Chapter 12 Bodywork

1 - Rear Hatch Reseal

2 - Ignition Lock Removal/Replacement

3 - Dashboard - removal and installation

4 - Fixing a Broken Odometer

1 - Rear Hatch Reseal

The rear hatch seal of the thin aluminum frame to the heavy glass, a design used on all of the 924/944/968 series, has one major flaw. Very strong struts are used to lift the heavy (est. 80 lbs) piece of glass with it's corresponding frame. These exert a lot of force when fully compressed, with the hatch closed. Due to the design of the hatch, with the aluminum frame representing only a small portion of the hatch structure and weight, the entire extent of that force is transferred to the bond between the glass and the aluminum frame. Over time, this bond will deteriorate and separate, resulting in a leaking, rattling hatch. The only option is to reseal the hatch with 3M's windshield adhesive, either by following the procedure outlined below or by taking the vehicle to a glass shop that will perform the work. The hatch can be removed as per the instructions in the Haynes manual; open the hatch, disconnect the struts, and remove the four socket head screws at the hinges, under plastic caps in the rear of the roof lining. What follows is an article from Jim Demas describing the process:


Hatch Reseal Procedure

I have seen posts regarding help on subjects such as rebonding the rear hatch frame to the glass. I will outline here what I have used in many concours restorations.

The procedure is almost the same as for setting bonded windshields... and uses the same material... a super strong isocyanate urethane bonding caulk from 3M. 3M claims that it "Exceeds OEM strength requirements." They are truly not kidding. I have used this stuff for precisely these two uses... and a word of caution is on order at this point... it is the strongest pliable sealant around. Unbelievable stuff... as you cannot tear a dried 3 inch long piece from the cartridge nozzle later.

Make sure that you put it where you want it before it dries... it is tremendously tough stuff... and very hard to remove from improper areas once cured!

What is it? 3M "Window-Weld Primerless Super Fast Urethane Auto Glass Sealant." It is part #08609... and comes in a cartridge gun tube of 10 fl. oz. (295.7ml). It is made by their Automotive Trades Division... and is sold by companies who supply body shops and auto glass shops (almost all auto paint wholesalers carry it). One tube is sufficient for one hatch, with a little left over.


1. The bonding surface on the frame (or in the case of windshield, the pinchweld) should be clean and dry (remove dirt and as much of the old sealant as possible). A heat gun may ease removal of the old sealant.

2. Prime any bare metal with 3M Super Fast Urethane Primer, Part #08608

3. Clean glass with 3M Glass Cleaner, part #08968. Windshields (or rear windows) that do not have a black ceramic band on the perimeter (to hide the sealant) will require priming with 3M Super Fast Urethane Primer, part #08608, for UV protection of the bond (this is one reason why the bond fails in many of the hatch frame separations).

4. With sealant cartridge in a cartridge gun, and the nozzle cut to the desired bead size you wish (1/4" is preferable)... apply the sealant to the frame (if a windshield)... or to the glass(if a hatch... you can apply it to the frame if you wish... whatever is easier for you).

5. Position the glass or the frame onto the surface which has had the sealant put on it... place in final location... and gently press for proper fitting. You may paddle the sealant around the edges if desired.

6. Clean up using 3M General Purpose Adhesive Cleaner (great for removing old decal and pinstriping glue residue, too)... part #08984 or 08986.

7. Let cure. Higher temperature and humidity makes the sealant cure faster... lower cures slower. Though it firms up in a few hours and sooner than this... 24 hours is a good timeframe for proper curing. If you can... give a hatch 48 hours before using to give it the extra strength of a very full cure. The hatch is a very stressed unit... much more than a windshield (remember: a windshield sits on the glue... the hatch does just the opposite). Avoid reconnecting the hatch struts for as long as you can bear.

