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Door will not open
Posted by: Sir Thomas ()
Date: October 30, 2019 05:59AM

I had a new one happen to me last night. After I closed the driver's door on my late model convertible, I was no longer able to open it using either the interior or exterior options. I can see both the exterior button and the interior lever are moving the mechanism inside the door, but neither have any effect on releasing the door. It is as if the spring which should kick the latch open has failed.

How do I get the door to open so I can fix the problem?

Thomas Ratliff
Abilene, Texas
'65 Fitch Sprint
'66 Monza convertible with EFI
ThomasMRatliff@GMAIL.com

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Re: Door will not open
Posted by: jjohnsonjo ()
Date: October 30, 2019 06:12AM

Hopefully its not caused by weak inner rockers

J.O.

65 Corsa Turbo Vert
79 Honda XL 500S
69 Honda CL 160 D
2010 BMW F 650 GS
2003 Bounder 36D
2013 KIA Optima SX turbo-AKA ZIPPY (wife,s car)
69 Newport Holiday Sailboat
Baja 150 dune buggy cart
Coleman HS 500 UTV
2016 KIA Sorento SXL Turbo

Bethlehem,Pa


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Re: Door will not open
Posted by: Sir Thomas ()
Date: October 30, 2019 06:15AM

Agreed, weak inner rockers would be terrible. I'd be pretty shocked, this convertible has always seemed completely rock solid. The doors have always functioned perfectly whether the car has been on the ground or in any combination of jack stands. I've never had a second's trouble with opening and closing them, so last night's adventure was quite the shock.

Thomas Ratliff
Abilene, Texas
'65 Fitch Sprint
'66 Monza convertible with EFI
ThomasMRatliff@GMAIL.com

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Re: Door will not open
Posted by: Spyderman64 ()
Date: October 30, 2019 06:22AM

On late models there is a plastic piece which can break and jam the door release mechanism. (I've never experienced this personally.) As far as I know the only fix is to force the door open (like with your shoulder) and remove and replace the broken piece. Can anyone else chime in?

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Re: Door will not open
Posted by: jjohnsonjo ()
Date: October 30, 2019 06:51AM

[corvaircenter.com]

J.O.

65 Corsa Turbo Vert
79 Honda XL 500S
69 Honda CL 160 D
2010 BMW F 650 GS
2003 Bounder 36D
2013 KIA Optima SX turbo-AKA ZIPPY (wife,s car)
69 Newport Holiday Sailboat
Baja 150 dune buggy cart
Coleman HS 500 UTV
2016 KIA Sorento SXL Turbo

Bethlehem,Pa


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Re: Door will not open
Posted by: Sir Thomas ()
Date: October 30, 2019 07:08AM

Thanks for sharing this conversation thread. It didn't pull up for me when I did a search before posting my question. I guess I have some kicking to do tonight. Hmn, didn't plan that for my car. Am I correct in assuming I will need to remove my brand new interior door panel before become forceful with the car?

Thomas Ratliff
Abilene, Texas
'65 Fitch Sprint
'66 Monza convertible with EFI
ThomasMRatliff@GMAIL.com

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Re: Door will not open
Posted by: azdave ()
Date: October 30, 2019 07:46AM

Sir Thomas Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Am I correct in assuming I will need to remove my brand new interior door panel before become forceful with the car?

To be safe yes, but on the two doors where that has happened to me, I used a sheet of foam rubber for protection and then a 2 x 4 over that to spread the load of the kick. With a bungee cord to hold the inner door handle up, I sat in the back seat and gave it a good boot to break it free. Both have opened and closed fine after that trick.

Dave W. / Gilbert Arizona
65 Corsa 140/4
66 Corsa 140/4
66 Corsa 140/4 w/factory A/C
66 Corsa 455 Toro V8
65 Monza Convertible 110/4
66 Monza Convertible 140/4 A/C
65 Monza 4DR 140/PG w/factory A/C
65 Monza 4DR EJ20T/5



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Re: Door will not open
Posted by: playerpage ()
Date: October 30, 2019 07:54AM

This happened to me and I got some advice that worked.

