So Close…

Everything was in place to have my engine lid mechanism working again. I had remanufactured the retractable spool. I had found a supplier for the long-unavailable center rod. I had ordered a new, stronger universal joint from Hill Engineering. All I needed to do was re-assemble everything and I would hear the re-assuring whizz-clunk of the mechanism as I lifted my engine lid.

Ferrari 308 engine lid bolts
Original univesal joint bolts

The first issue was to find some bolts to attach the universal joint to the engine lid. Miraculously, what appeared to be the original bolts were still tight in the lid. Whoever removed the mechanism years ago put back the bolts afterwards. Surely a good omen!

Universal joint attached, central rod inserted

The new universal joint seemed to fit well, secured with the original bolts. The rod also seemed to fit snugly in the universal joint. So far… so good.

Finally, the center rod needs to be anchored to the universal joint with a pin. But there is a problem… the hole in the universal joint does not line up with the hole in the rod. There is a 3mm vertical difference in the position of the holes. There is no way a pin can go through the holes as they are currently drilled.

Well those holes are not going to work

I have an original support rod in my parts cabinet and from looking at that, it appears that the Hill Engineering universal joint is simply drilled in the wrong place.


The Hill Engineering joint and the Superformance support rod are correct. It is a very tight fit but the rod is supposed to fit in a 5mm recess in the joint:

Hill Engineering 308HS-01
Circular recess

Once the rod was fully seated into this recess, the holes aligned.

Hill Engineering 308HS-01 and Superformance support rod
Holes aligned between rod and joint

Disclaimer: 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.

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3 Responses

  1. Paul says:

    Did you go back to Hill Engineering to find out why the hole does not line up?

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