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Custom Tools for Your 356

September 26, 2010 | Troubleshooting & Repair
Registry members are a clever bunch when it comes to designing and building custom tools for specific jobs on their 356's. If you have a specialty tool that you use, please submit it for publication to Barry Lee Brisco, Website Technical Editor, at .

Pickle Fork for Removing Inside Door Handles and Window Cranks

This device will help you to hold those pesky escutcheons down while you remove the pins from your door handles and window cranks. A great idea developed and built out of milled aluminum by Bill Shea.
Pickel Fork

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Seat Recliner Spring Installation Tool

When the seat recliner is assembled, bring it in open position and fix it with the lever from the recliner. Attention; the assurance spring for the lever has to be assembled! The spring from the recliner has a lot of power. Then you put the spring in the tool, the inner diameter is a little smaller than the outer diameter of the spring. After, you put the spring over the pin with slot from the recliner. You have to push the tool a little from the back side and with a screwdriver through the hole you could turn it to the right side. The spring can't get out of the tool or from the pin because you secure it with the tool. When the spring is fixed, finish the assembling and try it. View a PDF file with exact tool dimensions. Submitted by Wolfgang Nussrainer

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Crank to Turn 356 motors Over

The tool in this picture is a crank to turn 356 motors over as it is being assembled. (Sure beats grabbing the flywheel etc.) It was fabricated from an old VW pulley hub. I cut away the bulk of the pulley and machined down the od of the seal surface slightly. Then I welded on a piece of rod stock (indexed so that the rod is vertical when the engine is on TDC) and added a ball for a handle. Submitted by Ken Daugherty

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Crankshaft Holder Note that this crankshaft holder fits in a socket built into the bench. My vice, the engine stand, and other tools are mounted to a 1" bar that fits the socket. No matter where you put a vice, it sometimes is in the way. Submitted by Ken Daugherty