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So I go to change the rear hatch support shocks on my ’97 Geo Metro 2 dr. rear hatch car…….

The kit came with a little ball head on a threaded post that feeds through the rear pillar made of sheet metal that is the inside body of the car. That’s where the top end of the shock attaches to the car body pillar.
I assume just like the other end of where the shock attaches to the bottom of the hatch door itself …. that the inaccessible bolt is spot welded to the other side of the sheet metal and was spot welded during the assembly of the car.

I carefully unscrew the ball head threaded post…
PLOP…. !!!!

It drops off and goes somewhere down into the wheel well area and disappears forever into the abyss… OH NOOOOOOO !!!…. after much looking at the problem and poking around….. It appears I only have 2 solutions:
  1. Remove the backseat passenger window to PROBABLY but not necessarily definitely access the other side of that hole so I can hold the “blind” nut and thread the ball head post through the sheet metal. In which case I would need to purchase some sort of rubber replacement kit for that window and also risk screwing THAT WHOLE THING UP.

  2. Drilling and grinding out a slot large enough in the sheet metal pillar (carefully placing this access point that I cut out so it doesn’t compromise the structural integrity of the pillar or allow any compromise to the tie down point that I’m repairing here as it actually experiences quite a bit of force and torque) so that I can somehow manage to carefully insert the bolt needed on the backside of the sheet metal pillar and while carefully holding it right up against the hole in the sheet metal (using a wrench so that I can hold it still as I turn and thread in the ball head threaded post)…. simultaneously feed the threaded ball head post through the sheet metal, thread it into the “blind” nut and tighten it down.

Does anyone have ANY experience with this dilemma ???
I’m NOT looking forward to either of these solutions. Of course the easiest thing to do is to cut a ½″ wooden dowel to the correct length and just use this stick to prop the rear hatch open in much the same way as we all keep the front hood open.
Unfortunately I don’t think there is an easy fix for that. Don’t bother popping the window out, it won’t get you anywhere. I would suggest cutting 3 sides of a square around the hole so you can pry a flap up/down/sideways and out, place a nut in the correct location and weld it to the sheet metal. Then bend the flap back down and re-weld it to the surrounding metal. Don’t weld? you can at least cut it open and prep everything, then take it to someone who can weld to finish the job or try JB weld to hold it.
Casper 2.0


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