One of the first things I needed to do to my 1200 after I bought it was fix the hood release. The cable had broken right at the release handle, so to open the hood I had to grab the end of the cable with pliers and pull. I couldn"t find a new one. I am a cyclist so I figured I could build a new cable with a bike brake cable. The parts cost me about 6 bucks, so it is real cheap and pretty easy too. Follow along to see just how easy. This is for my 1200, but I think most older datsuns used a similar arrangement.
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First you need to remove the latch under the hood. Then unhook the cable end from the latch. From inside the car remove the bolts that hold the handle on and pull the cable through the firewall and out of the car.
Here"s where mine was broken:
The cable end:
Notice the shape of the end lug is a small cylinder so it will fit through the hole on the latch mechanism.
Here are the parts I used:
The cable, black cable housing, a ferrule (the loopy thing) and a clamp (the small silver part). I bought the brake cable and housing at a bike shop. If you take in your old cable housing they can cut the housing to the proper length for you. If you don"t you will need to use a nail to fix the end of the housing. Cutting it will flatten the spiral shield in the housing. Pushing a nail into the end will reshape the hole so the cable will slide through again.
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The other parts I bought at the local Ace hardware store. Including the following part. I had to go back and get this after I found out the ferrule loop was too big to fit. I think it is called a screw stud:
First I reshaped the end to look more like the original cable. The cylinder is sideways compared to the original. You probably don"t need to do this since it would still fit through the hole on the latch:
Put some lube on the cable and insert the cable into the housing. I used tri-flow silicon, don"t use a petroleum based oil like wd40, it will attract dirt. Line up the new cable with the original at both ends to check the length. It should just be close, the amount hanging out at each end is what matters:
Now the fun part. You need to drill out the big rivet that holds the cable end to the handle. I used a drill bit that was close to the size of the rivet flange. Drill slowly from the side that has the hole and just enough to cut off the flange on that one side and the rivet will come out the other side:
This is the only part you need to be careful on. Both ends need to hang out of the housing the same amount. So line up the cable housing to the original, line up the ends, and make the finished loop so that the length would match the original if it"s loop end was still attached. Here you can see how I was doing this with the ferrule. The loop would have been too long by the time I clamped the end of the wire so I ended up doing a loop with out the ferrule as in the second pic:
There is a tool availabe to crimnp the clamp on the cable but I just used a big hammer on the anvil portion of my vice to flatten it good.
Now put the screw stud into the handle with the loop of the cable going around it: