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Power Door Locks

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  • Power Door Locks

    Looking to add power latches to my Carryall. Just latches, not looking for a key override or anything. Just want to be able to have like a power deadbolt. My CANbus wiring system has a wireless fob feature that I can pre-set certain functions and in doing so one of them would be a power door lock feature.

    Anybody put powered latches in their Power Wagon or WC? Whats a clean way of doing it? I think I want to put the actuator and pin into the frame so that there aren't any wires running through the door hinge since the doors open away from the truck body and leave a big gap. I can make a plate to reinforce the door frame where the deadbolt pin lines up and strikes.
    1942 WC53 Carryall in progress.

  • #2
    Take a look at these, I have never installed them but it may be a fix.
    1967 W200.aka.Hank
    1946 WDX.aka.Shorty
    2012 Ram 2500 PowerWagon.aka Ollie

    Life is easier in a lower gear.


    • #3
      I'm not sure exactly what kind of mechanism you're looking at. Something more like the "door popers" that hot rods use? Or just reversing the normal latch mechanism with the pin on the door and the latch in the jamb?

      I do not recommend the "large" latches Matt linked to, I used those on the tailgate and have not been very impressed with them, they are too finicky on alignment. The small style is actually easier to set up, though not dramatically smaller size wise. The lock mechanisms on these aren't the best, they're strong but very simple compared to what you're used to with any regular automotive lock.

      I purchased the door latches for my cab at Watson's Street Works, they also have separate lock pins (manual and automatic). The page I linked to had both as well as their "gator jaw" latches (the locking ones) which are what I used. Only problem I had with them is I bought their stainless door pins and they're too long for my application compared to the ones that come with the kit.

      They have some nice stuff, some is a little too street-rod for a PW, but it's all really nice stuff. I used one of their billet switches for my power lock actuators.


      • #4
        Yea, I am just looking for a regular actuated type dead bolt pin. Something that just moves a shear plate into the door frame and prevents the door from opening even if the handle is turned. I would machine an adjustable delrin guide block to keep things from rubbing. I was going to leave the original handles and latches since my doors actually close and latch VERY well... for now. With the boxed frame and softer suspension I am expecting the truck to not experience the body torsion issues with the door un-latching issues that have been mentioned in the past about the Carryalls.

        I mean, if switching to a bear-claw latch would keep the doors sealed better, I could justify the conversion. I know that I'll be adding some significant weatherstripping to the doors also, which may change how the latches are pre-loaded when they are closed.

        I'm not experienced in messing with doors so I am open to many suggestions from those who are well versed in this.
        1942 WC53 Carryall in progress.


        • #5
          Just thought about the safety side of this. If the doors get locked from the inside... the handle can't be simply turned to override the lock if they are a deadbolt. So getting out in a hurry for whatever reason, could be impossible and that bothers me...

          So... yea... latches that I can still pull the handle to open from the inside to override any electronic thing.
          1942 WC53 Carryall in progress.


          • #6
            Good points on the safety side. I know Watson's had a manual version that could be rigged to open with the handle, but then you're back to weird linkages.

            The modern bolt style are definitely more secure than older latches. They way they capture the pin they basically can't pop open due to body flex. They have some really nice kits to adapt original handles to the new latch mechanisms too.

            That said the locks on the universal ones like I used are really simple, just a bar that can block the handle from turning but only when it's closed, while it prevents you from locking keys in the car, it's not nearly as clean as you are probably used to with modern door locks, and there is no internal override like you find on some systems, where pulling the handle will unlock the door too, and the release spring is fairly short, e.g. there's a very short pull on the release latch.

            It might be worth looking at some junkyard doors and seeing if you can adapt from another vehicle, that's a lot more time than a universal kit, but I think you'd get a better quality of latch mechanism. The Watson's units are very robust, but very simple.

            Putting the latch in the door frame and the pin in the door gets you similar issues with being strange if you had to open the door in a hurry, and is a bit more involved for modifications to the door jambs.

            For wires look at the jamb contact switches. I mainly avoided them because I didn't want my door speakers disconnecting when I opened the doors, but they are clean and give you an easy dome light pin too.