What you do, is have somebody on the outside of the door holding in the latch, while you lie down in the car and slam your feet on it. Like hard. Like you're trapped in there or something.

The way to save your door, is to stick a piece of plywood over it. It spreads the force and you don't have to take anything off. If you're worried about the paint, you can also put a blanket between your door and the plywood. I didn't, and it didn't hurt anything.

Once your door is open, it will work like new again. The plastic piece is pretty extemporaneous, I never replaced it and my door has closed just as solidly as ever. Especially after I replaced the insulation around the edge.

____________________________________________

Eric C. Player, Porterville, CA
Member: CORSA National, Central Coast CORSA, South Coast CORSA, and San Joaquin Valley Corvair Club
THEN: 1965 Monza 110 Canary Yellow
1967 Monza 140 Red
1966 500 110, Black; nicknamed "Shadow"
1965 Monza 110, Camaro Yellow; nicknamed "Silver"
NOW: 1966 Corsa 180 Turbo; nicknamed "Bluvair"

"It would not have helped if I had [taken notes], as he would start a paragraph with, 'It is therefore obvious. . .'
and go on from there to matters which may have been obvious to him and God but to no one else."
-- Robert A. Heinlein, character of Daniel B. Davis, 'The Door Into Summer.'

------

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Re: Door will not open
Posted by: larry202br ()
Date: October 30, 2019 08:00AM

Wow, I learned something new today! Thanks!

1961 rampside with a 65 / 67 110 engine, car four speed.
1965 convertible
1966 Custom two door/four door 180 Turbo.

KC0SKX
Olathe, ks
HACOA

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Re: Door will not open
Posted by: corventure Dave ()
Date: October 30, 2019 01:19PM

I had one do this years ago. First, being a convertible I jacked the side up to release any stress that may have been there from rocker-frame sag.
Next I rolled window up and removed the door panel to access the inside of the door. From here I could look in at the latch assembly.
I had another latch assembly already removed to use as a reference. With mine it was the lock portion of the latch that fell apart. I was able to manually unlock and open the door.

Corventure Dave



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 10/30/2019 04:32PM by MattNall.

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Re: Door will not open
Posted by: Sir Thomas ()
Date: October 31, 2019 08:50AM

What did you physically have to do to manually unlock the door, Dave? I like the idea of having a less violent option to try.

Thomas Ratliff
Abilene, Texas
'65 Fitch Sprint
'66 Monza convertible with EFI
ThomasMRatliff@GMAIL.com

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Re: Door will not open
Posted by: corventure Dave ()
Date: October 31, 2019 02:23PM

Look inside at the door latch assembly. The lock and opening actuators are visible. I manually activated them.

Corventure Dave

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Re: Door will not open
Posted by: Sir Thomas ()
Date: November 05, 2019 06:35AM

I opted to take my door panel off and try to trip the door latch mechanism from the inside, hoping to skip the 'kick the door until it flies open' technique. But after nearly three hours of effort I have yet to find a way to trip the mechanism from the inside. Exactly how can that be done?

Thomas Ratliff
Abilene, Texas
'65 Fitch Sprint
'66 Monza convertible with EFI
ThomasMRatliff@GMAIL.com

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Re: Door will not open
Posted by: Frank DuVal ()
Date: November 05, 2019 07:21AM

Two ways,

1. The linkage (belcrank?) that the rod from the inside handle connects to.

2. The push plate that the outside door handle pin pushes upon*.

There are no other linkages to open the latch.

The inside rod should open the latch even if the latch is in the locked position from the lock knob.


*I think this plate is the top thing in Rafee's picture:

[www.corvair1.com]

Frank DuVal

Fredericksburg, VA

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Re: Door will not open
Posted by: azdave ()
Date: November 05, 2019 08:18AM

Sir Thomas Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I opted to take my door panel off and try to trip the door latch mechanism from the inside, hoping to skip the 'kick the door until it flies open' technique.

