The comments contained herein are the sole opinions of the contributors, and should be used with appropriate consideration of possible errors of omission, commission, or lack of sufficient information.

Section Editor - Larry Paulick

Section O - Body
Page 9

Hood (Bonnet) and Latch

From: tiger technologies-
Date: Tue, 29 Jul 1997 18:24:45 -0700

Subject: LAT hoods

Tiger Technologies is currently revising its molds for its LAT-style hood. The new hoods will be exactly like those previously supplied regarding quality of manufacturer, however they will be a bit lighter: 16 vs. 19 pounds. The first samples should be popping out of the oven in approximately one month. A question for Tiger-ites out the RE: is there a market for carbon fiber hoods? If so, we will be prepared to supply them. Our job shop manufacturers primarily racing sheet metal...er, I mean fiberglass and carbon fiber. The hood--obviously intended for racing--would be of pin attachment design, not hinged and would be available only as a single piece, not the clamshell design of the LAT stock hood. Weight is estimated at 8 pounds. If there IS an interest, get back to us on the NET and we'll see what happens. Hey, don't forget about our great 1 3/4 and 2 inch complete exhaust systems. Best deal around for $295 including UPS charges anywhere in the continental U.S. Just send check or MO to Tiger Technologies, P.O. Box 2302, Huntington Beach, CA 92647. Keep it straight down the road of life...

Jeff Cushing/TT

Subject: LAT 79 HOODS
Date: Tue, 31 Mar 1998 09:40:15 -0800
From: "Norman C. Miller"-

The source for the best reproduction of the LAT 79 hood is the manufacturer:
619-448-6700 (WORK)
EL CAJON, CA 92020

Last I checked, you can get one of these beauties for around $350.00. If you buy it elsewhere, expect to shell out $500.00, or more.

Subject: Cobra style hood
Date: Mon, 20 Jul 1998 21:07:00 -0700
From: Bob Palmer-
To: Bill Gullatt-

A source for high quality fiberglass pieces for Shelby Mustangs and for reproduction LAT hoods is Kent Wilcox at Aerodyne in Santee, CA.

At some distant time in the past I got a cobra hood scoop from Kent and put it on my steel Tiger hood. It actually provided more clearance than the LAT hood which I now have (also Kent's). It is possible that Kent would consider making a special all-fiberglass hood with the Cobra style scoop, but you would have to talk to him directly about that. Information about Kent has been posted to the list before, but his phone number is 619-448-6700 and his address is 1763 N. Marshall, El Cajon, CA 92020.

Good luck with the Web site and with finding a hood


Subject: LAT Hoods
Date: Sat, 31 Oct 1998 18:41:58 -0800

From: "Allan Connell"- 1/4 inch gap all the way around is WAY too much for my money. I have also seen Kent's hoods installed on a few cars and they do not have much more than 1/8 inch just like mine.

The measurements you requested are as follows:

1) Over-all inside length of hood in center (or as close as you can get without the latch interfering. My original hood measures 45 3/4-inches. Mine is 45 1/2-inches

2) Width from corner to corner across inside back of hood (projected to square points, if yours is rounded - couple of rulers to show intersection). My original hood is 45 inches. 45 inches as is yours.

3) Inside width of hood at front across furthest back set of hinge mounting bolt centers. My original is 32 1/2-inches. 32 1/2 inches or 32 3/4 inches, depending on if you measure based on the inside or the outside of the curve on the hood.

4) Gap between hood and cowl, front, sides when closed. Mine is 1/8, centered. Little variation around perimeter. No more and in some cases less than 1/8 inch all the way around the hood.

However, one must consider that mine is not a "Concours" fit. It is a bit off center, but the best I could get it when I got it back from Kent. He helped me by fixing it as the front of the hood was separating from the frame. Sincerely hope this information helps. Looks to me as though my measurements are a bit closer to your original steel hood.

Happy Halloween. Since we moved, we don't get too many trick-or-treaters any more.....miss that. Guess that is what you get for living in an "older" neighborhood with long driveways!!



Subject: Tiger Hood
Date: Tue, 10 Nov 1998 06:54:33 -0700
From: Ken Tisdale-Organization: Pulsecom
To: Charles Nichols-

Give Ken Corbin of the CO Assoc. of Tiger owners a call @ 303-364-5787. He should have square and round corner hoods and trunks available. Charles Nichols wrote:
> To all:
> I looking for a round corner hood for my tiger. Preferably in the
> southwest part of the U.S. that I would be able to go get. Any help
> would be appreciated.
> Thanks
> Charlie Nichols
> Tucson

-- Ken Tisdale

Subject: You want HOW MUCH for that hood?
Date: Sat, 22 May 1999 07:37:17 -0500From: Ray McCrary-
To: Steve Laifman - B9472289-


How do I get in touch with Steve Alcala?

