offline joeinbcs

  • Posts: 242
  • CLC Number: 26069
  • Name: Joe Northrop
Hood Difficult to Open
« on: April 29, 2016, 10:37:07 AM »
I've had trouble with the hood on my '72 Eldorado, but shot WD40 on the moving parts and it seemed to fix.  But, my '76 is not as accommodating.
Do I need to shorten the cable that goes from the cabin to the hood latch, or is there some other adjustment I can do to make it easier to get the hood open?
I'm almost afraid to close it now...which makes driving a bit difficult...
Thanks, Joe
Joe Northrop
9633 Whispering Ridge
College Station, TX  77845
joenorthrop@yahoo.com
979-324-6432

1976 Eldorado, 35K miles, one owner (before me), Firethorn/Firethorn/White

Offline TJ Hopland

  • Posts: 10193
Re: Hood Difficult to Open
« Reply #1 on: April 29, 2016, 11:29:15 AM »
Where do you think the issue is?   Is the handle difficult to pull?   

The typical issue with these is that it just does not 'pop'.    The test for that is to have someone pull out and hold the handle pulled while another person goes and lifts up on the hood.   If it releases fine this way then the cable and latch is fine.    The issue is these hoods weight a couple of tons and the 'pop up' spring just can't do it at this age.   Some people have found NOS springs and others have just built some shims to put more pressure on it.   The spring we are taking about is the one on the hood that comes down near the latch.   

If lifting when the handle is pulled does not work then you do have a issue with the latch or cable that will need further investigation.    To find out if its the latch or cable you can remove the guard that blocks access to the arm the cable attaches to from being accessed from the grille area.   With that guard removed you can use a long screwdriver or tire iron to move the arm.  If it pops that way then you may need a new cable.   If that is the case leave the guard off so if it breaks you can still get the hood open with a tire iron.
StPaul/Mpls, MN USA

73 Eldo convert w/FiTech EFI
80 Eldo Diesel
90 CDV
And other assorted stuff I keep buying for some reason

Offline joeinbcs

  • Posts: 242
  • CLC Number: 26069
  • Name: Joe Northrop
Re: Hood Difficult to Open
« Reply #2 on: April 29, 2016, 12:15:32 PM »
Thanks very much...exactly what I needed to know.
My problem is definitely the spring...it does not pop up, but can be opened by two people as you suggest.
Now, I'll have to search for a spring, or see if I can shim the one in the car.
Thanks again!  Joe
Joe Northrop
9633 Whispering Ridge
College Station, TX  77845
joenorthrop@yahoo.com
979-324-6432

1976 Eldorado, 35K miles, one owner (before me), Firethorn/Firethorn/White

Offline 35-709

  • Posts: 5365
  • The most valuable antique is an old friend.
  • CLC Number: 4719
  • Name: G. Newcombe
Re: Hood Difficult to Open
« Reply #3 on: April 29, 2016, 07:11:23 PM »
If all else fails before you find a new "pop-up" spring --- I used a small spring clamp to hold the hood lever rod attached to the handle in the car all the way out which allowed me to then get out of the car and go around and open the hood alone.  Don't forget to take the clamp off the release lever in the car though before you close the hood or you'll be lifting that backbreaking hood again.
1935 Cadillac Sedan resto-mod "Big Red"
1973 Cadillac Caribou - Sold - but still in the family
1950 Jaguar Mark V Saloon resto-mod - Sold
1942 Cadillac 6269 - Sold
1968 Pontiac Bonneville Convertible
1935 Glenn Pray - Auburn Boattail Speedster, Gen. 2

Offline The Tassie Devil(le)

  • Administrator
  • Posts: 12434
  • CLC Number: 18992
  • Name: Bruce Reynolds
Re: Hood Difficult to Open
« Reply #4 on: April 29, 2016, 08:58:26 PM »
You could always try my solution to this problem.

Simply lay a shocker rubber on the top of the front support crossmember, and it will stay in place.

