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Doorspring Installation on Advance-Design Models

Any ideas on how to install the doorsprings for a 1948 Chevrolet Thriftmaster?

Allen Jones: I just did it on my '50 - I imagine they're the same. I bought new hinge pins (slightly oversized) and springs from Chevy Duty. They're acceptable quality. To that end: completely remove hinges from the hinge pocket and door, drive out the old pin to separate the two hinge halves (this is a major operation as the old pins were rusted in place - had to be carefully drilled out first, followed by pressing out with a shop press). Drill out the pin holes to the next size up (I think it was 1/32" over but can't remember for sure - let your micrometer tell you), slip in the springs (note that there are 2 springs per hinge and only go on the top hinges), slip in the hinge pin, finish installing pin with light tap of hammer to set in place (you'll know what I mean when you see the new pins). Cut off the extra pin length sticking out (this is hardened steel, so a hack saw doesn't work very well - use a die grinder with light dressing after words), sand blast, paint, and install (installation can be a trick because the springs may "catch" on the hinge pocket - I just cranked them in place with the expectation that I wouldn't need to remove them again for about 40 years). The hinges are like new, and the doors are very solid again with very strong spring action. Note that there are oil holes in all the hinges - I suggest the heaviest oil you can find - the manual suggests motor oil, but I think that's too light.

You will need to completely realign the door after this operation. It's obvious, but I think most people forget that they need to spend several hours realigning their doors too. I find door alignment more challenging than the hinge rehabilitation. In fact, I resized the cab door opening areas for a better fit in aligning the doors.

Good luck and have fun!


A special thanks to Allen L. Jones and Casey Mathews for this article.

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