Jump to content

521- best way to remove tailgate?

Recommended Posts

As stated in my MA inspection sucks thread, I failed today because I have a rusty tailgate. I have another to put on, but what is the best way to get the old one off?


No bolts and they crimped the end of the hinge tubes. Any tricks? Or just stick something like a punch in the hole and beat the shit out of it till the pin comes out the other side?


I can't get the BFH in theere so it looks like a smaller hammer will have to do.

Link to comment
  • Replies 13
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Top Posters In This Topic

Update- Once the pbBlaster set in it was pretty easy to hammer the pins out with a bolt stuck in the hole.


NEw tailgate on! THough it needs paint!

Link to comment

Not as simple as you'd think! The hinges did not line up with the new gate.


I had to use a cut off wheel and remove a 1/4 inch of tubing from both the hinge halves on the gate in order to shift it to the right so it would close. Kinda weird they were not the same at all. But it is on there now so all is good!

Link to comment
  • 2 years later...
  • 5 months later...

I just ordered some drill rod from McMaster Carr. The spec is, Tool Steel Rod, Letter Size O, .316" Diameter, 3 feet length.


The stock pin diameter is .317 inches and the stock length is 4.543 inches. This drill rod comes in 3 foot lengths so if I make the pins 4.5 inches exactly, I should be able to make 8 pins from each drill rod. Then again this is RATSUN so...I can probably just spit on the drill rod and cut where the wet spot is.


Seriously, these aren't particularly expensive. Depending how much it costs me to get them cut, I'll sell the extra pins in sets of two. Message me if you need a pair (of tailgate hinge pins).



Link to comment
  • 2 weeks later...

I guess part of your question... you answered. That doesn't sound like the hot-set-up to me. Maybe it was the best way to get it off... but it that didn't seem to help out on the re-hang.


Are you kiddin' me you cut the hinge knuckles off?? You also didn't know or think to drill the crimps out of the hinge, and hammer a drift pin on the side you can swing on?


I have hung, built, remodeled, repaired and fucked with everything using a hinge that could be construed as a door or gate... from garage doors to fire doors, to 20' tall wooden bi-fold hanger doors. I thought I knew every trick to doctoring hinges and doors that there was, and invented a few of my own. Many, many expensive lessons, wasting time, energy, knuckle skin, materials and patience. But isn't that how we really learn anything.


When I removed the hooks and handles off my 620 tailgate I had some of the same problems you encountered, but I needed this thing to be swinging in the same plane as the bed opening, touch the latch point at the same time and have the margins in the opening perfect. It was a bitch to get it dialed in.


On the assembly line they must have had a complete tailgate assembly including the hinge installed on the gate. Then it would be too easy for a mindless worker bee to shoot six, hex head shouldered bolts into the bed. Next.


I never would have tried to pull the pins, because I know better. When I re-hang expensive entry doors to existing jams, I set the hinges on the jamb, shim the door into the opening so that the margins are precise, then mark the location of the hinge mortises on the door. I never take the pin out of hinge sets until the door is hung.


The odds that two different tailgates that have been sat on, and bent to shit, would line up are nil. I would have hosed PB Blast on there and let it cook for a day, then break the bolts off the bed, leaving the hinge with the gate. Maybe a dozen tailgates I have messed with, the only time I twisted a bolt of was on my 620. I didn't use any oil or anything after 35 years and it just sheared off with no effort. I drilled it and hit it with an easy-out no problem. The other five were rusty, dirty but came right out... it was the last bolt of course.


After I got done fabricating my new tailgate. I cleaned all the hinge bolt holes with a tap, oiled, then finger tightened both sides of the hinge. I realized that even though the holes in the hinge are sloppy big, I still couldn't get it lined up right. I ended up reaming out ovals on both sides of the hinge, so I could slide the gate to where the margins lined up... then crank down on the bolts.


I have had remodel situations where I had to locate the hinges on the door side first or the jamb side first, but I am so anal that I mark the pins so they go back into same hole if I have to split them to pop the door off.


When I pulled my truck all apart for paint, my doors were rusted and dented. I found a cream-puff 620 and stripped the nice doors off it and restored them. When I went to hang them back on the cab, the passenger door was a snap, it lined right up and closes perfectly in ten minutes. The driver door was so out to lunch that it took me two solid days to doctor the hinge... actually bend the leafs to change location of the pins in relation to the latch... then bore out the hinge holes big time to get the door to line up, be in a plane and operate the latch right. What a bitch, and the whole time I knew exactly what was preventing it from closing and lining up... I just couldn't believer how much surgery I had to do and how long it look.


There are so many times every day where jump to conclusions and in my haste to complete a task, I make more work for myself.

My first thought was to bend the door as an easy way out... I had to take a deep breath, and leave... come back when I had patience and beat the shit outta the hinges!


My EX used to say, " If there is and easy way or a hard way... I will always take the hard way."


The trick is not figuring out how to solve a problem... it's when you do find a slick solution... you can actually remember it, so the next time you know what you are doing. On that.

Link to comment

On a 521, the hinges on the tailgate, and the body are welded on.

I believe the 521 trucks were spot welded together by humans, and not pre programmed robots. If the assembly instructions called for five spot welds in two pieces of sheet metal, they got five spot welds, where ever the worker thought they should go.

Link to comment

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.