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Big Hatch latch and lock
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BarryL Premium Member
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Joined: November 01, 2004
Posts: 12314
Location: Casa de Oro, California
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2020 2:10 pm    Post subject: Big Hatch latch and lock Reply with quote

From the "What did you do for your Bus today" thread:
EverettB wrote:
cdennisg wrote:
BarryL wrote:
Finished reconditioning my rear hatch latch/lock.
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Anyone want play-by-play pics?


That would be handy for future reference.

LAGrunthaner wrote:
Yes looking forward to that FAQ, I'd love to learn how to take mine apart and get all the tumblers sent out to key alike without braking anything Wink


Yes, please do a dedicated brand new thread on it and I can add it to the Split Bus FAQ afterward.






The push button and lock on my '65 Big Hatch was getting hard to turn the lock/unlock and the push action was sluggish. This is how I revamped mine. '64 to '66 are the same. '67 is slightly different to remove but the lock comes apart the same.
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The hatch aligment and tension was good against the striker so I figured it must be somthing inside the latch causing the problems. BTW, The Bentley Manual 1963-1967 instructions for adjustment of the hatch strike plate are one of the rare things I've come across that aren't correct to nomenclature. In The Bentley section A-12 page 8 just reverse the wordage and you will get it right. I decided to take my latch apart and refresh anything I could to improve it.
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The hatch has a panel that has to come off in order to remove the mechanism. I use a door card tool and a folded piece of plastic heat laminate so the paint doesn't get scratched and the vinyl on the card panel doesn't rip. Go around and pop all but one button on each far side. Hold the panel as you take off the last two buttons so it doesn't break.
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Take off the three screws holding the latch. A hand held impact driver most likely will be needed to free the screws.
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Take off the two screws to free up the button/lock. Here I used a large phillips tip with a ratchet handle to break the screws loose.
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This is the simple latch/catch mechanism. When the hatch is closed the part in the foreground swings to capture the post on the jamb-strike and hooks under the pointed lever. This is where there will be wear as well as the shafts where there is motion. It can be welded and shaped but mine is barely worn so just a cleanup and lube for me. If you do weld, clip the welder's ground right next to where you weld, not where the current can travel through the rotational springs or you run the risk of the springs losing their temper.
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This is the push-button lock tab. This part is not weldable but can endure considerable wear. Take off the screw, beveled star washer, and remove the lock tab. My black screw is an improvement in length as the OG screws are Wimpy.
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Next to come off is the internal snap ring. I used a small slot driver to push the ring at the casting side opening and stuck another tiny slot driver into the ring gap to free the snap ring.
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Push on the button and all will come apart.
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The button is now free to remove the lock.
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Find this tiny screw and remove it with an eyeglasses screw driver. Put it in a safe place for now.
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Now put the key (if you have the correct one), another key (if you have a VW key that will poke into the lock all the way), or any key or piece of thin coat hanger wire that will go all the way in. Push out the lock mechanism and don't remove the key (or whatever you used). These locks are the same as front door locks, BTW.
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If you are going to have any lock work done now is the time to do it or have your new lock ready now.

I cleaned up everything ready for inspection. The lock I just cleaned the outside as the brass wafers and springs inside were clean and good. Grease or solvent gunge inside the lock will end up on the key in your pocket or purse.
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There are five places that water can ingress the hatch so there are five points of defense against water.
First is the escution sealing the hatch from the stainless steel cover over the button housing casting.
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Second is a nylon insert between the stainless steel housing cover and the casting. The seal consists of a circumferal squeegie that rides along the outer
stainless cover over the button. Mine is disentigrated and not easily replaced as the stainless outer housing cover is peened in two places. If someone has an intact nylon seal I'd like a photo added please.
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The third seal is the outer o-ring that seals against the outer button cover when the button is in the un-pressed or sprung-out position.
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The fourth seal is the small inner o-ring of the button that seals against the lock outer stainless cover (see previous photo small inner o-ring). Luckily my inner o-ring was still good as this o-ring is hard to replace since the stainless button cover is also peened.
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And fifth is the stainless flap that covers the key slot opening. I've never gotten deep enough into the lock to size up the flap. Someone have one apart? They have a stainless cover that too is peened.
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This is why my button was hard to press and hard to turn the lock; the outer o-ring had disentigrated as well as some of the nylon squeegie.
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Reassembly is the reverse of disassembly. Put on a new o-ring. You can use two o-rings here if you want the button to not stick out as far but I use one. The o-ring is a hardware store plumbing o-ring Lincoln products part. Lightly grease the outside of the lock barrel making sure to get some grease into the setscrew channel then insert it having the key still inside.
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Put in the setscrew until it bottoms out in the channel then back it up one half turn. Test the lock and make sure it travels 180 degrees without binding on the setscrew using the key.
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Grease the assembled push button and install it back into the housing. Install the spring, orientation washer, and internal snap ring. It will only go together one way. The snap ring is easy to push in with a small slot driver.
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The push/lock lever orientation is such that when the lock/button is installed back to the latch mechanism and the latch assembly is back on the hatch the smaller side slot is downward while the key travels through a 9 o-clock to 3 o-clock arc.
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Grease the latch rotational springs' interacting levers and oil the rotational shafts. Reinstall the push button assembly to the latch.
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Check your orientation and make sure this is the open-the-latch position and that the key operates such that the tab comes toward you then ends on the right which is locked-latch position.
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Reinstall the fresh latch and test/adjust your striker.
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Reinstall your hatch panel if you have one.
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flemcadiddlehopper
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Joined: December 05, 2011
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Location: Kelowna, BC. Canada.
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2020 3:35 pm    Post subject: Re: Big Hatch latch and lock Reply with quote

Nicely done. Very clear and concise with excellent photos for those of us who need pictures to get the picture.

Gordo.
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Everybody Dies....Some Never Live.

Retrograde Garage. Vintage Aircooled, and others.
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