Author Topic: Replacing bonnet release cable  (Read 2665 times)

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Offline [email protected]

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Replacing bonnet release cable
« on: September 01, 2007, 23:32:36 PM »
Someone on this site suggested that it was 'very easy' to fit a new bonnet release cable.  They suggested tying a string to the old cable and pulling it through.  I assumed that this meant fitting a new inner cable through the existing outer jacket.  However, I understand that the whole thing comes as a complete assembly and the inner cable has a one end moulded into the release handle and the other has a nipple on it, so the inner cable cannot be removed.

The Haynes manual says:
  • Open the bonnet and support it in the fully open position. (this is obviously an 'idiot's guide'...)
  • Unscrew the release cable clip from the front body panel. (I assume that it is obvious what this clip is)
  • Disconnect the end of the release cable from the locking spring under the front body panel.
  • Remove the driver's side lower facia panel.
  • Open the flap covering the fuse box to expose the 4 lower facia panel securing screws.
  • Remove the 4 screws, then lower the panel and pull it towards the driver's door to release the two securing clips.
  • Withdraw the panel from the facia.
  • Disconnect the release cable from the release handle.  If necessary, remove the release handle from its retainer for access to the cable end (How do you do this, if the cable is supposed to be moulded into the handle, as Vx told me?)
  • Pull the cable through the grommet in the engine compartment bulkhead into the engine compartment.  (Wouldn't be able to do this if the handle is moulded on to the cable; I assumed that it must be pulled through from the engine bay into the drivers footwell.
  • Release the cable from any remaining clips and cable ties (does anyone know how many of these there are and how easy is it to get to them behind the V6 engine?) and withdraw it from the engine compartment.
  • Refitting is the reverse of removal, but ensure that the cable is correctly routed and,on completion, check the release mechanism for satisfactory operation.

Any tips, or advice?  Is it worth tying a string to the end of the cable to re-route the new cable round the engine bay?

Offline CalibraTurbo666

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Re: Replacing bonnet release cable
« Reply #1 on: September 01, 2007, 23:41:12 PM »
The handle does come off the cable. the cable has a bar about 1/8 inch diamiter and 3/8" long on the end, the bar fits in a hole till the cable hits the handle, then you turn it round till the cable goes into a slot, then then it drops further into the handle it turns again to point the cable the right way, at this point the cable is held inside the handle, you need to reverse this to take the handle off the cable
But you dont need to take it off until you have the cable out and you will see how then, and if theres one on the new cable then theres no need

With the bonnet open, the clip holding the cable is a screw ontop of the slam panel by the catch that is a square bit of metal that always goes rusty, undo the screw, pull the cable into the engine bay a bit
then reach under the slam panel and unclip the cable from the big spring metal bit of the catch
Then tie a long bit of string onto the end of the cable in the engine bay
then go into the car and pull the cable into the car, hopefully leaving the string in the engine bay and inside the car
untie the string, atach to new cable, and then pull the string back through to the engine bay, take the same route that it was last time and then clip to the catch and then reclamp

Offline [email protected]

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Re: Replacing bonnet release cable
« Reply #2 on: September 01, 2007, 23:54:22 PM »
Brilliant, thank you - I'll let you know how I get on.  Sounds easy enough...

Vx wanted to charge

bricksnbikes

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Re: Replacing bonnet release cable
« Reply #3 on: September 02, 2007, 06:27:16 AM »
yeh the cable definatly comes out from the handle as when my se4 got damaged i used a pair of pliers to pull the cable to pop the bonnet (wouldnt open with the lever after the damage)
have fun [email protected],job satisfaction and no dent in your wallet

Offline [email protected]

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Re: Replacing bonnet release cable
« Reply #4 on: September 09, 2007, 12:49:03 PM »
OK so I've disconnected the bonnet release cable nipple from the locking spring.  This is not explained in the Haynes manual and it is difficult to see how it works because it is hidden under the front body panel and the top of the radiator hides it from behind.  Once you have slackened the cable, you can use a lever in the catch to slacken the tension & then use a screwdriver through the narrow slot to lever the cable forwards out of the loop on the locking spring.

I've tied a piece of string to the end.  I've cut a couple of cable ties and pulled the cable back round the engine bay and through the grommet in the engine bulkhead - not as easy as it sounds because of the tightness and angle of the grommet and the fact that it is hidden behind part of the loom.

I've also unscrewed the 4 screws and detached the driver's side lower facia panel - it is quite difficult to get at a good angle, with good light to see where these are.  I've detached the nipple from the release handle, so that it was easier to pull the cable and string through the grommet into the driver's footwell.

What I can't work out is how to detach the release handle mechanism from the metal panel.  It is obvious from the replacement handle that there are a pair of plastic spring clips that hold the mechanism in place.  What I can't see is how you get at these clips to squash them to release the plastic body from the metal panel - or can you just force them by levering on the body somewhere.

I'm stuck until I can find out how to detach the release handle mechanism from the body...

I'm also concerned about pulling the new nipple and cable back through the grommet, without breaking the string, because it is so tight.

Can anyone advise?  Thanks.

