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Rock Sliders instead of Rocker Boxes on 75???

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by atlantak-5er, Jan 30, 2006.

  1. atlantak-5er

    atlantak-5er 1/2 ton status

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    My doors don't close right due to body sag and rusty rocker boxes. I have some rock sliders I will weld in and am wondering if they are sufficient for supporting the area the rocker boxes were intended to support??? I see some people have fixed the rocker boxes but I dont see the need. I just want my doors to close easily!! Right now if I am flexed at all, I'm pretty much stuck in the ****ing truck!!!
     
  2. atlantak-5er

    atlantak-5er 1/2 ton status

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  3. goldwing2000

    goldwing2000 Guest

    Depends on how badly everything else is rusted. You have to have good metal in there somewhere to weld to. Otherwise it's all just going to crumble around the sliders.
    You're liable to have to add a lot of metal just to support the new stuff.
     
  4. bigjbear

    bigjbear 1 ton status Staff Member Moderator

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    On my '73 I cut the floor back inboard of the sill plate. The accutal floor is 4" above the rocker box and that drop down for the sill plate is 4" inboard of the outboard edge of the rocker box. So I welded in a piece of 4x4 square tube to fill the gap, strengthen & straighten the rocker box, and reinforce the opening. To clear the body mount you must cut a wedge out of the tube, pound it closed and weld it back up. The door will need some modification as well.
     
  5. 73k5blazer

    73k5blazer Unplug the matrix cable from the back of your head Premium Member

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    My '73 fiberglass body doesn't have the rocker boxes. My sliders support the body and the roll cage. I just made sure to gusset the he** out of it, and where it meets the frame front and rear is right by a cross member. Everything there is custom though. The sliders (more side-impact protection for the fiberglass body) I made from 2x6 1/4" steel.
    The company that made the body (US Body Source) said they cake on the glass in that area (front floor boards & rocker panels) and also many many layers of kevlar matting. Sitting on the ground with no support (before I mounted) I could grab the top of the windshield frame and I could not flex it more than 1/2". The rusty old steel body I took off, I could pull that back a good many inches and watch the floor buckle while I did it.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2007
  6. ZooMad75

    ZooMad75 1/2 ton status Premium Member GMOTM Winner

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    You wouldn't have any pics of that when you had it apart would you? I've been planning to do rock sliders to replace my swiss cheese rockers but nothing I've seen on here or elseware on the web have anything on the 73-75's with the rocker boxes.

    I was planning on following what I pulled from the off-road.com write up, but I'm not sure if the rocker boxes would be in the way to tie the sliders in at the body mount area. From your description it sounds like they don't but any pics would help.
     
  7. bigjbear

    bigjbear 1 ton status Staff Member Moderator

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    I had some on here but they got lost in one of the updates.

    Here are some before
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    &
    [​IMG]
    &
    [​IMG]
    I look to see what I have on my computer
     
  8. bigjbear

    bigjbear 1 ton status Staff Member Moderator

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    Here is a done pic, I cant find any in progress. I'll see if I have any film pics, but I doubt it.
    [​IMG]
     
  9. ZooMad75

    ZooMad75 1/2 ton status Premium Member GMOTM Winner

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    Thanks bigjbear. Your pics give me a good idea what I'm working with. From you pics, the 4x4 tube is mainly there to reinforce the rocker box, did you add anything back where the stock rocker panel went?
     
  10. bigjbear

    bigjbear 1 ton status Staff Member Moderator

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    No, but I don't run a normal door anymore. To fit the stock door you might need to trim the bottom or use a shorter piece of tube for the patch. Basicly what was talked about in the off-road.com article you read. Then add a little to get back to the edge. Let take some measurments this P.M. so i give you some hard #s.

    My doors look like this now:
    [​IMG]
     
  11. bigjbear

    bigjbear 1 ton status Staff Member Moderator

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    After comparing my '80 (with stock rockers & doors) to my '73 it looks like the 4x4 tube will work with stock doors. On my '80 its about 26" from the back edge of the trans tunnel cover plate to the inside edge of the closed door. The outboard edge of the rockerbox, and my tube, is just under 26" from the same point on my '73. I think you could just weld some sort of a nerf bar right to the 4x4 and call it good. I've jacked my truck up from my reinforced rocker-boxes w/o a problem. Ive also had a couple hard landings on them.

    To give a finished look I put in one of those front section rubber floor mats. Then I used some plastic sill plates that install w/ 2 sided tape at the door openings.

    The only issue you will run into is mounting the weather stripping at the bottom of the door. You MAY get away with welding a piece of sheet-metal on top of the 4x4 tube and installing the weather stripping just like stock. Then let it hit the door at a slightly higher point. I'm not sure that will work though, it might be too close of a fit. You may need to move the insulation in a little bit, out of line with the vertical mounts.

    If you do go this way it will leave the bottom of your door exposed. I think if you are planning to wheel it with the doors on, some sort of a nerf/rub rail welded to the 4x4 tube would be a must.

    If you go for it pleases post pics. PM me for help, I'll offer what I can. To start you'll need 8' of 4x4 tube, I used 1/8" wall. Its 47" for each side, 90* cut at the front, 45* the back. The inboard side needs a wedge cut at the front measuring about 1"x8" IIRC. Then take a sledge hammer and pound it back shut. This will let it clear the kick-up that is in the rocker-box for the body mount. AFTER test fitting, weld the seam back up.

    I can pull my floor covering and take some close ups of the finished job if you need them for some reason. But, there is no way to get back inside. The tube is welded to the rocker box and the floor.
     
  12. bigjbear

    bigjbear 1 ton status Staff Member Moderator

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    atlantak5er, you're welcome to come look at mine if you want.
     
  13. atlantak-5er

    atlantak-5er 1/2 ton status

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    Thanks dude, I may take you up on that if we run into a snag. Thanks for all the info in your posts. Like usual, you guys help me out tremendously!!!

    Where can you get one of those fiberglass bodies???? How much???? Looks great.
     

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