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Problems unlocking door - door lock cylinder wear - easy repair.


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Hi All!

Both doors on my 1978 280Z were impossible to unlock with the key. Locking worked fine. Upon removing the door lock cylinders, I found that there was excessive wear on both of the cylinders because the lever which actuates the unlocking mechanism rode up on the cylinder due to play between the lever and the cylinder.

It turns out that the cylinders can be swapped between the left and right doors, if the levers are interchanged. This allows the unlocking mechanism to work and because of the torque on the levers, the locking mechanism works fine too. It helps to lube all moving parts and to install 0.010" shim washers under the spring clips which hold the levers on the lock cylinders. The shim keeps the lever from riding up and causing the wear to occur again.

I've included some pictures to show the wear and the installation of the shim. The jpg file which is included with this post gives a bit more explanation.

Since new lock cylinders are about $120 each, this is a cost-saving repair.



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