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ragnarhairybreeks Fri Mar 31, 2017 8:31 am

Hi,

I can't be the first one that has done this, maybe it's mentioned elsewhere here?

Anyway, finally ditched the annoying "broken leg" support strut on the kitchen sink lid and replaced with a small gas charged strut. I think it's a better way, the strut holds the lid up securely and in the closed position there is enough over centre action to hold the lid down a bit.

My only reservation is that the original strut screw holes couldn't be re used.



More info on my blog here, https://shufti.blog/

Cheers

Alistair

Ahwahnee Fri Mar 31, 2017 8:45 am

Very nice indeed.

I had pondered using a flexing knee support as I have one on another, similar, application:


atomatom Fri Mar 31, 2017 8:53 am

very nice. this has been on my list for a while. my current solution is a bit of rope with a loop to hold it open.

i guess a shorter strut might allow hole re-use. my main issue was where to find the strut. i knew about the later westy's struts, but no mounting gear. http://www.gowesty.com/product-details.php?id=3271

ragnarhairybreeks Fri Mar 31, 2017 9:40 am

Shorter strut might work, but at a glance, using the stock mounting holes makes the compressed and extended length required challenging.

I bought the gas struts pretty well on a flutter. Wasn't expecting it to work quite as well as it turned out. The over centre down force when lid closed was a bonus.

Alistair

atomatom Fri Mar 31, 2017 10:08 am

did you just guess on the power of the strut? would you go up or down in Nm?

btw, it looks like you linked to the 4 pack on your blog. you can have just one mailed for $5.

or are you going to add them to the side cupboards as well? that would be useful. i use the curtain line to hold them up, but room for improvement. similar to this: http://campwestfalia.com/cabinet-lid-support/

MsTaboo Fri Mar 31, 2017 10:41 am

Smacking good idea. Does it help with the rattle? Like you, I hate to drill new holes if avoidable but this looks worth doing.

ragnarhairybreeks Fri Mar 31, 2017 1:10 pm

I haven't had them on long enough to determine if it reduces rattling. It might, but I've also added some foam under the edge of the lid to press against the stove top.

I sure hope it helps, even with the foam and with dish clothes etc between the stove grate and the drop down drain tray , I get rattles on rough roads.

Alistair

ragnarhairybreeks Fri Mar 31, 2017 1:13 pm

I guessed about the strength. 100 N is about 22.5 lbf. That seems like too much but what with the lever arm of the lid on the strut placement it turned out to be fine.

Thought about the side cupboards. I too use the curtain line to hold them up. I think you'd have to make a right angle bracket just inside the cupboard opening to mount the strut. Not sure though.



Alistair



atomatom wrote: did you just guess on the power of the strut? would you go up or down in Nm?

btw, it looks like you linked to the 4 pack on your blog. you can have just one mailed for $5.

or are you going to add them to the side cupboards as well? that would be useful. i use the curtain line to hold them up, but room for improvement. similar to this: http://campwestfalia.com/cabinet-lid-support/

kourt Fri May 05, 2017 6:40 pm

Unfortunately this mod won't work on a newer Westy with a gray galley and a Shurflo faucet. There is just not enough room for everything. I love the idea of some sort of force holding the top down, which I hope will suppress rattles in the galley. I hope to accomplish something with rare earth magnets. More later.

kourt

Terry Kay Fri May 05, 2017 7:14 pm

There are two different mounting set ups for the stove top lid.
Early & late both NLA from VW.

The pieces of wood added to the inside of the early cabinet edge is kinda "iffy" at best, the pivot point on the bottom is also the mounting point.
A guy with use would have to be oversizing the hole eventually, probably wind up going all the way through the front board.

Alistair ,
Good call on the mini gas cylinder placement.
However, there always going to be some sort of slight up pressure on the lid, the weight of it alone will not keep it banging on the top of the cabinet as you go down the road.
That would be a pain in short order.
Some sort of latch, catch, hasp, anything to hold it tight.
No banging.
You're going to have to work on that a little.

I have a few late model stock OE lid props still available.
When these are gone, that's all here in the USA.

ragnarhairybreeks Fri May 05, 2017 10:31 pm

Terry Kay wrote: There are two different mounting set ups for the stove top lid.
Early & late both NLA from VW.

The pieces of wood added to the inside of the early cabinet edge is kinda "iffy" at best, the pivot point on the bottom is also the mounting point.
A guy with use would have to be oversizing the hole eventually, probably wind up going all the way through the front board.

Alistair ,
Good call on the mini gas cylinder placement.
However, there always going to be some sort of slight up pressure on the lid, the weight of it alone will not keep it banging on the top of the cabinet as you go down the road.
That would be a pain in short order.
Some sort of latch, catch, hasp, anything to hold it tight.
No banging.
You're going to have to work on that a little.

I have a few late model stock OE lid props still available.
When these are gone, that's all here in the USA.

Terry,

I did not expect the gas strut to exert any down force at all when the lid was closed. I do use the stock latch, but as it turned out, how I mounted the strut attachment ended up with an " over the centre" action that does apply down force on the closed lid. It's a noticeable amount but I'm not saying it would keep the lid closed tight without the stock latch.

Was just one of those fortunate things :-)

Cheers

Alistair

plummerdesign Sun May 21, 2017 8:20 am

Alistair,

You have done the very project I have been pondering for many years! Wonderful work!
There are now (2) of these struts and associated mounting parts here for me to install in both campers. Your video is great, the pictures super helpful. If time allows, might you be coerced into sharing some hole drilling measurements?
Super cool mod!

Jeffery

ragnarhairybreeks Sun May 21, 2017 9:21 am

Jeffrey,

I'll grab some measurements today.

Alistair

ragnarhairybreeks Mon May 22, 2017 10:55 am

As requested by Jeffrey, I've appended my blog post with some pics of strut location with ruler.
Just to be clear, this is on earlier westy kitchen unit.

https://shufti.blog/2017/03/30/vanagon-kitchen-unit-lid-strut-support/

Alistair

davevickery Sat Jan 05, 2019 4:40 pm

I also added a strut similar to what Alistair did above. I just looked on Amazon for short struts with the right type of mounts. I tried to reuse the holes on the sink side and they are not in the right place so I decided to mount it on the other side. I had previously removed the rattly drain tray otherwise this placement might not work.

I think I will like it. It looks more modern and it might reduce some rattling now that the floppy lift arm is gone and there is bit of a pull on the lid in the closed position.






Sodo Sat Jan 05, 2019 7:04 pm

Ahh, moved to the rear gets it away from the faucet. And the eye doesn't linger on old screwholes. Realistically you can plug the old holes with tiny screws. Can't imagine burner heat on that gas cylinder is a problem when only one inch farther is "combustibles".

I have to do this. But now we have to decide "front or rear."

Sodo Sun Mar 22, 2020 10:28 am

I saw some pics of guys in Europe installing gas springs to their Westfalia stove lid on Facebook.
Their stove cabinet was different from mine & easier to fit the gas spring kits.
Then had a moment where synapses were re-inspired to fire and thus 'remembered' that I'd seen it on
:wink: some obscure blog from back in 2017 by some guy marooned on an island out in the North Pacific..........


Pic ^^^above^^^ from: (SHOOFTIE) Vanagon Ė kitchen unit lid strut support
Notice the Shooftie feller forgot to disable the latch. :roll:

===== ....ahem (cough)...... OK onward to a ...hoh-hoh-haaaaack....modern Westy ======



1990 westfalia stove lid is different than the 1988 Shooftie kitchen.
(I don't know what year it changed)

This pic shows how the gas spring bracket holes would be in the corner of the ledge.

