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Hot Rods How to reduce hood hinge spring tension

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by cluxford, Oct 15, 2021.

  1. cluxford
    Joined: Jun 5, 2012
    Posts: 53

    cluxford
    Member
    from Australia

    61 Buick Lesabre.

    It bent the old hinge.

    Can't find a replacement (I've tried, may have sourced one, but still confirming).

    So I straightened the old one and welded 2 x 3mm plate to the 2 pieces that bend. No way they are bending now.

    Spring off, hood closes perfectly

    Spring on, it tries to bend the hinge again, it can't due to the welded plate, but it tries.

    Clearly the spring on that side needs to be a bit "looser" with slightly less tension.

    Any thoughts on how to reduce the tension a tad ?
     
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2021
  2. Torana68
    Joined: Jan 28, 2008
    Posts: 1,278

    Torana68
    Member
    from Australia

    it worked fine from new so maybe just buy another good hinge?
     
  3. cluxford
    Joined: Jun 5, 2012
    Posts: 53

    cluxford
    Member
    from Australia

    LOL they don't sell them and I have scoured the US for a 2nd hand one...no joy...unobtainium
     
  4. Something close like from a HQ Holden, etc?
     

  5. cluxford
    Joined: Jun 5, 2012
    Posts: 53

    cluxford
    Member
    from Australia

    Maybe I'm hunting. 27 coils 8.5" length hooks 90 degrees different to each other. 67 and 69 Impala look like they will fit. But can't find any that are available now...all are late Nov shipping.
     
    lothiandon1940 likes this.
  6. Torana68
    Joined: Jan 28, 2008
    Posts: 1,278

    Torana68
    Member
    from Australia

    lothiandon1940 likes this.
  7. cluxford
    Joined: Jun 5, 2012
    Posts: 53

    cluxford
    Member
    from Australia

  8. Flame and tame.
     
    loudbang likes this.
  9. I would think there is something else wrong with the hinge…the spring hasn’t gotten stiffer over the years.
     
  10. BJR
    Joined: Mar 11, 2005
    Posts: 7,141

    BJR
    Member

  11. Mark Grabo
    Joined: Jan 26, 2018
    Posts: 76

    Mark Grabo
    Member
    from Upstate NY

    move the two spring anchor points closer together if it doesn't have to stretch as far it will have less tension
     
    jaw22w likes this.
  12. KevKo
    Joined: Jun 25, 2009
    Posts: 632

    KevKo
    Member
    from Motown

    Don't open the hood? Kidding. Heat will soften it. Order the new ones and then have at the old one.
     
  13. RmK57
    Joined: Dec 31, 2008
    Posts: 1,901

    RmK57
    Member

    Remove the springs and use a prop-rod.
     
    jimgoetz, Jibs, VANDENPLAS and 2 others like this.
  14. choptop40
    Joined: Dec 23, 2009
    Posts: 4,005

    choptop40
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    What he said...Hood prop...
     
  15. MAD MIKE
    Joined: Aug 1, 2009
    Posts: 669

    MAD MIKE
    Member
    from 94577

    If the rivets have wallowed out the holes then they may be binding up the hinge.
    If the spring can be readily removed, the tension will be off the hinge pins and the slop can be observed.
    If the correct hood spring tool is not available, a pack of door jamb shims can be used. Mostly close the hood and start sliding in the shims between coils. When opening the hood the spring will go slack, if you have enough you maybe able to slide the hook end off the hinge.
     
  16. cluxford
    Joined: Jun 5, 2012
    Posts: 53

    cluxford
    Member
    from Australia


    The hinge itself actually bent, which is why I took it off. I can't find a replacement (I've tried every source I know for 61 Buick parts, including 3 dedicated Facebook groups to the model). None to be found. So I took the original off and rebuilt it. Rivets were solid. No slop at all. but it still bent the hinge. I have replaced with bolts, and there is a little wiggle but very very minor wiggle. To get all the wiggle out I have to tighten them so tight that then the hinge won't move. So I tighten so tight then loosen it about a quarter turn, minimal wiggle and hinge moves. So I know the wiggle isn't the issue as it bent originally with the rivets in place and they were perfect.
     