I am really pissed off about this "hood"; Jeff apparently sublets their fabrication to some guy in Ohio, and I guess that he has a business making panels. I just don't think that I want to accept the lousy panel gap and poor workmanship in this hood. The aluminum plates that are supposed to bolt up to the hinge already has one hole stripped; you are supposed to use coarse thread with aluminum to preclude this, so you did the right thing with your hood.

I am afraid that with this "hood" the latch plate will never work properly. I think I would rather pay 1200 bucks for a hood that fits, rather than invest 1200 total to make a poor one fit.

I suppose that if Steve is out of the business of making aluminum ones I will have to do just that, though.



Subject: TT fiberglass hood from hell
Date: Sat, 22 May 1999 08:11:51 -0500
From: Ray McCrary

- Hello all,

Recently, I purchased a Tiger Technologies LAT hood for the Tiger, and seem to have some really serious problems with it. There are both quality control problems as well as a design problem with the hood. When I first opened the box, I thought that it was a nice piece, but this first impression changed upon attempting to fit it to the car.

First, the hood is too short for the opening, nor is it wide enough. This makes for some really poor panel gaps. The hood is too high by slightly over 1/4" on one side of the car, and varies from 1/4" high to 1/8" low down the other side (warped). In addition, the hood is warped along the rear edge as well. The bonded-in hinge mounting plate is of aluminum, and is threaded with 1/4-28 thread; this is a stripped thread waiting to happen. These plates should be steel, or, failing this, should have studs. So far, I have tried to space the hinges down enough for the "hood" to fit, but will have to start grinding on the hinges in order to move it back far enough to cover the rear area. This gives only the bolts that fit through the top radiator support panel to hold the hinge; the four bolts that go through the leading edge of the hood opening cannot be used, because of the spacing problem.

I have some serious reservations about trying to make this hood work; in fact, I may just purchase the aluminum hood, or cut the scoops out of this hood and bond them to my old hood. The only thing that stops me from cutting up the thing is the cost of the hood; these things are not cheap enough to hack up for the scoops. Steve Laifman - B9472289 has the carbon fiber version, and he has had a hard time making it work as well, so it isn't just the fiberglass version. My question is this: Are Steve and I the only guys who have had trouble with these hoods?, and if not, what did the rest of you resort to make them fit. Also, does anyone know how to get in touch with the guy who makes a aluminum version? Have any of you used his hood? Does IT fit?



Subject: You want HOW MUCH for that hood?
Date: Sun, 23 May 1999 12:27:37 -0700
From: Steve Laifman - B9472289-
To: Ray McCrary-


Steve Alcala is at 120 Sheldon El Segundo 310-322-6323. Tell him I recommended him, but that price is a "SWAG" (Scientific Wild Ass Guess). It can also be done with your hood and steel, but I don't know if he does that. RE: fabrication. I have looked at the CAT hood, and it is MUCH worse. The one made near San Diego, that is touted a lot, was TT's first supplier until his stuff was really bad. And it was the wrong size too, as well as warped. Looked at the ORIGINAL LAT hood, and it's no better fit.!!!! Maybe you should think of it as "side area ventilation. BTW: ALL of them had aluminum fine thread plates!!!!! Which is way Dale A. always puts in fine thread studs cut from bolts. Can't seem to buy double fine thread ended studs. ALL of them had surface waves and dents, were warped, and wrong dimensions for close edge gaps. BUT, it looks fine (acceptable, anyway) once a lot of work goes into the surface leveling, it is painted and centered. The latch plate CAN indeed be made to work correctly. It is just as much a bitch with the steel hood, unless you know the procedure. I will publish it on the new (soon) web site as a Tech Note. One of the tricks with the fiberglass hoods is to put the hood farther back to make that gap the same all the way around. This WILL require elongating the hinge slots to the rear. I would also recommend, now that you've used washers to shim the hinge down to make the thicker hood's surface match at the front edge, that you measure the stack and replace them with slip-in shims. These are easy to make, or have fabricated, from aluminum. They "slip in", and do not require bolt removal, and additional thin ones can be used to make it perfect. This allows the clamping force of the bolts to be spread over the entire hinge area, rather than concentrated in the washer area. It looks like this:

______ ..._______ ..._____
|...........|_| .............|_| ........|

| and the length matches the hinge plate, the width fits inside the car deck lip when the bolt hits the slot bottom and the slots have round bottoms and are space bolt center apart. Neat, huh! They can be slid in from inside the grill opening. You may want to remove the center emblem and allow the center bar to rotate to the bottom (pad) for access. Good luck with TT. He thinks they are great, and are better than the others and the same as the factory one. In fact, he may be correct. I've seen some with 1/2 inch of Bondo to make the edge even. I know it's a pain, but it sure looks good when you've finished. I'm just pissed that these known original flaws were never corrected. BTW: You have to cut the rear rubber bumpers to allow the edge to be flat with the fender. It is thicker. The front bumpers are so far below the bow that I just left them off, Can't reach the hood. Maybe Ill ADD rubber.

