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Jag-Lovers XJ6 Hood Release Solutions

             Jag-Lovers XJ6 Hood Release Solutions.

                       Lawrence Buja

A common problem with series I-III XJ6's is that, with age, the bonnets
pop open unexpectedly.  Since XJ6 bonnets hinge from the front and also
have a strong backup catch, this isn't the disastrous occurrence that it
can be with rear-hinged bonnets.  But it is bothersome and, if left
untreated, can result in futher damage and expense from the loose bonnet
bouncing around (i.e. the welds in the picture below fail and your
little problem turns into a big problem).

Here's what the intake-side bonnet pin looks like from the rear:

1. The assembled product:    2. The individual parts:                         
    bonnet top                     bonnet top                               
___________________          _____________________                      
  \     .-.     /  \             \             /  \                     
   \  #######  /                  \  #######  / <- Sheetmetal U            
    \*#######*/                    \*#######*/       channel                
       =====                        ^   ^   ^                                
       =====                     weld  Nut weld                         
        ///                            .-.  <-top of bonnet pin                           
        ///                            |~|  <-bonnet pin (threaded)              
        ///                            |~|                              
       \---/                          ===== <-- pinch nut                 
         V                            =====                             
                                      /---\ <-washer                    
                                       ///  <-spring over the pin       
                                      \---/ <-washer                    
                                        V   <-end of pin which engages  
                                                the striker plate       

Below is a collection of articles from Jag-lovers on the subject:

-Date: Fri, 13 Sep 96 18:02:19 -0700
-From: Barrie Dawson 
-Subject: RE:Bonnet opening(NOT XJS air Damn!)

Dave Wood, wrote about the rhs of the bonnet occasionally popping open.
I too have had this problem especially when I first got my XJ6.  My
friendly Jaguar speciallist helped me out by showing me the recognised
method of closing the bonnet.  You stand to the front centre of the open
bonnet and place the hand on finger tips centrally on the bonnet, then
push firmly so that the bonnet shuts with a "clunk".  This ensures
sufficient force within the flexing bonnet to snap shut in the locks.
If the bonnet pops up on one side NEVER push that side back down as the
bonnet can bend, always open and start closure afresh.

Try it out, I've had no trouble since adopting this technique.

Barrie Dawson
Chatham, Kent England
1985 series III Jaguar Sovereign

-From: (Lawrence Buja)
-Subject: XJ6 bonnet opening fix.
-Date: Fri, 13 Sep 1996 09:33:48 -0600 (MDT)

Cosmo pleads...
{The bonnet on my XJ6 SIII as started to open when on the move.  This
{is a tad annoying and has now become serious as both sides now do it
{occasionaly.  The Fine Manual only mentions adjusting the release
{cable and I can't see any adjustment in the catch mechanism.  Is
{there any trick to this?

This was happening on the Daimler for a long time before I got around to
fixing it.

I loosened the pinch nut on the bonnet pin and turned the bonnet pin a
few turns to make it longer, then retightened the pinch nut.  It was
really very simple.  I did this to both sides of the bonnet and now it's
stopped popping up.  Previously, I had increased the spring tension on
the catch mechanism and it didn't help at all.

If somehow you mess up and can't get the bonnet released (say the bonnet
release cable breaks), there are little access holes in each wheel well
thru which you can insert a slim screwdriver and manually release each
bonnet catch.  Just to be on the safe side, I practiced opening the
bonnet this way a few times before I started messing around with the
catch mechanism.

/\      Lawrence Buja 
  \_][  National Center for Atmospheric Research

-From: Jan Wikstroem 
-Date: 16 Sep 96 18:31:46 
-Subject: Re: XJ6 bonnet opening fix.

Lawrence Buja wrote:
>I loosened the pinch nut on the bonnet pin and turned the bonnet pin a
>few turns to make it longer, then retightened the pinch nut.

That's indeed the method. I just thought I'd insert a small note of
caution here, based on my own experience with two elderly XJs. You need
to keep the adjustment to a minimum; when you push down on the closed
bonnet where the latches are, you should not be able to push it down
noticeably. The reason is that if the bonnet doesn't sit down tightly on
its guide blocks, it can wobble slightly sideways and the pins (or
rather, the bonnet rib their mounting nuts are welded to) fall prey to
fatigue fracture. This may not be a concern on smooth city streets, but
out here in the sticks it sure is.

If anyone has fractures around those nuts, I can give you details of a
repair/reinforcement I did that seems highly successful.


-From: ** SHANE MANTOSZKO  ** IBMA INVENTORY ANALYST **                         
-*** INTERNET ADDRESS  -  SHANEM@VNET.IBM.COM  *****************                
-Subject: Hood(Bonnet) catch problems                                           
>myself worked on it with no solution: ... MY HOOD WILL POP OUT                
>UNEXPECTEDLY.... This will happen usually if I hit a slight bump on the       
>road. First one side will come loose, then about 5-10 minutes of driving      
 Boy what a familiar problem. I went through exactly what you went
through here in Sydney. I took the car to Gary Walker Jaguar...
[ed: several lines of libelous slander deleted]
 Anyway, basically he had the car 3 times, and each time he said he            
had it fixed, and lo and behold, you couldn't drive 2 blocks without it        
popping again. All the parts had been replaced, so what the hell was           
going on !!!                                                                   
 I was so angry I could have killed these guys.....anyway, I calmed down,      
got the car home and had a good look at the latch. What I noticed, was         
that the bolt sticking down from the bonnet on the problem side, was           
not sticking out at the same angle as the bolt on the other side. Even         
though both sides slid into the hole easily, it was just a fraction of an      
inch out.                                                                      
 All I did was tap it a few times with a rubber mallet, to get it              
parallel to the other pin. It closes just as easily now, but has not           
popped in the 2 years since. Also, no damage to the pin or bonnet.             
I had to tap it towards the back of the car. The more it                       
was tilted towards the front, the more the bonnet(hood) would pop.             
  Sure this may not be the problem with yours, but it sure was with            
mine.....amazing what a couple eighth's of an inch can do in a jag....         

