Author Topic: Exterior door handles  (Read 1016 times)

Wallington

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Exterior door handles
« on: September 29, 2021, 10:22:44 PM »
I posted this once before and was lost, still haven't discovered anything new since.

Does anyone know of a decent brand or supplier of the exterior door handles? I bought 3 different sets, different brands and suppliers and apart from a different spring plating on one set, appeared to be the same castings. And they were all cheap quality but not always cheap to purchase.

The other problem too is how do you compare cheap Taiwanese parts to the same parts elsewhere that are just overpriced and with their own part number? Half use the same stock photos, may help compare some but not much else.

They all sit too far out from the door shell, need the stop modified, and from what I've seen, the LH sides work with the GM plastic gaskets whereas the RH side has less clearance and fouls the gasket, doesn't need the hinge stop as sits on the plastic along handle top.

I've taken several detail comparison pics but haven't been home properly in weeks, too hard to post on phone. Either way, just see destroyed another RH handle trying to file clearance and the cheap chrome plating simply lifted and peeled. Worse still, had my own custom handle insert already in place, have to cut some more to suit new handle again.

So, any ideas? Had better results with any? I know where I got most of mine, although they could use different suppliers over the years, to not purchase same again but inadvertently still seem to. Postage costs as much as the handles here and no returns to swap and change mind.

I even checked the handles on my car, added when I got it nearly 20 years ago, yes they stick out a mile and the RH side is worse as also fouls the plastic gasket a lot more than the LH side. Possibly same castings still. Could leave gaskets off but also one way to see how they compare. Also, I think these all have the 6mm mounting studs, if there's a variation that is imperial it would indicate a different supplier perhaps.

Wallington

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Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #1 on: September 29, 2021, 10:43:02 PM »
Actually, checked again. The handles on my car, RH sticks out twice as much but both seem to close onto the plastic gasket. Can see marks in top when handle edge rubs. Can't see hinge stop while installed.

roadking77

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Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #2 on: September 30, 2021, 07:08:33 AM »
I think I responded the first time around that I would check. I will try to remember to do so. I have NOS on my black car but bought repros from rock auto for the 79. I can install the 79 now and see how they compare. I think dr. side NOS are gone from the vendors now, may find some on the bay or flea markets. The originals are priced about 10xs higher.
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FormTA

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Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #3 on: September 30, 2021, 11:50:57 AM »
Ya, I replied with pictures of the alterations I had to make to mine and the three differ after market handle I had were all different.  The worst were a set I got from NPD IIRC, but the best were also ones that came from NPD. There were 10 years between purchases and the must have changed suppliers. I don't remember though what was what.... that was lost with the site crash...
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Wallington

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Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #4 on: September 30, 2021, 07:59:41 PM »
Yes, I think I saved a photo or two of whoever modified the stop to make the handles close more. I thought I'd found a somewhat decent set this time around until test fitting a set of the GM gaskets and found they fouled up on one and made it obvious that they were not a mirrored set.
I'd also found variations in the length of the inlay decals, but I'm not sure how much variation occurs in casting, even of same item over many years.

Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #4 on: September 30, 2021, 07:59:41 PM »

Wallington

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Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #5 on: October 26, 2021, 04:03:42 PM »
I bought another pair of door handles, medium price but are very cheap in quality. As usual, they are branded to suit the seller but not their work. But they are a different casting to my previous 2 sets here. Not only with the casting numbers inside the handle, but various shapes of components that vary. There is a lot of flash around the top edge, and also have large casting ejection pins present that mean the GM plastic gasket is impossible to fit. One has the metal mounting bracket not bent up squarely on one end so that the handle sits unevenly, and will wear prematurely from angled hinge pin. So, try again.