8. You are now done! And you have fixed the windshield or hatch as good as new or better. This stuff is amazingly strong and tough. - Jim Demas

And Russ Bullock also shared his experience with a slight twist:

Well folks, I finally got the glass separated from the frame.  The two feet
snow that we got last week had just about everything shut down, and I
had time to work in this project.  I've not yet obtained the proper
material (3M "Window-Weld Primerless Super Fast Urethane Auto Glass
Sealant - part #08609)due to the abovementioned snow storm, but here are
a few tips that I developed by trial and error that might help with the

1)  If you have the rear hatch wiper, getting the hatch off involves an
step that even the factory manual doesn't mention.  The power and control
wires for the wiper must be disconnected from the wiring harness.  This
connection is not anywhere near where the wires feed into the rear body
pillar.  It is accessable thru the side panel.  Then these wires must be
withdrawn thru the hole in the rear pillar near the top of the hatch.  I
yanked them out in a bad sort of way when I first tried to remove the hatch.

2)  Removing the spoiler trim is a royal PITA!  The top trim was a snap.
The side trim is attached with what I would call knurled-knob nuts which
have nearly useless flat-blade slots in the top of them.  The factory must
use a special tool to fit over the stud and engage these slots on each
side of the nut.  I used brute force (i.e., a pair of vise-grips).  The rear
spoiler is attached with phillips head machine screws with a hardness
rating similar to that of warm butter.  I actually got a couple of them off
with a screw driver, but most had to be drilled out.

3)  The sealing compound had completely let go from the glass at the
left hinge, which was the motivating factor behind this project, but the
remainder of the seal was still very much intact.  Separating the glass
from the frame is the toughest part of the job.  I started with a 1.5"
wide flexible putty knife to slip between the glass and the seal.  The
metal blade and the amazing rubber-kryptonite sealant did not want
to slip past each other without considerable force and a variety of
four-letter words.  WD-40 applied to the working surfaces helped greatly.
I also sharpened the end of the blade by grinding on only one side
(like scissors) and used the unground side on the glass side of the bond.
In addition to this putty knife operation, draw your attention to the top
of the hatch and use a good sharp utility knife to cut the outer edge of the
glass from the sealant.  WD-40 comes in handy here too.  Cutting this
edge bond first allows the putty knife operation on the other side of the
glass to go a little more smoothly.  I kept a thin block of wood wedged
between the glass and frame where I had already achieved separation.
This helped to force open the gap so that the putty knife could do its job.
Take care with the wedge block so that the frame is flexed, but not bent.
Overall, it took me four hours to separate the glass from the frame.

4)  Once separated, I cleaned the glass of remaining sealant with a razor
blade scraper followed by 4X steel wool.  I tried using a Scrub-Brite pad,
but found that it left slight scratches in the glass surface.  I used
some fine polishing compound and a cotton cloth to remove scratches
that might be seen after the glass is re-bonded.  I might actually grind or
sand a rough surface into the glass at the bonding surfaces near the hinges
to make a stronger bond there.  Any thoughts or warnings about this idea
would be most appreciated.

5)  Concerning the use of solvents to soften the sealant:  GOOD LUCK!
I even went so far as to try GumOut carb cleaner, the stuff with Xylene
and other possibly carcinogenic (and definitely flamable) solvents.
That sealant took everything I could throw at it, then threatened to taunt
me a second time.  Apparently the only thing that can make this stuff
turn loose is 20 years of UV solar radiation.

Well, that's about as far as I got with the job before my electricity went
due to the ice storm which followed the snow storm.  We enjoy a little snow
now and then here in North Carolina, but this is getting ridiculous!

Good luck to all those with a similar condition to their 924/931/944/951/968
rear hatch.  Porsche AG obviously did not intend these hatches to be a
repairable item.  I guess they just expect us to buy another one, another
Porsche that is.

Remember, that which fails to kill us only serves to make us stronger.

Russ Bullock - 1980 931 - Efland, NC (the snow belt of the southeast US)

2 - Ignition Lock Removal/Replacement

The ignition switch on the 924 often fails, necessitating replacement. However, though the entire assembly is very expensive and hard to find, the usual point of failure is the electrical part of the switch, which can be replaced separately of the entire assembly. The part also typically costs less than $15USD. Symptoms of this failure are such that the car will start, but not stay running once the ignition is released from the "Start" to the "Run" position, or that it won't start. This is often caused by having too many keys on the same keyring as the ignition key - all the more reason to get a special Porsche keyring for your baby! Ignition switch failure can easily be confirmed by hotwiring the car after removing the ignition switch connector from the back of the switch (just reach under the dash). The pin numbers are marked on the connector; jump 30 (battery) to 15 (ignition on) to turn on the ignition, and touch 30 to 50 (starter) to trigger the starter. Oh, don't forget to make sure it's out of gear! The car can even be driven in this state, if the key is used to retract the steering wheel lock - this is useful if your switch dies in the middle of nowhere, and all you have is a couple short bits of wire.