Steve --

Steve Laifman - B9472289

Subject: Bonnet release problem

Date: Mon, 3 May 1999 07:16:35 -0700

From: "Mike Sutter"-
To:- John, The problem you describe is one of the first experiences I had with my car. My car has a cable release system, instead of the rod. This method will only work if you have sufficient space where the rod goes through the back of the hood (bonnet) release mounting pan. I don't know the diameter of the release rod or the diameter of the hole it passes through in the rod release type system, but if you don't have enough clearance, this won't work. I straightened out a coat hanger, I mean REALLY straightened out a coat hanger. TIG rod would have worked better. I put a tiny 90-degree bend in the end of the coat hanger. A sharp little hook about 1/16" tall is all I could use. This "hook" has to be short enough in order to allow you to do the following: Sit in the passenger seat and move the defroster control rod to the middle position "CAR". Stick the coat hanger through the right side of the defroster control slot, hook first. Look under the dash and guide the hanger into the rod hole adjacent to the release rod. If you don't have the proper clearance here, you're SOL. Once you start the hanger through the hole, sit up in the passenger seat and feed the hanger through the dash until you feel the hook hit the back side of the release mounting pan. The hanger has just traveled through the heater core box. This is where you need lots of luck. Be persistent and try and thread the hanger into the hole in the back of the release pan. Before you start this whole operation make a crude guess/measurement and put a mark on the hanger where you feel the dash will need to line up in order to get the little hook under the hood release arm. Also make a bend in the "handle" side of the hanger so you know the orientation of the now hidden hook. Once you have the hook oriented properly for depth and rotation start moving the hanger in and out. You may get lucky and actually catch the release arm. This is all done by feel and luck. You may not believe this, but I hooked the release on my first try. I had the hood (bonnet) open in less than 1 minute. I have two witnesses, my wife and my neighbor who owns an MGB. Upon seeing me open the hood on the first pull, my skeptical MG owning neighbor, who was loving the fact that I had this problem, threw up his hands, said No F___ing Way!, turned and walked away. Lucky Mike

Subject: bonnet release
Date: Tue, 10 Aug 1999 22:23:14 -0700
From: Steve Laifman - B9472289-
To: "James E. Pickard"-
"James E. Pickard" wrote:
> To open the bonnet on my MkI, I have to pull the bonnet release with
> one hand and lift the bonnet with the other hand at the same time. I
> know it isn't suppose to work like this. I should be able to pull and
> release the bonnet handle and the bonnet should pop open enough to lift
> without further use of the release handle. Anybody know how to fix the
> problem?
> Jim Pickard
> B9473298


Note: Pictures are for reference, not Tech Hint illustration.

Having just gone through that agony, including locking the hood on the safety catch and not being able to open it at all, I thought that there MUST be a better way. When I installed the LAT hood I found the lost secret of the alignment process. Or invented one where there never was a good way. Here's the "Magic":

1) Make sure the body mounted receiver is far enough forward, and the rod (cable) length adjustment adequate, to allow the simple pulling, without deforming anything, to open the retaining jaws and bring the secondary catch to the limit of its forward travel.

2) The resulting position should be fairly centered in the body, but not critical. AS long as a full pull opens the jaws all the way and brings the hook to the forward end of its travel 'cage'.

3) If you have a stock hood you will only need the hood mounted spring to be in good condition, with all the parts, like the ring at the bottom end and the secondary hook body. Make sure the small screwdriver slot at the bottom of the pointed end is adequate for using a screwdriver. Clean up with fine hacksaw blade or jewelers file till you can actually insert a small screwdriver.

4) Make sure you have all the mounting hardware bolts, washers and lock nuts.

5) Make sure you remembered which face of the hood mount the catch faces. The mount is not symmetrical. Mark it before you remove it.

6) Remove the hood-mounted hardware. and remove the rod from the plate.

7) Place masking tape on the hood covering the elongated hole that the threaded rod-spring assembly enters.

