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1969 Camaro Convertible
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm trying to hang my drivers side door with new hinges installed. I've read everything on here I could find and watched some videos. The fender is off and there is no striker or rubber in the door. The door and quarter panel are original. The hinges are new and I cannot get the door far enough forward to get the gap I need. With the hinges all the way forward as far as they go in their travel there is virtually no gap between the door and the quarter panel. How can this be? I know these cars were never that great from the factory, but still this seems unusual. The only thing I can think to do is slot all the holes in the hinges by almost a 1/4 inch. Has anyone ever encountered this problem to this extent? Thanks.

Paul
 

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If you still have your original hinges you can rebuild them with new pins and bushings that are readily available.

Don
 

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If you still have your original hinges you can rebuild them with new pins and bushings that are readily available.

Don
I don't buy them from resto vendors. I buy them by the box from my local suppliers. That way you can check tolerances and toss the pins and bushings that suck.

No vendor supplies a quality rebuild kit for 67 lower hinges. Garbage. Willie machines his own parts and bronze bushes his rebuilds. Sent dozens of hood and door hinges to him.
 

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1969 Camaro Convertible
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
At first I tried to rebuild the hinges myself with a kit I bought, but then I discovered I needed a new roller and detent arm as well. One of the reasons I bought reproduction hinges was because (1) I didn't know how wrong of a thing that was to do. I have since been schooled 😁 . And (2) I wasn't sure that the ones on the car were factory hinges to begin with. They looked bent and someone had been beating on them with a hammer at one time. The other side of the car is the same way. The door gap is insufficient and it looks like someone had already started to slot the holes. So, they weren't necessarily worth saving. Also, the holes in the repo hinges look identical to the ones that were on the car, so maybe they were already reproduction, I don't know. If slotting the holes is all that is required and they work well otherwise then I'm okay with that, just surprised that it would be necessary on new hinges that are at least good enough to be sold by Rick's and the like. The pictures below are of the "factory" hinges.

Paul

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Is it possible the quarters were replaced without the doors in the car? That could cause your problem too.
 

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Those are original hinges. They do look distorted in the pics. Do you have the same issue on both sides?

Don
 

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Those hinges are junk. The PO bent them up I guess trying to adjust the doors with a hammer. It's amazing how some people work.
 

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Your original hinges look like they have been cut and welded and bent. If they were just bent, you might be able to straighten them. Your hinges will have to be cut, straightened and rewelded. Too much work.

If your car has the original quarter panel and door, why did the previous owner have to mutilate the original hinges? Was this car in a wreck?

On my car, I have reproduction quarter panels and doors. I had the same problem as you and did not have enough adjustment in the hinges. Another area that you can slot that will give you some more play is on the A pillar where the hinge bolts to the car. It won't give you much more adjustment but every little bit helps. I used a die grinder with a round bit. The hinge will cover the enlarged hole.



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I did not have to slot my original hinges. I wonder if you can take your reproduction hinges and fill the bolt holes with weld and re-drill the holes?

New detents are available for your old hinges. The points need to be ground down and softened a little. I welded the new pin that holds the detent. The new pin is a different size compared to the old pin.




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I am wondering if we are looking at some sort of hack collision repair job done on those hinges and possibly the hinge pillars. That might be why the repop hinges don’t fit well...

Don
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks for all the replies, guys. I also really appreciate the illustrations and photos. Unfortunately I don't know the history of this car. Anything is possible, but if the quarter panel was replaced it must have happened a very long time ago because everything behind the panel and in the wheel well and trunk looks old. However, the door almost seems too long for the opening. If I were able to get the gaps right there would be no room for the weatherstripping at the cowl area. I'm so frustrated. Below is a photo of the door gap when I bought the car. At that time the door panel hit the windlace every time the door was closed.
I stayed up late last night trying to get a slightly wider gap at the top and no matter what I do I can't make it happen. The door refuses to go forward the way I want it to. I had to remove the stainless A pillar trim because the fender was hitting it.

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Post a few pictures of the bottom of the door and rocker. My suspicion is the quarter has been replaced and too far forward. The car is built around the doors. Set the doors, then the quarters, then the fenders. The picture I requested will tell if you need to re gap the quarters.
 