Warren Seale

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Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #6 on: October 27, 2021, 06:50:06 AM »
Do any of the handles you bought have the GM Restoration Parts logo?  This is supposed to guarantee that the part will fit as originally designed.

https://www.npdlink.com/brand/GM-Restoration-Parts
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Wallington

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Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #7 on: October 27, 2021, 07:02:18 PM »
I doubt it, the recent few have just been on plain plastic packs, with the seller's name stuck over the label claiming it as their part. But slowly I'm recording different types with different casting info and stock photos used to be able to tell if I've purchased same already and what to expect from them. Seller offered a refund but return shipping isn't worth the trouble, they got a better deal then I would sending it back.

Wallington

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Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #8 on: November 02, 2021, 06:51:39 AM »
I had another set arrive today. Very poor quality, again but we're also cheap prior to the expensive shipping. The main reason to check them out was that the part number or code used appears to be used by several sellers of either cheap or somewhat expensive sets. Glad I found out with the cheap set.

Usual story, a lot of pot metal flash on the back and not even cleaned up prior to plating, so poor quality, not quality control. I doubt they clean the flash on any sets. And a mounting plate that is not parallel to handle, has a tapered twist when shut. The gap means a GM plastic gasket unlikely to fit again. I didn't even open the sealed packet to tell this. Now to waste money on a few more sets.

FormTA

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Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #9 on: November 02, 2021, 08:47:54 AM »
I appreciate you being the self guinea pig here. It's crazy how many different ones there are out there unlike other parts where there is one manufacturer with different banding.
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Wallington

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Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #10 on: November 02, 2021, 09:17:58 PM »
I made a closer inspection, the last 2 sets are the same type, same castings and numbers inside them, but have different part numbers and labels, not just the sellers listing as their brand. I'll record some details which should probably identify half the handles out there. Yet to find the 'good' ones. Price isn't an indication so far.
« Last Edit: November 03, 2021, 03:49:59 PM by Wallington »

Wallington

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Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #11 on: November 04, 2021, 09:46:05 PM »
Looking at stock photos of OER brand handles, they appear to have the same casting detail marks and patterns behind the handles as my cheap (rubbish) sets here. Assuming the stock photos are accurate. So same factory again and price seems to be similar.

But then looking at Classic Industries page, they have OER for 17 bucks ea, and then a non-branded one discounted from 170 to 150, for one. It doesn't claim to be NOS.


Edited update although mainly for my own use as I'm not sure anyone cares!

The Classic Industries handle is actually NOS GM, they just don't like to mention either, even giving it their own part number. WTF...?

I also noticed at least one of the cheap and nasty handle sets I have shows a picture of the handle back and it is devoid of any casting details, part numbers or Made in Taiwan information, which it clearly has. This is half the reason I bought them, thinking they were at least a different set to the one that had that casting. It's also a case of trying to mislead buyers, hiding the actual handles being purchased and where made, although can assume safely.

Not sure if this link will work, but one of the edited photos showing plain handle backs.

https://i.ebayimg.com/images/g/8lIAAOSwApxhJz86/s-l1600.jpg

Does anyone have an OER branded set? Either in packet or on car? I wanted to see if they also had the casting details saying Made in Taiwan and GM3040.
« Last Edit: November 06, 2021, 01:08:01 AM by Wallington »

wheels78ta

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Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #12 on: November 07, 2021, 04:05:15 PM »
If no one has the OER handles then I'm going to get them from Classic Industries and see if they are anything close to originals.  I'll keep an eye on this thread to see if anyone has OER before I buy them from CI.

