Shim new hinge to fix driver's door alignment?

Shim new hinge to fix driver's door alignment?

Postby baytonemus [OP] » May 13th 2014, 5:48pm

The lower hinge on my driver's door was broken, so I pulled the door, removed the old hinge, and installed the GM bolt-on replacement hinge. The door is sagging a bit, however, so I'm trying to come up with a solution to realign it. There is some wiggle room provided by the oversized bolt holes in the new hinge, but it seems to me that I'm going to need to put a shim behind the new hinge.

I've never done any door adjustments, so I'd appreciate knowing if I'm on the right track or if I might be creating another set of problems by shimming. Thanks.
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Re: Shim new hinge to fix driver's door alignment?

Postby RECox286 » May 13th 2014, 7:14pm

Try this:

Open the door enough to be able to slide a 2x4x2' between the doorwell and the door bottom on the latch side. Slide another

piece of 1x scrap lumber on top of the 2x4 to pad the door bottom. Once you have the "lever and pad" all in alignment, carefully

lift the door forcing the hinges to bend the sheetmetal. (somewhat more forcefully, if at first you don't succede) Check the

alignment of the door to the body and how the latch aligns with the bolt as you close the door. Don't over stress the sheet metal.

You may want to check the top hinge for worn bushings and pin by opening the door, grabbing the bottom of the door and raising

the latch side of the door and letting it drop (an easy rocking motion) as you watch the top hinge for looseness. Repair the top

hinge if necessary before trying to "lever" the door into alignment. As you will note, Chevy didn't make door hardware to outlast the

rest of the truck, but we still love the beasts in spite of their faults !

Keep on Truck'n

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Re: Shim new hinge to fix driver's door alignment?

Postby chevymaher » May 14th 2014, 12:25am

Washers between the lower hinge and door. I used to do it to camaros works like a champ.
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Re: Shim new hinge to fix driver's door alignment?

Postby Big_kid » May 14th 2014, 1:47am

Ugh... camaro hinges. thanks for THAT flashback! (but I once found an almost new set in a firebird at a junk yard)
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Re: Shim new hinge to fix driver's door alignment?

Postby chevymaher » May 14th 2014, 1:51am

Big_kid wrote:Ugh... camaro hinges. thanks for THAT flashback! (but I once found an almost new set in a firebird at a junk yard)

yep longest door ever made besides the old monte's. And women seemed to think they were a chair when it was open.
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Re: Shim new hinge to fix driver's door alignment?

Postby Astrofarian » May 15th 2014, 1:05am

chevymaher wrote:
Big_kid wrote:Ugh... camaro hinges. thanks for THAT flashback! (but I once found an almost new set in a firebird at a junk yard)

yep longest door ever made besides the old monte's. And women seemed to think they were a chair when it was open.


And how about the snort & grunt session that followed the first (and hopefully ONLY time) you unbolted one of these doors by yourself @ 12:30 a.m. and tried to GENTLY ease it onto the creeper without dropping it? :rofl: :banana: :rofl:
Move along....all is well.....return to your homes.....nothing to see here.
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Re: Shim new hinge to fix driver's door alignment?

Postby chevymaher » May 15th 2014, 1:10am

2 jackstands under it when you unbolt it.
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Re: Shim new hinge to fix driver's door alignment?

Postby baytonemus [OP] » May 15th 2014, 4:04pm

If you shim with washers there is obviously a gap created where water and debris can collect. Would you normally seal the edges then? Also, with the hinge kind of floating in that way and maybe flexing a bit, will the sealant stay in place?
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Re: Shim new hinge to fix driver's door alignment?

Postby Casey » May 17th 2014, 3:33pm

baytonemus wrote: There is some wiggle room provided by the oversized bolt holes in the new hinge, but it seems to me that I'm going to need to put a shim behind the new hinge.

I've never done any door adjustments, so I'd appreciate knowing if I'm on the right track or if I might be creating another set of problems by shimming. Thanks.


There should be enough room in the factory hinge holes to allow for proper adjustment, provided the front fender, door, and body were never tweaked in an accident. The in-out adjustment is made on the door half of the hinge, so I would suggest slightly enlarging the adjustment holes instead if adding a shim(!). You want the hinge halves bolted tightly to the body structure and/or door shell, and using a shim is going to make the bolt the load bearer in that situation. :naughty:

Door adjusting is neither fun nor easy, so get a friend to help. If you can rent (or have) and engine hoist, put it to good use to support the door while you make the adjustments.
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