Replacing/removing exterior chrome panel trim
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1985-1996 Fleetwood and Brougham Forum Discussion, Replacing/removing exterior chrome panel trim in Past Cadillac Vehicle Discussion; Hi guys, new to the forum. Just picked up an 86' Fleetwood Brougham, black with the 5.0lt. 307 Olds (still ...
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    mg-3's Avatar
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    Hi guys, new to the forum.

    Just picked up an 86' Fleetwood Brougham, black with the 5.0lt. 307 Olds (still gotta verify by VIN but looks like it from pictures). Love the car, despite all the rust, and I mean rust!, I'm keeping her.
    I'm in the process of sanding off the scale rust around the door trims and wheels bases. I can't get to all of it so before I screw anything up, I though I'd ask here first.

    Q: How do I remove the exterior chrome (silver) panels than line the bottom of the doors?

    I see two black plastic knob types on the inside of the door, but they look like the kind that when, if, I remove it, they'll break. I've scavenged the forums to no avail but if its already a topic, please send it my way...sorry!

    Thanks!

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    cadillac kevin's Avatar
    cadillac kevin is online now Cadillac Owners Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by mg-3 View Post
    Hi guys, new to the forum.

    Just picked up an 86' Fleetwood Brougham, black with the 5.0lt. 307 Olds (still gotta verify by VIN but looks like it from pictures). Love the car, despite all the rust, and I mean rust!, I'm keeping her.
    I'm in the process of sanding off the scale rust around the door trims and wheels bases. I can't get to all of it so before I screw anything up, I though I'd ask here first.

    Q: How do I remove the exterior chrome (silver) panels than line the bottom of the doors?

    I see two black plastic knob types on the inside of the door, but they look like the kind that when, if, I remove it, they'll break. I've scavenged the forums to no avail but if its already a topic, please send it my way...sorry!

    Thanks!
    You take those 2 nuts off the inside of the door (have a long skinny screwdriver handy to pop them out of the socket). Then you pull off the trim. IIRC, you have to get the screws that go through the door and hold the nuts on the inside outside the door (so pull the trim piece to you until they clear the holes.) Then you should go up with the trim piece and it should pop off 4 or 5 clips.

    If your doors have "scale" rust, especially around the outsides, I would highly recommend replacing them. I paid 30 a piece for some new completely rust free doors in the junkyard (mine had rust due to clogged drain holes and all had body damage due to old people hitting the garage.) It took me about a year of looking to find them, but $30 a panel was cheaper than the labor/ parts that could have fixed my original ones with.
    As for the rocker chrome, there are some (7mm?) screws that go in from the underside, then some phillips screws that you get from the topside with the doors open. The rocker chrome that goes behind the rear wheel well is a bit trickier. You have to take 3 screws off the wheel well molding to get the edge of it out (it tucks behind the wheel well molding). Then there is a spring loaded piece that goes through the rear filler. While holding the rocker piece, push the round piece that sits over the shaft towards the outside of the car and turn it. It will then pop off.
    The piece of chrome that sits between the front bumper and front wheel also tucks behind the wheel well chrome. Again, you'll have to remove the bottom 3 screws on the wheel well molding. It also has 2? 7mm? screws that bolt it into the filler/ body. It may or may not have a piece that goes through the filler.

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    mg-3's Avatar
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    Hey thanks for the thorough reply. Passenger door has a wooshing sound from last nights rain; 30 bucks a pop, you bet I'm heading over to the yard this week!

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    Re: Replacing/removing exterior chrome panel trim

    It's also my first Cadillac, and she needs a lot, lot of love. So much so that she won't be seeing the road this year!

    It's also the first time I'm doing body work so it's a nice way to learn, knowing that if I screw things up really bad...a new door only cost $30. I'd say I'm fairly new at the whole self maintenance auto thing but if you don't try it, you'll never know if you could. Been to the scrap yard only once in my life and had a good time, though never had the chance to get a quote for items, but man...doors being only $30 bucks?! can't go wrong! Also, I might be making a project thread for her.
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    Quote Originally Posted by mg-3 View Post
    Hey thanks for the thorough reply. Passenger door has a wooshing sound from last nights rain; 30 bucks a pop, you bet I'm heading over to the yard this week!
    I take that back, they might have been 35 or 40 a pop (but still...)

    Granted junkyards are cheaper here, and it took me 1.5 years to find the doors (going back to the junkyard every 2-3 weeks), but now all I have to do is sand and paint them. And that was the door complete with wiring, hinges, glass, chrome, interior panels, etc. If you live up north, it will be harder to find rust free doors (it was hard enough in the midwest, granted I only visit 2 yards in town), but they are probably very common down south/ out west.

    You may have to remove the rear wheels to remove the wheel well moldings (depends if you can get the front and rear bottom screws with a stubby screwdriver). I pulled my quarter rocker chrome tonight and will post up a pic of what the clips look like that hold on the panel.

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    j2rossit is offline Cadillac Owners Enthusiast
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    Re: Replacing/removing exterior chrome panel trim

    The acorn nuts, on the inside of the doors, that hold the lower molding in place do break easily. You should be able to go to a local fastener supplier and get some to replace them. I couldn't find the exact right size but I grabbed the next size down and used a drill to slightly enlarge the hole in the new acorn nuts.

    ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by mg-3 View Post
    It's also my first Cadillac, and she needs a lot, lot of love. So much so that she won't be seeing the road this year!