If the OER are junk then I'll have my originals rechromed.
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Wallington

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Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #13 on: November 07, 2021, 06:27:05 PM »
Thanks, would be good to know regardless and the casting numbers should at least tell if same as others or not. They are probably fine, but also good to know if there's an option that's perhaps more expensive but also for a reason. At present, you don't know what you are getting and you don't know if you are getting a good deal or not. Although many are cheap and around the same price, more referring to those that aren't, but are still the same items.

roadking77

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Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #14 on: November 08, 2021, 07:05:05 AM »
I think I have said before but I will make a sticky to remind myself. I have a repro set and will check them against the ones I put on my 77. For the 77 I bought NOS (and paid out of the nose for them  :shock:). I get most of my stuff from Ames, and I am pretty sure they are out of NOS at this point but may be worth a call. The set I got for my 79 came from Rock Auto ( I think) and were something like $15 compared to $75 I paid for nos.
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77 T/A - I will Call this one DONE!
79 TATA 4sp-Next Project?
79 TATA - Lost to Fire!
86 Grand Prix - Sold
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Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #14 on: November 08, 2021, 07:05:05 AM »

Wallington

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Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #15 on: November 11, 2021, 11:04:57 PM »
I have a couple of saved NOS handles fitted photos to show how much they stick out, but without the gaskets. Was that your car? It was someone on here not that long ago. Seems very few of the reproductions even allow the gaskets to fit and those that do see the handles close onto them instead of the cast stops in the mechanism. The set I have on my car currently, unknown brand from 15 yrs ago, is currently like this, RH worse than LH which seems common for nearly ever issue the handles have. This also creates the effect of the handles sticking out more, and sitting at a slight angle.
I haven't purchased any further door handle sets to compare yet, apparently rent is more important. 42 is a great age for a career change, but only those with support and dreams.

wheels78ta

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Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #16 on: November 12, 2021, 03:29:11 PM »
GM vs OER fitment

This is GM.  Door handle sits pretty flat. 

« Last Edit: November 12, 2021, 03:37:57 PM by wheels78ta »
1978 Gold Y88 SE 4 spd WS6 project
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wheels78ta

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Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #17 on: November 12, 2021, 03:31:01 PM »
This is OER......Door handle looks like it is partially open.  Not bad but not as flat as GM.

« Last Edit: November 12, 2021, 03:39:27 PM by wheels78ta »
1978 Gold Y88 SE 4 spd WS6 project
1987 K5 Blazer---The Crawler
2006 Chevy Silverado Z71----Hers
2005 Chevy Suburban 2500---The Hauler

wheels78ta

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Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #18 on: November 12, 2021, 03:32:52 PM »
The OER has a smaller gap where the handle closes against the gasket.  I might trim it down to match the GM and see if that makes a difference. 
« Last Edit: November 12, 2021, 03:40:24 PM by wheels78ta »
1978 Gold Y88 SE 4 spd WS6 project
1987 K5 Blazer---The Crawler
2006 Chevy Silverado Z71----Hers
2005 Chevy Suburban 2500---The Hauler

wheels78ta

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Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #19 on: November 12, 2021, 03:36:42 PM »
Here are the castings......

GM does not have any type of casting marks on the center section of the door handle.  It only has castings on both corners.

OER has part number and "made in" casting in the center section.  And a casting mark in each corner.

1978 Gold Y88 SE 4 spd WS6 project
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2006 Chevy Silverado Z71----Hers
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Wallington

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Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #20 on: November 12, 2021, 07:45:03 PM »
Brilliant! And those doors are much easier to take comparison photos on. My glossy black doors, and saved similar pics, are hard to tell what you are looking at, plus the reflection or dark paint with shadows.

Yes, confirms what I said about the OER being the same casting and part numbers as other non-brands if you wanted to search the number. But they are cheap so not really any groundbreaking discovery or savings to be had.

Likewise, when I said the repros sit slightly lifted as they hit on the plastic gasket prior to the stops. Do your pics both have gaskets installed? I only have NOS gaskets, or so they said when purchased, not sure the repro gaskets fit any differently, would have to be super thin perhaps as you can see the limited clearance.

One of the other guys on here ground a little out of the stop to make their repros sit down more with the door (Kerry?) but would only work if not already hitting the gasket, or not using one, which may have been the case.

