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Old 01-28-2020, 03:09 PM
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Deck Lid Struts

I am trying to determine what pound rating I need for the struts to lift the deck lid of my 1926 T coupe. I have pretty well figured out the mounting points necessary for the struts I have spec'ed from McMaster. I used a weight scale to lift the hood at the strut lift point. It takes 15# to lift at that point. It seems to me that the strut, pushing at that angle will require more than 15# to lift the lid. I have zero experience with struts, so I could easily be wrong here. I intend to install one strut on each side. I don't want the lid to slam open or bend when trying to close. The spec'ed strut comes in 15# through 120# in about 10# increments. I'm thinking 2-15#'s or 2-20#'s. What do you think? Any body have any experience with these struts?
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Old 01-28-2020, 04:50 PM
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I used to have them on one of my '32 roadster and could tell the outside temp the way they opened the trunk. On a cold day the trunk would just come up several inches but hot days look out for an uppercut! Might want to look at the units that open the back of a camper shell, they are spring and not gas operated. Cheaper too.
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Old 01-30-2020, 11:45 AM
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Man, I was hoping someone had some experience here. The struts listed by make and model never give the spec's, only the universal struts give spec's, so I can't figure out what the OEMs require.
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Old 01-30-2020, 12:29 PM
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No experience either. Maybe figure out far the struts need to open and go to a junkyard to see if you can find something that is similar in length and weight.
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Old 01-31-2020, 01:16 AM
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Sorry. I am just one more guy that can't help but am following along hoping to learn something.

John
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Old 01-31-2020, 09:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaw22w View Post
I am trying to determine what pound rating I need for the struts to lift the deck lid of my 1926 T coupe. I have pretty well figured out the mounting points necessary for the struts I have spec'ed from McMaster. I used a weight scale to lift the hood at the strut lift point. It takes 15# to lift at that point. It seems to me that the strut, pushing at that angle will require more than 15# to lift the lid. I have zero experience with struts, so I could easily be wrong here. I intend to install one strut on each side. I don't want the lid to slam open or bend when trying to close. The spec'ed strut comes in 15# through 120# in about 10# increments. I'm thinking 2-15#'s or 2-20#'s. What do you think? Any body have any experience with these struts?

Try looking around here; https://www.liftsupportsdepot.com/cu...ngthain=19||20
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Old 02-01-2020, 06:10 AM
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Sorry. I am just one more guy that can't help but am following along hoping to learn something.

John

Same here. Gonna need some later for my rod.
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Old 02-01-2020, 06:11 AM
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Here's some experience... I used gas struts on the deck lid of the Challenger in the <pic when the hinges had to be reconfigured 'cause of wheel tubs. What I did, figuring the lid was not too heavy, was go to the auto parts store around the corner and get a pair of something "smallish". Then I made mounts for one end where they pretty-much had to be at for packaging. For the other end where I had wiggle-room, I put together something temporary with c-clamps etc. Then I tried opening and shutting the deck lid...by moving the pivot in toward the deck lid pivot I got less pressure but more travel, and vice-versa...I just kept moving the pivot around until everything was satisfactory and then made a permanent bracket based on that. No calculations because I really didn't have much to base any on, I just had to get some hardware in-hand and get started. If I hadn't been able to make it work I would have had to go back to the store for some different-size struts and start over with the temporary pivot deal, by then I'd have at-least known I needed something bigger or longer or whatever.

They've lasted about 15 years but are getting weak now...presumably as an off-the-shelf part they will be easy to match new ones to...I did save the P/N but I imagine it's long-ago lost.

Note that mounts may need to be a little stronger than you'd think and you don't want your deck lid bending at that point over time so make a bracket there that spreads the load around a bit. Also, struts need to be mounted so that they're "upside-down" (cylinder up/shaft down) when the lid is in it's most-used position (shut) so that the lubricant/sealant inside stays against the seal. Otherwise the seal dries out and they fail early.

Will take a photo if you want, otherwise maybe the story helps.
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Old 02-01-2020, 06:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaw22w View Post
I am trying to determine what pound rating I need for the struts to lift the deck lid of my 1926 T coupe. I have pretty well figured out the mounting points necessary for the struts I have spec'ed from McMaster. I used a weight scale to lift the hood at the strut lift point. It takes 15# to lift at that point. It seems to me that the strut, pushing at that angle will require more than 15# to lift the lid. I have zero experience with struts, so I could easily be wrong here. I intend to install one strut on each side. I don't want the lid to slam open or bend when trying to close. The spec'ed strut comes in 15# through 120# in about 10# increments. I'm thinking 2-15#'s or 2-20#'s. What do you think? Any body have any experience with these struts?



A scale on each side at 15 LBS for 30 LBS total?
If so, the 15 LBS may not start to push and just remain static.
Just using numbers seems to make sense especially if you can sense that at that angle it would need more.


