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 How to make a custom hood release cable!

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240sxguy
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PostSubject: How to make a custom hood release cable!    Tue Mar 01, 2011 9:55 pm

Alright, well I talked about it and now I am done. Fortunately I had two old cables to butcher.

You absolutely will need a grinder with cutoff wheel!

First things first; Go to a local bike shop and ask for a brake cable for a tandem bike. You know, the retarded looking 2 seat ones that are ultra long. The brake cable will come separately from the sheath. I think the length was like 100" or so. Total cost; 17 bucks for the cable and sheath. I think the brand was Jagwire (not that it matters). I looked online and it was much cheaper buying local.

Remove your old hood release cable. Mine was all chewed from the tire and bound up. Cut off the end that attaches to the hood latch about 3-4" back from the steel ball with the slot that locks into the latch. Pull the piece of cable out of the end you cut off and throw it out.

Now go to the other end with the handle. Cut off the cable right behind the plastic stub that is part of the mount for the hood release. Pull the hood release handle out of the "socket". Cut the cable off near the crimped end where the cable is crimped into the end of the handle. Take a chisel or something sharp and split the crimp open. If you use a chisel, use a shitty one. Grab the old cable by a few strands and start pulling them out a few at a time. Should be fairly easy to get it all out. The hole the cable slid into actually goes deeper past that crimped portion. If you can't get the raw cable to slide down in there use a pick tool or something to open it up a hair.

Take the mount part that screws into the underside of the dash and find a drillbit that basically matches the diameter of the outer sheath Drill out the area the cable feeds through.

Now that you have the old cable prepared, take a good look at the replacement. The one I had.. it came with ends on it. One end was like a sideways cylinder and one was a ball shape. The ball shape fit the hood latch best on mine. Try both on yours. Cut off the end you don't want to use and toss it in the trash.

Now, take the end of the outer sheath from the factory hood release cable and slide the new cable through it. Now slide the new inner cable into the new outer sheath. I used heatshrink over the joint between the two sheaths which worked fine. I would prefer to use adhesive heatshrink but I didn't have any.

Install the cable into the hoodlatch and route it the way you want it routed. Mark the outer sheath to the length you want it. Remove it from the car and cut it off. Now feed the cable with the end on it and chunk of OEM sheath through the new sheath. Obviously the cable will be too long.

This is the tricky part. You need to figure out how long the cable will need to be to minimize freeplay. There will be no real adjustment after you are done. You can figure this out however you want to, but let me explain how I did it.

Install the cable onto the hoodlatch and pull it tight up against the latch to remove freeplay. Then I cut the raw center cable end to length. I cut off and left about 1" hanging out if memory serves. Obviously start long. Slide the plastic mount piece down over the cable sheath. Slip the new cable into the old hole that you cut open with the chisel and crimp it shut in a vice. Slide the plastic part back and insert the handle into the mount. Pull the sheathing back until it is tight and the handle is bottomed out, you must do this with the cable hooked to the hood release so you don't remove too much "extra" cable.

You can either use a clamp of some sort or epoxy to keep the sheath from pulling through the mount when you pull the handle.

I know this writeup kinda sucks, I am better at doing than teaching.

Here are some pictures to illustrate the situation better;

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PostSubject: Re: How to make a custom hood release cable!    Wed Mar 02, 2011 4:13 pm

I would need to see it, but sounds easy enough. Thanks Evan!

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240sxguy
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PostSubject: Re: How to make a custom hood release cable!    Wed Mar 02, 2011 4:16 pm

Once you have the parts in your hand, it becomes kinda clear how things have to go down to make this work quite frankly. I didn't take pictures along the way because it screws up my train of thought.

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Flicktitty
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PostSubject: Re: How to make a custom hood release cable!    Wed Mar 02, 2011 4:54 pm

looks pretty helpful, might give it a try.
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PostSubject: Re: How to make a custom hood release cable!    Wed Mar 02, 2011 4:56 pm

2 things occurred to me.

Before you crimp the handle onto the end of the cable, make sure you slid the rubber boot onto the cable that seals it into the firewall.

Figuring the amount of cable slack you will need would be best done by just measuring how much is poking out of the factory hood release cable.

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