CORVETTE BODY RESTORATION
Assembling the doors for 1956-1962 Corvettes:|
- Install the defroster grills at the top of the dash first. When finished with the job, you might want to leave the windshield on the car. The defroster grills will not go in if the windshield is on the car.
- Check for a sagging dash before doing the bodywork. You might have to make some corrections to the dash. '53 to early '57 Corvettes do not have the metal support frame work under the dash, and over the years the dash could have sagged from the weight of the windshield. If the dash has sagged, the chrome door window post won't line up with the windshield post.
- During the process, you may also find that the two posts mentioned above will fit too tight. You can, from the beginning, slot the holes at the top of the dash to allow the windshield to move forward slightly which will allow space between the post.
- Mount the windshield, leaving the windshield loose for adjustments.
- Install the door latch assembly and the striker plate. Adjust the doors to the best fit possible.
- Remove the striker plate at this point until the job is finished. If the striker plate is on the car and the door post is not adjusted completely, sometimes the door can pull itself shut on its own. The door post can crack the door and paint.
- Install the window regulator. '58 and above, have the window in the up position when installing.
- Install window front guide, (channel for front window roller).
- Install rear window guide (curved channel for regulator roller) located in the center of the door.
- Install lever assembly (controls interior and exterior locks and latches). It is mounted at the rear of the door with three screws and a triangle retainer plate.
- Install door handle and lock on the interior side. (lower regulator)
- Install adjustable rubber bumpers at the top of the door.
- Install window into the door allowing the wheel guide to enter the front window guide.
- With the window in the up position, install the window rear run held on by two screws at the rear of the door. Before doing this, now is the time for some adjusting to be done. The rear window run has a felt cloth glued in it. Take a round object and press it down into the base of the channel. A tube, socket, or socket extension will work. Just something to spread the base of the channel. A hammer and large punch will be needed to drive this object down into the base. This will spread the channel and allow the window to move easily up and down. Hold the other window glass upright and place the window rear run over it moving it upward and down until it moves freely. Repeat the above with the other window run.
- Now lower the window to the bottom of the door.
- Install and adjust the front post (chrome post). Remember to remove the striker plate from the body doorjamb. There should be a small gap between the two posts, the door post and the windshield post, about an 1/8 inch. If you can't achieve this, push the windshield forward slightly to obtain this gap. The holes were slotted to achieve this previously. See #3.
- Raise the window. Install the horizontal window channel (upper guide rail) to the window regulator, slipping it over the two wheels. Note: lubricate all moving parts as necessary.
- Attach the window to this window channel (upper guide rail) with two screws at each end.
- After the posts are adjusted and the window is working install the outer stainless molding ('59 - '62 Corvettes).
- Install the exterior door handle and door lock.
- Now install the Garnish Moldings, the inner and outer horizontal stainless molding.
- Complete the interior of the door. All of the above steps on the assembly of the '56 - '62 Corvette doors normally will take one day for the job for one door. If all is complete and works to your satisfaction, pat yourself on the back. Good job.