HELP! Bonnet release on 15TS
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  1. #1
    Fellow Frogger! Alastair Browne's Avatar
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    Default HELP! Bonnet release on 15TS

    Went to open the bonnet today and 'Toyota' me, it wouldn't. It will open on the drivers side but there is no movement on the passenger side despite a bit of encouragement with a large screwdriver. It hasn't been opened for about 2 weeks. I can't see anyway in from under the car. The Workshop manual is silent on this problem. I suspect the cable may have slipped/slipped off.

    Could some kind person give me some hints as to what to do, please?

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  2. #2
    1000+ Posts Europa's Avatar
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    Haven't got a picture to hand, but the trick is to press the release lever on the latch upwards using some sort of rod. From memory a broom handle works pretty well. You can come up from underneath (if you have access) or jack the car and remove the wheel and access via the steering arm hole in the inner guard. All you need to do is press upwards on the lever (note on the R15/R17 bonnet the cable "outer" does the actual release, the inner is hooked over a fixed mounting point.

    There is reference to this in the workshop manuals I have seen.

    (Update: hand drawn picture attached, side view of lock)
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails HELP!  Bonnet release on 15TS-lock.jpg  
    Last edited by Europa; 2nd March 2005 at 04:58 PM. Reason: Added "artwork"!
    '05 Pearl Black Mégane 5-Door LXR(Daily Driver), '75 Trak Yellow R16TSA (Parts Car), '74 Midnight Blue R17TS (Rebuilding), '73 457 Blue R17TL (Parts Car), '72 Alpine White R16TL (Retired), '69 Sunburst Brown R16TS (Awaiting Rebuild), '68 "Appliance White" Europa (Stored)

  3. #3
    Fellow Frogger! Alastair Browne's Avatar
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    Europa

    Many thanks for that. Your drawing is spot on. It's a similar contraption to the Elan + 2 I had.

    Hostilities have commenced. I jacked the car up but there was no way I could actually see the release. Now it has started raining (and a few ant bites later) so I've had to pack up. I shall take the wheel off to try to gain acces through the steering arm aperture tomorrow. What a pig of a job!

    Alastair

  4. #4
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    Default Bonnet Release 15TS

    Haynes Manual 763 for the Renault 15 & 17 provides this solution at pages 308-310. It even provides the dimensions of the "tool'' you can fabricate to facilitate opening the bonnet. As you already have the drivers side open the technique is to now "Prise the released side of the bonnet open carefully to be able to insert the tool and move the lever on the second bonnet catch."
    While the trick is to release the drivers side from underneath the car the passenger side is released by sliding the tool under the slightly ajar bonnet from the drivers side of the car.
    The tool dimensions are a piece of flat steel 25 mm wide and 4 mm thick. 800mm long and bent at a right angle so one side is 100 mm long and the other is 700 mm long. As the small right angle is for releasing the drivers side, you only basically need something approximating 25 x 4 mm and of sufficent length to reach across to the passenger side from the opening you can create on the drivers side by prising up the bonnet. If you become desperate I can send you a copy of the relevant sections.
    Good Luck!!!

  5. #5
    Fellow Frogger! Alastair Browne's Avatar
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    Phillipjh

    I tried and tried and tried but I don't think my piece of steel was quite right. I had to give up in the end for fear of twisting the bonnet and scraping off paint. I will give it a rest for a few days then try again because I'm off to Mudgee in it today on a Ticko's Tour.

    I shall have to get the Haines Manual 'cos the proper Renault Workshop manual says nothing.

    I appreciate your help and if you could copy the pages of the Manual, I'd be v grateful.

    Alastair

  6. #6
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    I'd say go the broomstick method. Some of the Haynes methods are based on very early Renault workshop information (particularly the 12 book) which was later superseded by Renault when they found it didn't work. Perhaps it could be the same with the Haynes 15/17 book and that method if the bonnet doesn't want to twist enough.

    I'm also wondering if drivers side of the car refers to LH or RH drive, or if Haynes just ripped it from Renault documentation which mostly only refer to LHD cars......

  7. #7
    1000+ Posts Europa's Avatar
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    I can guarantee the "broomstick-from-the-wheel-well" method will work - because I have done it (on a R17TS) You probably will need to jack the car and remove the wheel first.

