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Anyone ever had the door hinge plate fall down inside the A pillar?

broncobuddha

Jr. Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2007
Messages
119
73' Bronco.

I've had the top and the doors off for 3 or 4 years now. (even through winters).

Decided I wanted to put everything back on this winter and forgot about this little issue. (Got the top back on today)

When I initially removed the doors, I put the body side hinge bolts back in so I wouldn't lose them. Never noticed it before, but the lower side, driver's door hinge plate appears to have fallen.

Is there a way to fish it out without ripping fenders and stuff off? Or is it likely gone.

If it's not retrievable (the a pillars actually appear to be in decent shape) can the hinge be welded to the pillar? I'm thinking of getting some quick disconnect hinges since I like to take the doors off.

Thanks.
 

ared77

Contributor
Bronco Guru
Joined
Apr 21, 2013
Messages
2,484
Would one of those flexible rods with a strong magnet on the end fish it back up?
 
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broncobuddha

broncobuddha

Jr. Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2007
Messages
119
I was gonna see if I had one or a wire coat hanger.

I assume the little pockets that hold these plates in place are visible if the fender is removed? Not that I really want to do that.

I'd probably try welding the lower hinge bracket on before doing that. Though welding it on would not allow further shimming if needed so I getting the backing plate would be preferable.
 
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EPB72

Contributor
Sr. Member
Joined
Jul 13, 2019
Messages
676
Loc.
Pleasant Hill, CA
I assume the little pockets that hold these plates in place are visible if the fender is removed? Not that I really want to do that.

If you pull the fender all you will see is the front side of the door pillar you would still have to cut a hole in that area to have access to the blind cavity ..
 
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broncobuddha

broncobuddha

Jr. Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2007
Messages
119
Ah, got it. I'm going to peek behind the fender and see what kind of rot I have. I'm assuming the tab the holds these in place rusted off.

Sent from my Pixel 4 XL using Tapatalk
 
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broncobuddha

broncobuddha

Jr. Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2007
Messages
119
Interesting. So for mine to have fallen down, at minimum, that bottom shelf must be gone.

Sent from my Pixel 4 XL using Tapatalk
 

Yooper74

Contributor
Full Member
Joined
Aug 13, 2020
Messages
312
I had to replace 2 of mine as the threads were all stripped out.

Here's what I did to get the new ones in

IMG_3462.jpg
 
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broncobuddha

broncobuddha

Jr. Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2007
Messages
119
Nice, Yooper. No point in cutting out that decent metal.

For something the factory didn't consider to be a serviceable item they should have been tacked in at minimum.

Sent from my Pixel 4 XL using Tapatalk
 

mp

Contributor
Bronco Guru
Joined
Dec 22, 2001
Messages
2,909
Loc.
Austin, TX
Nice, Yooper. No point in cutting out that decent metal.

For something the factory didn't consider to be a serviceable item they should have been tacked in at minimum.

Sent from my Pixel 4 XL using Tapatalk

They were designed to float, for door gap adjustability. If they were tacked in, the adjustability would be lost.
 
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broncobuddha

broncobuddha

Jr. Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2007
Messages
119
Ah. I figured all of the adjustability would be on the outside but it makes sense.

Sent from my Pixel 4 XL using Tapatalk
 
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broncobuddha

broncobuddha

Jr. Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2007
Messages
119
So I checked and the front and back of both A pillars are solid. There's holes at the bottom. Is that rot or were they there to let any water drip out?

Regardless, on the driver's side if I stick my finger up from the bottom I can feel the plate. I might be able to push it up while trying to grab it from above.

Sent from my Pixel 4 XL using Tapatalk
 

75MIKE

Contributor
Sr. Member
Joined
Aug 22, 2001
Messages
954
Loc.
NE Washington
So I checked and the front and back of both A pillars are solid. There's holes at the bottom. Is that rot or were they there to let any water drip out?

Regardless, on the driver's side if I stick my finger up from the bottom I can feel the plate. I might be able to push it up while trying to grab it from above.

Sent from my Pixel 4 XL using Tapatalk

It's rot.
 

pcf_mark

Bronco Guru
Joined
Jun 11, 2010
Messages
3,439
This is pure torture but you can fish it back up. I had my top one fall down. I used mangled coat hangers get it into a decent spot. Then I threaded a stud into it so I had a handle to work with. It took hours but the stud made it easy to hold on to. Then I put the door back on over the stud with a nut. Then I lined up the other holes put bolts in them. Then I took the stud out and put that last bolt in. I just have to remember some day if I ever take the door off!

FYI magnets suck because they stick to everything everywhere in the pocket.
 
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broncobuddha

broncobuddha

Jr. Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2007
Messages
119
Thanks guys. I've got a quick release hing set en route from Tom's.

I plan on trying to fish it back up today. My other fun issue is on the passenger side where the top backing plate has one bolt in it and two snapped off bolts that I'll have to drill out. Fun.

Sent from my Pixel 4 XL using Tapatalk
 
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broncobuddha

broncobuddha

Jr. Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2007
Messages
119
Got it.

Used an extendable magnet to push it up, then I hooked an allen wrench into it to hold it while I got a bolt started.

c5a9fba6d799c363caba602c8996d0ae.jpg


Sent from my Pixel 4 XL using Tapatalk
 
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