Holding The Hood Up On My 1928 Hudson Sedan

I'm not sure if I'm missing a bracket...probably am. I want to hold the hood up while working on the car. 

There are two rods running from each side of the radiator top to the upper corners of the firewall. I made new ones from 3/8" stressproof high tensile rod. I suppose that I can add a hook made from bent sheet metal, or a bent wire; both will rattle when driving and scratch my new paint. And, of course, I used to just jamb the hood open, or use a block of wood, but won't be doing that now that I've spruced it up, painted, and straightened out the warps in the hood.

But, ah ha!

I found a picture on Craigslist while looking at cars for sale by owner, and found a 1936 DeSoto with brackets that fasten onto the radiator-to-cowl rods. (Is there a name for these?) I don't know if Hudson had anything like this, and they may be an aftermarket item. So, I'm asking.....

What are they called and where do I get them? What do you do about this problem of holding the hood open?

Tom in New Jersey


  • bob ward
    bob ward Senior Contributor
    AFAIK hood holders are mainly DIYed, 2 things are needed a pivot point and an arm.
    This is what I have on my 35, a pivot point made from 1" x 1/8" flat attached to the end of the radiator brace rod and an arm made from 5/16" round. Not my idea, thanks to Phil Haxby and Ashley Kubler

  • Your title to your post says 1928 Hudson ?
  • Yes Paul, my car is a 28 Hudson, not a Desoto. The first picture is the only one I could find with a hood prop. And that bring a question to mind: Why do so many of these old cars have the radiator rods removed? Do the restorers just never put them back?

    Back to the prop.....

    I still haven't arrived at a solution. There is a readily available Ford bracket, a bent sheet metal channel that bolts across the two radiator rods having fold out prop arms, and it's cheap at $27 to $35. But I'm never going to use a Ford part on my car, so I'll have to make my own, I guess.

    Bob, thanks for sharing your pics. That is a good and simple solution for your car, however my firewall is recessed about 1-1/4" behind the windlace edge. That still might be the best place to mount the arm if I can figure out a method. 

    It's going to work on my car only if the upper prop fork gives a fixed position, or the folded hood will unfold. That's why the bend near your pivot point is such a good design - it makes it's own brace. I'll have to figure a way to copy the design function. Maybe using two flange nuts on the radiator brace to fasten a clip that captures and steadies the arm. Humm....
  • Geoff
    Geoff Senior Contributor
    There was never ever a prop from new. the hood folded right back and rested on the hinge basically.  Worked fine for me.
  • lostmind
    lostmind Expert Adviser
    I'm with Geoff. Never used one on my 29 Hudson, laid it over like it was designed.
    Never scratched the paint. Didn't have to worry about it blowing  or slipping down.
  • FYI, to set the record straight...

    I examined the hoods of the 29s at Hershey this year, and there is a clear difference to the hoods of earlier cars.

    The 28 and 27 hoods are not fabricated to lay flat, not designed to lay flat. Nope, Can't do it. They will go up, but never over unless you want to break the hinge or force the hinge pin to pop out of the upper end bracket. That's why a HOOD PROP SHOULD BE USED. And that's most likely the reason that I had to repair the broken bracket on my 28, and to reattach the hood and bend the bracket on my 27.

    That also makes it impossible to raise both sides of the hood simultaneously (on the 28 and 27).

    On the 28 and 27, the hinge pin lays below the upper surface of the hood, so it can't bend much more than 90 degrees. On the 29, the design is changed, the hinge pin axis  is raised and lays close to the surface plane of the hood. To enable this, the 29 hood has a raised embossed stripe to accommodate the hinge and folding back.

  • lostmind
    lostmind Expert Adviser
    Interesting , thanks for sharing that. I assumed they were the same . 

  • Geoff
    Geoff Senior Contributor
    I think you will find that the hinge has been distorted over the years.   The rod and hinge should be above the level of the hood itself.   The hinge should be a right angle (90 deg).  If it has been squashed down then this will lower the  centre portion and of course the edges of the  top portions will butt against one another.   Don't know how to draw a diagram for this page, but  check those angles.     I removed the hinge from the top by drilling out the rivets,  re-profiled the angle, and then pop rivetted it back together,  after getting them chromed.   Not original, but looks classy and is better than  cracking paint each time the hood is opened.    So, sorry to disagree with you Tom, but that's how it is.  
  • On my 28 hudson the hood lays flat exactly like my 29 does. As Geoff says , your hinges are bent. / distorted. 
  • I'll live with an adjustable hood prop, BTW, it's very convenient, because I can have both sides up and open at the same time... I'm certainly not going to grind/drill out the original rivets.
  • Geoff
    Geoff Senior Contributor
    Over to you.   The hood will fit much nicer with the centre in the correct position.   You could straighten  it without dismantling.   The top hinge should stand proud.  
  • on my 28 Essex the hood does not lay over on the other half so I made a bracket to hold one side at a time open look at photos
  • Just a thought but you might try burts model A in Denver. It might not be a Hudson specific part but it will save your hinge and paint . 
    Best of luck!