On Wed, 29 Nov 1995, Aygen E. Dogar wrote:
> Now my problem and it's been a frustrating one as several people including 
> myself worked on it with no solution: ... MY HOOD WILL POP OUT 
> UNEXPECTEDLY...          ^^^^^^^^^^^^

	Believe it or not, our car had the same problem.  Boy, we messed 
with adjustment, hood pin springs (even removing them at one point), 
cable adjustment. etc..   It would sure strike fear into occupants' heads 
when the hood jumps up 2 inches at 70 mph!  On one trip of several 
hundred miles duration, I got out and adjusted the inner headlights to 
compensate for the always-up hood, so that we could see the road 
	Ok I'll quit with the stories and tell you what we did which 
stopped the problem.  I removed the striker plate assemblies and replaced 
the plate retraction springs with ones of higher stiffness.  I noted that 
the coils of the old springs had begun to separate, indicating that the 
original preload wound into the spring had been lost.  All tension 
springs have a wound-in preload during cold-forming which gives the 
spring a non-zero initial takeup force.

                            Greg Meboe

-Date: Mon, 16 Sep 1996 21:58:32 -0500 (CDT)
-From: Larry Lee 
-Subject: Re: Bonnet openning (NOT XJS air Damn!)

There is another thing to check when an XJ's bonnet won't stay closed.  
Be sure that the screws--particularly the Phillips head ones--holding the 
latch mechanisms to the body are TIGHT.  They have a tendency to work 
loose, and an early symptom is for the bonnet to pop open.  If they get 
real loose, however, you will have trouble getting the bonnet to open at 
all.  For some reason--at least on my 1979 SII--Jaguar did not use lock 
washers on these screws, even though there seem to be lock washers on 
just about everything else!  Needless to say, mine now have lock 
washers, and they haven't worked loose in a while.

Loose diagonal struts (from the firewall center to the fenders) can also 
cause bonnet problems, but you should probably hear some "clunks" over 
bumps or in turns.

One more thing.  PLEASE don't push one corner of your bonnet down to 
secure it.  That's a real good way to warp it.  Re-open it fully and then 
close it from the front center (top of the grill) like Sir William intended.

Larry Lee

-Date: Mon, 16 Sep 1996 21:55:55 -0600 (CST)
-From: "A. Gardner" 
-Subject: Subject: XJ6 bonnet opening.

Cosmo wrote:
>The bonnet on my XJ6 SIII has started to open when on the move. 

I have noted various solutions posted but nobody seems to have mentioned
moving the spring loaded striker plate forward (towards the radiator) so
that the latch more aggressively engages the bonnet pin recess.  Observe
each striker plate and, if this is the problem, the one popping open will be
obscuring less of the aperture.  On my car (1985 XJ6 Series III) the striker
plate, when properly adjusted, forms a half moon crescent which obscures
about fifty percent of the hole.  Adjust by loosening the two bolts which
hold the mechanism (one on either side of the aperture through which the
bonnet pin travels).  If there is no forward adjustment possible, remover
the bolts and elongate the slotted holes using a round file.  Should the
bonnet pin be striking the aperture, and the pin is not bent, loosen the
three bolts that hold the bracket and reposition the entire assembly.  Again
this may involve elongating the bolt holes in the bracket.  If this doesn't
work, the try the rubber mallet suggested in the earlier post - perhaps by
leaning  out of the window and hitting it every time it pops up.

Tony Gardner
1986 XJ6 Series III

-Date: Mon, 23 Sep 1996 12:58:12 +0100
-From: Cosmo 
-Subject: Solution: XJ6 bonnet opening.

Cosmo wrote:
>The bonnet on my XJ6 SIII has started to open when on the move. 

Thanx for all the suggestions for the bonnet closure problem.  After
a few days of playing with them the final solution was the rubber
mallet.  A few taps to knock the bottom of the pin further towards
the rear of the car and presto!  All other attempts to close the
bonnet corectly, adjust the spring, adjust the cable, clean the
mechanism didn't work.

Thanx again,

-Date: Fri, 13 Sep 1996 14:42:45 PDT
-From: David Wood 
-Subject: Re: Bonnet openning (NOT XJS air Damn!)

On Fri, 13 Sep 1996 12:40:13 +0100 Cosmo wrote:

> The bonnet on my XJ6 SIII as started to open when on the move.   This
> is a tad annoying and has now become serious as both sides now do it
> occasionaly.  The Fine Manual only mentions adjusting the release
> cable and I can't see any adjustment in the catch mechanism.  Is
> there any trick to this?

My SIII bonnet hinges were going rusty, such that it was 
becoming difficult to open the bonnet without a lot of heaving on 
the structure - a common failing apparently, but never mentioned 
in ANY of the reports I have seen on an XJ6 (why? Do all the 
hacks just rehash each other's work? I digress.)

After a local garage had fixed the hinges, the bonnet shut and opened 
with no trouble, but occassionally the rhs would pop open out of its 
catch. Rather than taking it back, I noticed that the bonnet was not 
catching properly when it was should, although it appeared to do so. 
A final press in the offending area made sure the bonnet catched, and 
stayed shut.


Dave Wood. 


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