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ROCKER PANEL RUSTED OUT - 97 expl

tobybul

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1997 XLT
I know this is a common topic here and have looked thru the threads. My main question is where to get the replacement rocker panel for a 4 door. I went to LMC website but a bit confusing on the part description. And I can't tell how much rocker panel sheet metal comes with it so I know how much to cut out.

Anyone order from LMC?
 
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FIND

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Ebay is cheaper. I used a set from ebay on my old 92.
 
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99SportX

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I wouldn't cut anything until you have the replacements. You will be able to get the fit just right.
 
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tobybul

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I wouldn't cut anything until you have the replacements. You will be able to get the fit just right.

Agreed... just started the process... removed moulding and tapped off the rust to get it ready. I did order it from LMC. Looks like for a 4 door all they offer is a "slip-on". But it is made to be welded. eBay was not any cheaper.

Its amazing how much rust there was. Hardly anything left on the metal. Was this a defect on Ford's part?
 
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Blue01Sport

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I ordered mine from Raybuck. Mine are for a 2 door but I'm very happy with the quality and shipping.

Here is their URL: http://raybuck.com/

They sell them for 4 doors also.
 
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tobybul

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tobybul

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Joe Dirt

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Cutting wheel would be the least invasive I think, less flapping around of unsupported panels like you may get with a sawzall blade...
 
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tobybul

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Cutting wheel would be the least invasive I think, less flapping around of unsupported panels like you may get with a sawzall blade...

Thanks, Joe.... agreed. Hey, I just realized I'm only 30 min from you in GR.:D
 
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Joe Dirt

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I'm sitting in GR right now, avoiding work. :D
 
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DominicanX

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Sweet! This thread popped up just in time. Thanks guys!
 
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Joe Dirt

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Glad my idle chatter and work avoidance could help! lol!
 
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tobybul

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Has anyone used a pneumatic nibbler to cut body panels like the rocker? Does it work ok? I was thinking about getting the Harbor Freight unit today to try. On sale for $25. Since this is the only time I will be using it I figure its a cheap route.


I started using my pneumatic cutting wheel but its taking too long.... trying to find other options.
 
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lounge lizard

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1997 xlt awd
the harbor freight air nibbler is nice. I have one myself.
use plenty of lube to keep the blades cutting

if there are slight bends it may get hung up some and it can be a pain at times but it should work well for this job
 
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tobybul

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the harbor freight air nibbler is nice. I have one myself.
use plenty of lube to keep the blades cutting

if there are slight bends it may get hung up some and it can be a pain at times but it should work well for this job

Thanks. Good to know. Sounds like the bit help up well then? I heard HB does not sell the bits.

I'm guessing you need to drill a starter hole?

When you say 'lube' do you mean lubing the blades or the air part of the tool?
 
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lounge lizard

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they do sell replacement parts for the nibbler. I bought a set when I picked up mine.

lube the metal where you are cutting as well to keep the punch sharpe as it nibbles the metal away.
 
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tobybul

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This high speed saw worked very well too, Cut thru the panel with ease.

Just wondered, theres another layer of metal underneath the rocker. Is that part of the rocker? Its pretty rusted out too. And the upper layer (rocker) seems to be sticking to the piece underneath on the part right behind the door.

Is that a structural piece? Should all that be removed?
 
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tobybul

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I've paused in the work of replacing the rocker panels right now due to lack of time. But I'll be continuing in a few days. I've only cut about 20% of the drivers side.

Can someone tell me what you did in the spots where the inner rocker butt up to the outer rocker like on the C-Pillar? Also, where the rockers come together on the upper part of the rocker along the entrances to the truck. How did you separate them?

Thanks
 
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sport97

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I cut most of my inner rocker out and replaced it as well. I bought a sheet of decently heavy gauged galvanized steel and cut it to fit and used it. Then again, I had to because I had almost no inner rocker left.
 
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