    The tension is quite strong on those catches, I think getting the leverage from the top would be quite difficult. Better to "push up" from underneath.
    '05 Pearl Black Mégane 5-Door LXR(Daily Driver), '75 Trak Yellow R16TSA (Parts Car), '74 Midnight Blue R17TS (Rebuilding), '73 457 Blue R17TL (Parts Car), '72 Alpine White R16TL (Retired), '69 Sunburst Brown R16TS (Awaiting Rebuild), '68 "Appliance White" Europa (Stored)

  8. #8
    Fellow Frogger! Reno17's Avatar
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    This has happened to me

    The way I got around it was to take out a headlight and go in through there. Shon the torch in to see where I was goin and used a long bit of flat steel to push the lever upwards.
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  9. #9
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    Default Bonnet Release 15TS

    I have had a closer look at the manual and the reference to LHD and RHD may be relevant as the directions I gave came straight from the book and the picture shows the rod being directed from the right side across to the passenger side, BUT the illustration show's the brake master cylinder on the left side of the car and I am not sure whether this would impede under bonnet access across the vehicle or not. However if it does it therefore should allow access from underneath through the opening where the steering rack/arm protrudes. I am not sure what line of sight this allows and therefore whether a broomstick would work easily (although if it has been done it must be possible). However the picture of the access to the drivers's side catch(without the master cylinder in view) shows the short angle section of the fabricated tool being used to push the lever upwards after accessing through the steering rack/arm aperture which also necessitates taking off the drivers side (right) wheel. Therefore theoretically if the left bonnet catch needs releasing it should be accessed from underneath after removal of the left wheel. Now that you are completely confused I will endeavour to borrow the car back from son this weekend and have a look at the direct line of sight (or not) and advise you further. I am getting photocopies of the manual taken and can send these to you. I will also try and scan but with small print, etc I am not sure I will be able to provide as clear a picture as possible.
    Call me on 0402 319 724 and I will endeavour to confuse you further if you need more information.
    Philip

  10. #10
    Fellow Frogger! Stu17's Avatar
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    Definitely go the (very short) broomstick. Won't be useful to anyone but munchkins after. Hope you have a spare!
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  11. #11
    Fellow Frogger! Alastair Browne's Avatar
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    Look fellas, I really appreciate all the comments. I decided to take a punt that I wouldn't need the bonnet open and go away for a long weekend with some car enthusiasts to Mudgee and the Wellington Show. I took the R15TS which behaved magnificently even cruising at 120-130kmh on some country roads.

    I'll have another go this week with all the suggestions and let you know how I get on. I still like the broomstick idea, may be with a metal T piece attached to get over the water bottle and under the catch. The in-through-the headlight idea sounds good, too.

    Many thanks again.

    Alastair

  12. #12
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    Default Bonnet Release 15TS

    I had a look at our 15TS today and an alternative to taking out the headlight would be to take off the sump guard and you will not only get a good line of sight (torch needed) but a better angle for pushing the lever upwards. If you want to come from underneath you probably can but from behind the crossmember to avoid the coolant bottle. You will also have to push the heater hoses out of the way. The disadvantage of this method is you will possibly need to jack the car up quite a bit to get the length of broomstick/rod into the right position.
    If you go through the headlight or remove the sump you don't have to trim your broomstick. I suspect you will need the square end of the broomstick rather than the rounded end as the catch is quite small and the rounded end may not contact that well. I now have copies of the relevant pages and can post/fax them to you if you so desire.
    Please feel free to call me on 0402 319 724.
    Philip

  13. #13
    Fellow Frogger! Alastair Browne's Avatar
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    It's open at last! I got so frustrated with it that I took it to Simonetta's in Brookvale and they had it open in two shakes of a cat's donger. Excellent service there 'cos they charged me about $3 for it.

    Coming back from Mudgee the car developed a wobble in the front end. It turned out that one of the tyres had developed in to an egg. Two new tyres later and now it drives superbly.

    Many thanks to all who contributed with suggestions. This is a great forum.

    Alastair

  14. #14
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    Good one Alastair. Out of interest, did you watch them? If so, how did they do it?

    Cheers

    Stuey


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  15. #15
    Fellow Frogger! Alastair Browne's Avatar
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    Stuey

    Unfortunately not! But they said they put it on the hoist and did it from underneath - obviously much easier than trying to jack the thing up in your driveway! The inner cable had fallen off the plastic mount, so easy yet b.. frustrating.

    A friend in RCC is going to attach some fishing line to both his locks and have it going down the rain channels to the front of his car so that if it ever happens to him, he'll just bring the line up to near the locks and PULL - and hope for the best! Not a bad idea, really.

    Alastair

  16. #16
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    Alastair, tell him to use stainless steel fishing trace (wire), not fishing line.


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  17. #17
    Fellow Frogger! Alastair Browne's Avatar
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    Stuey

    I'll tell him that. Your suggestion is good because it's quite a strong catch (fish joke)

    Alastair

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