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Old 02-02-2002, 02:28 PM   #1
mower
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Post How do you convert the Suburban tailgate to cargo doors.

Is there a conversian kit available to change the tailgate to the doors. Has anyone done this. I've read that the problem is the lower section that needs to be cut and refabricated.
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Old 02-04-2002, 11:39 AM   #2
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mower,

Get a Suburban catalogue from www.lmctruck.com. They have a new catalogue that has parts for the 88-91 suburbans. I'm not sure if the when GM changed to the doors but the catalogue from LMC should give you some idea on the details to make a conversion. I'm pretty sure the hinge mechanisms for the doors would have to fabriacated to the older style. I have not heard of anyone trying or doing the conversion.
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Old 02-09-2002, 08:51 PM   #3
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I've got a '77 2WD that I would like to convert as well. Please let me know if you find more definitive information about this. Thank you.
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Old 02-10-2002, 09:57 AM   #4
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Aww.. come on guys - who's got money for new everything? Roll on down to the local bone yard and pick up some barndoors with the hinges & latches complete. Also get the hinge anchor plates - this is what the hinge-bolts bolt into. Maybe even measure the location of the hinge slots while you're there.

The beauty of this swap is the body tubs for barndoor and tailgate Subs are all the same. You just need to drill holes for the hinge bolts and cut slots for the hinges.

Many of these 'projects' seem totally insurmountable until you get started. This has been my experience anyway. (with other projects - I haven't done a Sub barn-door swap yet)
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Old 02-11-2002, 04:03 PM   #5
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Thank you for the info, I really don't have the dough for a high dollar kit, but I like to get some idea of the cost. I was hoping to find someone else who actually performed the swap, that they may convey some of their wisdom, tips, and tricks. Plus I'm not quite ready to tackle this myself, I need to get my other truck running before I tear apart this one. Has anyone out there performed this swap?
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Old 02-20-2002, 11:56 AM   #6
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This might sound like a dumb question but why is it better to have the barn doors than the tailgate. I was looking at getting an 88-91 suburban and the problem I am finding is most are barn doors and I think I like the tailgate better.

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Old 02-21-2002, 05:07 PM   #7
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Well, personally I despise having to roll down a window to access the cargo space. The damn thing makes a racket and is slow, plus the key switch outside quit working. If it wasn't for the great deal I got on it, my great uncle was the original owner, I would never have messed with this thing. So now I will try to turn it into what I really wanted.
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Old 03-03-2002, 03:33 PM   #8
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The holes for the barn doors hinges are already in the body. They are usually covered with plastic plugs. The top surround that the glass goes up in just unbolts. The hinges are exposed on the back, so you don't need to cut anything. If you get the doors and hinges from a donor truck, everything will bolt on.

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Old 09-06-2017, 10:50 AM   #9
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Re: How do you convert the Suburban tailgate to cargo doors.

I know I am replying to a super old post, but is it that easy? Direct bolt on replacement?

I have a 1987 GMC Suburban Classic that has a tailgate with a broken back window and motor and switch. When looking into the cost of the parts I found a set of barn doors on a junkyard 1984 Suburban.

I am assuming the 84 doors will work on the 87, yeah?

I want to arrange to pick them up but wanted to know exactly I would be getting into prior to taking the trip. Any info would be helpful.

Last edited by chrisMacDonald; 09-06-2017 at 01:15 PM.
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Old 09-06-2017, 04:53 PM   #10
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Re: How do you convert the Suburban tailgate to cargo doors.

It depends on the year whether there are holes for the barndoors and tailgate options. I have a beater Suburban (tub is an '86 I think - not 100% sure, but that's what it's titled as). The previous owner swapped it from a tailgate to barn doors, but had to add the bolt anchor plates (cut sheet metal and added them). Also need to change the sill at the bottom of the door to the barn door style as it has a catch.

The barn doors don't line up perfect, but I'm guessing that is just because it was kind of a sloppy job (the whole thing is rough, but it runs great, so winter beater status it gets)
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Old 09-07-2017, 02:42 PM   #11
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Re: How do you convert the Suburban tailgate to cargo doors.

Short answer: it's hard. Are you sure you want to get involved in that?
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Old 09-29-2017, 02:31 PM   #12
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Re: How do you convert the Suburban tailgate to cargo doors.

Hey Guys -

Yeah, to be honest I need to replace the glass in the rear gate and like I said the parts that I need motor, glass, stoppers etc etc end up being rather expensive. I got barn doors from an 84 Suburban cheap, I have an 87 - so I figure since I like barn doors better I might as well give it a try.

I got the latches and bolts for the doors on LMC and I have taken off the tailgate, am just now taking off the surround to see what I am working with.

My guess is that I will find out once I get into it? I am only guessing that the bolt anchor plates will be needed and do something to the bottom sill.

@chevy3100truck any chance you could send me a picture of that conversion - mainly the hinge and sill parts?
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Old 10-18-2017, 11:47 AM   #13
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Re: How do you convert the Suburban tailgate to cargo doors.

So I found out that LMC carries the cargo doors sill for the bottom of the doors:
http://www.lmctruck.com/icatalog/csb/865w/0012.jpg
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Old 10-19-2017, 05:49 PM   #14
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Re: How do you convert the Suburban tailgate to cargo doors.

Just saw these locally.....

https://cosprings.craigslist.org/pts...350386382.html
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Old 11-15-2017, 05:51 PM   #15
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Re: How do you convert the Suburban tailgate to cargo doors.

Having gone full circle on this - the answer is dont. You would need / need to do the following

a. The doors
b. Cut into rear to expose hinge plates
c. Cut through interior (2 levels) to get to back of hinge plates
d. Weld or attach nuts to bolts (since the screw holes are there for barn doors but the older and ones that come with barn door have nuts welded on the back of the hinge plates.
e. Remove bottom rear ledge (unscrew and cut left and right welds)
f. Spread frame or opening in rear to insert new ledge from LMC Truck.
g. Weld in new ledge.
h. Buy all new hardware for latches for doors from LMC.

Hope that it all magically lines up correctly. In the end, I got the doors reading it was 100% swapable but alas it is not and you could do it a 100 horrible ways and it would be a huge PIA so I put the tailgate back on.
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