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Repair of Sliding door track
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barefootwestie
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 17, 2011 6:56 am    Post subject: Repair of Sliding door track Reply with quote

Looking for advice on repairing my lower sliding door track. The rocker panel, the panel under the bus and the floor are very solid. The only rust is actually inside the track. There are a few(3 or 4) holes varying in size of 1/4" to 1/2" then there is one section that is at the bottom of the track that the roller from the sliding door rolls over which is about 3 inches long that is rusted through. What would be the best way to repair? It's going to be difficult to get a welding tip and grinder in the area as it is a tight area. Here are a few pictures. Not concerned about the aesthetics of the holes as most of it will be covered with the rubber seal. However, the 3 inch hole under the track roller causes the door not to roll smoothly. Kinda like a pothole.

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.
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1973 Westfalia
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Other VW's owned through the years, in no particular order:
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barefootwestie
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 11:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Any valid suggestions?
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1973 Westfalia
"Getting better....one repair at a time."

Other VW's owned through the years, in no particular order:
'67 Beetle,
'67 Ghia Hardtop,
'72 Ghia Convertible,
'72 Westfalia
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skills@eurocarsplus
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 1:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

that piece is not just a flat piece of steel, it does have some slight contour in it. i have a NOS piece and a gerson piece i can snap some pix for you if you like. IF (and only if) the areas around the rusty potholes are solid, you could weld in some patches and grind to match. remember, if this gets messed up, say goodbye to your sliding door ever having a chance of working correctly. you may just need to pony up and buy a track and weld it in.
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No you're cool, its a high light bus so no loss. Carry on.


schell '59 wrote:
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barefootwestie
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 1:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah. might have to to that. Just hated to tear out other good metal to do it. I did find this page that shows in great detail how the area is put together:
http://www.specialpatrolgroup.co.uk/spooky/sills/ns/ns.html
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1973 Westfalia
"Getting better....one repair at a time."

Other VW's owned through the years, in no particular order:
'67 Beetle,
'67 Ghia Hardtop,
'72 Ghia Convertible,
'72 Westfalia
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VAVWFAN
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 1:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, I had similar issues on my 69 Westy. Before I tell you what I did, I have to let you know what I use my bus for. It's used to haul my drums around for a band I'm in. Yeah, I want it nice, but I'm not a purist. That said; here's what I did two years ago:

I beefed the rocker area up with stock metal; cut out the bad; recessed and dimpled the good metal, and rivited in place. I POR-15's the piss out of everything and filled the area with structural bondo. For the track, I cleaned it out very well and used the best JB Weld possible. Ground it smooth; spayed it with Zinc Chromate; painted, cured and sprayed-on graphite for the rollers.

It isn't the right way, but I don't have a "smoke wrench" nor money to dump into this bus, so I made-do. It still works fine, with NO loosening of the bondo and gets the job done!

It really matters what you want to do with the bus..... My solution fit my need. Yours may be different!

Good luck
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TheRealMacGyver
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 1:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have to ask out of curiosity, what is that black pipe coming out of the bottom? I know it's got to be a drain, but it looks like 3", is that standard for sinks, or do you have a full-blown crapper in there?
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barefootwestie
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 1:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

No, it's the standard drain pipe for the sink.
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1973 Westfalia
"Getting better....one repair at a time."

Other VW's owned through the years, in no particular order:
'67 Beetle,
'67 Ghia Hardtop,
'72 Ghia Convertible,
'72 Westfalia
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skills@eurocarsplus
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 1:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

barefoot, i have seen that too. the only advise i can give is make 100's of measurements before you cut. the slider can be shimmed, but only so much. i just cracked into my outter rocker on the pass side too and was overcome with joy when i saw how solid it is, and i will not need to replace any of it, just the outter rocker. let me snap some pix for you. you may be able to get away with just doing a 'L' shape in the track area, providing the rest of it is solid
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Krautski wrote:

No you're cool, its a high light bus so no loss. Carry on.


schell '59 wrote:
The honor system works for boy scouts..not in real business

Jake Raby wrote:
Thanks for the correction. I used to be a nice guy, then I ruined it by exposing myself to the public.

bugger101 wrote:

skills, you never win with cheap vw people
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zerothehero
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 3:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi, I managed to get the MIG into the same area to fill up a couple of small holes on a previous bus. Built them up with weld rather than trying to fit little bits of new steel in. Angle grinder with guard removed gets in ok.
Should last until you are ready to chop the whole panel.
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barefootwestie
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 5:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

zerothehero wrote:
Hi, I managed to get the MIG into the same area to fill up a couple of small holes on a previous bus. Built them up with weld rather than trying to fit little bits of new steel in. Angle grinder with guard removed gets in ok.
Should last until you are ready to chop the whole panel.


Thanks for that info.

After further examination, my track on the '73 is different than the link I shared above. However, it does still appear that I would need to remove the outside rocker and then the track. I'll have to start looking around for replacement tracks and the lower rocker. Ugh. I really hate this.

The last panels I bought were not even close to the same original metal thickness.
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1973 Westfalia
"Getting better....one repair at a time."

Other VW's owned through the years, in no particular order:
'67 Beetle,
'67 Ghia Hardtop,
'72 Ghia Convertible,
'72 Westfalia
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barefootwestie
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 5:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It appears based on this photo from Bus Boys and my photos above, that I would need the part marked "J" to repair the track. Would anyone else agree?

