View Full Version : hinged on success

11-01-2000, 10:12 PM
heres my question?is there a difference amongst the 64-70 door hinges or doors.i've replaced the passenger front door and have been unable to get the door to line up very well.i've even gone as far as stripping about five van worths of salvage yard van hinges to try to get it right.better but not perfect.some one mentioned that 1967 van front doors are different than any other van can anyone out there enlighten me. the only other option i see that may work is to hog out the door adjustment holes on the van to get more movement out of the hinge adjusment.the other question is lwr front door leading edge bottom on both sides does not line up to body contour of my van.is this also a common problem with these old vans?was gm that bad with there quality control on these old vans. with all other body lines perfect i still have an area out of alignment.need i custom dolly work all these panels or have i just overlooked something.anyone out there have similar problems?what was the fix?

11-02-2000, 12:23 PM
all of the early van doors should be the same shape. The difference is that in 66, they put "chevy van" emblems on the doors. In 67, the took the lock cylinders out of the handle and put them down on the door. In 68, they added a side marker light. But, as far as I know, the doors are all the same shape. I put a set of 66 doors on my 64 and had trouble lining them up because of the way the doors are made. On later model cars, doors are designed in such a way that you can easily adjust them to make them fit. The way that the early chevies are designed, it's not that simple. I ended up making some shims to put between the door hinge and the pillar to allow me to change the orientation of the door and make it line up properly. The shims are just sheet metal with holes punched in them that line up with the hinge bolts. The tricky part is getting the shims in place between the door and the pillar. It's easier if you have a helper because you aren't trying to hold up the weight of the door while you slip the shims in place.

11-02-2000, 03:20 PM
welllll.......nobody's quality was as good in the 60's as it is now. Those cars you've seen in the shows with perfectly aligned panels had hundreds of hours invested in them to get them right. Remember, our vans were commercial vehicles back then, and the only quality issue was "will they open and close?". I have a sales brochure from 68 and the body panels didn't look too hot in there either.

11-02-2000, 04:57 PM
thanks for the replies.sorry if i insulted any van fans.just getting a little frustrated with one door in question.will definitely try adding shims.never seen a van with any installed but sounds like it may help.thanks again tom.

solid side 65
11-02-2000, 09:50 PM
as previously stated the doors are interchangeable between years, fronts, sides and rears. I have a 68 and a 69 solid side door on the rear of my 65, less holes to fill and inside handles on both doors. if the hinge pins are tight check for cracks in the doors near the hinge bolts. especially the outer bolt near the weatherstriping sometimes develops a vertical crack in the door crease which hard to see, until flexed. large fender washers help, but welding the cracks up is best. it is almost impossible to do an alignment with sloppy hinge pins and door flexing from cracks. i try to center the door in the opening first, then adjust the striker plate. placing a 2x4 between one of the hinges and CAREFULLY closing the door inward will sometimes straighten things up, practice on a Dodge or Ford van first!

after being pissed off spending a day on each door jam smoothing rough welds, filling spot welds and generally cleaning things up my painter remarked Its a 1960s commercial vehicle, not suppose to be perfect"

11-03-2000, 12:07 PM
Hey, I didn't mean to insult the quality of Early chevy products. I was simply making a comment about the way the door hinges are designed. I hung 4 doors and a front clip on a late-model ford van once and the set-up was designed to give you a front to back and side to side adjustment, allowing you to align the doors without anything more difficult than loosening some bolts and shifting the door a little. The Early chevies are not designed this way, which is why I had to make the shims to get my new front doors to line up. You may also have to adjust the striker plate, shave down the rubber bumpers on the door edge, and/or replace the weatherstripping. You may also have to do some slight readjustment in a few weeks. Good Luck,

11-03-2000, 05:29 PM
Ahhhh, no one's insulted, that's just the way things are. If you want wacky body panel alignment, I had a 67 Mustang earlier this year that no two panels lined up perfect, and the trunk lid rubbed! I did the 2 x 4 trick on that, it helped. Get a body manual from GM for old vans and trucks and you'll cringe at the FACTORY RECOMMENDED methods of alignment!