8) Put the removed rod in the hood release mechanism deeply enough so the end is captured by the jaws of the opener. Release the opening pull rod, and the rod should be firmly captured in the jaws and be sticking into the air.

9) Take some of your wife's nail polish (or your own) or some wet paint and coat the end of the bolt sticking out.

10) Lightly lower the hood till it just touches the tape, then open the hood and make sure you have left a clear mark.

11) Place the bracket (right way oriented) on the bolts and lightly thread it towards the tape. The object is to align the threaded hole with the paint mark. A flashlight will help.

12) When you are sure it is aligned with where the bolt wants to go, snug up the bolts. The unit should be fairly straight with the hood rear edge, and you can rotate it around the paint mark until it is.

13) Use a center punch (automatic spring load is best) and put two marks on the flat steel plate, on each side of the center hole.

14) using a new 1/8-inch drill bit (preferably one with a bullet nose that self centers the drill with a smaller size drill in the center (Home Depot), Drill a hole through the plate and the hood sheet metal. Be careful to only go through the inner panel, not the outer hood.

15) Do the same with the plate on the body, but you may want 4 holes.

16) These holes are for alignment purposes, and can be used again if you ever have to take the thing apart.

17) Remove the hood plate, masking tape, and remove the bolt from the body catch.

18) Re-assemble the hood-mounted hardware, making sure the spring ring is on, the hook is on the correct face, and is facing the correct direction that you noted before. Screw the bolt in enough to stick out the other end about 1/4 inch.

19) Lightly bolt the assembly in place on the hood, then align the plate using the shaft end of the drill bit, to the pre-determined position. Check both holes and snug up the bolts. Check them again and do it over until the bit shank shows correct alignment. Snug the bolts tight.


The hood pintle will now go exactly into the center of the body hood catch. The only thing left is to back off the rear shaft nut, that locks the assembly to the mounting plate, and screw the bolt in until the hood is resting on the 4 new rubber feet you bought from Sunbeam Specialties or Classic Sunbeam. (another pair goes in front). You can now remove and replace the hood-mounted hardware, or the body mounted hardware at any time and regain perfect alignment. If you are going to get at the heater core, you better drill a few more guide holes in the large plate/body on the edges where the bolts are to put this back in the same position. If you are going to remove the hood, do the same guide hole trick with the front hinges to hood. Need at least two diagonally opposite holes per hinge. If you are removing the bottom part of the hinge, do the same. The hoods are really tough to get into alignment (providing they are aligned already) If your do not like your hood alignment, do it first, and drill it, before attempting the rear catch. The bolts between the hood and the hinge are ONLY for fore/aft movement. Sideways tweaking will bend them. The bolts on the bottom of the hinge are for left-right and with spacer shims, up/down in the front. Although I mention these last, this is where you start, if it isn't right to begin with. You don't want to force anything in order to align it when shutting the hood. To be PERFECTLY SAFE, running some high-test safety wire or fish line from the safety catch through the front of the car will allow you to release the hood if the safety catch can't be moved back far enough by the hood release lever. This shouldn't happen if you have followed the directions. Hope this helps. It sure worked slick for me.

Steve --
Steve Laifman - B9472289

Well, who says you can't learn from your kids? Here is a recent message from my son Jay, giving some valuable information on the many varying types of "hook plates" that Sunbeams have had, and how to align and use the rod limitations on stroke. I found that mine seems to have full travel with a rod, but I am VERY close to the forward well edge, and may be damaging some paint with the pull rod end full released. The suggested 'notch' in the hook was discovered while comparing the three Alpine ones Jay had with mine. Mine definitely has a curved area that meets the pintle. If yours doesn't, I suggest you follow Jay's advice and get out your files.


Subject: Hood Latch Discovery!
Date: Mon, 29 Nov 1999 07:56:36 -0800
From: "Jay Laifman"

- While I was trying to get my hood latch to work right, I discovered that I had three of the hood side spring parts - one from a S3, a SIV and a SV, and each was different at the safety latch. The S3 was the biggest/longest and the SV the shortest. What I mean by that is that the safety latch is in a shape of a "J", with the bottom part of the "J" being the part that hooks on to the safety hook. On the S3 one, that bottom part of the "J" sticks out just over 1/2" for a "healthy" hook. On the SV one, part of that bottom part was cut straight across so that it only sticks out 3/8". (Other than that, they are identical). This 1/8" makes a huge difference. Try as I might, I could not get the S3 one to fully disengage properly every time. The SV one works like a charm every time (and the safety hook does still catch the hood if it slips open - even though of little use with the front hinge hood). So, in addition to my suggestion last week that if you ever run into trouble, to try unbolting the bonnet release bracket near the dash so you can get that last tiny bit of travel to open a stuck hood, I suggest cutting the safety J down to 3/8" The SIV one, by the way, was like the SV one, in that there was only a 3/8" hook. But, it was not cut cleanly straight across like the SV one. Rather, it was cut out in a circular path, with the deepest part in the center, curving up and out to the edges of the hook. At first I thought it was from wear, because it is a little rough. But, after seeing the SV one, I realized it was probably intentional, and even though a little rough, too well formed to be from haphazard wear. It seems way back in 1963 the factory knew this was a problem and started down the road to curing it. So good luck to you. May you never have a stuck hood again!