On all 3 sets I have that are likely the same castings, the RH side has been worse, one really bad, mainly due to the steel mounting bracket not being bent up square. This was more obvious looking at the gap along the handle top that was double that of the other end. It may have been a rare case but would look crooked on door, and wear prematurely as the hinge pin was also crooked and being forced to pivot on it each time.

The other main issue was flashing on the castings, the rear edge. They simply hadn't been cleaned up prior to chroming and couldn't be filed off to help. I tried that and peeled the chrome on one of my better sets. It's hard to sell parts and make you money back when you honestly tell them how bad they are, plus the shipping, plus where damaged. They claim the costs are ridiculous It makes them go any buy new elsewhere at higher cost, and end up with an identical set.
« Last Edit: November 12, 2021, 07:48:57 PM by Wallington »

Wallington

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Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #21 on: November 12, 2021, 07:56:45 PM »
Oh, can see the gaskets on larger pics when opened.

Be careful if you try to file the back clearance down. That's what I did and lead me to need new handles in the first place. Same issue, wavy flash and would hit on gasket. I tried filing over the handle but still managed to catch it somehow when nearly done it it lifted the chrome into a patch, it was replying on the flash and rough corner to bond and not the casting surface, very cheap chrome.

Another set variation I've seen occasionally and had a few years ago is one that has a large cast CP on the inside end and LH or RH on the other end. It possibly has the single word Taiwan in the centre but my saved photos at the time don't show it. I believe my set were by MCI in a red box and sold through F-Body Warehouse. They now stock the usual brand instead. And my memory of them were that they were 'good' but one had a nick in the chrome right on top out of the box, so I resold them. They were about twice the price of others at the time so expected better quality but couldn't confirm. I've seen the CP casting on a few others recently but wasn't taking details at that time, so they are still out there, but also don't recall if ever tested with gasket.
« Last Edit: November 12, 2021, 08:05:35 PM by Wallington »

wheels78ta

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Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #22 on: November 12, 2021, 11:38:16 PM »
Both were tested using the original GM gasket.

My original GM handles are in really good shape so I'm going to work with the OER handles and see if I can make them fit like GM.  If for some odd reason or things out of my control....If I screw up the OER handles then I guess lesson learned and it only cost me $36 to find out.  But I'll take my time and try to make a great fit and have some new shiny handles.

I will post up when finished.

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FormTA

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Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #23 on: November 16, 2021, 09:56:31 AM »
I ground down the casting in spots to try to get the repository to sti better. I also have the gaskets installed. I'll see if I can dig up the pictures.

Here is a spot I ground out.








On a side note, I had to weld some nuts to the rod to take up the slack on the handle when opening the door. It helps ot engage sooner.





Another GM original.



My other pictures mush have got lost to PB....

The handles I used were OER but from 20 years ago and are not like what they stock now. I ordered a set (as I forgot I had these) and they are completely different. Even the latch rod hole was in a different place...


79 Trans am low buck LS swapped
79 Formula 301 (Work in progress)
67 RS Camaro (This one is next)


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Wallington

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Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #24 on: November 16, 2021, 07:32:10 PM »
Thanks for those also. I had some similar pics saved before, may have been yours of you had posted them previously.

And I think my current door handles also have nylon bushes pushed onto the rods to take up the slack, and circlips added to the hinge for any slop! But not to the extent of yours with welded nuts. Will have to compare my different handle castings to see if they differ in the arm length.

I'll try a few handle swaps in the doors with gaskets as well, but a lot of effort at present, just for a boredom cure! They aren't the easiest things to access just for kicks.
« Last Edit: November 26, 2021, 12:20:41 AM by Wallington »

Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #24 on: November 16, 2021, 07:32:10 PM »

firebirdparts

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Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #25 on: November 18, 2021, 03:26:48 PM »
I ground down the casting in spots to try to get the repository to sti better. I also have the gaskets installed. I'll see if I can dig up the pictures.

Here is a spot I ground out.








