Hood Lock (on a 65 Chevelle)
Authored by Wes Vann, modified April 29, 2000
In almost all of the postings that have anything to do with security,I end up saying how you have to keep the hood locked. Although Idon't really like the idea of giving away any of my secrets, here is whatI did for a solid hood lock. It really covers two different methods thatI worked up. The second is the most straight forward and positive.
Both methods require that you have some fabrication skills!
This page is rather intensive with photos. (some are "clickable"to a larger version) There really isn't any other way to show what I'vedone. I'm sorry if it takes a long time to load.
What ever type of "alarm" you have, you have to knowthat the hood is locked down solid!
General comments and notes; (things to besaid up front)
The first method that I was going to do, required a cable lock assemblythat is currently available through JC Whitney for around $29.99 (info thanks toChristopher Turner). I used this type assembly in anearlier car that I had and it always worked well. What is scary is if thecable breaks or gets gummed up. It is possible to hook up a "killswitch" or relay off the unit, but that means that you are working it a lotmore, and risk it breaking.
The bracket that I made that mounts on the hood, was used for both methods.I had to drill an extra hole for the second method.
In both methods, I was after a method that could be removed at a latterdate so that the car could be returned to "stock". The secondmethod works best for this.
The first method;
In this method, I was going to use a hood lock cable (currently availablethrough JC Whitney). On one end, there is ahousing that has a circular lock type key and also an indicator led. Theled could be wired as an indicator light for the alarm. On the other end(to be mounted at the leading edge of the hood) is a plunger that catcheson a bracket with a hole in it. There is also a switch that can be wiredto the indicator led or kill switch.
To do a good job with this assembly, you have to make a mounting bracketfor the end of the unit, and also a solid bracket that forms the hole thatthe plunger goes into. (the photo above shows the simple bracket that comeswith the kit)
The mounting bracket that I made went between the radiator core supportand the front of the grill. It took quite some time to make up the shapethat was required!! It's all sheet steel, cut and welded into shape.
Here is a photo of the bracket after painting and the cable-end bracketin place.
What can't be seen in the photo above is that nuts were welded on theunderside for both the "cable-end" bracket and the two boltsthat are shown. The nuts have to be welded in due to the fact that oncethe bracket is installed, you can't get to the back side.
In this photo, you can see how the cable runs off on the lower rightof the photo. It runs behind the headlight assembly, between the innerand outer fender panels, through the firewall, and then the other end ismounted at the lower edge of the dash. (I never really ran it through thefirewall, I ended up doing the other method)
You can see the bolt (there are two) that goes through the radiatorcore support. It's the rusty bolt head.
You can also see the bolt that goes through the leading edge of thegrill cross member. (it's the bolt head that is below and to the left ofthe cable bracket.
The really big thing to note is that nothing can be reached orremoved, even if they kick in the grill!
Next is the bracket that is mounted on the leading edge of the hood.As I said in the beginning, I was after something that was "removable".
The bracket was fabricated out of flat sheet steel and is bolted betweenthe hood and the stock hood latch bracket. The big hassle (thatonly applies to the first method) is that the flange with the hole has tobe exactly in the correct position for the lock plunger. To make this,I ended up having to mount it and repeatedly open and close the hood. Thelocation of the hole is established by putting a small amount of greaseon the plunger, and then extending it until it touches the flange.
Another thing about that bracket, you have to make sure that it doesn'tstop the stock hood latch from working!! The photo above shows the finalposition of the bracket. Note that it's removable and that all four hoodlatch bolts hold it in place.
At this point, the first method was "workable". Except forrunning the cable through the firewall and mounting the "key"end.
I spent a lot of time trying to think of a good place to mount the "key"end of the cable. The problem was that there was already a ton of otherstuff mounted in that location.
I also wanted something that was real straight forward and simple. Asa result, I went to the second method.
The second method;
I've spent a fair amount of time telling people that even if they haveto use a chain and lock, just keep the hood locked. This method is dangclose to being that simple.
What I needed was a steel strap that would "hook" on the hoodbracket, slide between the radiator and grill, and then be locked to somethingbehind the bumper.
By there being a "hook" at the top of the strap, the onlyway that the strap can be removed from the hood bracket is by rotatingit horizontal! (the hood has to be wide open!!)
The strap bracket should have a hook on it made out of hardened steelas this would be the weak part of the strap. The hook is just a sectionof a chain link! (that is why there is a photo of a chain at the top ofthis page)
The strap is nothing more that some one inch wide steel. I notched itas shown and then brazed it together.
Then I shaped the end of the strap so that it looked clean.
Here is a photo of the strap hanging from the hood bracket. Notice thatI ended up drilling a new hole in the hood bracket. This was required sothat the bottom edge of the hook wouldn't hit the hood latch bracket atthe grill. I'm going to have to grind off the lower section just to makeit cleaner.
Here is the strap hanging in position. As I said before, in order toremove the strap, it has to be rotated horizontal. Once removed, thereis nothing hanging down lower that the stock hood latch pin (that alwaysmanages to find my bald head).
The reason for the bends in the strap is that it has to clear the stocklatch mechanism. The strap slides down between the radiator and the grill,while you close the hood.
This photo shows the end of the strap when the hood is closed. I drilleda hole through the existing grill bracket and that's what the strap islocked to.
The lock sits behind the bumper (behind the license plate). It can onlybe seen if you look real hard!
One of the things that surprised me is that it doesn't rattle,which I thought would be a problem!
The strap is painted black and isn't noticeable through the grill. Thestrap doesn't restrict any air flow.
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