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#1071606 - 08/14/21 01:36 PM Modified Hood Secondary Latch  
Joined: May 2019
Posts: 364
T5montecarlo Offline
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T5montecarlo  Offline
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Joined: May 2019
Posts: 364
Lederach, PA
The hood secondary latch has always made contact with the airbox cover on both of my cars. Now that I have a new airbox cover, I finally decided to modify the latch lever so it doesn't make contact and cause scrapes and rusting.

In my opinion, the hole in the top of the airbox cover is either misplaced or the wrong dimensions; there should be no contact with the secondary latch lever.

There are 3 places the lever made contact with the airbox cover:
  • The lowest part that is pushed by fingers to release the latch
  • The vertical part just below the part that is pushed by the fingers to unlatch
  • The hook of the latch makes contact with the edge of the hole in the airbox cover when closing the hood


Some time ago, I cut off the lowest part that is pushed by the fingers to release the latch, but the latch still rubbed the front of the hole in the airbox cover, causing the airbox cover to rust. There is scoring on the latch where it rubbed. The bolt holes for the latch are oval and the latch was positioned as far forward as possible, so I moved it rearward, but was still not pleased with how close it was to the hole in the airbox cover.

I first tried rebending the upper lever part of the latch, without success, so I cut a notch in the latch lever, cutting out the material that was scored from rubbing on the airbox cover.

Then, for an additional safety factor, I opened the bolt holes giving more movement of the latch. I suppose I should close the open end of the hole for added support.

Lastly, I welded a bit of the material I cut off to the latch stop, so the latch would not close all the way. Now the latch will not make contact with the airbox cover when closing the hood, but will still properly grab the support when the primary latch is released.

When I cut the notch in the lever, I also cut out a piece of the top of the lever and decided I had to weld it back on to make opening the latch a bit easier.

I will monitor the latch and see if I was successful in keeping it away from the airbox cover.

(in the pictures, the spring is removed, but will be reinstalled after media blasting and painting)

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#1071623 - 08/15/21 02:31 PM Re: Modified Hood Secondary Latch [Re: T5montecarlo]  
Joined: Feb 2020
Posts: 501
88ssBrent Offline
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88ssBrent  Offline
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Posts: 501
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Marc, good to see a thread on this, As you know my airbox top was recently painted and that latch is a real pain in the rear. Ive tried adjusting 20 different ways and still have some issues. Looks like surgery is coming for the latch in the near future.

#1071902 - 09/01/21 12:25 AM Re: Modified Hood Secondary Latch [Re: T5montecarlo]  
Joined: May 2019
Posts: 364
T5montecarlo Offline
Member
T5montecarlo  Offline
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Joined: May 2019
Posts: 364
Lederach, PA
Here are some more pictures of my progress.

I cut 1/4" lengths from 1-inch wide flatstock, that measured 0.100 inches thick (the latch material is 0.110 inches thick, so it was close), rounded the corners, and used them to close up the slotted bolt holes and give some surface area for the bolt to press against.

I used some files to flatten the welds; it was not possible to use the bench grinder. It was tricky on the side closest to the lever; I had to use a very narrow file.

After bolting on the latch, I could slide it rearward to where it would rest against the new stops that were just welded in. If the latch were to move any further rearward, I think it would make contact with the air box cover closer to the radiator, where the cutout shape tapers.

When lifting the lever, it just barely clears the bolt on the left side.

As best as I can tell, the latch will no longer make any contact with the air box top cover.

It may not have been necessary to cut out the curved notch that I made earlier; just moving the assembly rearward and cutting off the part of the lever (that you press with your fingers to release the latch) that hangs down close to the air box cover may be enough to prevent further contact.

I wish I knew how to prevent the front of the hood from making contact with the top cover, apart from cutting material off of the hood.

Today, I media blasted it and painted it with VHT epoxy satin black. (not pictured)

[Linked Image]

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#1071903 - 09/01/21 12:42 AM Re: Modified Hood Secondary Latch [Re: T5montecarlo]  
Joined: Feb 2020
Posts: 501
88ssBrent Offline
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88ssBrent  Offline
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Joined: Feb 2020
Posts: 501
Friendsville
That thing is looking factory! Its amazing how much time a small project can take. I need to get to work on mine, I have all the same problems you had on my latch.

#1071904 - 09/01/21 01:10 AM Re: Modified Hood Secondary Latch [Re: T5montecarlo]  
Joined: May 2019
Posts: 364
T5montecarlo Offline
Member
T5montecarlo  Offline
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Joined: May 2019
Posts: 364
Lederach, PA
Thanks Brent. I am sure your mods will turn out well; let us know how you get on.

#1071905 - 09/01/21 02:40 AM Re: Modified Hood Secondary Latch [Re: T5montecarlo]  
Joined: Jan 2000
Posts: 5,391
mmc427ss Offline
20+ Year
mmc427ss  Offline
20+ Year
Member

Joined: Jan 2000
Posts: 5,391
Pottstown, Pa
The 86 had that same hitting on the sheetmetal. I was lucky and got by with adding enough MIG wire there to eliminate the touch. That was done when the top airbox cover needed refinishing. It was to late to make the damage from 20 years of touching invisible but it looks good now.
Saw an SS this weekend were the fix was enlarging the hole in the cover.
Bob

#1071909 - 09/01/21 12:52 PM Re: Modified Hood Secondary Latch [Re: T5montecarlo]  
Joined: May 2019
Posts: 364
T5montecarlo Offline
Member
T5montecarlo  Offline
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Joined: May 2019
Posts: 364
Lederach, PA
Enlarging the hole fixes 2 of the 3 problems, but I chose to modify the latch, instead, to fix all 3 problems.

In my opinion:
  • The hole should have been moved forward a bit to prevent the front edge of the latch from contacting the edge of the hole, or the hole made larger.
  • The hole should have been moved a bit to the left to prevent the hook from contacting it when closing the hood, or the hole made wider.


The 3rd problem is that the part of the latch that is lifted with your fingers to release the latch can make contact with the air box cover, so I shortened that part of the latch lever. A unique release lever should have been made for the SS to prevent damage to the air box cover.

Bob, did you add mig wire, where I added a small bit of the latch that I had cut off, to keep the latch hook from contacting the cover when closing the hood?


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