I saw pics where a Portland feller put the gas spring on the outside.
With the bracket screwed onto the rubber edge moulding
He used 2.5 inch long screws, down thru the molding T, (deep into the plywood).
It looked like a fairly easy install.



But I wanted my spring to be on the inside, and up on the little ledge, kinda OEM-ish. :wink:
AND I wanted the mount to be BELOW the lid hinge pivot; for hold-down force.
It was a fight but I eventually won.
I built my own mount of stainless steel.
I'm not proud of how many hours it took.
But it's hidden inside - the way I want it.



I started by fussing with the mount.
Bent the bracket to fit on the ledge, with the screw holes away from the corner..
Shortened the stalk & re-peened it back on.
Then got concerned the molestation would crack the nickel plating.
Could bleed rust onto my SS sink.



Heck with it.
Built a Stainless steel mount.
I'm all quarantined here, what else can I do?
I ground a SS hex screw into a ball (of sorts) and welded it onto an SS bracket.



I riveted it on with stainless steel pop-rivets for that vaulted OEM-ish appearance. 8)
A little box of SS rivets cost $5.50, about as much as a gas strut kit. :shock:



Had to spacer the rivet-setter tool upward with washers to get in there.



Here's the dimensions that I used for the 1990 (?) Westfalia.
Note they all are from the lid pivot/hinge bolt.
Note the upper ball is about 1/2 inch below the hinge pivot so when closed, the gas spring will be pushing the lid down.
In gearboy speak the hold-down force is 22.5 lbs x (.5/12.5) = 0.9 lbs on the stove lid.
With the idea that there's less chance of rattle.

A chord of the mount circle was cut off, just enough remaining for the countersunk screws.
m4x10mm countersunk flat head stainless screws were used from the outside.

It sure works well. It holds the lid down with a little pressure.
And the strut lifts the lid when you get past about 4 inches.

I ordered the gas spring on eBay; 2 kits for $12.
They're 100kn. 80kn would be plenty.
Gas Strut Kitchen Cabinet Cupboard Door Hinges Blanket Toy Box Lid Gas Stay100Nm



I also disabled the main latch so now I can just lift the cover with one hand from anywhere.
And I can close it from the driver's seat if I forget, and I drive off.

Sodo Mon Mar 30, 2020 1:25 pm

Mine bangs against the wall when it opens.



The 100N strut takes about 22lbs to start, then 18 lbs to keep moving.

It takes 4.65 lbs to pull the lid closed (from open).
5 pounds is not a problem.....
But it just "seems" like the lid should close easier, like it's not designed right.
But of course moving the mount location closer to the hinge would do the same thing. But I ain't re-drillin'.

I've already drilled mine so I have to downsize my strut to 60kN.
And soft close would be more 'elegant' in design too.

So if you bought the 100N strut, don't use the 3 1/2 inches; use about 60% of that (=2.1 inches to the hinge).
......I think......give me a few days to test the numbers.

I ordered this "soft close" 60N strut, should be here Apr 3rd.

FURNICA 2X Soft Close Telescopic Spring Gas Strut (60N - 13LB)

ragnarhairybreeks Wed Apr 01, 2020 9:17 am

Tom,

Youíve done a bang up job there. Pun intended. For whatever reason my lid doesnít bang. Dumb luck on strut placement I guess.

The brackets impressive.

Isnít it nice to one hand open and close the lid? Iíll have to look at mine again, canít recall what if anything I did to stock latch.

Cheers

Alistair

ledogboy Wed Jun 03, 2020 10:16 pm

Thanks to Sodo, for adding to this thread (which I had bookmarked long ago) and for linking to the furnica struts!

I did this mod on the van tonight, but followed Davevickeryís lead and removed the dish drain so I could install the strut on the left side. Using that spot, I was in and out in 10 minutes and the strut works beautifully- I am so glad to be rid of the rickety original! I think I will be happier not having the dish drain rattling down the highway, but Iím keeping all the bits, in case I miss it. Either way, this is one sweet mod!



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