August 17-18, 2002
Sometimes you just have to admit to yourself that you've gotten into a fight you're not going to win.  My fight with the door panels was one such fight.  I kept trying to convince myself that if I was just persistent I would eventually win.  I was wrong.  What follows is the sad tell of my defeat.  

Before installing the new reproduction door panels I applied RAAMmat to the area of the door behind the door panel.  My original plans were to apply the RAAMmat inside the doors also.  But in my haste I applied the RAAMmat on the outside of the door first, so rather than remove the RAAMmat, I decided I didn't need it on the inside.  Like with the carpet, about the only tricky part of the door panel installation is finding the door panel attachment holes after you install the RAAMmat.  A little poking around with an awl and I eventually found all of the holes.  After installing the RAAMmat I used 3M Super Weatherstrip Adhesive to glue on the new door panel foam seals.  The location for the foam seals is easy to find because a channel for the seal is molded into the sheet metal on the door.

I had already installed the woodgrain trim on the door panels, so all I needed to do was attach the plastic cork screw fasteners to the door panels and then pop the panels on the door.  I lined up all the fasteners with the holes in the door, popped them in place, and stood back to admire my new panels.  Sadly, admiration does not describe my feelings as I gazed upon the panels. 

All of the problems with the door panels that I documented in a previous episode had not magically disappeared, but were all the more apparent once the panels were installed -- the edges of the door panels did not fit flush with the door; the holes for the window crank and door handle were not centered on the shafts;  the improper position of the woodgrain trim caused the reproduction arm rests to not fit properly; and the flimsy plastic strips where the  cork screw fasteners attached came unglued.   It was time to holler Uncle!  

I decided I would give up and restore the original door panels and armrest the best I could and reuse them.  Having made my decision, I removed the offending abomination and worked on other things the remainder of the day.  Everything else that day went smoothly, so I assume Maych was also pleased with my decision.

My original door panels and arm rests are at the house in Grand Island, so I will have to wait until next weekend to start their restoration.  I'll chronicle that in Part 2 of this episode.




Copyright 2001-2006 by Johnny M. Patterson
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