Is the weight rating per piece or pair?
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Old 02-01-2020, 09:20 AM
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Unfortunately, the days of wandering a junk yard with your tool box are past in this area, so that's not going to work.
Thanks KSO for your input. I have already figured out some reinforcement on the deck lid. The body mount end of the strut is a little harder to figure. The ideal point is kinda hanging out in no mans land, but I have an idea for that.
I was figuring on 2 struts, one on each side, but as light as the lid is, one strut may do it. The stock lid support is only on one side. I think what I can do is set up one 20# strut on one side and give it a try. If that doesn't lift it I could add another 20# strut to the other side. At that point I may find that two 15# struts may be better, or I could need more than 20# struts.
123pugsy, It was 15 pounds total to lift the deck lid, and yes the ratings are per shock.
Here's my thinking. You see in the drawing how in the closed position the lid mounting is uphill from the body mount. I think if that strut ran downhill it would actually "break over" and hold the lid down instead of raising it. That makes the body mounting point critical. Using the length spec's for the strut and a compass the mounting point has to be at the intersection of the two arcs swung from the deck lid closed position and the lid open position. I just played around with the lid mounting point to get the strut to run uphill.
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Old 02-01-2020, 01:22 PM
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I work with a guy who has worked through this many times. He will most likely do it again for the converted rumble lid on my current job, a '30 coupe. I don't know that he has a quantifiable method of strut selection, it generally starts with an educated guess and a great deal of luck would be required to nail it on the first guess. It is not unheard of to need two adjacent part numbers to fine-tune the end result. What I have gathered from observation is that the first thing you need is strut in hand so you can work out location to suit.

It is one of those situations where cart has to go in front of horse, to start. The reason recommendations are tough to come by is that each application is pretty much individual.

In one case, a Trans Am so low and big-tired that stock hood hinges occupied tire space, we started off using 02 Grand Prix trunk hinges for their travel path and modified them from there. Because we had them. Ended up using struts of the same size and configuration but with higher rating.

Knowing that, what might be helpful is to browse through available stock type struts enough to find something that resrmbles your predicted dimensional and attachment parameters, buy it and try it, then use your scale to gauge it's rating. This gives you a starting point and takes you from needing to pull a number out of the blue to being able to say "stronger than" or "weaker than" strut in hand. And thats why new struts should be used for evaluation. Salvage yard is a valid idea for browsing designs and sizes though.

My main point to make is that on any custom application, it is rare to not buy at least one strut you don't need and unwise to pin down a location prior to recieving the actual strut or struts to be used, which have been selected by best educated guess work.

I would like to see more people lifting the lid and using some sort of simple hold-open lock at the hinges due to the complexities you are facing, but don't favor the idea of props. If you have all the time in the world, my project will eventually have a final solution with part numbers... but its going to be awhile!

Best of luck. I can ask our guy for a guess next week but the key thing is that you will need a reference strut to start. Struts are easy to decide to use while doing bodywork, but much tougher to make a reality and people often overlook the fact that it is not a frugal choice. It just wins over trying to utilize a production car's setup in most cases because it SEEMS like struts would be easier. That just ain't always the case.
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Old 02-01-2020, 01:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Paulz View Post
I think this link has some useful configuration info and measuring references. Don't we all wish there was an application chart for hotrods? That can't happen but the page can help familiarize a person with available variations.
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Old 02-01-2020, 01:54 PM
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Pardon the three posts in a row but I gotta throw personal opinion on the fire here...

I would be willing to make a small bet that out of all the years of Mustangs, theres a whole hinges and rods setup that would adapt easily enough. Think about the similarity in lid size and weight. Its possible that Mustang width might even work as-is.

How cool would that be to dismiss the whole strut mess? Seeing how easy it is to widely vary torsion rods via notches and comparing that to what you face using struts seems pretty attractive to me. Although my project uses billet hinges, now that I think about it theres enough Mustangs handy to perhaps explore that option. If I recall correctly, the 60s Mustangs have hinges contained in bolt-in boxes which would make for pretty easy tryouts. A guy could even mount hinges with rods and lid on a bench mounted plywood setup for tweaking with it all off the car. Hmm...
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Old 02-01-2020, 06:31 PM
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Quote:
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Here's my thinking. You see in the drawing how in the closed position the lid mounting is uphill from the body mount. I think if that strut ran downhill it would actually "break over" and hold the lid down instead of raising it. That makes the body mounting point critical.... I just played around with the lid mounting point to get the strut to run uphill.
While thinking about this right after posting, I realized that this is wrong. The breakover point would be on a line extended through the trunk hinge point and the strut body mount, not anything about being level. I thought about it and realized that if the above quote was true, and the car was going up a steep hill the lid would not open. AH HA! Well that puts me back to exploring different length struts. Sometimes it just helps to write your thoughts down. I will get this sorted out and post the info if you guys are interested.
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Old 02-01-2020, 11:26 PM
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1 - when you trigger your trunk latch , you want the lid to " pop up" so you can get ahold of it , no?
2- those struts put a lot of load on the mounting points , ever notice how many are torn loose on truck topper doors.
3 - IMO , the closest application for what you're going is truck topper/cap doors , co.'s like A.R.E. , LUND or a truck accessory store is where I'd start looking , I did and decided a simple prop rod made from 1/8" SS Rod would work just fine , and it has for 19 years ! ��
Dave
I just googled " truck topper gas shocks" , WOW , there's sets with or without every conceivable mounting / length/ weight rating, etc. And , they're dirt cheap !!!

Last edited by 2old2fast; 02-01-2020 at 11:39 PM.
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