Below is the sequence of steps to remove the lock assembly and the ignition switch. Installation is the reverse of assembly.

NOTE: Make sure you have your steering wheel straight before removing it! Otherwise you will have a fun time getting it to the correct orientation again!

  1. Disconnect the negative battery terminal.
  2. Pull the horn pad off (grasp cover and pull really hard!).
  3. Use a 24mm socket with extension to remove the steering wheel nut.
  4. Remove the steering wheel.
  5. Remove the 4 flathead screws holding the turn-signal/wiper switch in place.
  6. Remove the turn-signal/wiper switch assembly
  7. Use a 6mm allen wrench to remove the bolt holding the ignition lock assembly to the steering column.
  8. Gently pry open the clamp which the bolt holds tight with a flat screwdriver, just enough so that the lock assembly can rotate slightly around the column.
  9. Using the screwdriver, pry off the plastic cylindrical sleeve on the end of the steering column. It may be necessary to split this sleeve in order to remove it.
  10. Grasp the plastic cover and housing assembly and pull straight off
  11. Remove phillips screw holding ignition switch (electrical part) into the lock assembly.

3 - Dashboard - removal and installation

Tech Forum - 924 and Early 944 Dash Replacement, J. Pasha, Excellence, Oct 1999, pg 129-133.

This job is not too difficult, technically, mainly time-consuming. If you've been into parts of your interior before, you'll be familiar enough with it to move pretty quickly. The order of the steps isn't too cruical... you just have to pull the center console prior to pulling the dash... likewise, all the stuff that goes into the dash, like the steering wheel, the glovebox, the center speaker. The wiring harness will stay when the dash comes out, so all electrical connections will need to be pulled. The important thing to remember with these is that there are multipin connectiors back in the dash; disconnecting these will be quicker than pulling connections at gauges, etc., make for quicker reassembly, and prevent confusion.

This procedure can be used if you need to get to the heater core or blower unit for cleaning or repair, or for dash repair or replacement. This is often necessary if your blower motor is tired or dead. However, if you'd like to do what you can for the motor without pulling the dash, you can actually get to the blower motor under the hood - you just can't pull the motor out. If you pop out the three plastic press-in studs on the blower cover, under the hood, at the base of the windsheild, you can remove the blower cover. Then just pop the linkage off the shutter and you can see the top of the motor, spray with WD40 or whatever. I found my motor to be in excellent shape after 21 yrs and 140kmi. Also be aware that you may need to clean the contact surfaces on the heater controls in the center console. This is also possible without pulling the entire dash - just remove the center gauge cluster.

Disconnect the battery, to prevent shorts. The coolant system doesn't need to be drained if you're not removing the heater core or if you don't mind a little bit of coolant dripped on your carpet; just move the heat control to the cold (closed) position - all the way to the left.

Remove the steering wheel horn pad (pull HARD), and disconnect the horn wire. Using a large socket (1" will do, or the equivalent correct metric size) loosen the nut holding the steering wheel on. Straighten the wheel until it naturally site straight; this is important if you want if straight afterwards! Remove the nut and spring washer, then evenly pull the steering wheel straight off.

Dive under the dash and remove the three connectors below the steering column; two for the turn signal and wiper switches, and one for the ignition lock. Remove the for small flathead screws and pull out the turn signal/wiper switch assembly. Remove the 6mm allen socket head bolt from underneath the steering column (there's a hole to access it - put a crescent wrench on your allen key if you need to). There's a long plastic spacer pressed onto the steering column which holds the ignition lock on. You may be able to pull this off with the ignition lock (and it's aluminum mounting) - I was the first time - but you can split it longitudinally, making it easier to get off, while being able to reuse it afterwards. Once the plastic spacer is off, you can pull the ignition lock free followed by the plastic steering column cover.

