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MG MGB Technical - Dorr stuck closed, emergency advice needed....

I have an interesting dilema.... the release mechanism for my drivers side door fell apart in the latch, and now the door wont open.... None of the bits acessable with the inner panel off will release the door. I have NO IDEA how to fix this problem without cutting the door apart in one way or another.. anyone had this happen and have any neat tricks to pop it open? I need to get the car into the the body shop in the next 2 days, or a loose my "spot" and ill have to waid a long time before the shop has another opening, so i need to resolve this quickly, or its adios door. any help would be greatly appreciated

I had a similar problem with my Mk1 pull handle. It was possible to get inside the doors through the opening of the sidescreen, when the window was down. I used a strong wire with bent end to catch the latch and pull it up to open it.

If you have to cut it, make a cut in the inside. This damage can later be welded up and covered by the trim

i can get to the latch and everything that can be seen from inside the door, and I can move the visible parts (not inside the actual unit) and such, the malfunction is inside the actual mechanism so even with the latch out of the car, i dont think i could get it to work, what im looking for is a way to jimmy rig the mechanism inside the box to open.

Ben, Does the door open from inside? To make sure we understand your problem are you saying the thumb release on the exterior fell apart or is the problem inside the door? You say the inside panel is off. Look at figure 12.14 on page 229 in a Haynes mgb manual. Item 13 is the latch contactor normally operated by the push button on the external latch. With the window up you should be able to pull the contactor and open the door. You may have to move the locking lever, item 21 around to make it work. That probably will not work if the latch item 12 is broken inside. If that is the case there was a thread several months ago on this topic, I don't recall the cure. Search the archives.

Clifton Gordon

From memory I think you can see the striker plate if you take the trim panel behind the door out. Actually its the threaded "sandwich " plate the striker attaches to. Perhaps some persuasion with the vernier hammer here, or in extremis drilling the 3 screws out so the plate falls off and the door opens with the latch still engaged?
S Best

Both the internal pull handle and the external push buttom mechanism work fine, it the actual door latch that holds the door closed that is broken, so i cannot get the door open to work with it. the striker plate that the pin on the push buttong hists flops around freely, so it isnt a question of being able to access that, the problem is somewhere between the door and the door sill, on a door that is stuck closed, if that explains my dilema better. the idea of cutting, would be literally chopping the door apart just to get it off the car... im at a total loss of what else to do. the only thing i could see as an alternative is grinding the captured nuts off the inside of the door, bit id have to cut a hole in the door skin to acess 1 of the screws, wich sends me back to point a.


I think your door is locked. Sounds like the locking tang has hung up. The lock only works with the door mechanism in the closed position and if it is hanging up it will give all the symptoms you are explaining. (i.e. button loose on the outside and door that will not move off the latching post).

I have a door mechanism out on my 67. Will see if I can take some pictures of the area where the locking tang engages. With a picture, you should be able to see where to apply leverage to get the lock to release.
Bruce Cunha

Take the latch assembly off the other door and study it long and hard - might give a clue.
FR Millmore

Ben; I have a lock in front of me, I know it's more difficult to see what's happening with the latch in a closed door. I have some photos in My Yahoo albums so looking at the photos may help.
I hope the link will work.

It may be a good idea to remove the lock control rod # 19 and the latch release rod #17 from the door latch assembly. You said the latch contactor is loose and flopping around. Look at photo 2, notice the arm coming out of a slot at the bottom of the levers, it's about 1/2" to the left of the marking "left". That arm is part of the contactor arm #13. When the contactor arm moves in toward the inside this arm should move toward the left side of the slot. If it moves to the left limits of the slot the rotary lock of the latch should br free. Perhaps the rotary latch has a broken spring. I'm hoping that you can try bumping the door open while holding the latch contactor in the open position (arm at left limits of the slot)and the door will open. It's hard to describe the action since several of the parts aren't named in the drawing.

If the above mentioned arm isn't going to the left limit of the slot check to make sure the locking slider is pulled out, see photo marked locking slider, it's shown in the locked position, it should slide up to the slot limits to unlock and allow the latch to work. You may have to disconnect the locking arm from the outside key lock.

Look at the last photo labeled rotary lock. It's shown in the locked position. It has a notch inside that engages the contactor arm. The rotary lock has a strong spring. When door is opened with either latch the contactor arm is pulled out of the notch, the spring turns the rotary latch to the open position allowiny the door to open.

I'm having a little communication problem because I don't have part names so If you don't understand something, post again I'll try a different description.


Clifton Gordon

This thread was discussed on 20/07/2005

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