71-73 Ram Air Actuator / Flapper Rebuild

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I will continue to edit and improve this as I work on it.

For those that don't know at this time our Ram Air Flapper Actuator is not reproduced. At one point it was but who ever made them stopped. That leaves us a problem. Either paying to get replacement originals(crazy priced). Perogie Enterprises charges $80 each not including shipping to rebuild them. I am a cheap bastard and refuse to pay that much for what amounts to a $14 dollar Motorcraft part on Ebay. Please excuse me this is the first time I have ever done this so it is a little rough. I plan to repaint them after to look nice again. So here is what I did with pics. Biggest thing I recommend is be careful take your time and pay attention to what you are doing.

I recommend a small ball peen hammer, center punch(non pointy), and a small flat screwdriver 3/16" tip or so. Also a medium flat tip.

Also you will need Motorcraft part# CX-361 or D9FZ-9D612-A Vacuum Motor

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First I removed the vent from the car and dissembled it. It comes apart pretty easy.

2 Captive Spring Clips on the end of the rod and it slides out. From that point you want to split that plastic halves apart. Also a good time to clean and grease the moving parts.

Mine was held together with 6 staples which I carefully pried the bent sides straight so that I could get a screw drive inbetween and carefully pry the 2 sides apart. Plan is to bend them back after reassembly.

Once I got the 2 halves apart I was then able to slide the flapper off the rod. Then it is time to remove the rivets holding the actuator on. Remember this is a plastic material so if you heat them up to much you will mess up the hole. Once the 2 rivets are out the actuator slides right out.

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Now comes the fun part. First take a marker and scribe on the bottom which direction the rod points. You will regret it later if you don't. Hopefully yours wasn't painted with thick paint like mine was. You do the same for both the new actuator and the old one. Using the small screwdriver work you way around one side prying lightly on the crimped edge till about 50% around is pried up to allow the top half to separate from the bottom half and slide out of the other crimped side. Do that for both.

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Unfortunately the new one I got the top half was plastic which I wasn't a big fan of. Because is if it was metal I would have used it in place of my ugly top half.

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Once you get both apart you can match up the plungers. The new plungers outer ring is slightly larger. But that is an easy fix with a pair of scissors. I just slid the new on into the old top and used it as a guide for trimming.

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From that point I used the new spring which is a perfect fit and re-assembled. Slide the new plunger into the base matching the rod direction to your scribed mark(I hope you marked it). The larger end of the spring goes in the top of the actuator, small end on the metal portion of the plunger. Slide the top on and I used a bench vice slightly open to set it on and the ball peen and punch to crimp the edges back down.

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Test your work, mine sealed on the first try no issues. Reassemble your Ram Air and have a few beers with the money you saved.

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Personally I am using aluminum rivets and washers as a replacement on the back side of the plastic to hold the actuators in place. I will add pics with the final product when I get it fully reassembled.

Like I said this is the first one I have ever replaced so if anybody has suggestions to improve this process it would be appreciated.

 
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