  17. Bandit Billy
    Joined: Sep 16, 2014
    Posts: 7,949

    Bandit Billy
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Light duty glass hood spring?
    upload_2021-10-15_13-17-18.png
     

    Attached Files:

    egads and loudbang like this.
  18. X-cpe
    Joined: Mar 9, 2018
    Posts: 1,246

    X-cpe

    When closing the hood, don't pull down on the front of it. Push back down the length of it
     
    MAD MIKE and Bandit Billy like this.
  19. Another vote for the prop rod.
     
    VANDENPLAS likes this.
  20. Bandit Billy
    Joined: Sep 16, 2014
    Posts: 7,949

    Bandit Billy
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    And give it a little wiggle on the way down. My 68 442 has terrible hinges, bad design. The hood doesn't open far enough (as witnessed by the scars on my head from the latch) and they are notorious for causing people to bend the hood in half trying to close them.

    Mine was bent and straightened (poorly) when I bought it 25 years ago and I have never found a good replacement to swap it out. The "olds wiggle" combined with pushing it back prevents further damage when closing I have found.
     
    MAD MIKE and X-cpe like this.
  21. Moriarity
    Joined: Apr 11, 2001
    Posts: 21,884

    Moriarity
    SUPER MODERATOR
    Staff Member

    It can't be that difficult to find. did you check French Lake Auto parts in Annandale Mn? they have 100s of acres of cars from the 20's thru the 70's in their salvage yard. @396skip is the owner, send him a PM
     
  22. X-cpe
    Joined: Mar 9, 2018
    Posts: 1,246

    X-cpe

    Also apply some spray lubriplate on all the pivot points and between any place the hinge parts rub each other.
     
    jimmy six likes this.
  23. gene-koning
    Joined: Oct 28, 2016
    Posts: 2,542

    gene-koning
    Member

    The OP is in Australia I can see where nothing from the USA could get there before mid Nov. I'd be surprised if it got there that fast, really.

    Pull the springs and use a prop rod to hold the hood open when you need to do something under it. I made one for my coupe that attaches to the under side of the hood, one end pivots and the loose end has a hook to hold it in place on the under side of the hood when the prop rod isn't in use.

    Another option might be those little hydraulic extension rods like the new stuff uses. The prop rods are more traditional (couldn't resist). Gene
     
    jimmy six likes this.
  24. MAD MIKE
    Joined: Aug 1, 2009
    Posts: 669

    MAD MIKE
    Member
    from 94577

    This is the technique.
    Push back near the front corners with your open hands, not pull down vertically.
    Hood will start to move back/down and you follow the hoods motion. Almost an inverted 'J' motion.

    If the hood has ever been removed the hinges may not be properly realigned. This will also cause binding. Look for old witness marks on the bolts/hinges and see if getting them back to where they were improves the hinge actuation.
     
    ottoman likes this.
  25. gimpyshotrods
    Joined: May 20, 2009
    Posts: 18,652

    gimpyshotrods
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Yup. That's the place. I have stuff from them all the way out here, because they are awesome.
     
    Moriarity likes this.
  26. RmK57
    Joined: Dec 31, 2008
    Posts: 1,901

    RmK57
    Member

    My 1970 Ranchero had a big, long, heavy hood which also required a bit of finesse to get it closed. If you pulled it straight down from vertical it would hang up and you would definitely bend it. The trick was to give it slight lift and pull over to the right then it drop down without any trouble.
    It was almost like a safety feature so the hood wouldn't close and clobber you unexpectedly.
     
  27. cluxford
    Joined: Jun 5, 2012
    Posts: 53

    cluxford
    Member
    from Australia

    Thanks all. I’ve ordered 3 different springs to try. None factory correct. But that’s fine. For now springs removed and prop rod being used
     

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