Offline [email protected]

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Re: Replacing bonnet release cable
« Reply #5 on: September 09, 2007, 17:00:57 PM »
After performing acrobatics, lying upside down on the drivers seat, breaking my back over the seat squab to get up under the dash & one broken thumb-nail later & I've got the release lever mounting block off...

The string through the bulkhead snapped, so I had to fiddle the new cable back through the grommet (which isn't easy because it can't be seen from inside the drivers footwell, or from the engine bay) and I've threaded the cable back around the engine bay and in and out of the front body panel and reconnect it to the locking spring. Eureka!

Now 'all' I've got to do is fit the new release lever mounting block into the side panel - but this isn't as easy as it sounds.  It's obviously a push-fit, which should snap into place with the plastic spring clips that I had so much trouble unclipping on the original...  but it's virtually impossible to see what you're doing and it's a tight fit, so I haven't managed to do it yet.  There must be an easier way.  Does anyone who's done it before, know how to line it up, so that it just slides into place?

bricksnbikes

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Re: Replacing bonnet release cable
« Reply #6 on: September 09, 2007, 21:18:23 PM »
without sounding rude , you could have greased up the grommet to aid pulling the cable through .
i only ever took my release handle off [email protected] and it kinda fell off so as to putting it back in if they are spring clips give it a smack in position with the palm of your hand

Offline [email protected]

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Re: Replacing bonnet release cable
« Reply #7 on: September 09, 2007, 22:34:09 PM »
without sounding rude , you could have greased up the grommet to aid pulling the cable through .
i only ever took my release handle off [email protected] and it kinda fell off so as to putting it back in if they are spring clips give it a smack in position with the palm of your hand

mmm maybe I should have greased the grommet, only it wasn't exactly easy to get to from either side.  It said nothing in the Haynes manual about removing the insulation inside the bulkhead and I was reluctant to remove too much to get at the grommet, in case it wouldn't go back properly.  In the engine bay, the corrugated conduit for the main loom got in the way.

The release handle mechanism didn't exactly 'fall off'.  I couldn't get at the plastic clips to release them, but after applying a lot of physical effort first the release handle fell out of the mechanism and eventually I managed to shift the mounting block.  My concern was that I might have bent the mounting, making it difficult to fit the replacement.

Eventually, somehow I managed to click the new one into place and adjust the cable, before reassembling the fuse box and the driver's side lower facia panel.

I suspect that, like so many other jobs, once you know how to do it, it shouldn't be too difficult, but if you are trying to do it from a Haynes manual that is less than helpful - which gives a detailed description of the obvious easy bits and glosses over the difficult ones, like how to release the release handle mounting block - it is one of those jobs that should be relatively easy, but is a lot more fiddly than it looks.  The main problem being one of poor access.

Finally the Haynes manual says "check the release mechanism for satisfactory operation".  What happens if it isn't and you can't release the bonnet catch...?  The 'adjustment', not that it is obvious, appears to be on top of the front body panel, under the lip of the bonnet!

I'll post a description, with pics, in the Wiki section, when I've had a chance to download the pics.

bricksnbikes

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Re: Replacing bonnet release cable
« Reply #8 on: September 09, 2007, 22:41:25 PM »
yep i think your right mate , the haynes is crap since they changed them a few years back and yep once youve done an awkward job its easyer the second time around , fingers crossed that you dont have to do it again though .have you noticed how many times in the haynes it says refer to section blah blah for this and section blah blah for that when your half way through doing a job on the car , lots of page flicking with oily fingers isnt a good idea and i tend to use spanners as bookmarks then need one thats being used for a book mark and loose the damn page

Offline [email protected]

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Re: Replacing bonnet release cable
« Reply #9 on: September 09, 2007, 22:53:39 PM »
yep i think your right mate , the haynes is crap since they changed them a few years back and yep once youve done an awkward job its easyer the second time around , fingers crossed that you dont have to do it again though .have you noticed how many times in the haynes it says refer to section blah blah for this and section blah blah for that when your half way through doing a job on the car , lots of page flicking with oily fingers isnt a good idea and i tend to use spanners as bookmarks then need one thats being used for a book mark and loose the damn page

Yeah - I hadn't realised how much worse they were than they used to be.  They used to be nearly as good, if not better than a workshop manual, with step-by-step pictures guiding you through some tasks.

The Calibra manual is nothing like as good as I remember the manuals for cars I've had in the past - I thought that it was just me remembering the old ones being better than they were - and it doesn't cover the V6.  :(

I guess that Haynes are just trading on their old reputation, so that mugs like me buy the manual for our cars...

I get round the 'flicking' problem by reading through the instructions - poor as they are - before hand and sticking post-it note tabs on the relevant pages, so where it says 'see section xx.yy for details, I can find it easily.

bricksnbikes

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Re: Replacing bonnet release cable
« Reply #10 on: September 09, 2007, 23:02:22 PM »
ha i read it first then get stuck into the job then get stuck and end up flicking through it .
their was a post on here somwhere just the other day about a maual for the v6 , sammy g i think started it

Offline Greg Dodd

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Re: Replacing bonnet release cable
« Reply #11 on: August 08, 2022, 12:10:42 PM »
Can anyone tell me whether the bonnet release handle is in the left or right footwell??  It appears the replacement cables  at about 1m long will not reach the right footwell??    Greg