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Jamos Sat Apr 26, 2008 4:04 pm

So I picked up a grab handle that was on the body of a parts van...mounted vertically just forward of the sliding door.

I'd like to install it on the slider itself...kind of just a little back from where it was originally.

Anybody done this?
Pics?

Seems like a pretty straight-forward upgrade/addition.
Any reason not to do it?

msinabottle Sat Apr 26, 2008 8:29 pm

I'm not sure I'd want to put too much weight on something that slides in a track and moves. If you want other handle on the sliding door, take a look at this:



Not sure you can rig the later sliders for this, but I use the 2nd handle to finish closing that hatch all the time.

Best!

1621 Sat Apr 26, 2008 10:23 pm

I've seen this done, and have almost done it myself. There's a picture and quick mention about mounting one here: http://www.mts.net/~rrh/WestyMods.html Here's the picture.
Anyhow, I've seen little base pieces that fit perfectly on the rounded curve of the front window frame. I may even have a pair I picked up along the way. At any rate, they're out there, and should make closing the slider from inside much easier.

Jamos Sat Apr 26, 2008 10:43 pm

Thanks for the replies guys...
I just finished up the job a little while ago.

The hardest part was getting the measuring correct for the holes.

and the handle I had was from just ahead of the door as I mentioned, so it was one of the ones with the rounded mounting bases. This made it a little more difficult to install since I had to drill the holes on a curve.
:?

So installing one of the flat ones on the flat metal would make this a snap.

Anyway, I like it! Mostly just to slide the door closed (maybe it will help the interior handle last longer?)

I need a couple of the little screw-cover bits for the handle if anyone has some (in brown).

I'll snap some pics later and post 'em here.

Timwhy Thu Feb 04, 2010 3:53 pm

Jamos wrote:


I'll snap some pics later and post 'em here.

Do you think that you can post some pics of your install?

I am planning on doing this very thing and like you I will be using a front collumn grab handle with the rounded wedges.

1621 Thu Feb 04, 2010 9:37 pm

Not mounted on the curve, but gives you a good idea of how it might turn out. I opted against using the curved wedges since the curve on the back of the b-pillar (where the curved bases originally mounted) is larger than the curve alongside the slider window. Just didn't seem like it was going to match up the way I wanted it to. Also found the flat mounting pieces to be too wide for the upper mounting point beside the window, so I went without. On the flat works out great, and I find using the grab handle makes opening and closing the slider a simpler task. YMMV.



syncrodoka Thu Feb 04, 2010 9:55 pm

Thanks for the pic. I have been meaning to stick a handle there for the kids and it looks exactly like I pictured it in my head. Gotta do it now. :)

madspaniard Thu Feb 04, 2010 10:02 pm

great info, thanks a bunch, I had a handle already here to do this, just never had the time to think about how to mount it. It does make a lot of sense to have a grab handle inside the sliding door, closing that door is not easy if you are a passenger unfamiliar with these vans.

K58 Thu Feb 04, 2010 10:31 pm

here's another

Jamos Thu Feb 04, 2010 11:13 pm

Here are a couple pictures of mine. Sorry for the iphone quality pics.





I did mount mine on the curve with the wedge base pieces...I think just a little higher than the one in 1621's photo. Mine came from the vertical section just forward of the slider (from an '87 passenger van), so the bases had the right shape to fit on the door. Not sure if bases from the front pillars would have the right curve or not.

Great upgrade, we use it every time we're in the van!

Timwhy Fri Feb 05, 2010 4:15 am

1621 wrote: Not mounted on the curve, but gives you a good idea of how it might turn out. I opted against using the curved wedges since the curve on the back of the b-pillar (where the curved bases originally mounted) is larger than the curve alongside the slider window. Just didn't seem like it was going to match up the way I wanted it to. Also found the flat mounting pieces to be too wide for the upper mounting point beside the window, so I went without. On the flat works out great, and I find using the grab handle makes opening and closing the slider a simpler task. YMMV.

What do you have the handle screwed into to keep it from coming off the door? Did you you a nylon screw grommet or spreader nut?

1621 Fri Feb 05, 2010 9:00 am

Timwhy wrote: 1621 wrote: Not mounted on the curve, but gives you a good idea of how it might turn out. I opted against using the curved wedges since the curve on the back of the b-pillar (where the curved bases originally mounted) is larger than the curve alongside the slider window. Just didn't seem like it was going to match up the way I wanted it to. Also found the flat mounting pieces to be too wide for the upper mounting point beside the window, so I went without. On the flat works out great, and I find using the grab handle makes opening and closing the slider a simpler task. YMMV.

What do you have the handle screwed into to keep it from coming off the door? Did you you a nylon screw grommet or spreader nut?

No spreader nuts or grommets necessary. Drilled a pilot hole and used the stock screws to hold it in place. Plenty strong enough, even with yanking the door open and closed all the time.

DAIZEE Fri Feb 05, 2010 9:04 am

Intersting. That would make life much easier for closing the door from the inside. I'd like to have one on the drivers front side to help me climb up. I slide down so its only for up.

Could I ask where you find the handles, various places please?

PDXWesty Fri Feb 05, 2010 9:18 am

Will the door still open fully if the handle is mounted horizontally just below the window towards the front? I think that would be an easy place to mount and grab too.

You can find the handles and parts in the classified section.

climberjohn Fri Feb 05, 2010 9:56 am

Handles are pretty easy to procure at junkyards, in my experience.

1621 Fri Feb 05, 2010 10:00 am

PDXWesty wrote: Will the door still open fully if the handle is mounted horizontally just below the window towards the front? I think that would be an easy place to mount and grab too.

Don't quote me on this, but I think I recall looking at this option and it would have hit the c-pillar. It really would be an ideal place though.

madspaniard Fri Feb 05, 2010 12:52 pm

1621 wrote: PDXWesty wrote: Will the door still open fully if the handle is mounted horizontally just below the window towards the front? I think that would be an easy place to mount and grab too.

Don't quote me on this, but I think I recall looking at this option and it would have hit the c-pillar. It really would be an ideal place though.

hum, not sure that would be ergonomic, I think it is easier to pull and push on a vertical grab handle to open and close the sliding door.

DAIZEE Fri Feb 05, 2010 1:14 pm

Yes there would be less drag and less effort to pull a vertical handle. Lifting something up would be better with a horizontal handle.

PDXWesty Fri Feb 05, 2010 1:20 pm

madspaniard wrote: 1621 wrote: PDXWesty wrote: Will the door still open fully if the handle is mounted horizontally just below the window towards the front? I think that would be an easy place to mount and grab too.

Don't quote me on this, but I think I recall looking at this option and it would have hit the c-pillar. It really would be an ideal place though.

hum, not sure that would be ergonomic, I think it is easier to pull and push on a vertical grab handle to open and close the sliding door.

Don't knock it til you've tried it! :wink:

It actually feels easier because there is no bending pressure on your wrist.

madspaniard Fri Feb 05, 2010 1:40 pm

PDXWesty wrote: madspaniard wrote: 1621 wrote: PDXWesty wrote: Will the door still open fully if the handle is mounted horizontally just below the window towards the front? I think that would be an easy place to mount and grab too.

Don't quote me on this, but I think I recall looking at this option and it would have hit the c-pillar. It really would be an ideal place though.

hum, not sure that would be ergonomic, I think it is easier to pull and push on a vertical grab handle to open and close the sliding door.

Don't knock it til you've tried it! :wink:

It actually feels easier because there is no bending pressure on your wrist.


true I haven't tried it, do I have to come up there to try and while I'm there get a couple of beers with the PDX crowd? I wouldn't mind \:D/



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