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Old 07-16-2004, 01:02 AM
flamingo 59 flamingo 59 is offline
Join Date: May 9 2004
Posts: 35
flamingo 59
Default door latch troubles

Hi everyone. Recently I've been exploring options on how to fix the door latches on my '59 hardtop. The problem is, when I close the door, wont close and bounces back. So, im thinking I need a new assembly all together, or maybe just the striker is worn out?
Buying the pieces new from a catalog is looking pricey so I would like to avoid that. I have access to several '58 and '59 Ford sedans and I am wondering whether or not the parts are interchangable. Any help or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 07-16-2004, 11:59 AM
tarps3 tarps3 is offline
Join Date: Jul 21 2003
Posts: 837
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Default RE: door latch troubles

I had a similar problem with the passenger door on my '60 Bird.
I found that the striker was not in the correct location and was keeping the door latch from engaging.

In essence, the door weatherstripping was making contact with the body before the latch had a chance to fully engage the striker plate.

There are several adjustments I made in both the door hinges as well as the striker plate location which solved my problem. It was primarily that the striker plate needed to move "out" about 1/8" for the latch to grab it.

Lubricating the latch mechanism helped a lot too.

'60 TBird hardtop
'64 Galaxie convertible
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Old 07-18-2004, 11:51 PM
Alexander's Avatar
Alexander Alexander is offline
Join Date: Oct 30 2002
Posts: 3,337
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Default RE: door latch troubles

The door lock and striker plate are unique to the 1958-60 Thunderbirds. If you have misalignment of the doors or new weatherstripping, you may have difficulty closing the door.

1959 Hardtop
1960 Golde Top
1959 Hard Top
1960 Golde Top
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Old 07-20-2004, 05:17 AM
flamingo 59 flamingo 59 is offline
Join Date: May 9 2004
Posts: 35
flamingo 59
Default RE: door latch troubles

Thanks guys. I got the door closing correctly following your advice.
Fixing it was as simple as lubricating the mechanism, which had frozen in the release position. Also, making adjustments to the striker helped get past the problem of fresh weatherstripping getting in the way. Thanks again for your help.

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