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GT6 Door Adjustment

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gweers Gary Weers/A
The Colony, TX, USA   USA
The window on the driver side door on my ‘68 GT6 has a gap on the rear side. At first I thought it was a window alignment but I am thinking that it is a door alignment problem. There seems to be a similar gap at the rear of the window that is also in the upper portion of the door. I have attached two photos. The first is the door in question and second is the door that seems to fit correctly. The door also is very hard to open and close. I see that the two hinges adjust up and down but don’t see any in and out adjustment. I have heard of people having to shim the hinges but it seems that shimming it would bring it out instead of in (there are no shims now). It also looks like the latching mechinism has no adjustment. Has anyone else had a similar issue that could shed some light.

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65or66 Gold Member Jim B
Lake village, IN, USA   USA
1965 Triumph Spitfire MkII
1973 Triumph Spitfire 1500 "Jusanudda Munny Pit"
the half of the hinge that is bolted to the door allows in/out and some 'twist' adjustment. Leave one bolt snug when you make those adjustments, and pivot around the snug bolt. Otherwise it's easy for the door to slip and chip paint. The latch on the door has no adjustment, but the striker plate on the B pillar has up/down, in/out and angle adjustment.

Doors that have been repaired can also have 'twist' between the front edge and the rear edge. Also, if a rear fender(s) has been repaired (bondo) or replaced, the curve at the door opening on the fender might not be an exact match for the curvature of the door. And I've heard that the factory gaps were far from perfect.

wwt338j david c
leeds, UK   GBR
Hi Gary
The first thing to remember is that the panel gaps on these cars weren't great when they left the factor. The second problem is the effect of previous repairs. Replacement panels (including heritage parts) are not great. The profile of the fenders is a particular problem.
You could probably improve the gaps by adjusting the door hinges but you need to be careful not to worsen alignment with the hood.
Good luck. It's a tedious job.
David

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Bpt70gt Avatar
Bpt70gt Brian T
Westmoreland, NH, USA   USA
Absolutely correct. I've owned my GT6 since it was new and the door gaps were not a big priority back then. I had a Triumph dealer back then try to improve mine and he did try but said that's "just the way it is". A "nature of the beast" answer.

F1000RACER Avatar
F1000RACER Platinum Member Gary H
Alpine, CA, USA   USA
Like all the posts above recounting poor gap fit from new I can attest to this first hand. Of course previous crash damage and poor workmanship to repair doesn't help. And yes the reproduction parts don't fit worth a damn and require mega rework but that's almost expected in the restoration biz.

You can get the gap alignment dead on it just takes some time. This is all part of doing body work in preparation for painting. Doing this after the fact is sometimes possible but not likely 100%.

My last GT6 build I had take the door hinges and put them in one of my cnc mills and slot them so I could get more range of adjustment out of them. When I was done the gap fit was I'm sure far better than anything Triumph put out.

One other problem with doing proper door fit is having hinges that are sloppy. From stock the hinge pin fit was poor and the pins after a short time would seize and snap. They'll still hinge but have slop, any slop makes door fit impossible.

Any Triumph restoration I do at the top of my list is rebuild the door hinges. I bore them out and bush with a bronze sleeve, then I ream them to a .0005" clearance. I then use centerless ground 4340 heat treated hing pins (I make them myself you can't buy them of this quality). Seems like overkill but ask any qualified resto guy and door hinges are tops for good gap fit.

Doug in Vegas Avatar
Doug in Vegas Douglas D
Las Vegas, NV, USA   USA
You are lucky to be able to align by reflection.

If you have a milking stool, now is the time to use it.

The first thing to do is loosen the latch pin in the frame and close the door on a blanket folded to prevent drop and then loosen the hinge bolts.

You want the door to float a little on it's mounts. The blanket really helps you pull from the bottom without having to push from the inside or risk chipping the paint by prying so you don't have to get up constantly.

Spitfireball Brian K
Morristown, NJ, USA   USA
Gary,
Not owning a CNC machine, would drilling the holes in the hinge to a larger ID achieve the same result? Just replaced hinges on my '69 Spitfire, and door gap by rear fender is too tight. Also, there was a thread regarding body to frame shims, which shims do you increase/decrease that influence B post fitment?

Brian K.

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F1000RACER Avatar
F1000RACER Platinum Member Gary H
Alpine, CA, USA   USA
In reply to # 1526462 by Spitfireball Gary,
Not owning a CNC machine, would drilling the holes in the hinge to a larger ID achieve the same result? Just replaced hinges on my '69 Spitfire, and door gap by rear fender is too tight. Also, there was a thread regarding body to frame shims, which shims do you increase/decrease that influence B post fitment?

Brian K.

Brian
No, you at least need a small milling machine that has a rigid spindle. Then you need some way to hold the hinge so that the hinge pin hole is parallel and concentric. I machined my own purpose built fixtures to hold TR hinges to so I know they're concentric each and every time.

I like installing bronze bushings in them because it is self lubricating. When I'm done with them they hinge so smoothly and with zero slop. It's a game changer for a 45 plus old car with crappy door gaps, you can actually close the door without slamming it.

There's a guy on eBay that offers this service. He does this far all the TR hinges and dozens of other brands of cars that suffered from the same issue. I believe he charge $49 per hinge which is a bargain. One of my customers recently had him do some TR250 hinges for him and they came out very nice. I recommend you chase that guy down on eBay.

Brian-
You also mentioned that you replaced your hinges and now the gap is too close on the "B" post. First thing is if they're replacement hinges all bets are off, this is why I prefer using the originals and rebuilding them. Secondly if the gap is too close at the B post the door needs to come forward. The major problem with the Spitfire / GT6 is the floating plate on the "A" Post doesn't have enough range of movement. There's a work around for this. Remove the hinge from the A post and elongate the holes in the A post....move them forward. The plate that floats on the backside is limited though in how far it can move forward however I've always been able to get another 1/8" to 5/32" out of them.

The issue with the doors being tight on the B post is nothing new. I saw this problem in the 70's when I worked for JRT, they didn't give a crap then.



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 2018-04-15 03:26 PM by F1000RACER.

65or66 Gold Member Jim B
Lake village, IN, USA   USA
1965 Triumph Spitfire MkII
1973 Triumph Spitfire 1500 "Jusanudda Munny Pit"
if the gap issue on the B post is at the top of the post more than all along the post, usually an indication of weakened sills/floors, and body sag under the door. or again, previous 'repairs' being done haphazardly.

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