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Old 09-21-2015, 09:43 AM   #1
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Rear trunk lid


I did something stupid. I was repairing one of the three cables that actuate the rear trunk, and had removed all the ends from the actuator pin. I then closed the trunk. The electric actuator works, but I had placed a paper towel above the mechanism to keep epoxy from dripping on the carpet. This towel may be in the way. I put a plastic trowel in the opening between the lid and the spoiler and tried to gently persuade it open, but it doesn't work. I feel sooooooo dumb. Anyone have any suggestions?

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Old 09-21-2015, 02:59 PM   #2
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Post pictures of what you have. As a group if we can help someone get a dropped screw out from under the IMS cog in the crankcase, we might be able to help you get your trunk open without damaging it.
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Old 09-21-2015, 06:05 PM   #3
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In the past someone pried the lid open and used a very thin wrench to remove catch attached to lid. Another guy removed the bumper and CUT A HOLE thru to the latch. I found these posts when I was fixing cable ends that had pulled off. (fairly common) Good luck. Oh and another post went thru the vent in the wheel well? that goes thru to the trunk and caught the latch with a coat hanger......I think
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Old 09-21-2015, 07:04 PM   #4
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Rear trunk lid

I have looked through all the related posts. The 10mm wrench sounds like the most promising. I will, however, on the unlikely chance, try to access the manual release to see if I might have left it on. I didn't photograph anything because there isn't anything to see. I have also looked at used lids on eBay. They start about $150.00. Labor and paint extra, and a last resort.
Thanks. Let's see what tomorrow brings.
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Old 09-22-2015, 07:51 AM   #5
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I did not realize emergency cable still attached (maybe) hopefully so!
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Old 09-22-2015, 10:34 AM   #6
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Well, the emergency cable was not attached. I had taken off the rear wheel, and removed the hardware holding the rear plastic wheel shield. I found the cable and pulled gently and inch or two, but all I felt was it sliding through the sheath. I then tried to access the opening to the trunk. Unfortunately, as much as I could reach around and try to access the way into the trunk, I could not. I did follow the cable to the grommet, but that is still outside the compartment. How someone said he could see the latch is beyond me. Anyway, I removed the spoiler and started to feel around for the nuts on the bracket attached to the lid. I only had very minor success. I managed to turn one about 1/4 turn (two 1/8 turns), and then had to turn the wrench around. I couldn't get it on again. I tried the other one, and could not even find it. I will look for a longer wrench and/or a slim box end with a ratchet. This will take patience. Fortunately, I do have the time. You now know as much as I do, and maybe more.
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Old 09-22-2015, 11:31 AM   #7
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I guess you could be more aggressive lifting the lid since a new lid is an option that you may have to take. I think with the thin wrench and patience with more of a gap you will succeed. let us know
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Old 09-22-2015, 11:50 AM   #8
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Here's the latch mechanism on my 01 parts car:


It unlatches by moving the lever to the direction of the red arrow. If you are willing to take an invasive approach, you may be able to drill through from the center-back of the trunk and insert a tool to push on it.

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I think with the thin wrench and patience with more of a gap you will succeed. let us know
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Old 09-22-2015, 11:51 AM   #9
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Maybe a good time to upgrade to DEPO tail lights? If I was in the situation I'd dremel them apart and go in through the tail light opening, then replace them with aftermarket ones as they are on my list anyway.

Although if you were going to stay stock I'd bet you could pick one up for way less than $150 for a new lid and paint.
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Old 09-22-2015, 12:38 PM   #10
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Maybe a good time to upgrade to DEPO tail lights? If I was in the situation I'd dremel them apart and go in through the tail light opening,
Brilliant! With the left tail removed I can easily reach the latch assembly. If the plastic cover is still on, it will be held in place by the closed lid and two phillips screws. It is probably easier to destroy the plastic cover than the metal parts of the trunk. I have a spare 01 base tail and latch and I expect Woody has a few laying around cheap.

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Old 09-22-2015, 01:17 PM   #11
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I do have a dremel type tool with lots of cutting wheels. It is brilliant suggestion. Sacrificing a tail lamp sounds doable! I think I would like to remain stock. Mine is an '03. Is the '01 tail lamp the same? At the risk of sounding uninformed, who is Woody, and how do I get in touch with him?
BTW, I know the inner plastic cover is off so I only have to actuate the lever. I will spend a little more time tomorrow trying to wrench it. If that works, it is an immediate fix.
I am amazed at the wealth of knowledge and help from this wonderful group. I feel much better about the whole thing thanks to you all.
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Old 09-22-2015, 01:23 PM   #12
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Woody sells used parts at a great price. His user name is itsnotanova. You can call him or text at 512-925-9171
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Old 09-22-2015, 01:28 PM   #13
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Thanks, again.
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Old 09-22-2015, 01:46 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 78F350 View Post
Brilliant! With the left tail removed I can easily reach the latch assembly.
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I do have a dremel type tool with lots of cutting wheels.
Glad I could help. Unfortunately I have '00 tail lights or I'd offer mine up (as I do want to upgrade)!

My dremel is the most used tool in my arsenal. I couldn't recall all the things I've used it for in regards to auto repair.
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Old 09-22-2015, 01:49 PM   #15
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Rear trunk lid

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Glad I could help. Unfortunately I have '00 tail lights or I'd offer mine up (as I do want to upgrade)!

My dremel is the most used tool in my arsenal. I couldn't recall all the things I've used it for in regards to auto repair.

What procedure is best for cutting out the light. Isn't there also some sort of cover behind it held on with fasteners?
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Old 09-22-2015, 02:11 PM   #16
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If I were to do it, I'd disconnect the battery, cut the lens off as best I could without getting too close to the paint or quarter panel, and then start hacking up the inside a bit at a time.

Once you get enough of it opened you can get a box wrench in to remove the four mounting posts and remove the rest to get it out of the way.

The panel behind it is just held in by plastic press buttons. I'd imagine you could push them out or pry them out from behind easily.



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Old 09-22-2015, 02:53 PM   #17
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Excellent precaution to disconnect the battery.
As before, thank you.
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Old 09-22-2015, 07:25 PM   #18
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Just an idea, maybe go through the main wire harness hole? I'm not in front of a car to test my theory, but I'm thinking you could push the seal off the firewall. That might give you enough room to stick a long bar through the trunk and move the lever. Maybe?
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Old 09-22-2015, 07:28 PM   #19
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Oh and another post went thru the vent in the wheel well? that goes thru to the trunk and caught the latch with a coat hanger......I think
I like this idea too.
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Old 09-22-2015, 07:42 PM   #20
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Thanks, Woody. The main wire harness hole is another possibility. But I think I'm out of my comfort zone with this one, though.
If I don't have any success with removing the lid bracket latch, do you have a l/s tail lamp for an '03?

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