Rocker panel repair

Rocker panel repair

Postby edkinmaine [OP] » July 19th 2020, 10:26pm

How do I remove plastic trim pieces to get at rocker panels?
Original Poster [OP]
edkinmaine
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Van Model Year: 2001
Van Make/Model: GMC Safari
Extra Info: 2001 RWD SLE 4.3

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Re: Rocker panel repair

Postby Rod's Trucks » July 20th 2020, 5:01am

Edkinmaine,
The plastic trim pieces are a bit hard to remove.
They are held on by a combination of metal brackets under the slider door; but plastic moulding in other places a; and lots of double-sided trim tape.
The top edge is trim tape,
The plastic extrusions that do the heavy lifting are held on by the industrial equivalent to trim tape.
the lower edge of the retainer extrusion has a downward and outward angle. The lower edge of the cladding piece slips up under that lip and then snaps over the top edge of the retainer extrusion. The very top edge of the cladding piece is glued to the body with double-backed trim tape.
The easiest was I found to remove it all, was on a very warm day (some seem to sue hot air guns).
I used plastic scrapers and forced them into the tape, very slowly, to give the tape time to separate. I used some wooden carpentry wedges to hold things apart, slowly, as I progressed.
After several inches of the tape has separated, it was possible to get a hold of the cladding part with my fingers and slowly keep pulling it away from the body panel.
Once you get a foot or so loose, then I began pulling in a more downward direction and slowly the lower part of section would begin to separate.
Sometimes the retaining extrusion would want to stay on the body, and in other places it would come free easily.
My van had been wrecked and partially repainted, so maybe my trim pieces were not all original and the adhesives used were different in the repaired areas.
With the exception of the metal track under the sliding door sill ( held on with plastic rivets and screws) , and a few easy to see screws in the wheel well and bumper areas, it is all just stuck down with trim tape.
It is rather intimidating to do the first piece, and definitely time consuming, but it is not difficult.

Rod J
Rod's Trucks
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Re: Rocker panel repair

Postby edkinmaine [OP] » July 21st 2020, 3:13pm

Thank you, Rod. That will help. I've had this Safari since 2001. It has almost 300,00 miles on it. This is my third. I had an 85 and an 89 before that. I love these vans. 3 years ago I spent quit a bit on having a new radiator support, new front fenders, body mounts and a few spots on the frame. The rockers were patched at that time it they have started to rust out again. The stuff they put on the roads in Maine really does a job on vehicles here. There are 10 year old trucks that are junk with rotted frames. I've spent the las 40 years or so calling on garages , body shops and dealerships selling auto parts. I am currently working at inside sales at my local NAPA store in Kennebunk. Thanks again. Ed
Original Poster [OP]
edkinmaine
Fueling (Empty tank)
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Posts: 2
Topics: 1
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Joined: July 2020
Gender: Male
Alias (AKA):
Van Model Year: 2001
Van Make/Model: GMC Safari
Extra Info: 2001 RWD SLE 4.3


 
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