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Technical 4 DOOR TO 2 DOOR CONVERSION?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by papajohn, Apr 23, 2020.

  1. papajohn
    Joined: Nov 2, 2006
    Posts: 875

    papajohn
    Member

    What's the best way to weld up the doors?
     
  2. billfunk29
    Joined: Jun 28, 2005
    Posts: 32

    billfunk29
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Minnesota

    It is difficult to keep sheet metal straight when it is held on the ends and the middle. I have seen cars Where the back door skin was removed and welded in the hole. Eventually the weld will show. 2 door cars usually have longer doors. If you can find a set of doors from a two door and move the door post back it will have better proportions. Not easy though.
     
    Gasser 57 and lilmann like this.
  3. john walker
    Joined: Sep 11, 2008
    Posts: 1,117

    john walker
    Member

    Seems the OP wants to go the other direction.
     
  4. papajohn
    Joined: Nov 2, 2006
    Posts: 875

    papajohn
    Member

    I think I can live with the short front doors. Plus I was going to leave the windows all in tact . This is my 60 OLDS wagon. I think the Chevy 2 door wagons and sedan deliveries used short front doors. Been a while since I owned one, so I can't remember.
     

  5. mkubacak
    Joined: Jun 20, 2005
    Posts: 176

    mkubacak
    Member

    The tread title and the first post are incongruent.
     
  6. papajohn
    Joined: Nov 2, 2006
    Posts: 875

    papajohn
    Member

    Woops! Dislexic? Just fixed it. Thanks
     
    31hotrodguy likes this.
  7. papajohn
    Joined: Nov 2, 2006
    Posts: 875

    papajohn
    Member

    I just looked at some 60 Chevy 2 door wagons on the web. Looks like they definitely used the longer 2 door doors.

    Probably too much trouble to do it right.
     
  8. If I was going to weld the doors I would ad a strip of metal to the back side of the open door to fill the gap when the door was closed. Then weld the strip to the door jam when the door was closed. It will take some mud to finish it up or lead but we have been doing that part of it for decades.
     
  9. anthony myrick
    Joined: Sep 4, 2009
    Posts: 6,755

    anthony myrick
    Member

    Enjoy the 4 door. The only folks that see a difference is old guys.
    Most people today just see an old cool ride.
    Rock those 2 extra escape hatches with pride.
     
    VANDENPLAS, 283john, Tman and 15 others like this.
  10. goldmountain
    Joined: Jun 12, 2016
    Posts: 2,557

    goldmountain

    If you keep the doors short, how do you get in the back? Too much work to make a questionable result.
     
    VANDENPLAS and scotty t like this.
  11. Jalopy Joker
    Joined: Sep 3, 2006
    Posts: 25,719

    Jalopy Joker
    Member

    - maybe just shave rear exterior door handles - eliminate rear doors and will need split bench front seat or buckets - paint really nice deep/dark color and no one will not care about extra doors
     
    VANDENPLAS, Rocky72, belair and 4 others like this.
  12. oldiron 440
    Joined: Dec 12, 2018
    Posts: 1,692

    oldiron 440
    Member

    With a TIG welder, a MIG weld is to hard and will show up sooner or later.
     
  13. As mentioned there's a lot more to it than just welding up the door. Just step back and ask yourself what am I going to do about the triangle piece of Glass? If you want a 2 door wagon find a 2 door wagon to start with. Like Anthony said, be proud of your 4 door. Spend the time and $$$ on some quality paint work and be proud of what you have.
     
  14. anthony myrick
    Joined: Sep 4, 2009
    Posts: 6,755

    anthony myrick
    Member

    This is how ya do it and is looks proper
    Acquire some 2 door doors.
    Install longer doors. Remove B post
    Cut up B post to fit new longer doors.
    Remove rear door skins. Trim off dog leg area of the qtrs. Fit the rear door skin to stretch the qtr to line up with the longer front doors. Extend rocker panel. Finish fabing b pillar.
    Now ya get to do the fun stuff. Making the side glass area and trim look like it belongs.
    That’s a short version on what it would take.
    Or just weld up rear doors and hope the Bondo doesn’t show the weld line eventually.
     
  15. You might want to sit and ponder your above statement a bit longer. The key part of that sentence is, do it right.
    Then re read what Anthony just posted in #14. Now if your still thinking "I CAN DO THAT" ask your self if your actually up to the task of welding the body moldings together and refit to work with the new door length and shorter quarter panels. That part takes some real skill. No you can't just leave them off.
     
  16. Baumi
    Joined: Jan 28, 2003
    Posts: 2,667

    Baumi
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    You could do a 3-door conversion, it´s only half as difficult.
     
    nochop, Boden, falconvan and 6 others like this.
  17. LOL we don't really care about the extra doors on a wagon. Well I don't and I am a pretty hard core 2 door guy
     
  18. RJP
    Joined: Oct 5, 2005
    Posts: 1,758

    RJP
    Member
    from PNW

    Get some steel rod, heat and bend to follow the body lines to fill the gaps inside and out. Weld it solid. Grind it smooth and finish sand. Skim with bondo. The bondo could show some cracks in about 50 yrs, but it probably will need some paint by then anyway.
     
    scrap metal 48 likes this.
  19. Sanford&Son
    Joined: Oct 13, 2006
    Posts: 492

    Sanford&Son
    Member
    from Visalia,Ca

    I always say just make the back doors suicide and make it cooler! Those '67 Lincoln's aren't the best looking
    cars (very slab-sided), the suicide doors are the best thing about them!
    Just saying!
     