Jay Laifman

Subject: Coolant filter longish reply
Date: Fri, 21 May 1999 15:37:38 -0500
From: Ray McCrary-
To: Steve Laifman - B9472289

- Steve,

The fit of the Fiberglas version is terrible. The hood varies in length and width, and is warped. On one side, it is 1/4" short and varies to 1/8" short on the other. It is warped slightly, with the right side too high at the rear, too low half way down and too high at the front. The left side is over 1/4" too high all along the side. The above is with the hinges fully down and fully to the left!! When I first put the thing on the car, I was tempted to just cut the various scoops out of it, and bond them to the stock hood.....in fact, I'm still considering this option. I used a spare set of hinges, since I had to bent them slightly to get the hood to center over the hole. I haven't had the heart to try the lock plate alignment yet. I think that the mould must have been taken from a warped original; if so, it duplicates the (lack of) quality of the original! And these babies ain't cheap, either!

Best Regards

, Ray At 09:26 PM 5/20/99 -0700, you wrote:
>I don't know how your LAT hood fitting went, but my expensive carbon
>fiber version was a real challenge, Plenty of tricks one had to know
>and NO instructions. As if it were a bolt-on. My installer/finisher,
>with ample hours of my own at his shop, said not to tell anyone who did
>the job, he never wants to see another. Just got the final color
>sanding and polishing and it looks smashing. I can (and will) write a
>book on how to align a hood and that G-D latch, so that it is easier and
>comes out well.
>So, how did yours go?
>Steve Laifman - B9472289

Subject: FW: Can you give me some advice? Please?
Date: Sun, 2 May 1999 15:25:15 -0700

Have you had any luck yet?? It is tricky, but here you go: Stick your hands in back of the center medallion, remove both nuts from the rear and slip the spears loose, just to give you some working room. Now get an open end wrench or a short ratchet with a swivel on it, you can access the bolts that hold the hinges to the hood, loosen and remove them, do it slowly, and I suggest placing a soft rag all around the hood opening so you do not bang it up. Then after the bolts are out, have someone help by pulling the release from inside, move the hood around and it will pop loose. John, it is a pain in the ass when it gets stuck, but it is a rather easy fix. I wish you good luck, and take your time. Warm regards, Jan S-E Harde ----- Original Message -----

From: "John Cederlund"-
Subject: Can you give me some advice? Please?
Date: Sun, 2 May 1999 12:46:03 -0600
> > I can't figure out how to open the bonnet!!.. I have tried to get to
> > it from the bottom, but after removing everything, there is still no way in
> > but the opening the rod is in...I thought about undoing the hinges thru
> > the front, but the cowling over the radiator is in the way...short of a
> > crowbar, any advice would be greatly appreciated
> >...thanks in advance.
> >...John Cederlund

Subject: Hood and Rack Questions
Date: Wed, 17 Nov 1999 09:56:25 -0800
From: Steve Laifman - B9472289-
To: les.mcclelland@wcom.com

Les wrote:
> Steve,
> This is an excellent idea, and I will implement it as soon as I can get the
> #%*@$&% hood open. Any ideas of how to do that minus cutting the thing off
> and finding a LAT hood?
> Thanks
> Les McClelland


Here it is. You must get to the hinge bolts to the good thru the front valance air inlet. You can reach up and feel the 4 bolt heads on each side. They stick through a cut-out in the body panel. You may need a wobbly 1/4" drive extension (not a universal joint, and a small, flex-handle 1/4 ratchet to give you room. It's a few clicks at a time, for some bolts. Once they are all removed the hood can be lifted up at the front. I don't know if your pull mechanism is broken, or mal-adjusted. If you have any connection to the hook, use it as you maneuver the hood off. This part is a two-man job, and possibly a small boy to pull the hood release lever. Remember to pad your body, ahead of the hood, to prevent scratches from maneuvering the hood. Let me know how this works.

-- Steve Laifman - B9472289

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