Door Lock: Removal and Reassembly

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Andrew 2.8i
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Door Lock: Removal and Reassembly

Post by Andrew 2.8i » Sat Jun 15, 2019 8:34 pm

Unlocking the Secrets! :D

A brief how-to guide on removing, stripping down, cleaning and reassembly of door locks.

I decided to write this guide after I had a small issue with one of my door locks. Something had gone wrong with the lock, meaning that the key could not be fully inserted. After a brief struggle, I managed to get the key into the lock and got it to turn. However, the key then became stuck in the lock. If you are suffering from similar problems, you may not need to replace your lock.

This guide focuses mainly on the early type door handle with the integral lock, however, parts of it will still be relevant to the later separate lock.

The first thing to do is to remove the door card. I won't go into detail here as the procedure is in the Haynes manual and is fairly obvious anyway. Once the door card has been removed, you must carefully peel back the plastic sheet that covers the inside of the door. Once you have access to the back of the handle you can remove the two rods from their plastic clips. The handle is held on to the door by two screws. One is easy to get to and can be seen when the door is open, the other screw is inside the door cavity. The later type separate locks are a little easier to remove as they are held in place by a sliding clip.

Once the handle has been removed from the car the fun begins.

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The metal cap that covers the workings of the lock will have to be removed. To do this, knock out the roll pin using a suitable drift.

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Here is what we're up against - over thirty years of grime that in my case was making the operation of the passenger door lock sticky.

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Remove the sliding circular clip that holds the barrel of the lock in the handle.

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Now the barrel can be removed, even if the key is stuck in the lock. There is a spring fitted on the barrel, so be careful that it doesn't go pinging off.
As you can see, here the brass tumbling pins are stuck in position. Ideally, they should freely move and should be protruding slightly when the key is not in the lock.

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Three of the tumbling pins are removed from one side of the barrel, and the other three from the opposite side. I elected to remove and clean them one at a time to avoid any potential mishaps putting them back in their correct positions. Here you can see one pin removed.

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As previously mentioned, I cleaned each pin individually with a degreaser and made sure that they were completely dry before putting them back into position.

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You will notice that the tumbling pins are shaped differently on both sides.

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The pins need to be fitted in the barrel the correct way. The little ledge on the pin sits on a tiny spring inside it's slot.

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Once the six tumbling pins have been cleaned and returned to their correct positions, they should move in and out freely.

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When the key is inserted into the lock, the tumbling pins are pulled into the barrel and should be flush fitting. If they aren't you will have put them back into an incorrect slot. This is why I thought it would be easier to remove them one at a time. At this stage, it's best to keep the key in the lock to secure the tumbling pins in position so they don't fall out. You don't want to loose them!

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Now we can turn our attention to the condition of the outer lock. This is the passenger side, and as such appears to have little wear. My driver's side lock was quite heavily worn with pronounced notches due to many years of use. I smoothed out the worst of the notches and burrs using a half-round file. Be sure to remove any metal filings before reassembling the lock.

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Before the barrel of the lock is put back into the handle, ensure that there is a washer is fitted at the keyhole end of the barrel. This is very important as It acts as a spacer to eliminate play in the lock/handle assembly. If this washer/spacer is in poor condition or is missing, as it was on my driver's door lock, you can use a fibre washer of the correct size to do the same job.

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Now we're ready for reassembly. Reassembly, naturally, is a reversal of removal but there are a few things to check along the way.

Insert the lock barrel into the handle, ensuring that the lugs on the barrel and handle are in alignment.

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Refit the torsion spring. Place one end of the spring on one side of the lugs, then stretch the other end to hook over the other side of the lugs. You may have to gently persuade it into position with a small flat bladed screwdriver, or similar. The purpose of the spring is to automatically return the key to the 'unlock' position (vertical when the lock is in position in the door).

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Don't test your handiwork yet as the spring will, most likely, move from it's correct position. Refit the sliding circular clip first before you have a play.

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Remember that I mentioned about the critical spacer? If that is not fitted, there will be play in the barrel that will allow it to move in and out in relation to the handle. This will enable the spring to unhook itself from the lugs and jam itself between the lug and the spacer, meaning that the key will not turn in the lock. This is what happened to my driver's side door lock - all because that spacer was missing or had deteriorated.

