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  1. #1

    GTS Manual Door Latch Relocate Mod Hack to clear Roll Bar Covering It

    You want to talk about panic?

    I was at the light at a major intersection on McCarren Blvd in Reno, when my Positive Post lost contact and my car is now electrically dead. It was at night, I'm in the fast lane, and I realize I can't reach the latch. FIRST THING WAS DISROBE since heat was going to be a factor. I'm topless and at 5'10 & 290 lbs, quite a sight. Somehow I contort my body to get at the latch and escape my entombment. Then Hood up, tighten stud and on my way - I swear people will tell the story about the topless, fat guy that had broke down!

    That latch is also virtually impossible to reach with the rear hatch up too.

    I need a solution.

    FIRST THOUGHT: A loose plastic tie that goes around the roll bar tube and also around the top of the pull tab. If I can keep it on the tab, it would be easy to grab the tie. However I think the tie would pop off the end of the pull tab. I could drill a small hole towards the tab end and secure this tie with a tiny tie or... you get the idea.

    What do the racers do? Any clean solutions out there?

  2. #2
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    Have posted about this in past when friend and I got locked out of his 01 GTS with rollbar while doing IOD test.

    The solution was provided by Tom Sessions...in that the emergency latch can be bent around rollbar without breaking anything. In was skeptical...but it worked. Frankly I thought it would break the latch handle but Sessions was right...AGAIN !!
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  3. #3
    "Bent around the roll bar" - don't see it. Lever is plastic and vertically aligned parallel to tube.
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    Last edited by MrCreosote; 01-20-2020 at 09:22 AM.

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    In the situation that I described, the roll bar was on top of the latch...completely blocking access...hence the need to pull hard to get it past the bar. It worried me but it worked. Your situation looks different. Glad you could grab it !!
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  5. #5
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    I re-bent my roll bar to miss the catches.

    Big job

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/905823...h/34063856111/

    If you have the standard Autoform roll bar the other alternative is to shorten the plastic tab on the pillar. I elected for the harder route
    Last edited by Fatboy 18; 01-20-2020 at 04:28 PM.

  6. #6
    I'm going to look into this, but part of the problem is that you must "dig out" the latch first beforeyou can get a finger behind it. If it is possible to slide a straight finger under it (which is the only thing you can do with a roll bar over it) that may be a solution. NOTE: I think this would solve the operation through the open hatch back too.

    The lever can be moved enough to get my finger under it without engaging the door latch mechanism.

    So a solution may be some kind of bumper/spacer/etc. that keeps the lever sticking out all the time. Of course, now it will become a potential "harpoon" to potentially snag clothing during ingress/egress.

  7. #7
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    You guys are talking about this part?


    All you have to do for a quickfix is trim the top of the tab off another thing you could do if you wanted is to drill a small hole in the upper part of the tab and put a material loop secured with a rivet, that way it would be easier to grab hold of and not cause any snagging issues.

  8. #8
    Thanks Fatboy 18 for the PICS and TIPS,

    In my case, the roll bar does not interfere with the operation of the latch - problem is getting fingers under latch.

    Since it is plastic,
    • I'm concerned about weakening it with a hole
    • It may embrittle with age which would become a real shit show if the tab breaks off! This is a CRITICAL part and should be made of metal.


    Has anyone ever crawled out the passenger door? maybe when storing car in a tight space? (Is it possible (!) )

    Other thoughts:
    • Mod a backup battery
    • Route another mechanical release in case of lever breakage or roll bar interference
    • Fab a metal mechanical latch lever which will never break
    • Buy a used driver's side window and carry an automatic center punch

    Found this gem:

    75 year old man Trapped 14 hours in Cadillac w/electric latches in Cleveland
    Last edited by MrCreosote; 01-21-2020 at 06:33 PM.

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    Yes, many of us have crawled into and out of the window of a Gen II Viper...which is what I have seen professional drivers do who make car deliveries from enclosed trailers. The same thing goes with real race cars with a full cage.

    Unfortunately, not all body builds can utilize this method.
    I don't send or receive "PM's" since I prefer DIRECT communication.

  10. #10
    mine was cut with a dremel to clear the bar.

  11. #11
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    This is what I had in mind. A small rivet with a thin washer on the back to spread the load and a tab something like this [ATTACH=CONFIG]41701[/ATTACH

    IMG_20200122_120835.jpg
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  12. #12
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    You could use any colour material you liked (match the body's colour or go red for safety

  13. #13
    I spent a few more minutes surveying mine.

    First, since I did get out of my car once, while it took me a while to accomplish it, I'm thinking maybe with some practice, I can do it w/o too much fuss.

    HOWEVER, opening the latch from the open hatch window - that is impossible since you normally have to reach around the B-pillar - with the bar there you have to reach around it, the other way!!!! The solution to this since not a safety issue is make a tool to operate the latch.

    I was also thinking about the talk of the latch plastic breaking etc. If Dodge engineers did their job right, that plastic should be the most unbreakable plastic - so Sessions was right about bending it.

  14. #14
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    If you can indeed open the latch but you just can't get your finger behind it because of the roll bar in the way make a handle extension. I used a 2" x 3" piece of cardboard to illustrate. If I was doing it for real I would probably use 0.080 5052. It could be riveted or machine screwed to the plastic handle. It would relocate the factory handle outboard so you can get a finger behind it. You could make it as pretty or ugly as you wanted.

    20200918_184146.jpg
    20200918_184137.jpg
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  15. #15
    You know, it might work if I put a tab on the top of the lever. I could slide hand between bar and door from top, catch the tab and push down. The recess is a major part of the problem.

    NOTE: I wonder if that is the "bend" that Tom Sessions was talking about?

    Access from the trunk basically needs your left palm on the roll bar as you reach around which means you have crawl into the trunk (!) With the "Top" or "Sessions" tab, it might be easier.

    I'll have to try the above.
    Last edited by MrCreosote; 1 Week Ago at 07:21 PM.


 

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