Decklid Support Rod and Spool
My 308 is serial number 26359, which means, being a GTB built before 27581, my decklid is not supposed to have gas struts. Instead, it is supposed to have the central support rod that was fitted to all early cars:
Most of my mechanism is long gone with only the horizontal track remaining. Since I bought the car I have been wanting to restore the
The parts I needed were a universal joint attached to the decklid itself, a metal rod with a wheel at the bottom that slides in a track, a cable attached to the wheel and a spool that winds up the cable when the lid is closed.
The spool should be mounted using the three mystery holes above. I have never seen such a contraption on any other car. It seems gloriously over-engineered and I’d love to know if any other Italian cars of the period had such a mechanism (if anyone knows of one please leave a comment). With early 308s, Ferrari went to a lot of trouble to ensure their owners would not have to touch anything greasy or grimy.
Reproduction upper universal joints have been available for a number of years in either original plastic or uprated
I’ve known the dimensions of the spool cover for a while. The intention was always to 3D print a cover when I found a suitable replacement spool. I never bothered seriously looking for such a spool because the support rod was not available. One without the other makes no sense. A few years ago I got hold of an old support rod, but alas, the wheel at the bottom was missing so the project stayed on the back burner.
But recently Superformance in the UK started selling reproduction support rods.… my decklid support project was back on!
The first job was to find something to put in the spool cover. The Ferrari version was a crude affair with a coil of spring steel in a rough plastic molding that had a tendency to spit.
I found a manufacturer of industrial spring reels – the mechanisms that assist you when opening and closing the overhead luggage compartments on aircraft. They had a reel that looked like it would work so I ordered a prototype.
While waiting for a test spring reel to arrive, I started modeling the cover to hold the spool. I have never seen one of these spool covers in person but armed with some measurements taken by Wade, another 308
The design for the inside of the spool cover had to wait until I got the sample spool in the post. Only then could I work out how it needed to attach to the cover. Some sort of mounting plate inside the cover is what I expected would be needed and that proved to be the case when the spool arrived. Both cover and mounting plate CAD designs have been successfully printed so now I will fit them to the car to see how well it all works.
My dream of replacing my incorrect gas struts with a correct spring-loaded, central rod support is now
Disclaimer: 308restoration.com describes the restoration work I perform on my car and only my car. I am not a professional mechanic. The website content is presented for entertainment purposes only and should not be seen as any kind of advice, information, instruction or guidance for working on any other car. The opinions stated here are my own and no-one else’s.