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Old 08-04-2020, 09:47 PM   #21
Daves55Sedan
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Default Re: 55 Ford Ranch wagon Door latch Question

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if i remember there is a spring on that unit i don't remember if it connects to the star wheel its about the size of a quarter coiled
That spring interacts with the lock-wheel on the backside. That is what keeps the star-wheel from backing off once the door is closed. The star-wheel on the outside is interlocked with the lock-wheel on the inside via the pressed shaft I spoke of previously, so that both always turn and lock in unison.
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Old 08-04-2020, 09:57 PM   #22
Daves55Sedan
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Default Re: 55 Ford Ranch wagon Door latch Question

Looks like I caught this part of the discussion too late, but yes you can remove the latch without removing the window glass. Once the latch mounting screws are removed, the latch needs to be pushed in about 5/8 of an inch and allowed to slide down. It is necessary to remove the very bottom mounting screw for the glass run so that you can slide that glass run channel aside to allow the latch to be manipulated down to the bottom of the door, then you can pull it out thru the access hole at the bottom corner of the door. Looks like you figured it out. Good job!
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Old 08-05-2020, 01:00 PM   #23
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Default Re: 55 Ford Ranch wagon Door latch Question

Hello Dave.Yes,I was able to remove the latch yesterday.Just waiting for the new part to come in so I can put it back together.With the help of Dobie and you and the advice and suggestions of others here in this group,I was able to do it.Very helpful group here.I am really learning quite a bit from all of you great guys.Always appreciate all the help.As soon as I think I can help,I will do just that.Thanks.
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Old 08-08-2020, 07:25 PM   #24
frank long island
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Default Re: 55 Ford Ranch wagon Door latch Question

i have seen those springs although i dont recall where
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Old 08-08-2020, 07:41 PM   #25
Daves55Sedan
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Default Re: 55 Ford Ranch wagon Door latch Question

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Originally Posted by frank long island View Post
i have seen those springs although i dont recall where
I am not 100% sure, but I think those springs are the same springs that are used for the interior door handle return spring. If so, those are available from some of the repro parts suppliers. If you need one for the door latch mechanism, please verify before ordering and make sure it is not a mirror image of the interior door return spring. Been too long ago since I replaced mine, so I don't remember for sure.
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Old 09-10-2020, 05:49 PM   #26
grumppyoldman
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Default Re: 55 Ford Ranch wagon Door latch Question

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Glad to find this post mine just started acting up. I've just turned the lock wheel back a turn or two to get it to latch, now I know how to fix it. Al
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Old 09-10-2020, 08:22 PM   #27
Daves55Sedan
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Default Re: 55 Ford Ranch wagon Door latch Question

These door lock mechanisms were a brilliant design, but if your doors are not properly adjusted such that undue tension is placed upon that star-wheel/shaft/lock-wheel assembly, you will severely reduce the life of that mechanism.
When you get your new (or good used) replacement, I suggest first throwing a few drops of 3-in-1 oil down behind the star-wheel so it will run down into that shaft. Immediately afterward, smear lubriplate all around that star-wheel and shove it down in there with a little screwdriver to "lock" the oil in that shaft area. Turn to the backside of the mechanism and lube the heck out of all the moving parts there too before installation. It should last you a good long time if your doors are adjusted properly.
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Old 09-12-2020, 02:40 PM   #28
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Default Re: 55 Ford Ranch wagon Door latch Question

For those of you that don't want to use an after market door latch on your car or wagon, I would suggest to do what I did. I removed the latch and sent it out for repairs to Prestige Thunderbird in California. This guys work mostly on thunderbirds but when I told him that my latch looked almost exactly like the one used in the 55 thunderbird,he said go ahead and send it to me and I will rebuild the latch. I sent it to him and after 1 week,I had it back.He suggested I also replace the striker plate which I did. After a few minor alignments, the door closes really nice on the first shut,no more having to slam the door. Hope this helps someone.
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