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Moving guts from one door to a brand new door

Discussion in 'Chevy Trucks' started by Zooman, Sep 4, 2001.

  1. Zooman

    Zooman Junior Member
    Messages: 7

    Has anyone ever moved the window assembly and door handles(pretty much everything) from one door to another?
    Is there any tips that I need to know?
  2. cat320

    cat320 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,224

    Well if I was not familar with it I would take a picture of the old assembly to make sure every thing goes back the same way.
  3. 75

    75 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,382

    What year truck we talkin' about here? If it's a '73 to '87, I've done it a few times, anything earlier or newer I haven't. Also, I've never dealt with power windows/door locks.

    It's a fairly straightforward operation, biggest ingredient is patience - especially when dealing with those wretched *(&^^&%^% clips that GM likes using! (The horseshoe type for the window crank as well as the clips for the door lock rods)

    Some service & repair manuals also have a "bodywork" section which outline procedures for working on the door guts.

    And, the old tip often given when working on brakes of "leave one side intact as a reference" works well here too: Swap parts out of one door at a time, using the other one as a guide to how everything should look.

    Just don't tackle this job if you've had a stressful day at work - voice of experience talking! ;)
  4. Chuck Smith

    Chuck Smith 2000 Club Member
    from NJ
    Messages: 2,317

    Rob is right on, and having small hands helps. Also, every edge is a sharp edge, so be CAREFUL.
    You might also want to coat the inside bottoms of the doors with undercoating. Might help them last longer than the originals.
    I had a buddy with a 67 Chevelle, and he used to squirt motor oil inside the doors every few months. He claimed it worked it's way into the crimped seam on the bottom, and helped prevent rust. He did the same on the front fenders along the top of the wheel arch.

    If the doors you have are new, then they need to be painted inside, since they come only primed. Use a scuff pad to scuff what you can before painting them.

  5. DaveK

    DaveK Senior Member
    Messages: 420

    There is a tool made just for removing the
    (the horseshoe ones on the window crank) Makes it painless to remove them.

    Your local auto parts store should have one.
  6. John DiMartino

    John DiMartino PlowSite.com Veteran
    Messages: 2,154

    I have done this,bring lots of band aids and peroxide,you always get cut up working inside doors,the edges are very sharp.
  7. Alan

    Alan PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,393

    I've gotta differ with you, Chuck. The stuff to use inside doors is rustproofing, not undercoating. Rustproofing is exactly what the name implies, for fighting corrosion. Undercoating has the nasty habit of loosening from the substrate and trapping moisture against the metal. I use a product called Rusfree, it has a smell much like old Ziebart/TuffCoat products, I suspect it is mostly beeswax with some sort of solvent. The stuff does work though and I use it liberally whenever I do repair work. I apply it with a spray gun made for rustproofing and undercoating that I got form the Eastwood Co. J.C. Whitney has the same setup, under $50 from either place and it gets into corners and crannies real well.
  8. 75

    75 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,382

    Thanks for the info on the *(&^^&%^% clip tool Dave! And the guys who mentioned Band-Aids are right.

    One thing I forgot to mention - what I like to call the "soft parts" around the window (the felt strips that wipe the glass and the channel that surrounds the window opening) are often pretty tired, now's the best time to replace them. Same goes for the door hinge pins & bushings, since you've got the door off anyway.

    I believe JC Whitney sells the window felts & channel, as do some other parts sources that specialize in Chevy trucks.

    Good luck with the "gut transplant" - it's not impossible, just tedious.
  9. plowjockey

    plowjockey PlowSite.com Sponsor
    Messages: 622

    Sometimes putting tape (200mph works fine) around the sharp edges will keep you from cutting yourself.
    Just remember to skin up one knuckle so the job will be official.


    Plowing at night with no lights will get you up close and personal with something every time.
  10. sonjaab

    sonjaab PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,425

    If its a newer GM they use those BIg rivets to
    hold the window and guts in there.
    No more nuts and bolts.
    The rivet guns I've seen at the gm body shop
    are huge things.
    Pull the door panel off first and have a look.........Geo
  11. sonjaab

    sonjaab PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,425

    Sorry they are not like a rivet gun that you
    have seen before. It looks like a pair of
    BIG bolt cutters. But it works the same way.
    But a HUGE rivet it is.....................
  12. plowjockey

    plowjockey PlowSite.com Sponsor
    Messages: 622

    Those rivets, if used, would be stainless steel if my memory serves me right.

  13. Alan

    Alan PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,393

    Not stainless, they're aluminum. Went through that last spring when I had to put on a new door. I cheated, took both old and new to a body shop and had them do the swap. On the older ones (I'm familiar with a 78) the job goes pretty easy once you figure out which way to turn stuff so it will go in through those little access ports.
  14. plowjockey

    plowjockey PlowSite.com Sponsor
    Messages: 622


    When you see them several thousand in a box they look very similar. And even worse, if you are looking at them you most likely have to either use them or move them.

    Would my '85 have bolts or rivets?

  15. 75

    75 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,382

    As far as doors/door guts, your '85 should be identical to my '75 Bruce - good 'ol "bolts".
  16. plowjockey

    plowjockey PlowSite.com Sponsor
    Messages: 622

    Thanks Rob I'ev got to fix my "manual" window you saw when you were down.

    Can anyone remember the steps to the snow dance we all did last year?

  17. Zooman

    Zooman Junior Member
    Messages: 7

    Thanks everyone I will print this out for when I do it in a couple of weeks. The door are brand new and going on an 80. Good Idea on rust treating the inside.
    Thanks again