    It's also the first time I'm doing body work so it's a nice way to learn, knowing that if I screw things up really bad...a new door only cost $30. I'd say I'm fairly new at the whole self maintenance auto thing but if you don't try it, you'll never know if you could. Been to the scrap yard only once in my life and had a good time, though never had the chance to get a quote for items, but man...doors being only $30 bucks?! can't go wrong! Also, I might be making a project thread for her.

    Here's a picture of her...whad'ya think?
    She looks fantastic!

    The price in scrap yards varies from region to region. Around here a door would be $100 minimum with a lot of places being more expensive.

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    cadillac kevin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mg-3 View Post
    It's also my first Cadillac, and she needs a lot, lot of love. So much so that she won't be seeing the road this year!

    It's also the first time I'm doing body work so it's a nice way to learn, knowing that if I screw things up really bad...a new door only cost $30. I'd say I'm fairly new at the whole self maintenance auto thing but if you don't try it, you'll never know if you could. Been to the scrap yard only once in my life and had a good time, though never had the chance to get a quote for items, but man...doors being only $30 bucks?! can't go wrong! Also, I might be making a project thread for her.

    Here's a picture of her...whad'ya think?

    <img src="http://www.cadillacforums.com/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=146370"/>
    I'm doing my own body work on my quarter panel on my 86....its been a learning experience for sure (now I know why body shops are expensive...this stuff is tedious and material is not cheap). Also, the long board (doing it by hand because I cannot justify an air board) is a great workout. So far, I'm about 170 dollars in in parts (and thats with really good quality parts/ materials). I am going to do everything myself except paint it.

    That is a very nice looking caddy btw. I'm betting it was repainted sometime in its life, so expect some issues when you sand down to fix the rust.

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    Re: Replacing/removing exterior chrome panel trim

    Quote Originally Posted by cadillac kevin View Post
    If you live up north, it will be harder to find rust free doors (it was hard enough in the midwest, granted I only visit 2 yards in town), but they are probably very common down south/ out west.
    I do. In the great White North...plenty of salt for everyone here!

    Quote Originally Posted by cadillac kevin View Post
    I pulled my quarter rocker chrome tonight and will post up a pic of what the clips look like that hold on the panel.
    Awesome! Tomorrows sunny so I'm planning to hit the pavement for a few hours. Would love to see these photos before anything!

    ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by j2rossit View Post
    The acorn nuts, on the inside of the doors, that hold the lower molding in place do break easily. nuts.
    Yea, I figure as much...they look like the kind that when fiddled with, do pass their threshold. It's the small things like this that I know will happen but what to do...so much rust! Bought lots of supplies today (Canadian Tire had no POR-15...what a surprise) but bought some other stuff.

    ----------

    Thanks for posting guys...Tomorrow I should have pictures of the damage done!

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    Buy alot of wire wheels. I use 5", 3" and 2" depending on amount of rust.

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    mg-3's Avatar
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    Thanks everyone, I put the words here into practise and came up with mediocre results; as would be explained by my lack of automotive skills and patience that the internet has taught me, it should work...now! Some rust removal and painting (without a primer) did in my opinion make it look worst than the rust! Haha

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    cadillac kevin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mg-3 View Post
    Thanks everyone, I put the words here into practise and came up with mediocre results; as would be explained by my lack of automotive skills and patience that the internet has taught me, it should work...now! Some rust removal and painting (without a primer) did in my opinion make it look worst than the rust! Haha
    You sand down the rust, sand down the body to the same level as the rust, seal it with rust converter, put putty over it to smooth it, sand the putty down so it is smooth, primer it and paint it.

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    mg-3's Avatar
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    Awesome, that theoretically sounds like it'll look a lot better! Defiantly what I'll do when I have the day free. Now, I gotta get to the rust into the under body, that's a huge thing I gotta take care of. I'm thinking this...

    1 sand rust
    2 apply rust converter
    3 slap on POR 15 (anyone know where go get some in Canada?)
    4 apply bed liner, very liberally

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    j2rossit is offline Cadillac Owners Enthusiast
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    Re: Replacing/removing exterior chrome panel trim

    Don't know about where to source anything but I can put the word out with the local Caddy guys. What part of Canada are you in?

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    cadillac kevin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mg-3 View Post
    Awesome, that theoretically sounds like it'll look a lot better! Defiantly what I'll do when I have the day free. Now, I gotta get to the rust into the under body, that's a huge thing I gotta take care of. I'm thinking this...

    1 sand rust
    2 apply rust converter
    3 slap on POR 15 (anyone know where go get some in Canada?)
    4 apply bed liner, very liberally
    Get a bunch of wire wheels....you'll need them

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    Re: Replacing/removing exterior chrome panel trim

    I used a wire wheel drill bit (cylinder shaped) to really get at the rust first and destroy all the flaky pieces.
    Then, I used a sander to get a nice finish with a rough grit or if the rust was really bad, I used a hard wheel (specifically built for paint/rust removal).
    I'm not too crazy about the quality of my work, as it's almost just a rough patch up job...so no pictures so show the glory.

    This is a lot more work than I imagined and I just didn't have the patience to do a good job. I think I'm going to look for new doors since the electronics (driver side) are not to my standard (not working, broken switches, and plain, really dirty).

    Looks like I'll be getting her ready for the winter...rust proofed or not.

    Quote Originally Posted by j2rossit View Post
    Don't know about where to source anything but I can put the word out with the local Caddy guys. What part of Canada are you in?
    I'm in Southern Ontario, specifically the GTA.

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