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5.3.4 - Repairing Door Handles ( )

1) remove handle assembly

2) remove rubber seal from handle assembly to verify your handle is broken (handle itself doesn't usually break, pivot pin bracket is usually the culprit). If bracket is broken you can either pay $300.00 (USA) "list" for a complete handle assy, or:

3) fabricate a repair fitting out of a piece of 1/4" aluminum sheet. 1 3/4" X 5/8" steel can be used but not necessary. I'll do my best to describe the shape of fitting. It's a lot easier to make than it sounds, and does not have to be a close tolerance thing you would find in the space shuttle. (some shimming may be required in the long run).

Fabricating Fitting

a) from a piece of 1/4" aluminum sheet,cut a 1 3/4" X 5/8" rectangle.

b) at one end of the rectangle, draw a 5/8" square.

c) fill the 5/8" square with a circle.

d) from the long side of the rectangle, draw a line the length of the rectangle 3/8" from either side.

e) at this time you will be cutting out a letter "P" from the rectangle, the "stick" part of the "P" should be 3/8" thick and the bubble at the top should be between 9/16" and 5/8". (use a band saw, milling machine is nice). Exact measurements are not critical at this time, but the surface of the sides needs to be square (90 degrees) from the face of the fitting. Make a couple of these, if you mess one up, you won't have to go and cut another out.

Installing Fitting

The fitting needs to be screwed on next to the broken pivot bracket. The pivot pin will be going through the hole that is normally in the top of a letter "P" (somewhat accurate drilling needed but this is done last). To pinpoint the mounting location of P you need to take the handle assembly retainer (metal thingy you removed to take assembly from door) and set this in place on the new assembly and scribe the location where the retainer touches the assembly and this will be the bottom of the fitting.

Set the fitting in place and mark for the drilling of 2 holes that will pass through the fitting and assembly bezel (the screw cant really be seen from outside of the car after reinstallation as it's up too far). Use #6 or #8 button head screw (not Countersinks) to mount the fitting to assembly bezel, the fitting should be perpendicular to pivot pin.

After the fitting is temporarily mounted to the bezel, remove the pin from the assembly by popping the slip clip from the end of the pivot pin. The pivot pin bracket will be your drill guide in order to make hole in top of P. Using a drill bit that rotates freely in the pivot hole, make a mark for the hole on P (setting the handle straight and level will make up for the alignment of broken bracket). You may need a second set of hands to hold everything in place.

Keep in mind the up/ down position of the handle is critical for good operation. Side to side position is critical for clearance of spring and slip clip. Fore/ aft clearance can be shimmed for final adjustments.

At this time you need to check clearances, you may need to take a little off of the bottom corner of the "P" in order to get assy in and out of the hole in the door. At this time handle should rotate free on the pivot rod. If it hits bezel than you need to shim it (trial and error).

You need to come up with some kind of repair for rubber seal because seal will no longer fit.


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