What are Dutch doors good for?

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What are Dutch doors good for?

Postby Greasyman [OP] » July 6th 2012, 6:39am

People seem to find them desirable, but why? What advantages do they have over two side hinged doors? The only thing I can think of is better rearward view, but I know it's not that bad with regular doors. What's the deal?
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Re: What are Dutch doors good for?

Postby TDMobile » July 6th 2012, 7:01am

Personally, I wish I had dutch doors because of the rear view, plus more usable real estate for advertising! :D I also like how it looks, and that you can have a bunch of junk rolling around in the rear of the van and access it without a bowling ball falling on your foot.
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Re: What are Dutch doors good for?

Postby ihatemybike » July 6th 2012, 11:49am

During the summer I like to open the glass and the windows, then cruise.
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Re: What are Dutch doors good for?

Postby chevymaher » July 6th 2012, 12:00pm

Greasyman wrote:People seem to find them desirable, but why? What advantages do they have over two side hinged doors? The only thing I can think of is better rearward view, but I know it's not that bad with regular doors. What's the deal?


I have often wondered this myself. My brother has them on his tahoe.I see no real loading advantage. I have always been exposed to the barn doors on the vans. I tend to like what I see first. So they look good to me. The unobstructed view I can understand. But really if it is low to the ground you can't see it anyway. I back over my sons little toys when he puts them behind the van in the driveway. Can't see them with the garage door shut getting in. And sure can't see them once your in the van. Crunch. He catching on now. Daddy with his big doe tear eyes. My car. Oh okay go get it out of the way.
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Re: What are Dutch doors good for?

Postby Philly758 » July 6th 2012, 1:27pm

When I bought my van I didn't really care which doors I got, but I am happy I ended up with dutch doors. Here are some advantages I've experienced:
- Visibility.
- Rear defrost (not sure if the barn doors have it or not).
- Rear wiper.
- Easily access tightly packed items behind the rear seat without having it all fall out on you.
- You can open upper window when you have a bike rack or cargo carrier on.
- You can hang the front wheel of bikes over the back "tailgate" similar to a pickup.
- You can have the upper window open for ventilation / music / tailgating / etc and not have to worry about the wind catching it and slamming it shut. In general I think its better in tight places, kind of like the sliding door when you are in a tiny parking spot and cant open your doors...
- Can pack 16 foot 2x8 floor joist in the van and out the back window no problem, i'd imagine this would come in handy with a ladder too. More convenient than strapping it to the roof.
- Chicks dig it.

Thats all that comes to mind, i'm sure theres more.
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Re: What are Dutch doors good for?

Postby Mr_Bowtie » July 6th 2012, 1:53pm

Don't forget Jasen's favorite: When it rain the hatch part keeps you dry! :rockon: :rockon: :rockon:


My favorite part is the rear defrost. :chevy:
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Re: What are Dutch doors good for?

Postby chevymaher » July 6th 2012, 2:00pm

Mr_Bowtie wrote: My favorite part is the rear defrost. :chevy:


Now there is a bonus I can want.
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Re: What are Dutch doors good for?

Postby Bread Van » July 6th 2012, 2:42pm

I like this post, got some new ideas like the tailgate for bikes!

Open hatch and access gear w/out an avalanche
Hatch is a good, albeit small, rain shelter.
I haul dogs and I like opening the hatch but keeping the lower barrier in place while I leash them or load other things.
pop hatch out of the way for loading/unloading in a tight garage.
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Re: What are Dutch doors good for?

Postby Jasen » July 7th 2012, 1:33am

A place to stand out of the rain, hauling long things like lumber, no pillar in the rear view, a wiper, defrost, being able to reach in the back when some A hat has parked 11" from your bumper.
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What are Dutch doors good for?

Postby Astronaut87 » July 7th 2012, 2:38am

Has anybody ever tried to adapt Dutch doors to an early Astro? I'm pretty sure they came on 1st gens, but I have an '87, and I don't think they had the idea early enough to have the bolt holes for both styles, on such an early one. Any ideas? Done it?
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Re: What are Dutch doors good for?