If the problem is that little plastic thingy that we discussed has probably broken off and jammed the latch, there is no other way. I will guess that Corventure Dave was able to unlock his door because the failure he had was not for this same reason.

One clue I noticed when the problem was the little plastic thingy, is that the doors opened just a tiny bit (3/16"?) but that was all. The door was not stuck in the fully closed position but when I pushed in the button and pulled the door handle, it would only open a very tiny amount.

Dave W. / Gilbert Arizona
65 Corsa 140/4
66 Corsa 140/4
66 Corsa 140/4 w/factory A/C
66 Corsa 455 Toro V8
65 Monza Convertible 110/4
66 Monza Convertible 140/4 A/C
65 Monza 4DR 140/PG w/factory A/C
65 Monza 4DR EJ20T/5



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Re: Door will not open
Posted by: Reds kid ()
Date: November 05, 2019 10:23AM

I ran into this problem a few years ago. After fighting with it for over 2 weeks i bought another latch to see how it operated. Well in the end I used my 4" grinder with a cut off wheel in the correct location to open the door. Get a replacement latch first if you go this route.

65 140 Corsa
Castaic CA

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Re: Door will not open
Posted by: 66cv8 ()
Date: November 06, 2019 05:56AM

How do the door gaps look? tight at top wide at bottom = big problems.

Joe

66 500 Crown 350/4 on road
66 Corsa Convertible 140/4 rough
69 Monza Convertible 140/4 in progress (original 95/3)
Nu Joisey

" A LITTLE KNOWLEDGE IS A DANGEROUS THING"

"STUPID is the NEW SMART"

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Re: Door will not open
Posted by: Sir Thomas ()
Date: November 11, 2019 07:13AM

Thanks to all who contributed thoughts and advice concerning my sudden door jam problem. It is now resolved! I tried to find a way to trip the latch open from the inside of the door, but couldn't discover any way to do so. Finally I gave in to the violent 'kick the thing open' technique. After removing the new door panel I duct taped two short 2x4 pieces to the rear edge of the door and used a bungee cord to hold the interior door handle open. Three very focused and forceful kicks later, the door flung open.

Indeed the plastic piece had broken inside the mechanism and had jammed it in place. It took some time, pliers and a flathead screwdriver to work the piece out, but after it was removed, the door once again closes, latches and opens perfectly. Go figure.

One more Corvair adventure overcome! I truly appreciate the great help that can be found here. You are a terrific team of advisers!

Thomas Ratliff
Abilene, Texas
'65 Fitch Sprint
'66 Monza convertible with EFI
ThomasMRatliff@GMAIL.com

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Re: Door will not open
Posted by: moomba32 ()
Date: November 11, 2019 09:52AM

Makes me want to go hunt it down and remove it before it breaks.

Don Marlowe
66 Monza 2Dr 140/pg
64 Spyder convertible now, 110/pg
Eutawville SC

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Re: Door will not open
Posted by: American Mel ()
Date: November 11, 2019 12:08PM

moomba32 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Makes me want to go hunt it down and remove it before it breaks.


Exactly what I was thinking as I read this thread also.
Is this 50+ year-old plastic thingy accessible for preemptive removal ? ? ?
What exactly was its purpose, if the door operates perfectly fine without it?

-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-
WA. state, 1 mile south of the Canadian border,
I am not at the end of the world, but you can see it from here.
Have; '66 Monza Coupe - 140, 4-spd. Daily driver beater
'67 Monza Vert. - 140, 4-spd. Daily driver beater
'67 A/C Moredoor Monza
Have had; '61 Monza coupe, '62 Monza Wagon, '63 Spyder, '65 Corsa
.
non-vair
'04 Dodge Cummins Quad Dualy, approaching 400K
17'Terry

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