tail gates, long and lots of pictures

by Ted Jensen

Hey guys here is something that may help some. As you all are aware we are driving or restoring trucks that are over 50 years old in most cases. What we often find is that the elements have had ample opportunity to weaken and destroy parts that are expensive and sometimes hard to find. Now that I have a digital camera more pictures are taken and it is even easier to share. I hope no one gets tired of this input.
Most of the tail gates on the trucks that have come to my shop are in some way compromised. they are bent, dented and even rusted or greatly destressed in the hinge points. Often the part that attaches to the box is worn or rusted away. What follows is a discription of a fix that I have done now to three trucks.
Usually the ends of the tail gate where they fit the truck hinge point is expanded and fits loosly. I have found that by using the left over bearings from Champion, Commander or V8 waterpumps for the hinge is a great fix and makes for a very smooth operation of the tail gate. (i really do believe in recycling)
first here are the parts needed
You will need to cut the round end plate so only two screw holes are left. They are almost the exact spacing necessary. Only one time have I needed to enlarge a hole on the box and that was because of damage.

Press the end plate on the short end of the bearing.
Then press it into the tail gate. This tail gate is from Mac's in Moberly Missouri. They probably supply most of the Studebaker venders, but when I lived in Missouri I picked this one up as they were right out my back door. Mac's tail gates fit the bearings perfactly. These gates feel heavier than OEM and the lettering is a little different. Will show that later.

attached it will look like this
It fits nice and moves real smoth.

As for the Mac's Gate perhaps this photo will give some of the details. It is a Nice gate.
Unless I have a set of good hinges and a gate that will fit them that is how I have been taking a worn, bent and otherwise distorted hinge point and making it look and feel good. Ted

Posted on May 14, 2008, 10:21 AM
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