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1968 Buick Riviera right lower door patch and vinyl roof


McP

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Anyone out there know where I can find a patch for the lower right side door on my 1968 Buick Riviera? The rest of the car is in good condition but there is rust on the front and rear lower portion of the passenger door. I found the car in a storage building and have slowly been upgrading it to be an summer driver. I also have some rust under the vinyl roof and have been thinking of stripping the old one off and cleaning up the rust then putting on new vinyl. Has anyone had any experience in that area? I've been searching for a patch but with no luck.

Thanks,

McP

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Patch panels are not usually available for anything other than the likes of Chevelles, Mustangs, and Mopar stuff.  Your best bet might be to contact one of the desert salvage yards and see if they can't cut you a piece.  CTC Auto Ranch in Denton, TX, or Desert Valley Auto Parts, Phoenix, AZ.

 

Repairing rust under a vinyl top is something any body shop can handle.  Finding an upholstery shop that still knows how to install a vinyl top correctly will be more of a challenge but not impossible. Probably depends on how big of a city you live in.

 

Keep us posted.

 

PS - it's easier to help you if you let us know where you live. You may be close to someone with what you need but they'll never know it.

Edited by RivNut
PS (see edit history)
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Hi and welcome to the forum. There are no prefab patch panels available. The good thing about the lower door section is it flat on the outside so old metal can be cut out and new metal fabricated from flat sheet stock. Often rust in this area will migrate to the inside of door adjacent the rust on the outside where there are many contours. This is more difficult to repair depending how bad it is but again metal can be cut out and new pieces fab'ed and welded in. Be prepared to find a bigger problem than anticipated when you start grinding away on the door and under the vinyl top.    

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Thanks folks. I live in Gaylord, MI if that helps. I have a body man who will cut out the rust and weld in fresh metal to work from. I am going to strip the vinyl roof once the weather gets warmer and tackle that. Hey, my theory is that it can't look any worse than it does now. Thanks for all of your suggestions.

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 Welcome to the wonderful world of Riviera !

Both common problems on 2nd gen cars, as well as others. 

Those big, heavy doors have three thicknesses of unprotected spot welded metal in the lower hinge area on both sides.

Over time, accumulated dust/dirt and moisture take their toll on the unprotected metal.

Lower front fenders are another source of potential rusting.

Vinyl tops are also prone to bubbling/rusting as the vinyl ages.

Once the vinyl ages, and dries out with exposure to sun, it causes the vinyl to dry out, and crack.  This allows moisture to seep under the vinyl top.

As long as the rust damage is not too severe, rust damage can be repaired and new vinyl top can be applied.

My restoration involved  removing my vinyl top to eliminate potential problems.

Good luck with your  '68 restoration !

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