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Passenger door lock


Well-known member
Apr 30, 2002
Houston, TX
1977 Black L-82 4-speed
Hello all,

My passenger door works great! Except for the fact that after you lock it, either from the inside or out, it will not unlock (inside or out). I'm pretty sure the cylinder itself is alright. I think the problem lies in the lock assembly inside the door. Does anybody know where I can find the inner door lock assembly or what part numbers I might be looking for? I have tried all the usual places: Ecklers, DocRebuild, GM assembly manual, and nothing!

If anyone could help I would really appreciate it. I would hate to have to leave my doors unlocked all the time, just begging for some punk to steal it.


Door locks

Last summer I had to rebuild both doors on my '72 and the door locks are, too put it mildly, a nightmare.
I don't quite understand if the door can be locked, why it wouldn't unlock, but the mechanism is pretty intricate. My guess is that the "S" shaped rod linked to the part you put your key into is barely making contact with the heavier rod that operates the guts in the door.
I got parts fr a neighborhood vette
yard (that had just about anything I needed) - he even had alot of new stuff.
Just a reminder, if you tear into the door yourself buy a box of bandaids the night before. I had to clean, restore and grease all my parts and ended up safety-wiring that "S" rod in place.
If you can't find a part let me know and I'll see if my contacts can help.
Hope this helped... Mark
Thanks Mark!

Hopefully next weekend I can get in and remove the interior lock mechanism. Maybe with a ton of solvent I can loosen everything up and get it working. If I do need a new part you can bet I'll be calling!

Thanks again.


Did you get this taken care of?

Mine started having the same problem. I can lock it with the key but then I can't unlock it with the key. I have the door panel off working on the window and was able to apply significant pressure to the rod from the knob to the lock and get it unlocked. It works great there but as soon as you lock it with the key, it repeats the problem.

I can see the key mechanism trying to move the mechanism but won't turn it. Something appears to be catching but only when you lock it with the key.


Yeah, I finally got it fixed, sort of. The reason it wouldn't unlock was because of excessive dirt and grime build up in the inner mechanism. To fix it I sprayed a ton of wd-40 and degreaser into the mechanism. Eventually I worked all of the crap out and the lock mechanism worked. That's when I found out that I was missing one of the springs. Once the mechanism actually got loosened up and would unlock, it no longer would lock because I was missing the spring. Eventually I got it all taken care of.

But for what your describing, a thorough cleaning is in order. That should take care of it.

Good luck,


Oh, by the way, I ended up buying a trans am ram air :) TONS of fun. The vette sounds and looks better, but that ram air drives like an animal.
Congrats on the new car Russ. We just bought a new Lexus RX-300 for the wife.

The next new car is in five years. The kid will be 13 and I'll still need four seats. The TA looks good.

Funny you should mention WD-40. I hit it pretty good this afternoon and by this evening everything is working again.

Now if I can only get my daily driver to work. The Legend has had an intermittent starting problem for the last three years. Only won't turn the starter for a short time, never long enough to get it towed to a shop to check the circuits. Now it is not starting for 24 hours but always on a Friday so once again I can't get it on the shop.

I have the passenger door partially apart on the Vette. Once the Legend can be fixed I want to rebuild the passenger side window mechanism but I can't take it out as long as I might have to take it to work on any given morning.

Take care Russ and keep in touch.

Hey 77-4speed, you will love your ram air t/a. I have a '98 and it is a hand full. 12.9 sec 1/4 mile and then use it as a daily driver in the summer. Why they quit making them is still a mystery to me. Have fun.:cool
Yeah, I love the t/a so far. It is a ton of fun to drive!


You might want to check the starter solenoid on the legend. When those things start to go bad they are very intermitent. Just a guess.

I'll definitely be keeping in touch. I still visit the CAC regularly, although not as much since they blocked it at work :eek

Have fun with the vette door!

The starter solenoid is one of three possible culprits. I need to look at it but would expect that I can do that myself and may take a shot at it next weekend.

door locks

guess what? the passenger door on my 81 is a problem too! I appreciate the dialogue here that may help me fix mine. In the meantime, as crazy as it sounds, I found that if I unlock the door from the inside, lock it again, then unlock it again, it will open like its supposed to the first time. the key will not open it from the outside. aren't these cars funnnn? jim

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