- Article/photo's courtesy of:
- Nick Reynolds, AKA B_To_CPhase 1 - Making the pin:
Quick Release Door Hinge Pins
If you have ever wanted to take the doors off of your Full-size Chevy / GMC Truck or Blazer, Read on. This article will show you how to create quick release door hinge pins, so you can get those doors off and back on within a matter of minutes. This is an extremely easy modification. It should take you no more than one afternoon to complete both phases, assuming that you have all the needed parts and tools on hand.
1. Universal Door Hinge repair kit. These can be found in any auto parts store in the "Help" section. Remember you will need two of these for each door.
2. A Mini Hitch Pin. The shaft should be small enough to fit through a 5/64" hole. You can find these at any hardware store. You will need two per door.
3. You may also need some washers. These would need to have roughly the same Inside Diameter as the Outside Diameter of the Hinge Pin.
Door Hinge repair kit
Mini Hitch Pin
1. Angle grinder
2. Drill or Drill Press
3. Vise or Vise Grips
4. Safety glasses
The setup I used is shown above. It would have been nice to have an actual vise to secure the pin in while I worked on it. But the Vise Grips got the job done, with minimal hassle.
-The Dirty Work-
Step 1: Grind off the splines on the top of the hinge. These are used to keep the hinge from popping out. But because we want our hinges to pop out, we have to grind these off. Shown below is the hinge before and after grinding.
Step 2: Drill a hole through the bottom of the hinge pin. The hole needs to be drilled through the part of the hinge pin that is sloping, because this is the only part of the hinge that sticks out of the hinge assembly. I did this by holding the pin with the Vise Grips in one hand and the drill in the other. It would have been much easier with either a Drill Press or a Table Vise, but this method worked fine for me. I used a 5/64" drill bit, and it seemed to be the perfect size. Below is a picture of the hole.
Step 3: Make sure your mini hitch pin fits, and you have yourself a quick release door hinge. Simply repeat these 3 steps for however many pins you need.
Phase 2 - Installing the pin:
Hole Drilled in Pin
Quick Release Door Hinge
Now that you have made your pins, you will need to install them on your truck. This is the most challenging part of the process, though it is still very easy to do.
1. The quick release door hinge pins you made in Phase 1.
-If you have power doors-
2. Electrical connectors (which you can plug and unplug) for 14-16 gauge wire.
1. A ratchet with a 9/16" socket.
2. An open or boxed end 9/16" wrench.
3. Angle grinder or Sawzall.
4. Hammer and flat head screw driver
5. Safety Glasses.
-If you have power doors-
6. Wire cutter / Crimper
-The Dirty Work-
Pre- Door Removal: It is probably a good idea to roll the window down, this way the glass inside the door is less likely to be broken while the door is off.
Step 1: Cut the wires. If you have power windows / door locks / mirrors you have to cut the wires before you take the door off for the first time. Simply cut the outer sheath, and cut all of the wires. NOTE: MAKE SURE EXPOSED WIRES ARE NOT TOUCHING! RISK OF ELECTRICAL FIRE! (if battery is not disconnected).
Step 2: Make alignment marks on the door and hinge assembly (Shown below). These are critical to maintaining correct alignment when you bolt part of the hinge assembly back onto the door.
Step 3: Unbolt the door from the hinge. CAUTION: Once you unbolt these bolts your door will no longer be attached to the truck. These doors are heavy and awkward, so be prepared. I was lucky and had a trash barrel that was the perfect height to support the door.
Step 4: Remove the old pins and bushings. I used a Sawzall to cut the Pin in half then pushed the lower cut portion out of the bottom and the top out of the top. You should also note how the bushings are positioned, so you can put the new ones in the same way.
Step 5: Bolt the part of the hinge assembly that attaches to the door, back onto the door. You will be using the alignment marks you made earlier.
Step 6: If you have power doors, attach your connectors to both sets of wires now.
Step 7: Install the new bushings in the hinge assembly.
Step 8: Get the door in position and install your quick release pins. NOTE: the bottom pin goes in like normal, but the top pin needs to go in UPSIDE DOWN.
Step 9: Make sure everything lines up correctly, and congratulate yourself on a job well-done.
Quick Release Installed
Post- Installation: Remember to periodically check your mini hitch pins to make sure they are still intact. If they break your quick release pins may work themselves loose, and serious damage to your door may result.