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          Hey guys, do you hate the inside door handles on your truck stripping out ? Go to buy new ones and find the after-market Chinese handles are worse than the ones you are trying to replace ? That happened to Leonard's 1957 3100, so here is how he made his own...

Custom inside door handles

(1 April 08)



By Leonard

      I was going to try to fabricate something with a 12 point socket or 12 point box end wrench, but found out that the splinned shaft coming out of the door panel is 16 point. So, it was no go with that idea. Instead, I made a simple cinch nut that will NEVER come off again, and got a neat looking handle to go with it.

Parts needed

  • (2) 7/16-20 nuts
  • (4) 1/4-20 nuts
  • (2) 1/4-20 socket head cap screws
  • (2) 1/2 inch wrenches
  • (2) 1/2-13 nuts [ pix ]

      I will explain one handle. You just do this twice....

      First, take one 7/16-20 nut and drill the threaded inside out with a 7/16, .437 drill.

      Then take two 1/4-20 nuts and screw one 1/4-20 socket head cap screw into the both of them, leaving about a 1/8 gap between them.

      Then tig weld the two 1/4-20 nuts to the 7/16 nut in the fashion in the picture.

      Now take the 1/4-20 socket head cap screw out.

      Now drill ONLY one of the 1/4-20 nuts out with a 1/4 inch, .250 drill.

      Now hack saw the 7/16-20 nut BETWEEN the two 1/4-20 nuts.

      Now weld a wrench, (I used a 1/2 inch wrench with the box end cut off), to the 7/16-20 nut.

      To fill the space between the 7/16 nut and the door panel, I drilled out a 1/2-13 nut with a 1/2 inch, .500 drill, and tig welded it ONLY in one small area of the 7/16-20 nut. You don’t want to weld it to both legs of the nut. It won't cinch if you do.

      Now screw the 1/4-20 socket head cap screw through the drilled out 1/4-20 nut, into the still threaded 1/4-20 nut.

      Slip over the splinned door handle shaft, position in any desired way, and tighten the 1/4-20 socket head cap screw

      Now you have a custom looking door handle the will NEVER strip again, and will never fall off. Here are a few enlarged images: the entire handle; the connection piece; another close-up on the door.

      You can add anything you want to replace the wrench idea I had. I will also do something along this line to my window cranks also.

Images of this custom door handle process on Photobucket

      Hope you like my idea,



      Now that's a modification alright! Grigg thought another possible addition, to make a smoother look -- you could try a two piece shaft collar, like this one [ part number 6436K52 from Master-Carr for only $3.63 each ]. It would save time and effort, and would also make the project do-able for even someone with just a wire or stick welder, no drills or TIG welder needed.~~ Editor


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