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  • #16
    Originally posted by 345 DeSoto View Post
    A properly adjusted hood latch should NEVER allow the hood to come unlatched.
    I have always kept mine adjusted properly, and they have never blown up. However, and a BIG however, about every 10th time I close them, the latch only closes about 75 percent. I can feel the latch from below with fingertips, so just open and close again, and re-check. I believe the 75 percent closed latches account for most Hawk hoods' blowing up, but it is preventable, only takes an extra minute. Still, I would not leave the driveway without a safety mechanism in place, as discussed above.

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    • #17
      Ouch, that sounds brutal, having to get on your knees to release the pin. A fingertip feel suffices for me.

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      • #18
        Originally posted by JoeHall View Post
        Ouch, that sounds brutal, having to get on your knees to release the pin. A fingertip feel suffices for me.
        I do mine by braille too, it's surprisingly easy.

        If your latch arm often only drops in 75% ,it may still be adjusted too tight. I just set my hood down, then give it a quick push to latch it. It always drops in totally, but it took a lot of "fine tuning"(if you get my drift) to get it there. And, there is enough drag between the pin and socket it rarely "pops" up all the way when the latch is pulled.
        The real problem is that the latch is mounted to the sheet metal, all of which is relitively flexable, and that the latch must also be adjusted in such a way as to maintain the relitive location of the hood to the fenders. Perhaps, possible for all to function perfectly when everything was new, but after 55 to 66 years of use not so much.

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        • #19
          That's one reason almost all manufactures have moved away from what us body guys always called the Donkey Dick hood latch.

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          • #20
            Originally posted by JoeHall View Post
            For a long time, I have said this forum needs a, "LIKE" button, as FaceBook does. I definitely woulda 'liked' all these great ideas here.
            (Plus enough meaningless babble here in the text section to satisfy the "your post is too short" bot.)

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            • #21
              I remembered posting this on another thread a couple years ago:
              One day I had been showing someone under the
              hood and in my haste, did not put the pin back in my home made catch. The next day, I went out for a spin and it wasn't till the trip home while rowing through the gears, the hood flew up so fast, there was not even a millisecond to react. It bent my perfect hood back over the top of the car, bent both corners nearly severing the hood from the hinge. I had to take a piece of concrete to pound the huge crease out of the hood, just to get it to a semi straight condition so I could lower it and limp home.
              Ohhhhhhh the ANGER ! ! ! Ohhhhhh the terrible things I said ! ! ! Ohhhhh the venom I spewed ! ! ! It was indeed a very bad day.
              The only consolation was the fact that I had another perfect spare hood in the rafters of the garage. Two cans of black primer later, the car was back to its beautiful, pre-stupidity, glory.
              Moral of the story.. latch that 53-54 hood with a strap, pin or some method other than the factory catch if you're going to drive the car.
              Remember that these hood latches are secured primarily to sheet metal parts which are bolted to other sheet metal parts which have been flexing and stretching for 60 years. It's only logical to assume that some of that stress is going to mean adjustments may not be what the factory specified. Take precautions.
              Good luck with yours.
              sals54

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              • #22
                Originally posted by JoeHall View Post
                For a long time, I have said this forum needs a, "LIKE" button, as FaceBook does. I definitely woulda 'liked' all these great ideas here.
                At the top of the Thread is a gray bar. On the right side is an option to "Rate this Thread." Click on it.
                KURTRUK
                (read it backwards)




                Nothing is politically right which is morally wrong. -A. Lincoln

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                • #23
                  The problem is the secondary latch is only spot welded to the latch plate and a good yank can sometmes pop it right off the plate. I have taken the plate off and added weld to it with MIG welder. If you don't have one someone could do it for you for $5. Takes < 5 min. Joe Hall puts a bolt in it; that'd work and might be less messy than my welding. And be sure it is adjusted so that the safety catch catches.

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                  • #24
                    Hey all - I'm going to buy my first Studebaker soon - a 1961 Hawk - and actually have an extra plunger and was planning to drill a hole through it to allow me to use a snap ring/lynch pin to secure the hood when closed. My question is, will a small benchtop drillpress be enough to put a hole in the plunger, or am I better off saving my money and finding a local shop to do it. I'll find other uses to make a small drillpress worth having, but can't justify buying a full standing more powerful model at this time.

                    I've included a picture of the plunger if that helps.

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                    • #25
                      A small drill press should be ok. Being that you'll be drilling into an angled surface, you'll want to start by having the surface flat and drilling a divot that the drill bit will stay in when you tip the part back to the angle to drill through. Another approach would be to use a "Center Drill" to start the hole, they're stout enough that you can drill into the angled face without it deviating. You can't drill through with a center drill, only use it to start, then swap to a standard bit to go through.

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                      • #26
                        What diameter clevis pin should be used?

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                        • #27
                          I used a short 1/4" chain on my Hawk. 1/8" or 3/16" pin should be ok, you don't want to weaken your latch pin too much.- -Jim

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                          • #28
                            The hitch pin I used is about .160" the hole about ,170" . I attached a cable to the pin and bolted the other end to the underside of the latch assembly. Click image for larger version

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                            • #29
                              Hey all - new to all of this, so forgive me if this is a silly question, but how do I go about removing the plunger? Do I just need to loosen the bold that rests above the spring? I spent what felt like an eternity slowly turning that thing and I think it was making progress - but eventually it stopped spinning and I didn't want to cause any damage by forcing anything, so I stopped and spend another eternity re-tightening. Here's a pic of the assembly - I've marked where I plan to put a pin, so now I just need to get the thing out and the hole drilled!

                              Thanks all.


                              Click image for larger version

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                              • #30
                                There is SOMETHING about that Dovetail Pin and Spring that does not look Correct/Stock to me.
                                Maybe someone else knows WHAT it is.

                                The Coils do not look uniform over the length of the Spring and there is something inside at the bottom.

                                Is that a '63 or '64 GT Hawk?
                                Several things in that Engine Compartment look modified also.
                                Last edited by StudeRich; 10-11-2020, 12:53 PM.
                                StudeRich
                                Second Generation Stude Driver,
                                Proud '54 Starliner Owner

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