Too short to work under hood!

TTR230

Veteran Member
Aug 1, 2020
652
Burlington, Ontario
Hey guys, I was trying to reach the distributor in my '79, and really struggled to reach it comfortably. I'm not particularly short, but without climbing onto or supporting myself on the fender, which I'm loath to do, I can't puzzle out how people are working on the further reaches of the engine bay. With other cars with big engine bays I've had, I just clambered into the bay or just sat on the fender.

What are you guys doing? I'm a little embarrassed to ask this, lol.
 

camarochevy1970

Veteran Member
Jan 23, 2003
8,137
Pittsburgh, PA
It's been awhile, but as I recall I end up covering the fenders with heavy moving blankets or something, because while I can reach things like the distributor, I always end up touching the fenders somehow
 

TTR230

Veteran Member
Aug 1, 2020
652
Burlington, Ontario
It's been awhile, but as I recall I end up covering the fenders with heavy moving blankets or something, because while I can reach things like the distributor, I always end up touching the fenders somehow
That's what I did, but it wasn't ideal. That blanket is still rubbing the paint, I figure, and while my car is far from concours, it doesn't need my help deteriorating
 

Twisted_Metal

Administrator
Staff member
Lifetime Gold Member
Feb 26, 2004
31,461
Bloomington, MN
I'm at that height where I'm too short to look down the distributor hole (to see the oil pump) but plenty tall enough to bang my head on the hood latch.

I've stood on a 5-gallon bucket... but they tend to slide and leave you face down into the carb. :(

I've also made the mistake of kneeling on the fender and have a couple of shallow dents now. :mad:
(A moving blanket only hid them until the job was done.)

Do a search for a "Tire Step".
I haven't used one but it might be a workable solution.
 

TTR230

Veteran Member
Aug 1, 2020
652
Burlington, Ontario
I'm at that height where I'm too short to look down the distributor hole (to see the oil pump) but plenty tall enough to bang my head on the hood latch.

I've stood on a 5-gallon bucket... but they tend to slide and leave you face down into the carb. :(

I've also made the mistake of kneeling on the fender and have a couple of shallow dents now. :mad:
(A moving blanket only hid them until the job was done.)

Do a search for a "Tire Step".
I haven't used one but it might be a workable solution.
I had a tire step when I had 1-ton trucks, but it seems a bit impractical for the hood and vehicle height. I saw a sort of "reverse" creeper that sort of suspends you over the engine bay, and I might pick one up, but have limited space to store things like that.
 

mallard

Veteran Member
Oct 3, 2013
1,961
SK, Canada
Hey guys, I was trying to reach the distributor in my '79, and really struggled to reach it comfortably. I'm not particularly short, but without climbing onto or supporting myself on the fender, which I'm loath to do, I can't puzzle out how people are working on the further reaches of the engine bay. With other cars with big engine bays I've had, I just clambered into the bay or just sat on the fender.

What are you guys doing? I'm a little embarrassed to ask this, lol.
I’m 6’ and have a “boxers reach” for arms but I still know what you mean. I have a 74z that I believe was built the last week for points distributors. I converted the points distributor to electronic 30+ years ago and took the distributor out to do it.

Honestly, even at my height and reach I think the easiest thing to do is take the distributor out when working on it. A little more awkward with HEI but it may make things a little easier.
 




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