Bruce. >:D
'72 Eldorado Convertible (LHD)
'70 Ranchero Squire (RHD)
'74 Chris Craft Gull Wing (SH)
'02 VX Series II Holden Commodore SS Sedan
(Past President Modified Chapter)

Past Cars of significance - to me
1935 Ford 3 Window Coupe
1936 Ford 5 Window Coupe
1937 Chevrolet Sports Coupe
1955 Chevrolet Convertible
1959 Ford Fairlane Ranch Wagon
1960 Cadillac CDV
1972 Cadillac Eldorado Coupe

Offline joeinbcs

  • Posts: 242
  • CLC Number: 26069
  • Name: Joe Northrop
Re: Hood Difficult to Open
« Reply #5 on: April 30, 2016, 09:29:37 AM »
Good idea...thanks!
I also think I need new hood springs.
My car traveled only 3000 miles in the last 20 years, and spent all the time it wasn't on the road with the hood up and a battery tender on.
As a result, it won't stay all the way up, and the spring isn't strong enough to keep the rear corners all the way down when driving at highway speeds.
I saw these for sale on Ebay...don't know if this is a reasonable price or a good choice.  Someone on Facebook said Stainless Steel is not appropriate for spring material...any thoughts?
http://www.ebay.com/itm/130588999238?_trksid=p2060353.m1438.l2649&ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT
Joe Northrop
9633 Whispering Ridge
College Station, TX  77845
joenorthrop@yahoo.com
979-324-6432

1976 Eldorado, 35K miles, one owner (before me), Firethorn/Firethorn/White

Offline TJ Hopland

  • Posts: 10193
Re: Hood Difficult to Open
« Reply #6 on: April 30, 2016, 09:51:04 AM »
I had not seen those before.   Will be curious to see if anyone has used them.
StPaul/Mpls, MN USA

73 Eldo convert w/FiTech EFI
80 Eldo Diesel
90 CDV
And other assorted stuff I keep buying for some reason

Re: Hood Difficult to Open
« Reply #7 on: April 30, 2016, 12:25:09 PM »
Joe,
The hinge/springs are a weak point with this 165 pound hood.  Typically the hinges wear out long before the springs. SMS in New Hampshire charges something just south of $300.00 to rebuild the hinges and replace (if necessary) the springs.  I would consider that more prudent than just buying springs.  When you get the hood hinge/spring/hood alignment issue straightened out there are hood "pop up" springs available if you still need one.
Greg Surfas
Cadillac Kid-Greg Surfas
Director Modified Chapter CLC
CLC #15364
66 Coupe deVille (now gone to the UK)
72 Eldo Cpe  (now cruising the sands in Quatar)
73 Coupe deVille
75 Coupe deElegance
76 Coupe deVille
79 Coupe de ville with "Paris" (pick up) option and 472 motor
514 inch motor now in '73-

Offline The Tassie Devil(le)

  • Administrator
  • Posts: 12434
  • CLC Number: 18992
  • Name: Bruce Reynolds
Re: Hood Difficult to Open
« Reply #8 on: April 30, 2016, 08:17:41 PM »
As for wearing out springs, one has to recognise that when the hinge is in the open position, the spring is in its "relaxed" state, or its' shortest position.

When the hinge is closed, the spring is in its most extended position.

I would have thought that having the hood closed would create a greater chance of a spring being able to lose its' tension faster than the hood being open.

Bruce. >:D
'72 Eldorado Convertible (LHD)
'70 Ranchero Squire (RHD)
'74 Chris Craft Gull Wing (SH)
'02 VX Series II Holden Commodore SS Sedan
(Past President Modified Chapter)

Past Cars of significance - to me
1935 Ford 3 Window Coupe
1936 Ford 5 Window Coupe
1937 Chevrolet Sports Coupe
1955 Chevrolet Convertible
1959 Ford Fairlane Ranch Wagon
1960 Cadillac CDV
1972 Cadillac Eldorado Coupe

Offline joeinbcs

  • Posts: 242
  • CLC Number: 26069
  • Name: Joe Northrop
Re: Hood Difficult to Open
« Reply #9 on: May 01, 2016, 08:01:03 AM »
Thanks for that, Bruce.
I just assumed that the spring was most extended when the hood was up.  But, I just checked the movement and, of course, you're right.
But, I suppose a weak spring could still account for most of the trouble...ie. hood not staying all the way up, and corners near the cowl not staying down.
Greg probably has the best idea, but the idea of taking off the hinges and sending them away for a month is not appealing if new springs can cure the main problem.
Sure would like to hear from others who may have dealt with this issue.
Joe Northrop
9633 Whispering Ridge
College Station, TX  77845
joenorthrop@yahoo.com
979-324-6432

1976 Eldorado, 35K miles, one owner (before me), Firethorn/Firethorn/White

Offline TJ Hopland

  • Posts: 10193
Re: Hood Difficult to Open
« Reply #10 on: May 01, 2016, 08:41:47 AM »
I would think not staying up would have to be the hinge springs.   If not what else would there be?

