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El Camino and Chevelle Door Panels - Knock, Knock

How to re-skin a set of '68-72 El Camino/Chevelle door panels.

May 7, 2012
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Interiors see a lot of use and are subject to more wear and tear than you might think. While you may believe that if it doesn't get touched it won't wear out, unfortunately, that is not the reality of the situation. Even if we, as owners, keep our grubby paws off of the material, the sun and time will degrade just about any vinyl, leather, cloth, or the like. That's just the elements, If you add in the stuff we do by just getting in and out or driving the car, you can start to see why interiors eventually die.

We have done stories on how to refurbish bucket seats and headliners, and now it's time to take on door panels. Camaros and the early Chevelles ('64-67) have a door panel that stuffs up into a chrome strip and can basically be installed without much prep-work. When you look at the Impala or later Chevelles the door panels come all the way up the door to meet the window, so there is a some pre-assembly that needs to be done before you can hang them on the car.

The aftermarket offers the flat part of the door panel and then it is up to you or an upholstery shop to take out the metal piece from the stock door panel and transfer it to the new stuff. Then, a couple of years ago preassembled and ready to go door panels were offered. These cost about $54 more than the unassembled units. So we set out to show you how to do it all.

In this story we are going to tackle the harder of the two options: the non-assembled door panel. Once we have our panel assembled, we'll show the proper way to get it back on the car. This is where the assembled door panel customer can pick up and follow along. When we're all done, you can decide which route is better for your budget, skill set, and time frame.

We looked to Original Parts Group (OPGI) for all our parts. All the pieces are reproduced to OE specs. The panels have the correct die electric pleats, the seals have the right amount of fuzzy, the clips are the right shape, and the handles are nice and shiny.

Part Part Number Price
Door Panel Restoration Kit EK69BK 226.98
Door Panels Black In Kit
Water Shields In Kit
Armrest bases In Kit
Armrest pads In Kit
Screw and clip kit In Kit
Armrest Base Screw Kit PP0225 12.98
Window felts WF05131 56.95
Door Handle kit CH20015-PR 34.95
Window Crank Handle Kit PZ00575-PR 20.95
Vent Window Crank Handle Kit C220041-PR 27.95
Window Crank Washers(Foam) M240070 9.95
Door Handle Washers (Plastic) CH7732 6.95
Window Handle Springs PP02502 11.90
Door Panel Mounting Plug Set CH25223 22.99
Total $432.55


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