Postby safari kev » July 7th 2012, 2:53am

As someone who's had both, I like the dutch doors alot better. I am able to store stuff behind my rear seat and not have it fall out when I open the hatch. the hatch and my rear bed are at almost the same level, so I am able to simply slide stuff in onto the bed. It allows me to easily carry boards, pipe, etc over 10 feet (which I have done on numerous occasions).
its less hassle than having to open 2 doors to get something wide in and out of the van, such as plywood.
Also, because I don't have to open the bottom doors wide (remove the locks that keep them parallel to the sides of the van) I don't have to worry about the wind grabbing my doors and slamming them into the van, noticeably denting/ creasing the doors.
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Re: What are Dutch doors good for?

Postby Leeann_93 » July 7th 2012, 4:09am

I wish the '02 had Dutch doors. Have them on the Safari and '93 Astro.

For all of the reasons above...

Rear visibility (huge difference)

Long things can hang out the back with only the hatch open, not the whole door so other stuff doesn't't go flying

Shelter from rain and sun while standing at the back

Rear defrost

Rear wiper

Easier access to the cargo area to dump groceries, shopping, beer & ice into the cooler...
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Re: What are Dutch doors good for?

Postby Greasyman [OP] » July 7th 2012, 5:41am

Does the rear window open independently, or is it fixed and if you want it open you need to open the entire hatch?
Hows the ventilation in these vans anyway, with or without the Dutch doors? The Safari I looked at today had fixed windows in barn doors, and just pop-out side windows. Seems the ventilation would be pretty poor on a hot day.
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Re: What are Dutch doors good for?

Postby Leeann_93 » July 7th 2012, 3:37pm

Window is fixed in the Dutch door. Some barn doors have pop out rear windows, but not many at all.
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Re: What are Dutch doors good for?

Postby ccookie66 » July 7th 2012, 3:58pm

Yeah my 93 has them. I like the rain feature, but it doesn't really work. The rubber thing at the top has folded down from age and now if its open, the rain runs right in and on the floor. I also just realized a con about them, if your battery is dead, you can't push the **** button that unlocks the hatch.
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Re: What are Dutch doors good for?

Postby tedanderson » July 7th 2012, 4:40pm

As soon as I can find the parts, I am going to convert over.

My van is a shorty and it has a fixed cargo barrier behind the front seats. having a dutch door will make it possible to carry an 8-foot ladder without having to strap it to the top of the van. And having dutch doors make it more convenient to toss a few things in the back if the rest of the van is a mess.

Also, I tend to carry around some very interesting looking tools and equipment in my van. One thing that I can't stand is all of the nosy looky-loos who want to ask me questions about some of the stuff they see in the back of my van when I am trying to load stuff in it.

Many years ago I was helping to build the set for one of the museums around here and I had a replica satellite few shipping containers with the NASA logo on it. People started walking up to me asking me questions like, "What is that? Are you getting ready to launch that thing?"

Go away! There's nothing to see here! :lol:
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Re: What are Dutch doors good for?

Postby ccookie66 » July 7th 2012, 4:44pm

Wait...do all shorty vans have barn doors?
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Re: What are Dutch doors good for?

Postby astro1957 » July 8th 2012, 4:10pm

Greasyman wrote:Does the rear window open independently, or is it fixed and if you want it open you need to open the entire hatch?
Hows the ventilation in these vans anyway, with or without the Dutch doors? The Safari I looked at today had fixed windows in barn doors, and just pop-out side windows. Seems the ventilation would be pretty poor on a hot day.


My conversion Astro has the barns doors with no pop-out windows.The ONLY ventilation in the back are small slider windows with screens on each side of the van.Roughly 7"x12" openings.It gets ridiculously hot back there without the A/C on.Or the other option is to drive around with the side slider door wide open. :doh:
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Re: What are Dutch doors good for?

Postby Mr_Bowtie » July 8th 2012, 4:18pm

^I never thought about the lack of big window openings with the conversion Vans.
I have no A/C in my Van this year for the first time and with the front windows down and the side windows popped out there is a ton of air circulation in the Van. The kids sitting in the back bench seat are getting hammered with air. They love it.
Our Caravan doesn't have working A/C either and has now been sitting for about a month cause that thing has no ventilation at all. Just front windows.
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Re: What are Dutch doors good for?

Postby [email protected] » September 9th 2014, 5:23am

*Snap*
This post is alive again.

I don't know if you've ever been to a drive in theater before, but the seat mounts for the rear are the same forwards and back. Combined with the hatch opening in an upward motion, cup holders immediately off to your right, and those little boxes that open up to your left and right for food and snacks, you now have the perfect drive-in movie experience.

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