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Thread: Canopy latches

  1. #11

    Re: Canopy latches

    Well, I guess that works!!
    It's a 52 year old car and everything works, just not always at the same time.......and it's probably about to get jealous!
    *Donate to Euro-Nova today!*

  2. #12
    ***Euro-Nova Supporter*** Spacenut's Avatar
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    Re: Canopy latches

    Oi! I don't know everything about Novas y'know...

    ...But I know a bit about T-handles. All ADD factory Novas had manual canopy operation, which required the T-handle latch to secure the back of the canopy, and as Alex says, over-centre catches on the inside at the front to stop the canopy bouncing up on the gas rams. The T-handle came from the BL parts bin (Morris Minor/early Mini bootlid handle, still available new through Europa Spares!), and was lockable, which gave some security to manual canopies.

    The early Elam Mk1 Novas had the option of a hydraulic canopy, but the hydraulic pump used (Cadillac Eldorado convertible) had very poor negative holding pressure (fluid would creep past the twin-gear type impellor), so the canopy would shake loose over rough terrain, or slowly/fastly creep down when open, a possible problem if you had left your keys in the ignition! The operation was so painfully slow that some owners subsequently converted their canopy back to manual operation!

    So the factory cars left the T-handle in place even if they had the hydraulic option, just to locate the canopy. The T-handle has a square shaft which runs through the BL Mini/Landrover latch on the inside of the canopy and is then topped-off with an interior door lever to release the latch from the inside. It was only the later introduction of the Smiths Mini-Pack (the rightly-famed "noisemaker") on the Mk2 in 1980 that saw the end of the T-handle, although the depression in the canopy moulding was retained if a manual canopy was optioned. Green Machine was originally a factory hydraulic car, the Cad pump was so poor that the canopy would not lift unassisted (from the outside you had to turn the T-handle and heave at the same time, from inside you had to operate the momentary switch and turn the latch and push the canopy up at the same time). The previous owner allowed the canopy hinges to go over-centre and stopped the front edge/wiper motor crashing into the bonnet with nylon cord. Not a good look

    UK C&U regulations state that if the canopy is a "door", then it has to be fitted with burst-proof latches, which might mean there is still a place for the T-handle in the future!

    Lauren
    only Pythagoras can save me now!

  3. #13

    Re: Canopy latches

    Not to start a different thread, but my Sterling is equiped with hydraulic lift system for the canopy. I am curious as to what your thoughts are for rebuilding the system (rams, hoses, etc.) vs. spending perhaps very little more on a full electric actuators.

  4. #14

    Re: Canopy latches

    I think that depends on what condition your current hydraulic equipment is in. If the pump, rams and lines are good and just need a good checkout and maybe a few fittings replaced, then i'd say stay as is. If all/most of your equipment is worn out, you should make a price list of what all that equipment will cost you to replace and then compare it to linear actuators. That's what I did and considering that the only part of my original pneumatic system that was salvageable was the pump, I decided to go with linear actuators.

    I got mine here: http://www.surpluscenter.com/sort.asp?U ... yword=EALD
    1975 Sterling
    215 ci Buick V8
    Sterling in Garage! Back to work!

  5. #15

    Re: Canopy latches

    From a visual inspection the lines and at least 1/2 of the fittings will need replaced. The pump has yet to show me signs of life, but the rams are in good visual shape. What particular specs did you get for your actuator?

  6. #16

    Re: Canopy latches

    My canopy had/has gas rams attached to the hinges for assist and it also had a single pneumatic cylinder to open close it. I measured the stroke of the gas rams from open to close and bought linear actuators with at LEAST that much stroke. I also bought the controller so that I can set the linears to stop at the same point as the gas rams max out (I plan on mounting them in tandem with the linears on pull pins so that if the power goes out/fuse blows, i can pull the pins and manually open the canopy).
    1975 Sterling
    215 ci Buick V8
    Sterling in Garage! Back to work!

  7. #17
    Euro-Nova Founder bobbybrown's Avatar
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    Re: Canopy latches

    This thread is very informative, I've made it in to a sticky so it will be easy to find for people in the future.

  8. #18
    Senior Member
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    Re: Canopy latches

    Forgot about this thread. Here's a photo of the catch used to hold my roof down. Don't know where's it's from as it's off another 'reek. But probably just from your typical hardware store.


  9. #19

    Re: Canopy latches

    I was going to send a pm, but thought others would find this interesting and perhaps helpful. I have been pondering the release mechanism for the linear actuator release. At first I thought just a hood release cable set up with just pins holding the actuator to the mount. The issue is that while driving my fear would be bump after bump would jostle it loose. My next thought would be a spring loaded pull pin. Something like this. Your thoughts?

  10. #20

    Re: Canopy latches

    That's an interesting solution. There's quite a few guys using linear actuators that have already retro-fitted pull rings to their ram ends. I don't think that they will jostle loose while driving. Most have that little ball bearing at the end of the shaft, plus they are almost always under pressure, at least somewhat, and that should keep them in place.

    R

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