At this stage, I applied a little fine graphite powder to the key and operated the lock several times. The graphite acts as a dry lubricant. Under no circumstances use a wet lubricant, such as WD40, as this will attract dirt and grime.

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When you are happy that the lock operates as it should (smooth operation and the key automatically returns to the unlock position), you can refit the metal end cap.
Ensure that the holes in the end cap are aligned with the slot in the end of the barrel.

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A new roll pin (M2x 26mm) can de tapped through the hole to secure the endcap.

Once the handle is screwed back into position in the door, refit the rods. The plastic sheet can be reattached to the inside of the door and the door card fitted.

The final step is to triumphantly revel in the self-satisfaction that comes with fixing something by yourself! Go and have a cuppa. :D

This procedure took me around an hour for each lock, and now both of my door locks work perfectly as Mr. Ford intended! 8-)

I hope this guide helps somebody out, if you have any questions please ask.

:goodluck:

Andrew.
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Jasonmarie
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Re: Door Lock: Removal and Reassembly

Post by Jasonmarie » Sat Jun 15, 2019 9:40 pm

:applaud: :applaud:
First that was a great “ How To “ and the famous Tea Towel , so did you swap over the locks from both doors ?
But the dirt that’s 30 odd years worth . Yes No WD40 in them locks . Also they will last another 30 years .

Your make a good clock / watch restorer

Well done a good job there Sir
Ford Capri 2.0 Laser 1987 Mercury Grey ....... :beer:

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Re: Door Lock: Removal and Reassembly

Post by Paul G » Sat Jun 15, 2019 10:31 pm

:applaud: :applaud: That's a spot on description Andrew and it also applies to boot and ignition locks that are playing up. It also applies to most makes of cars, not just Fords - wish I had a quid for every VW and Vauxhall one I've done!

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Re: Door Lock: Removal and Reassembly

Post by andyd » Sun Jun 16, 2019 5:42 am

Nice job Andrew :cheers:

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Andrew 2.8i
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Re: Door Lock: Removal and Reassembly

Post by Andrew 2.8i » Sun Jun 16, 2019 7:38 am

Jasonmarie wrote:
Sat Jun 15, 2019 9:40 pm
:applaud: :applaud:
First that was a great “ How To “ and the famous Tea Towel , so did you swap over the locks from both doors ?
But the dirt that’s 30 odd years worth . Yes No WD40 in them locks . Also they will last another 30 years .

Well done a good job there Sir
Thanks Jason.
This is the replacement for the famous tea towel!
I didn't change the locks over as once I'd put the driver's side one back together it worked perfectly, so no real need to swap.
Paul G wrote:
Sat Jun 15, 2019 10:31 pm
:applaud: :applaud: That's a spot on description Andrew and it also applies to boot and ignition locks that are playing up.
Thanks Paul. I've never dismantled a lock before and I wasn't sure exactly what the inner workings were like. After my key became stuck in the lock I was sure that I'd need a replacement lock, but that was not the case. Hopefully a pictorial guide will help somebody else who might be having difficulties with their locks. The thought of it is quite daunting for an inexperienced person, but it's actually pretty easy.
andyd wrote:
Sun Jun 16, 2019 5:42 am
Nice job Andrew :cheers:
Thanks Andy. :D

Andrew.
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Re: Door Lock: Removal and Reassembly

Post by Caprifan Rob » Sun Jun 16, 2019 5:58 pm

Nice ‘how to’ Andrew. When I did mine, I removed the barrel but left the key in with all the sliders intact & soaked it in WD40. This takes it to a whole new level. Full marks for your patience :applaud:

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Re: Door Lock: Removal and Reassembly

Post by Andrew 2.8i » Sun Jun 16, 2019 7:55 pm

Caprifan Rob wrote:
Sun Jun 16, 2019 5:58 pm
Nice ‘how to’ Andrew. When I did mine, I removed the barrel but left the key in with all the sliders intact & soaked it in WD40. This takes it to a whole new level. Full marks for your patience :applaud:
Thanks Rob!
It was a great excuse to slink off to the garage for a couple of hours! :D

Andrew.
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