The corners not pulling down is hinge alignment and or wear.  It sounds nutty but raising the hinge fixes that.

That same spring vendor you linked to has the pop up spring.   I'm sort of thinking of giving the guy a try.   
StPaul/Mpls, MN USA

73 Eldo convert w/FiTech EFI
80 Eldo Diesel
90 CDV
And other assorted stuff I keep buying for some reason

Offline LenInLA1976

  • Posts: 7
  • Name: Leonard Grayver
Re: Hood Difficult to Open
« Reply #11 on: May 03, 2016, 06:13:47 PM »
What I found works with my 76 Eldorado is to pull on the release switch and stick my iPhone so that it doesn't retract.  Then the hood opens with minimal effort.

BTW - somehow I was banned from this forum for being - I kid you not - a "Russian spanner"

Offline The Tassie Devil(le)

  • Administrator
  • Posts: 12434
  • CLC Number: 18992
  • Name: Bruce Reynolds
Re: Hood Difficult to Open
« Reply #12 on: May 03, 2016, 08:41:01 PM »
G'day Len,

Sorry, but you weren't banned at all.

Looks like you changed your email address and your initial registration as "LenInLA" is still current and operational if you wish to go back to it.   You do remember your password?

Bruce. >:D
'72 Eldorado Convertible (LHD)
'70 Ranchero Squire (RHD)
'74 Chris Craft Gull Wing (SH)
'02 VX Series II Holden Commodore SS Sedan
(Past President Modified Chapter)

Past Cars of significance - to me
1935 Ford 3 Window Coupe
1936 Ford 5 Window Coupe
1937 Chevrolet Sports Coupe
1955 Chevrolet Convertible
1959 Ford Fairlane Ranch Wagon
1960 Cadillac CDV
1972 Cadillac Eldorado Coupe

Offline joeinbcs

  • Posts: 242
  • CLC Number: 26069
  • Name: Joe Northrop
Re: Hood Difficult to Open
« Reply #13 on: May 05, 2016, 07:00:56 AM »
I installed one of the stainless steel "pop-up" springs from the Ebay seller above, and it made no difference at all.
I'm pretty sure my issue is mainly weak hinge springs.
I've been looking for alternatives to the stainless steel springs for several days now with no luck...I thought of using springs meant for other cars/trucks for sale on Ebay, but haven't found any that are the right size (most are around 9 inches, and the springs in our cars are 11 inches.  Does anyone know a source for these?  Thanks...
Joe Northrop
9633 Whispering Ridge
College Station, TX  77845
joenorthrop@yahoo.com
979-324-6432

1976 Eldorado, 35K miles, one owner (before me), Firethorn/Firethorn/White

Offline The Tassie Devil(le)

  • Administrator
  • Posts: 12434
  • CLC Number: 18992
  • Name: Bruce Reynolds
Re: Hood Difficult to Open
« Reply #14 on: May 05, 2016, 07:34:22 AM »
I would still be giving the rubber block a try.

Bruce. >:D
'72 Eldorado Convertible (LHD)
'70 Ranchero Squire (RHD)
'74 Chris Craft Gull Wing (SH)
'02 VX Series II Holden Commodore SS Sedan
(Past President Modified Chapter)

Past Cars of significance - to me
1935 Ford 3 Window Coupe
1936 Ford 5 Window Coupe
1937 Chevrolet Sports Coupe
1955 Chevrolet Convertible
1959 Ford Fairlane Ranch Wagon
1960 Cadillac CDV
1972 Cadillac Eldorado Coupe

Re: Hood Difficult to Open
« Reply #15 on: May 05, 2016, 08:20:07 AM »
Joe,.
All those wonderfull springs on e-bay SEEM to either be reproductions or springs actually intended for cars with hoods of lesser mass. When you get a chance PM me.
Greg Surfas
Cadillac Kid-Greg Surfas
Director Modified Chapter CLC
CLC #15364
66 Coupe deVille (now gone to the UK)
72 Eldo Cpe  (now cruising the sands in Quatar)
73 Coupe deVille
75 Coupe deElegance
76 Coupe deVille
79 Coupe de ville with "Paris" (pick up) option and 472 motor
514 inch motor now in '73-

 

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