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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Installing all the parts into and onto my empty door shells has been an exercise. Today it was the door locks. I was missing one of the little 'E clips' that hold the lock pawl onto the lock cylinder, so I headed off to the locksmith. WHO reminded me of the following:

1) Original locks will have a number on them (the ones I have do not)
2) Original locks will have the stainless trim (on the outside) which crimps all the way around and not just in 4 little tabs as my door locks have.
3) Originally the ignition key fit the door locks; the glovebox key also fit the trunk (or tailgate).

So basically, someone has replaced the door locks in this car previously with 'universal replacements'.

Another difference I noticed was the 'key way hole' in the lock cover doesn't have the little tab in it to guide which way the key inserts as the originals do.

I need to pull one of my original door locks to see if they same type of E-clip was used on them. Does anyone know this already?

The photos below (1) show the 4 tabs holding the cover on the replacement locks, and 2) the E-clip holding the lock pawl onto the lock, and 3) An original factory lock has a little tab in the keyway which the replacement locks do not have.

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Hold out for originals. They just plain work better. Even if you are mixing and matching locks from different cars, your locksmith can change the wafers in the cylinders so that one key (a B-10 style key, Briggs & Stratton originally) fits all the locks as originally delivered from the dealer. The locksmith should give you a four digit code. From this code you can have brand new keys cut.

Here is my thread on code cutting keys.

 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks Mike! I always prefer originals, and I was disappointed when I realized these were replacements. I haven't looked in detail at the ignition or tailgate locks as yet, so I don't know if those have been changed also...

Are the replacements re-keyable, as the originals are?

I have a totally original, complete 4-door BelAir under my shed, but I HATE to begin cannibalizing it... Someone may want to restore it one day... :)
 

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I dont know if the replacements are rekeyable but here is here is what I would do. Pull the ignition cylinder and see if it is original. If it is, I would contact Mikey (55wagoncrazy) and see if he has some original door locks for you. If it is not original, see if Mikey has door locks and an ignition cylinder. He restores stainless to perfection and so he might even be able to give the stainless bezels the treatment.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks Mike... I should have check the ignition cylinder for a number already (it's removed) but I haven't as yet... (I'm getting slower in my old age!~).. :)
 

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My (probably original) locks have flaky behavior, and the original key is worn badly.
I bought a full set for my '57 2 door from Ecker's for $60, but haven't opened the package yet.
Unfortunately, they do have only the four tabs bent over to retain the stainless cover.
But they do have the little tab on the side of the keyway, and they do have the small indent where the tip of the key meets the internal cylinder dust cover that flips out of the way when the key is inserted.
Pictures of the package and the new and old door and trunk cylinder faces are attached below.
Vic

1259_15_105008_57ChevyLockss.jpg


1260_15_105020_57ChevyLockss.jpg 1261_15_105030_57ChevyLockss.jpg 1262_15_105051_57ChevyLockss.jpg 1263_15_105204_57ChevyLockss.jpg 1264_15_105221_57ChevyLockss.jpg 1265_15_105257_57ChevyLockss.jpg
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I pulled an original door lock assembly from one of my original cars today just to check the differences. It also had the '4 tabs rather than continuous flanging on the scalp, but the lock pawl had a 4-digit number stamped into it. It surprised me that the number was on the Pawl (which iss removable from the key cylinder) rather than on the cylinder itself. I also noted that the 'E clip' was more robust in the original lock than in the replacement locks.
 

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Truth be told, I guess I've been fortunate - in 25 years or so I've bought full sets of replacement locks for five different vehicles and have had zero problems. Quality always seems to be above average. Maybe I'm just lucky...

I wish I could say the same about other repro parts.
 

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Bama, when you pull the ignition tumbler out, it will also have the four digit code. If you get some door locks from Mikey, you can send them and the tailgate handle and lock to Jesser's Key and have them match all the locks to the ignition. Now you have all GM parts.

 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks Mike! I cleaned and got all these 'replacement' locks I have working with keys to match. I'll probably use these until I get the car fully 'operating' and 'think about' replacing them with all original locks later! I DO appreciate your comments and explanations.. :)

Gary
 
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