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Glutton For Punishment
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251 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am about the luckiest guy. Just pulled my trunk floor for removing my turbo and replacing my transmission output shaft seals. The second time I closed my rear hatch after pulling the floor, it wouldn't re-open.

Climbed under the car and popped the hatch. A couple of extra trunk pops with the floor in, and I would have been looking forward to a very frustrating job trying to pop the hatch. I will be replacing the cable and creating a backup system at the same time.
 

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Wingless Wonder
1988 Esprit Turbo
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6,424 Posts
Very common, I've broken 3 so far...

Do everything you can to reduce friction when you replace that.
Lubrication is the key, I've only broken ONE (on somebody else's Esprit! :facepalm ) and my car's cable is still OE. <--- JINX


Periodically I inspect the cable ends (interior latch and hatch ends) and lubricate the latches so that everything moves freely. Plus I don't pull too hard...remember, when properly adjusted, one side unlatches, then the other. (Less stress on the car and owner that way) TADTS
 

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How involved of a process is it to replace the rear hatch release cable on the older (83-87) Esprits? I wonder if it is something that could be replaced as a preventative measure
 

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Boy, is there a straightforward replacement for the whole hatch release system that anyone has ever developed? I tried setting up a solenoid driven back-up system but it never worked properly and I finally removed it. It would be very cool to have two small powerful solenoids which could be mounted adjacent to each latching mechanism which would pull the slide open and release the hatch. I tried using two center-mounted solenoids and ran sheathed bicycle cables to the latches (which were modified to accept a second cable). It "sort of" worked but then would fail. The solenoids triggered but the amount of flex for the relatively long cables just did not prove adequate. I think the idea would work if you could locate solenoids in line with the latches and used a relatively short and direct cable connection. But, I've never located and appropriately powerful solenoid or figured out how to unobtrusively mount it.
 

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Wingless Wonder
1988 Esprit Turbo
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6,424 Posts
I tried setting up a solenoid driven back-up system
Thinking this through,

Do you think a solenoid (electrical) release would be advisable to access an area containing a dead battery? ;)

If you sleep better at night knowing you have a backup hatch release, auxiliary cables accessible from the outside seem like the best bet...
 

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When I had my Exige I was worred that would happen. Reflecting current safety standards, Exige has a release inside the trunk as well so that someone trapped in there could get out. :panic:

I replaced that release with a longer cable, and routed/mounted it inside a rear wheel well.
 

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I am opening mine trunk with my remote and I have a safety feature to open it from the bottom with two latches I can pull from for each side if the battery goes dead.

Details on this feature please!
 

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Cal H
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982 Posts
Boy, is there a straightforward replacement for the whole hatch release system that anyone has ever developed? I tried setting up a solenoid driven back-up system but it never worked properly and I finally removed it. It would be very cool to have two small powerful solenoids which could be mounted adjacent to each latching mechanism which would pull the slide open and release the hatch. I tried using two center-mounted solenoids and ran sheathed bicycle cables to the latches (which were modified to accept a second cable). It "sort of" worked but then would fail. The solenoids triggered but the amount of flex for the relatively long cables just did not prove adequate. I think the idea would work if you could locate solenoids in line with the latches and used a relatively short and direct cable connection. But, I've never located and appropriately powerful solenoid or figured out how to unobtrusively mount it.
Right before I had to sell my former car many years ago this was the last topic of discussion between a small group that never got resolved.

As far as the emergency release I came came up with an idea to mount something like this behind the license plate. Prime-Line Brushed Chrome Emergency Release Lock Kit-GD 52143 at The Home Depot
This type of release is used in detached garages without standard door access. During a power failure a key is used and the lock comes out with a steel cable which is attached to the release mechanism of the garage door opener.

Like mieczkow, We ran across the not being able to source powerful enough solenoids also so we were going in the direction of using electric window or worm drive motors as they would provide enough torque to trigger the release.

Also in talks at the time was coming up with a way to replace the short section of cable between the two rear latches with a solid rod.

When the topic of the solid rod came up I also mentioned that the majority of cars have direct key access to the trunk or hatch and if going to a solid rod it would be fairly easy to attach the rod ends to a cam of a key lock.

Someone had mentioned pneumatic and/or hydraulic actuators like someone on this current thread but decided that we had our hands full keeping what we already have from leaking and did not want to add other items to the car with that potential.

I wish I could move forward on these but at this time all my efforts must go towards getting my car operational.
 

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Atwell,

To clarify I want a system which would open the hatch but leave the Lotus cable intact. In effect make the stock system the backup and the imagined new system the primary.

Tom
 

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Super Moderator
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4,265 Posts
<sigh> Y'all are scaring me.

I remember this issue back in 2011 when I got my car. In my daily driving routine, I put my work laptop either on passenger seat or front trunk/bonnet. That way, I never have to worry about my work laptop being stuck in the rear trunk/boot.

But 3 years/31K miles later, I guess I better put in at least a manual cable back up. I decided against the center-mounted solenoids back then because it seemed delicate with the small trunk (jamming stuff in there, etc.).

The best solution I believe I saw was drilling hole in release mechanism and putting secondary pull cables?
 

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This is what I have on each side. Vehicle door Automotive exterior Automotive lighting Vehicle Bumper
and this is what I use if the battery goes dead. Suspension part Auto part Suspension Coil spring Tire
one for the left and one for the latch. I am probably removing it to make it stock since I am planning on selling the car. The spring from the original latch is very strong so I had to change the spring. This two actuators are connected to my alarm, and that's how I am able to use my remote control with it, and of course I can open it with my cellphone also. The only reason I have it in the bottom is because the release cable was back ordered for several months and I needed a back up if the battery was dead. I finally just got it a couple of days ago, so I might try installing it and keeping the same setup but I don't know if it will work. I just don't want the new owner to be laying on the floor in order to open the trunk if the battery dies.

Sent from AutoGuide.com Free App
 
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