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how to install new rocker panels ?


merc81
05-05-2010, 09:00 AM
I purchased replacement rocker panels for my '99 van because the old ones were rusted through and through. Most all the vans I see have rust under the doors like this.

Anyway, I thought they would be plastic, but they are steel. Anyone done this? Looks like welding is required.

tks,
john

dewaynep
05-05-2010, 01:04 PM
Yes, lots of welding, cutting, fitting, refitting, etc... Rust repair is a big job and must be done correctly for it to last. You should line up the new panel over the top of the old panel to mark where you can cut out the old panel. Cut out the old panel and then make small cuts to get the new panel to but perfectly to the old panel. Then there is the problem of killing all of the rust. Then weld it in a little at a time moving around the panel to keep it from warping. Or you can just pop-rivet the new panel over the old and hope for the best.

lesterl
05-05-2010, 07:12 PM
Where did you get your panels at and how much did they cost?

Dewayne, how would you kill the rust? I am faced with some of this myself, altho mine is just in front of the wheel wells in the rear.

paprius4030
05-05-2010, 08:33 PM
Where did you get your panels at and how much did they cost?

Dewayne, how would you kill the rust? I am faced with some of this myself, altho mine is just in front of the wheel wells in the rear.


I don't know how to link it but try www.raybuck.com (http://www.raybuck.com) and search for1997-2005 Venture/Trans Sport rocker panel they are $34 a piece.

dewaynep
05-06-2010, 07:05 AM
lesterl, that's were they all start. Mine is starting there too. The best thing I have found to kill the rust is to remove all of it. If you can't remove all of the rust, use simple navel jelly to convert it. It is the best I've found for converting rust. After that, use a weld-thru primer on the back of the new panel and the edges of the old panel. After the panel is welded in, bondo'd (hopefully not too much) and painted I use a rustproofing wand to coat the inside of the rockers with rusfre clear undercoating. While you're at it it would be a good idea to do the inside of all of the doors also. If you don't have access to the undercoating equipment you can take it to a local body shop and have them do it. Around here it is about $100 to have the whole car rustproofed professionally. I wait about one month before doing the undercoating to make sure the paint is hardened sufficiently.

merc81
05-06-2010, 09:32 AM
paprius4030 is correct, raybuck has them for #34. Since I have rust in the rear only, I could have used just one and cut it in half. The are raw steel, I'm going to paint them with rustproof paint I got from raybuck before I do anything else.

I've also got a little rust starting to creep up the wheel well back where the rocker panel meets it. That may be a sheet metal-bondo job if it turns ugly when I'm cleaning it.

tks for the replies.
John

dewaynep
05-06-2010, 02:00 PM
I'm curious as to what the rockers look like from Raybuck? They're actually $54 if you include the handling fee. Are they really "universal" or do the match the original rocker panel profile nicely?

lesterl
05-06-2010, 09:05 PM
Yeah, I was afraid you were gonna say to remove all of it, that could take awhile. I have some scrap steel that I may try to use instead or purchasing the replacement panels... Time will tell...

fanta2
06-09-2010, 09:28 PM
I don't know how to link it but try www.raybuck.com (http://www.raybuck.com) and search for1997-2005 Venture/Trans Sport rocker panel they are $34 a piece.

don't know if I'm missing something here, but I just checked Raybuck and the cheapest I see is $73.50 per side.

paprius4030
06-09-2010, 10:16 PM
don't know if I'm missing something here, but I just checked Raybuck and the cheapest I see is $73.50 per side.

WOW seems like they went WAY up!

merc81
06-14-2010, 12:38 PM
Yea, they raised the price by a bunch. Its $73.40 now.
ouch, seems that if its got steel in it then you pay out the @$#@ for stuff these days.

We quit making steel in the USA--this is what happens.

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