Reached a milestone this past weekend (810/1/2021). Since I got the convertible back in 2018, I always wondered how much of a repair it would be and if I needed to actually take it to a body shop.
Quick history rundown:
2020 – Aug 2021 – Pandemic/ International borders closed
I knew I was going to be in WA October 1st for my father’s death anniversary. I also knew I was splitting the 5 day trip in half with 2 days in WA, 2 days in Vancouver BC and the last day to see my family in WA before driving to California.
Thursday night (Sept 30th), after my cousins were settled, I decided to spend a few hours working on the vert. I didn’t know how far I was going to get and I thought about it was probably going to have work done at a body shop.
I started to by assessing the door’s hinges (the function of the door was only recently available when I drove it back to WA). The door panel was already removed. I removed the foot panel that would give me access to the area where the hinge is mounted. There was an opening and it was enough to put the porta power in there and start pushing.
I stayed up until 1:30am working on getting that area pushed out. I removed the door to get a better assessment of how it the kinked part looked.
Once I took the door off, I felt that the resistance of the door being bolted wouldn’t be much of a factor. Using a porta power and the opening behind the hinge gave me enough to work with in repairing. I almost didn’t work on the car as I wanted to pull that part of the damaged area with a true frame straightener.
I kept pushing the kinked area out and I felt that it was decent, but didn’t expect the lower hinge to bolt up. I decided to get some sleep and continue the next day after visiting my father’s grave.
I personally felt that I would be leaving my M30 vert in a state of removed fender and door. I wasn’t expecting to get far honestly.
The next day, after my visiting my father’s grave, we got home and did a prayer session and had the celebration of life (Filipino tradition). While everyone was upstairs eating and talking, I was down in the garage working on my car.
I took off the door and started to try and get the harness out. Where the door was hit, is where the harness was, so it kinked the grommet and it was a pain to get out. My uncle (my father’s brother) came down and helped me out. Important to me because this was suppose to be a “father/son/grandson” project. But this was the closest it was gonna get.
I went to my storage to get the spare/replacement door and fender. My cousin Harry helped me bring it out.
Here is the door that Jim gave me with the car.
I decided to mount the door to check how much it was “off”. To my surprise, it all lined up and I bolted it on just to see how it was. It was mounted!!!!
I grabbed the fender and plugged in the harness and put them on quickly. I couldn’t believe it. I actually got to this level of replacing the door and making the vert one step better! True milestone.
One thing I will have to address in the future is getting the hinge pins. When I open the door, it drops down, But the hinges are solid in place.
Again, it isn’t perfect, but it is my car that I am slowly rebuilding to be a nice convertible. There are still other issues to address and work on. For now, I was satisfied… I even took the vert for a late night cruise to get boba tea.