Why The Datsun 510’s Hood Prop Rod Was Perfect

Why The Datsun 510's Hood Prop Rod Was Perfect 1

One automobile part that hasn’t changed plenty in lots of a long time is the prop rod—sure, the steel stick that holds your hood up while you attempt to figure out where the heck all that steam is coming from. Still, some editions are obtainable, some higher than others; that is why I’m here to show you my favored prop rod design. I observed it underneath (and on) the hood of a Datsun 510.


While in Germany on a business ride related to Motor Works of the Bavarian variety, I stopped with the aid of my friend’s amazing garage near Nuernberg. I drooled over his fantastic Datsun 510, which’s currently down for maintenance as my friend struggles to supply the front drum brake parts. Among the numerous thrilling attributes that I spotted at the mythical system is its hood prop mechanism, which is simple and cute:

The prop rod rotates approximately a go-vehicle axis defined via a bracket screwed to the pinnacle of the middle of the firewall. The rod is spring-loaded such that it inclines to factor its other give upwards in the direction of the sky. That different cease sits interior a fit in a bracket connected to the bottom of the hood. The slot has a notch in it that—while the hood is open—prevents the rod from sliding and maintains the hood from ultimate.

To close the hood, you carry the hood a chunk to pull the hood-quit of the rod off the notch and towards the front of the automobile, for that reason rotating it against the spring’s pressure. Then you decrease the hood, and the hood-cease of the rod slides alongside the slot. The rod sits flat with the hood completely closed, just above the little 1 — Four-Liter inline-four engine.

I’m keen on this setup because the rod is small and out of the way and because it’s simple. Obviously, it’s now not perfect because I bet the spring could theoretically put on out over time (though this Datsun is from 1972, and I guess that’s the unique hood prop spring). Also, on a car with a bigger engine, achieving the hoods again to tug the prop rod out of the notch in the slotted bracket can be hard. Plus, I don’t assume this is the cheapest setup since it requires huge brackets on the hood and firewall, in addition to that spring. Plus, because the prop acts close to the hood’s hinge, that hood must be pretty stiff close to that slotted notch.

Still, it’s simple, small, will remain for all time, and, most significantly, it’s out of the manner. That’s extra than I can say about most designs. For example, right here’s the hood prop setup on a Jeep Cherokee XJ:

The prop rod hinges about a small bracket bolted to the inner fender on the passenger’s aspect. To preserve the hood in the open function, you clutch the pinnacle stop of the rod (which sits towards the front of the Jeep) out of its smallholder (I’ll show that in a second), rotate it upwards, and jam its tip into one of the holes in the hood.

When the hood is closed, the rod runs parallel to the automobile’s fore-aft axis (which many automakers confer with because of the x-axis) and sits like so:

This setup is respectable, however, not best. For one, that little plastic piece that holds the prop rod within the down position breaks pretty without problems (even though Jeep later modified the holder to metallic). Secondly, this rod does absorb a chunk of underneath-hood packaging area (even though, inequity, the Datsun’s layout does, too—just above the engine).

My largest trouble with the XJ’s hood prop setup is that it can get in the way of wrenching, especially when I’m running inside the rear left nook region (for example, if I had been trying to update a blower motor, which I’ve pointed out in the image simply before the last one).

Still, I like that the XJ’s hood holes supply me with hood attitude options since I’m occasionally feeling lazy and don’t need to open the hood all the way. Plus, the layout is lifeless, simple, and possibly dust cheap.

Like the totaled Kia Rio that’s been festering in my outside, a wide variety of automobiles shop their prop rods alongside their radiator aid cross members. In other words, with the hood closed, the rods axis is parallel to that of the pass-vehicle axis (the y-axis).

This design, I could consider, is cheaper as, just like the XJ, it simply makes use of a primary bolted bracket on one give up and a plastic rod-holder on the alternative. As for a while, the hood is open; the rod’s non-hinged aspect just pokes into a hole within the hood.

It’s nice, but my largest qualm with hood props that hinge about a bracket at the radiator assist is they certainly block the engine bay. Just observe the photo above; any paintings that I do on the right side of that motor will involve me having to paintings round that metal rod, which is a pain in the ass.