Jim’s Blog: Snowballs in Spring

If there’s ever a time for a car project to snowball out of control, it’s right now.

We’ve all been there. Sometimes it’s as simple as a carb adjustment turned rebuild. Other times it’s a tune-up that turns into a top-end rebuild. Or maybe it’s that one little section of rust repair that becomes a complete body and paint job. Could we leave well enough alone? Sure, but where’s the fun in that?

Last week, I mentioned that I was thinking of readjusting the passenger’s front fender of my C10 to better align with the door. The gap was more or less OK (which is about as good as you can expect with any 1973–87 C10), but the trim line was low on the fender compared with the door. So this past weekend, I adjusted the fender up to get the side trim level with the door trim.

But, as you might have guessed, that caused other problems. Now the gap between the fender and door is too wide. but the line that runs from the fender up into the cab is right on the money. I could bring the fender back to compensate, but after studying everything, I figured out that the real fix here is to slide the door forward a little bit.

To bring the door forward, I have to remove the fender completely, because the bolts that handle that adjustment are out of reach with the fender in place. There’s also one bolt in the upper hinge that’s inside of the cab that requires removal of some interior components, including some of the a/c vents (depending on what side you’re working on).

To get the fender off, you also should remove the hood. And the front bumper. See where this is going?

I could just leave well enough alone here and drive the truck as-is, but the devil’s really in the details on stuff like this, and time is in on my side right now with no car (or truck) events going on in the near future. 

Whatever your project is right now, it makes sense to take the time to make it right. Or in the case of GM truck panel gaps, as right as they can be. 

Plus, that driver’s side door looks a little low, too….

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  1. Jim –
    Once upon a time I had a nice little Ford Falcon sedan delivery, a pretty rare bird, only 650-some having been produced. To make it handle a little better I had a Mustang II front suspension installed. Could’ve left well enough alone, but added a four link rear with coil overs & rear disks. Could’ve stopped there but added a 347 stroker with an AOD trans. Should’ve stopped there, but she needed some paint & body work. Then the interior was looking a little shabby in comparison to the rest of the car……. Long story short, my snowball turned into an avalanche. Five year and six figures later I have a beautiful car that I can’t take to any shows because there aren’t any, thank you Corona virus. The moral is, you can’t stop when you’re ahead because you can never get ahead.