The instrument cluster is easy after the steering wheel is out; pull the two screws in the top of the left and right gauges, pull it out a bit, disconnect the speedo cable from behind the speedo, pull the cluster out most of the way, disconnect the three plastic AMP (multipin) connectors that connect the instrument cluster wiring harness to the main harness (they're wrapped in foam, further back in the dash), then remove the cluster.

The center console goes as follows: two screws and snap out the instrument panel, disconnecting the multi-pin plugs behind the panel. There will be a small wiring harness that comes off with the panel and gauges. Pull the radio, as appropriate for whatever kind of radio you have. Remove the faceplate to the heater controls (snaps off) and remove the two screws holding the controls to the console. Remove the gearshift boot, move the gearshift far back to give yourself room. There are then six screws holding the console in: two big ones (hex head) under the ashtray, two under the top of the console going into the dash, and one on either side of the console, in the knee area. The console can then eased out - don't break it, they're very expensive! The heater controls will stay in place until you disconnect the fan connectors and control cables.

Remove the glovebox (screws around the edge of the box, then ease it out) and disconnect the glovebox light. Remove the center speaker grill by gently prying straight up, and remove and disconnect the speaker. Remove the central nut behind the speaker holding the center of the dash to the body.

Remove the dash vents, pop them towards you from behind (both center and side vents). Remove the flexible duct hoses behind the dash while you're at it. Remove the tray underneath the dash on the passenger side (3 screws).

Remove the sunvisors (3 screws each), and remove the A-pillar trim panels (you'll also need to remove the trim panels on either side of the roof to do this, 3 screws each). Once you've got the trim panels off, you'll be able to see the screws, one on each side, holding the side of the dash to the A-pillars. Remove these and you should be able to eash the dashboard out.

To remove the heater core and blower unit, if necessary, snap the heater core cover off of the right side of the blower unit. Remove the control cables from the heater controls, if you haven't already, and remove the control unit. Pop off the metal spring clip holding the top of the blower unit to the body. You should then be able to ease the blower unit to the left, sliding the heater core out to the right, removing the blower unit from the car (heater core stays). To remove the heater core for cleaning/replacement/refurbishment, there are three small nuts which hold it to a flange in the firewall - undo these and remove.

Once you've got the blower assy out, it is easy to pop the 8 or so spring clips holding the thing together, and it'll separate down the center, and the motor will pop out. You can then pop off the spring clip holding the shaft in the motor and replace the bearings if you like, or grease them, or whatever. It's highly advisable to clean all parts in the blower unit at this point, as they gather a lot of dust and mold. In particular, my heater core had quite a layer of mold on top of it, which was significantly restricting airflow and really irritating my allergies! Don't forget to also flush out the inside of the heater core, as there can be an accumulation of crud in there also.

Reassembly is the reverse of removal, as Mr. Haynes says. Reassemble the blower unit, and install it along with the heater core. Reattach the heater control unit and it's cables. Slide the dash in place and install the 2 screws and central nut. You can then reinstall the trim panels and sunvisor. Reinstall the ducting behind the dash - this can be a little tricky to get everything to stay together, and you may want to try some glue or tape to hold things together.

Reinstall the glovebox and tray underneath. Install the center speaker and grill. Install the center console, bolt it in place, install your radio, heater control faceplate, gearshift boot, and the center gauge cluster.

Reinstall the main gauge cluster, and don't forget the speedo cable. Now is a good time, BTW, to move your tachometer to the center gauge position, if you desire. The gauges are the same size and interchangeable, just push then out from the back. You'll need to splice in some additional wire for the turn signal indicator, to make it reach all the way over to the right position; interchange the gauge illumination lights, and the other wires will reach. The speedo cable will reach, though you may need to pull it through the firewall a little bit for some slack. Route it once the gauge pod is completely installed, as it's a little tight under the assembled dash, and you don't want to kink the cable and destroy it.

Reinstall the plastic steering column cover, ignition switch unit, plastic sleeve (be sure to press it all the way on), and the 6mm socket head bolt from under the steering column. Install the turn signal/wiper switch assembly and the 4 screws, Slide the steering wheel on, making sure it's straight, and install the spring washer and large nut. Reconnect the horn wire, and push the horn pad on (again, HARD!).

Your dash should now be back in place, with everything where it was.