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You have an old convertible. It could be sagging due to age and rust. The sagging could close the gap at the top of the door.

A sagging convertible will not cause the door to be placed so far forward that it hits the fender when you open and close the door. It could be the A pillar is bent. Below is a link that describes how to measure the windshield to the edge of the quarter panel. It gives you diagrams and dimensions. This is from a old post:

The link below has some measurements for a 1967 convertible:
67 Vert measurements needed please....

The windshield measurements will probably not be the same for a coupe.

These are my measurements from my notebook. The car is a 1969 Firebird convertible. Please refer to the above link "67 vert measurements..." for the start and end measurement points.

driver side (B): top windshield to top quarter panel 31.25 inches
pass side (B): top windshield to top quarter panel 31.25 inches
driver side (A): A pillar fender top screw hole to top quarter panel top 43.1"
pass side (A): A pillar fender top screw hole to top quarter panel 43.25 inches
quarter panel top to quarter panel top (C) 60 inches
quarter panel driver to top windshield pass (A) 63 inches
quarter panel pass to top windshield driver (A) 63 inches.
A pillar flange to the end of the rocker (front wheel house) 63.25 inches
Bottom of door to rocker 0.15-0.03 inches (factory specs)

Please don't take my measurements to be factory specifications. My original door to quarter panel gap at the top was zero inches. My doors and/or convertible body was sagging before I started taking apart the car. My door hinges needed some TLC.

One thing that is important is to make diagonal measurements. Notice that the measurements go from a driver side point to a passenger side point. Two complimentary diagonal measurements should read the same if the car is square.


The gap between the bottom of the door to the rocker panel is 3/16". Get two spacers to set the gap.
The gap between the door and quarter panel is 3/16".
The gap between the door and fender is 3/16".
The gap between the rocker and the bottom of the fender is 1/16".
 

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I'm going thru similar with my coupe but I know my car has been wrecked in the right front twice. I don't know how bad the first hit was but when I took it apart after the second hit my hinges were slotted, the fender was replaced prior and it had a junkyard upper control arm. Pictures of the second hit are in my profile. My current hurdle is getting the right alignment pin in the hole next to the subframe mount. I'm back about 5/8 inch there. Next will be to determine how far the cowl is back at the top.

Jeff
 

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Thanks for all the replies, guys. I also really appreciate the illustrations and photos. Unfortunately I don't know the history of this car. Anything is possible, but if the quarter panel was replaced it must have happened a very long time ago because everything behind the panel and in the wheel well and trunk looks old. However, the door almost seems too long for the opening. If I were able to get the gaps right there would be no room for the weatherstripping at the cowl area. I'm so frustrated. Below is a photo of the door gap when I bought the car. At that time the door panel hit the windlace every time the door was closed.
I stayed up late last night trying to get a slightly wider gap at the top and no matter what I do I can't make it happen. The door refuses to go forward the way I want it to. I had to remove the stainless A pillar trim because the fender was hitting it.

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Doesn't look bad. What is the door-quarter gap ? Factory spec is aprox 3/16".

There was very tight tolerance between the interior door panel to quarter windlace, even on original cars/parts. Usually there is evidence (wear) of rubbing the windlace at the top. Factor in repro parts and anything is possible.
 

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Just realized this is a convertible. There could be a lot going on related to sag as noted above by Patrick/John.

Don
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Unfortunately these are the only photos I have of the gaps prior to removing the doors and getting everything screwed up. In the last picture the car is on jack stands on the body. You can see the gap opened up at the top. I was shocked when I set the car on the ground to see the quarter panel to door gap close up so much. I welded in subframe connectors with the car on a lift and the suspension unloaded, but it seemed to make no difference in how much the body flexed when set back down on the ground.

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This picture tells me the problem is not the quarter gap. The front of the door is where it should be. I suspect you have hidden rust issues. Like maybe rockers/ cowl .
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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Something just occurred to me. At the moment my X brace is not installed on the car. Is it possible that under the weight of the car the body is flexing so much without that brace installed that it's closing the gap at the top of the door?
 
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