Suicide Hinges: Seeking Advice on Hinge Shape.
I decided a few weeks ago to suicide style the rear door hinges on my 1949 Hudson. I'll be leaving the front doors stock.
In all my research from those who have done custom or pre-fabbed kits the thing to do is to get the hinge pin location outward towards the quarter panel skin and towards the door as far as possible.
Given this is a unibody car with a unique body contour/profile I had to build my own hinges as the thing I noticed about the pre-fab kits is that they join the pockets straight inline like in image #1 - which is fine for most cars but the body profile of the Hudson is more at an angle from the roof line down as shown in this image...
Here's a prototype picture that really shows this angle and where the assembly has to sit to align the hinge pins level and vertically...
I know the lower hinge itself is most likely going to cause me some grief given the distance from the quarter panel due to the angle - the top hinge is as close as it can get to the recommended placements.
Here's a picture of a beautiful custom Hudson where they did all 4 door suicide style - but you can see here that the implementation caused the doors to swing up at an awkward angle when opened and don't open fully. I can't imagine what a PIA it is to get in and out of this car - I want my doors to open level and smooth and fully.
So here's a picture of what I've finished tack welding into place so far.
Given this information my twisted thinking is instead of the hinge itself being a 90 degree that it needs to have a curve applied near the hinge point to make the door move forward and out as it opens to clear the quarter panel edge - something like this...
So...anyone who's done this before I'd love to hear some feedback on possible hinge designs. Thanks ~ maybe someday I'll quit making mods and get this beast on the road :thumbup:
There is some good talk on this thread Click here.
Here's a good how to
thanks for the replies - I hit both links noted in the replies before I started on this mod on my car...the problem is the there is no real discussion on the hinge shape itself - only the placement of the pockets, which is very unique on this car - where the S10 door jamb is nearly vertical - I have to work around the angle and the thickness of the jamb itself...
I set the quarter panel back on loosely (they bolt on on this car :thumbup: ) and took this picture to better illustrate the difference between the S10 door jamb vs. the Hudson door jamb.
Where I might be able to use a similar shaped hinge in the top pocket as illustrated in the s10 implementation - the lower hinge is going to have to be a different shape, perhaps even a dual swing hinge to be able to clear the mid-belt line and distance between the hinge and outer skin.
the hinges need to be vertically level or when they open they will sag or raise up depending on the installation..
I've done a few sets.. they are a job.. That is for sure.
It also needs to have the same swing as the upper hinge or it will bind.
When I do the hinges I will level them out in the closed position and check to make sure they are the same levelness, i'll even use a angle meter, then put them in the open position and do the same thing. if this is not perfect you will get premature bushing wear and/or binding.
This is why you see so many doors drop down a little or up when open.. this is to keep the 2 hinges parallel all the way through the swing. sometimes you can only do so much..
This is also why I buy the suicide doors hinge kit when I do them.. that way I know the bushings and everything are going to be mounted on the same plane on each hinge.. that way when I measure the angle of the hinges, I know i can count on the hinge bushings being on the same angle to the hinge on each hinge. Each hinge is put in the same jig before welding..
Normally I put the hinge assembly together before cutting the hole in the pillar also.. I can make the hinges work on the same plane before installing..
then I can set it up to the piller and try got get it as level as possible without getting into the skin..
Here are some pics to show the assembly I made..
I measured the distance from the outside hole on one hinge then to the other in the open position,, then did the same in the closed to make sure that the distance stayed the same through out the swing.
I think I'd move that top hinge down some so you can get it closer to the outside skin. It may not be ideal as far as distance between the two hinges is concerned but should function better I'd think. Also if you make the "L" part inside the pillar longer it should give you a bigger swing out. For example Hagan sells two different hinges for different width doors. You have a lot of width to play with and I'd try to capitalize on that.
these doors open 90 degree's I don't want them to open any farther.. that is for sure..
They do slope down a little when all the way open due to the way it swings.
but better than many of them I have seen.
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