4 - Fixing a Broken Odometer

Borrowed from Darrin Smith's website (

Pictures of the disassembly can be found here.

I've lost count of the number of cars and stories I've heard about broken odometers in the 924 and early 944's. The fix is quite easy. It involves removing the Speedometer (quite difficult), opening it up (quite easy) and super-gluing a little plastic gear (dead easy!). The example I give here is from my experience with my car (a '77 right hand drive) it should be the same for most other models.
You'll need: 1 phillips head screw driver, 1 small flat bladed screw driver, small hands (not like mine!) and lots of patience!
1) Sitting in the drivers' seat reach under the dash with your right hand. Locate the back of the tachometer and gently push it out steadying it with your left hand. (It'll just pop straight out).
2) The tachometer has three wires attached to the back as well as two light globes. Remove the two light globes by just pulling them out (now is a good time to replace the bulbs!). Pull off the three wires taking note of which pin they come off (there are four pins!) on my car they black, blank, green and brown (looking at the back of the tacho from left to right) brown is intrument earth, green is feed direct from the distributor and black is (I think) another earth (DO NOT CONFUSE the wires!)
3) Remove the two phillips head screws securing the dash surround, but don't remove the surround, you only need to be able to move it a little.
4) With your right hand through the tach hole gently push out the speedo a short way. This should be enough for you to feel around and unscrew the speedo cable (it may be tight!).
5) If you can't unscrew the cable don't worry, next remove the wire and three globes from the back of the speedo. (one brown earth, two illumination globes and one indicator globe).
6) With your left hand under the dash feed the speedo cable out while pulling the speedo out with your right hand.
7) Unscrew the cable now if you haven't already.
8) The speedo should now be free, work it out of the dash (it may be tight!)
9) Using the small flat blade screwdriver pry off the lip around the speedo bezel, don't worry if you bend it you won't see it from the front.
10) The bezel comes off with a "snap" and with it comes the glass (plastic!) and another seal.
11) Remove the two screws on the back of the speedo and work the mechanism out of the case.
12) The broken plastic gear is located on the end of the shaft holding the odometer numbers. If it's still there you can just supa-glue it on the shaft. Check before you glue that it's all working by turning the cable drive and confirming that the numbers are going around. I found that moving toward the end of the shaft worked quite well.
13) Reassemble by reverse order.
14) Replacing the speedo is quite tricky. I found that the following worked best for me.
-Work the speedo back only a short way into it's hole so you still have access to the back.
-Attach the left hand globe and screw in the cable.
-Push the speedo back in (but not all the way) I needed to guide the cable with my left hand from under the dash and push quite hard (it's a VERY tight fit)
-with the speedo almost home, working through the tach hole, I put back the indicator globe, the earth wire (brown, goes on a pin on the speedo body) and then the right illumination globe (you changed the globes right??)
-Push the speedo firmly home.
15) Before putting back the tach confirm the lights and indicators are working: take care that no tach wires are shorting when switching on the ignition!
16) If all is well replace the tach taking care to put the wires back in the right spots, and push it home
17) Replace the dash surround and retaining screws
18) Fire her up and go for a test drive!

Pics of Recaro seats

From: Mark C
Date: 25 Apr 2000
Time: 05:50:13


A while a go someone asked about fitting Recaro seats from a Ford XR3. I've just put some in mine from a Capri. It wasn't too hard and the seats are a big improvement comfort wise Have a look at the links for pics


Re: improved ventilation system

From: pete
Date: 22 Aug 2000
Time: 12:58:19


The 82 ands newer ventilation system is definitely better. I installed this on my 79 924. It isn't the easiest swap, but it can be done. You need the complete heater assy., the water valve (944 type) the two hoses that connect the heater core to the cooling system, the electric vacuum solenoid, vacuum reservoir, the outlet hoses and all of the ducting under the dash, the three dash outlets, the little piece that attaches to the windshield base under the dash that holds up the rear of the assy, the heater control and wiring, the console, and the windshield wiper transmission. The biggest problem is that the hole in the body under the hood (fresh air inlet) is further forward by about an inch. I cut this out and patched the rear of the opening. Everything else has bolts in with the exception of the vacuum solenoid. You need to drill a hole to get to the engine for a vacuum supply. Then patch the power to the 924 harness.