On a side note, I had to weld some nuts to the rod to take up the slack on the handle when opening the door. It helps ot engage sooner.





Another GM original.



My other pictures mush have got lost to PB....

The handles I used were OER but from 20 years ago and are not like what they stock now. I ordered a set (as I forgot I had these) and they are completely different. Even the latch rod hole was in a different place...
Nice work on these.
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Wallington

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Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #26 on: November 23, 2021, 07:07:50 AM »
Ok, I have my hands on what is the nicest set of door handles yet, of about 6 sets. The chrome is perfect, the flash is non-existent, the brackets are bent square and there is no biased tilt towards the arm end of the handle having the larger gap that seems standard on all so far to some extent.

The problem is, I don't know what brand they are! Ok, the packets carry the same part numbers as OER handles (K357/K358), but they are not the same castings as above with the OER set and are not OER brand. So that could also mean several different suppliers are used to create the 'same' handle and use the same part number, even if for several brands.

I believe these are the same casting as currently on my car, except one of those has a slight twist towards the arm end as many do. I even tested both sides with the NOS GM gaskets and they both fit and still touched the hinge stops and not the plastic, another rarity with others, if the gasket fit on at all.

I'll add a few pics later as not home, but also makes me wonder if I bought several sets of same, how many would be perfect and how many I'd have rated poorly. And would I get all matching castings, possibly if they were same batch but 6 months later be another. Just potmetal pot luck!


Warren Seale

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Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #27 on: November 23, 2021, 09:49:37 AM »
Ok, I have my hands on what is the nicest set of door handles yet, of about 6 sets. The chrome is perfect, the flash is non-existent, the brackets are bent square and there is no biased tilt towards the arm end of the handle having the larger gap that seems standard on all so far to some extent.

The problem is, I don't know what brand they are! Ok, the packets carry the same part numbers as OER handles (K357/K358), but they are not the same castings as above with the OER set and are not OER brand. So that could also mean several different suppliers are used to create the 'same' handle and use the same part number, even if for several brands.

I believe these are the same casting as currently on my car, except one of those has a slight twist towards the arm end as many do. I even tested both sides with the NOS GM gaskets and they both fit and still touched the hinge stops and not the plastic, another rarity with others, if the gasket fit on at all.

I'll add a few pics later as not home, but also makes me wonder if I bought several sets of same, how many would be perfect and how many I'd have rated poorly. And would I get all matching castings, possibly if they were same batch but 6 months later be another. Just potmetal pot luck!

Who is the vendor?
79 T/A,WS6,403,A3
96 T/A,WS6(#1344),M6
72 442,W30,A3
96 Vette Grand Sport convertible (#713),F45,LT4,M6
13 427 Vette convertible (#1425),Z30/Z25,M6

Wallington

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Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #28 on: November 24, 2021, 06:31:42 AM »
Pontiworld, in Australia. Thought I'd try locally, ironically, although 3x the price and risk getting same cheap and nasty handles again. But these seem as good as I've seen out of my vast collection of Taiwanese handles! Also like most, they are a tad rattly when not hooked up, will add a few circlips to take up the slack. What else do you do.

Wallington

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Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #29 on: December 03, 2021, 10:56:13 PM »
So I had to return a handle after discovering the threaded studs on one were damaged. I really should have just repaired it but was requested to return. As expected, that in itself was a massive drama as returns always are with PW. I had to pay shipping both ways to replace a faulty item and the replacement was a completely different casting and nowhere near the quality sent back. This one has typical twisted mount and can tell without testing that a gasket won't fit. I could have bought 4 pairs of these with shipping from the US for the cost of this set which has one handle that is in condition to use. So after a complete waste of a thread all it says is that cheap and expensive handles are all the same, you won't know which castings you get in same packets but the odds are that you'll get many duds before a good one. And no one wants to buy your duds.

Re: Exterior door handles
« Reply #29 on: December 03, 2021, 10:56:13 PM »
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