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  20. manyolcars
    Joined: Mar 30, 2001
    Posts: 8,388

    manyolcars

    You left out one step. Remove the rear door sill. This allows rain to run down into the rocker and out the bottom. If you leave the rear door sill, you have a trap that will hold water and rot out
     
  21. 57JoeFoMoPar
    Joined: Sep 14, 2004
    Posts: 4,814

    57JoeFoMoPar
    Member

    The way I see this is you have a few options; 1) enjoy the 4 door for what it is, 2) sell the 4 door and buy the two door you really want, or 3) convert the 4 door to a 2 door the right way or not at all.

    The old timers drilled it into my head when I was young that 4 doors are never proper cars to build. Maybe a fun cruise night car, family hauler, or daily driver, but never a show car. I still feel that way.

    Some 4 doors can be cool though, especially wagons. Cody Walls' 59 Chevy wagon immediately comes to mind. But short door cars that clearly started as 4 doors are virtually always lame. They look weird and disproportionate. People inevitably put dumb seats in them because they can't source the proper split bench to access the back seat. Even when they do, it's nearly impossible to get in the back with the front seat in a reasonable position.

    There's also the unspoken message a short door car conveys. For starters, you're not fooling anyone that matters. If some lady getting her groceries or a 8 year old at a cruise night thinks it's a 2 door, great, who cares. But the people who actually know the cars will know. Secondly, having a short door car also conveys this message to me, that the owner/builder is so ashamed of having a 4 door that they damaged the looks and functionality of their car in an effort to conceal the perceived defect, but lacked the skill and/or resources to either do it the right way or buy what they actually want. That's not flattering. It's basically the equivalent to wearing a bad toupee when you're balding. Nobody is fooled and you're really just making the situation worse, when the better move is to shave it, hit the gym, get some fresh gear, own it and be confident in it.

    My $.02
     
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  22. Desmodromic
    Joined: Sep 25, 2010
    Posts: 571

    Desmodromic
    Member

    Could someone please explain to me the attraction to suicide doors? Seems to me to be a lot of work to gain absolutely nothing.
     
  23. anthony myrick
    Joined: Sep 4, 2009
    Posts: 6,755

    anthony myrick
    Member

    Probably left several out.
    Just trying to give the guy a general idea.
    I have seen several 4 door conversions turn out well.
    The amount of work is huge.
    This one began life as a 4 door
    07F94F04-F7A6-47D6-9322-5F0DA64CE6AB.jpeg
    Here is something similar.
    A72EFD9F-D4E6-4A84-9AE9-0150EE7928E7.jpeg
     
  24. The 60 Oldsmobile was a cool body style to begin with, please just enjoy the car as a 4 door unless you're going to do the full, correct job and use the longer doors as well. Otherwise the car is going to wind up as a butchered POS as many before it have.
     
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  25. Gman0046
    Joined: Jul 24, 2005
    Posts: 6,260

    Gman0046
    Member

    Changing regular opening doors to suicide is a complete waste of time and money. Recently saw a 66 Nova 2 door that some one changed the doors to suicide. Still haven't figured that one out. That car was for sale forever they couldn't give it away.
     
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2020
  26. finn
    Joined: Jan 25, 2006
    Posts: 737

    finn
    Member

    What 57Joe said.

    Do it right, or don’t do it.

    Halfhearted attempts are lame, and don’t fool anyone.
     
    Hnstray likes this.
  27. Desmodromic
    Joined: Sep 25, 2010
    Posts: 571

    Desmodromic
    Member

    I'm not even remotely an Oldsmophile, but here's a couple of germane questions:
    • Didn't Oldsmobile think, in 1960, "Who in the up-market world would want a two-door wagon?", and did not build one?
    • Were all Olds two-door sedans "bubble tops", and have some curvature in the door's top window frame that would need to be addressed?

    With regards to the technical aspect of the bodywork being completely feasible, isn't welding doors shut common practice? Four-door '49 to'51 Mercuries and '37 to '38 Willys come to mind. (Some claim Willys made two-door cars this way, but that may be anecdotal.)

    Here's an idea pioneered by the AMC Pacer -- to facilitate rear seat access, just put a "long door" on the passenger side!;)
     
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  28. Desmodromic
    Joined: Sep 25, 2010
    Posts: 571

    Desmodromic
    Member

    A lot of the anti-arguments in this thread could be used against chopped tops.;)
     
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  29. Squablow
    Joined: Apr 26, 2005
    Posts: 14,689

    Squablow
    Member

    I've done a bunch of 2 door conversions. You need the longer doors. The ideal donor for the Olds wagon would be a 59 or 60 Chevy 2 door wagon, but you could do it with just the doors if you had to, or the doors and a pair of B pillars from a 2 door sedan would make it easier.
    I can lay out the steps if you're serious about doing it the right way, but welding the back doors shut is not an option.
     
  30. 57JoeFoMoPar
    Joined: Sep 14, 2004
    Posts: 4,814

    57JoeFoMoPar
    Member

    Lots of common things are bad ideas. Go to any Wal-Mart and look at the way people dress.

    You're partially correct as it pertains to chopping a top, except that a chopped top when executed properly is a significant improvement in styling. Again, the argument against here is more centered on being against the lame, easy way out and pro-doing it the right way. Like any automotive modification, if done properly, the results can be a significant positive. If done poorly, the results can be a real retrograde.
     
    Hnstray likes this.

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