XJS ( X27 ) 1975 - 1996 3.6 4.0 5.3 6.0

89 convertible passenger door swap

Old 04-02-2019, 12:38 PM
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Default 89 convertible passenger door swap

Evening all, my 89 convertible passenger side door has some corrosion that could be repaired. I have a rot free replacement and wondered how much of a pain it is to swap them over. The glass would need swapping over as well as electrics and other associated door parts. Just trying to get a feel for the best option if anyone has done this job previously. Thanks.
Old 04-03-2019, 02:11 AM
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It is doable, Brinny, but quite a pain. Swapping the glass, locks etc etc is Ok once the door is off the car and lying down, but great care is needed to note the sequence of removal/reinstallation. Lock actuators adjustment is also time consuming. The door is removed (in case you have not yet done it) by removing the ankle height A pillar trim and the shin trim under the dash, whereupon you can see two oblong holes that give access to the hinge bolts (I would undo the hinges from the A pillar rather than the door). But the actual door is not the hard part.

Reinstallation is a complete pain, is a two person job, and unless the old door is unrepairably bad I would think very carefully before embarking on the task. You will be presented with the following problems:
  • lock actuation
  • glass alignment problems
  • door shut and door alignment problems
  • door vertical alignment problems
  • door to wing shutline problems - which you may only be able to solve by moving the wing.
In the factory all these things took a great deal of time by very skilled guys. I quote a line worker who said: "In a Japanese car factory you could throw the door at the car from 15 yards and it would fit. With the XJS, it takes 10 minutes on the line to fit each empty door, then we put in the electrics and take another 10 to realign it."

I did a door swap (coupe door for coupe door) during my rebuild and never again. Two days and then another day getting the lock mechanism to work properly!
Old 04-03-2019, 01:26 PM
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That’s good enough for me Greg. My welding skills are better than my mechanical ones so that’s the way I will go. Thanks.
Old 04-03-2019, 02:01 PM
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The stay spring on the hinge of my coupe's driver's door broke so I went about replacing it. Agree 100%. Talk about a can of worms. Never thought about the number of angles and dimensions one has to consider when aligning that thing. There are probably over a dozen. I marked the position of the hinges before I removed the door and it was still a mile off. After probably 3 hours of fiddling with it I got lucky and it's perfect. Doable? yes. Fun? NO.

Plus since each panel on the xjs has a VIN sticker, by repairing the original door you probably retain some kind of value if anyone ever went over the car with a fine toothed comb.
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