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.
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tangerinemoons.com
My Bus Restoration Blog
http://myvwbus.tangerinemoons.com/

1973 Westfalia
"Getting better....one repair at a time."

Other VW's owned through the years, in no particular order:
'67 Beetle,
'67 Ghia Hardtop,
'72 Ghia Convertible,
'72 Westfalia
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website Facebook Twitter Gallery Classifieds Feedback
skills@eurocarsplus
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 5:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

here is the NOS track i have. you can barely see the bend in the 'L' where the sliding door roller goes

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

this picture may be better. look up front, you can see the dip in the track

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

i am doing rockers now on my 71, this is what it looks like with the outter cut off

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

lucky for me, the track is dam near perfect Dancing i think you could just bend a 'L' out of the proper steel and go from there. i think the dip in the track may be there just to help the roller guide itself fore and aft, but realistically the roller can't go anywhere, as long as both are in good working order


'J' looks like the inner rocker.'L' perhaps? gerson makes them too. i bought his before i found a NOS one
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Krautski wrote:

No you're cool, its a high light bus so no loss. Carry on.


schell '59 wrote:
The honor system works for boy scouts..not in real business

Jake Raby wrote:
Thanks for the correction. I used to be a nice guy, then I ruined it by exposing myself to the public.

bugger101 wrote:

skills, you never win with cheap vw people
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barefootwestie
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 5:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the pics. I thought that about "L" also, based on what appears to be a slot or something on that part.

But the track looks like it is attached to the back and the top of the piece of metal. Where as "L" looks like basically a flat piece(with the exception of what may be the grove for the roller. What letter in the diagram is the piece in your photos?
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1973 Westfalia
"Getting better....one repair at a time."

Other VW's owned through the years, in no particular order:
'67 Beetle,
'67 Ghia Hardtop,
'72 Ghia Convertible,
'72 Westfalia
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barefootwestie
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 6:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This part looks like it is what is already attached to the piece in your photo:

http://www.airheadparts.com/vintage-vw-parts/slidi...11809904-a

Is your piece a combination of the pieces shown in the diagrams?
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tangerinemoons.com
My Bus Restoration Blog
http://myvwbus.tangerinemoons.com/

1973 Westfalia
"Getting better....one repair at a time."

Other VW's owned through the years, in no particular order:
'67 Beetle,
'67 Ghia Hardtop,
'72 Ghia Convertible,
'72 Westfalia
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barefootwestie
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 6:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Maybe the track IS like this photo:

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

and there is so much gunk and rust through the years that it just appears that the track is one piece with the rear (the metal he has marked between the CUT > | <CUT)

So, in theory I should be able to remove the outer sill, add the new track and put a new sill in place and be done with it.
_________________
tangerinemoons.com
My Bus Restoration Blog
http://myvwbus.tangerinemoons.com/

1973 Westfalia
"Getting better....one repair at a time."

Other VW's owned through the years, in no particular order:
'67 Beetle,
'67 Ghia Hardtop,
'72 Ghia Convertible,
'72 Westfalia


Last edited by barefootwestie on Tue Oct 18, 2011 6:33 pm; edited 1 time in total
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skills@eurocarsplus
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 6:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

try this

http://www.busdepot.com/details.jsp?partnumber=9555042

as i said gerson makes them too. here is his next to my NOS one

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


his is a heavy son of a bitch too. the NOS one is all 1 piece
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Krautski wrote:

No you're cool, its a high light bus so no loss. Carry on.


schell '59 wrote:
The honor system works for boy scouts..not in real business

Jake Raby wrote:
Thanks for the correction. I used to be a nice guy, then I ruined it by exposing myself to the public.

bugger101 wrote:

skills, you never win with cheap vw people
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skills@eurocarsplus
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 6:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

barefootwestie wrote:
So, in theory I should be able to remove the outer sill, then the track and put a new sill in place and be done with it.



if, and only IF the inner portion is solid. the loose piece of the gerson track is what (in theory) you may be able to get away with
_________________
Krautski wrote:

No you're cool, its a high light bus so no loss. Carry on.


schell '59 wrote:
The honor system works for boy scouts..not in real business

Jake Raby wrote:
Thanks for the correction. I used to be a nice guy, then I ruined it by exposing myself to the public.

bugger101 wrote:

skills, you never win with cheap vw people
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barefootwestie
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 6:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great pics. Yes everything else is solid. Happen to have a part number on the gerson piece that is in the top photo on the bottom?
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My Bus Restoration Blog
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1973 Westfalia
"Getting better....one repair at a time."

Other VW's owned through the years, in no particular order:
'67 Beetle,
'67 Ghia Hardtop,
'72 Ghia Convertible,
'72 Westfalia
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website Facebook Twitter Gallery Classifieds Feedback
skills@eurocarsplus
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 6:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

i do not have a p/n but i am pretty sure you will have to buy the whole deal. ask him, he may sell you just the track piece
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Krautski wrote:

No you're cool, its a high light bus so no loss. Carry on.


schell '59 wrote:
The honor system works for boy scouts..not in real business

Jake Raby wrote:
Thanks for the correction. I used to be a nice guy, then I ruined it by exposing myself to the public.

bugger101 wrote:

skills, you never win with cheap vw people
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View user's profile Send private message Gallery Classifieds Feedback
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