I needed to poke the holes in the firewall for the items I have on hand before the firewall pad is fitted. I decided to start with the hood release.
I didn't want the cable hanging low in the passenger compartment. I knew the cable had to run high and to the outside. The hood hinge and spring assembly were installed to check for a good spot. Originally, the side of the cowl looked promising. Installing the spring and hinge put an end to that idea. As luck would have it, almost as if Chevrolet had planned it, the hinge bracket has a half round relief which is perfect for the cable to go through.
On the back side a bracket was in the way. Quick work for the cut off wheel and air saw!
I took vacation today and tomorrow. Got up early. Went to a garage sale with my wife. Then we went to a fireplace and patio store to look at fireplace inserts (the next big house project - can't wait!). After that, 2 home improvement stores and 4 antique stores. A late lunch and then a real late start on the car.
While some things went well, it was a trying day.
Starting out, the "stabilizer rod" was an easy bend. While the welds aren't very pretty, they have good penetration into the rod while not creating a huge hump inside the channel. I got good penetration with virtually no clean up. I am happy.
The window installed fairly easily using the setting tape and a dead blow. Since I measured and re-measured and set the channels and the power unit, at this point I am thinking it is going to be an early night.
Of course, that's when the wheels came off. The window would not go up without my pushing it while applying power to the power unit. I adjusted, adjusted, and adjusted again. I took it all apart. Cleaned and lubed the power unit. I tweaked the "stabilizer." I put it all back together only to realize a marginal improvement. To be truthful, it probably was a wishful thinking improvement!
I was beginning to wish I had kept the vent wing and the stock regulator. I was afraid I was going to have to pay to have the doors fixed. I began to wonder how well the AC would work with no windows. It was getting to me!
Then, with the window up (still requiring me to push it), I loosened the top bolt. The top of the power unit popped to the rear of the door about 1/8". I tightened it down and tried it. It worked! It is not 100%, but it was great to jump from less than 10% ot the high 90's. A little tweaking and I should be there. Then all I have to do is transfer the latest knowledge to the passenger door. Another day. Tomorrow I work on the firewall pad and the AC unit.
Wednesday night after work I prepped the door for the window.
The channel was glued in place. I couldn't find the sweep material so I cut up a short section of channel for now. All of the channel and sweep at this point is sacrificial. Once everything is just so, it will all be ripped out for paint. Brand new stuff will be purchased, cut, trimmed, and installed.
On the passenger side, I cut the interior window surround in one place. It now has a hump I have to address. On the driver's side, I used two cuts and worked the piece a little bit more before welding. More time for two welds and more time for the prep before welding. However, the part is basically straight and will not require anywhere near the finish work the passenger side is going to take.
Tonight the "hump" welding was finished. The last spot weld hole was also filled. Other than some minor tweaking, this is done.
I mounted the latch release and the window regulator to determine how far the Autoloc switch would need to extend from the door. I had previously contemplated this on the other door and hadn't done anything. There are three levels of sheet metal in this area. I expected to do a lot of sheet metal work. After measuring, I determined the panel forward of the existing hole was the correct height. I decided there was no reason not to move the location slightly forward. The holes were drilled and the switch test fit. The door panels are going to be custom items, so this should work well. And, it is going to save me a bunch of custom metal work. All I have to do now is fill the old holes.
The top section was completely welded before starting on the lower section. I did it this way so any shrinkage would not affect the measurements on the lower section. This required a lot of hammer and dolly work, welding, and grinding.
Once the top section was welded down to the bottom of the door pull mounts, the hole pattern was laid out. There are five slotted holes for the motor mount and two large holes for access to the window mounting bolts. The holes were drilled and the slots were cut.
More welding and grinding. I almost got it done. I still have to cut out the filler piece for the front gap and weld it in. With the holiday upon us, it will probably be Wednesday before I get this welded in. The power unit was fit several times during the welding and grinding process, so once the welding is complete, I have high hopes of getting the window functioning rather quickly afterward.