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I have a 68 SS Covertable, unfortunately when I bought it, it had NO interior!!! While browsing through the catalogs for X-mas gifts, I became confused on the descriptions "Standard and preassembled" door panels. Since I do not have an example, I do not know the difference and which would be best to order. Anyone have any experience good and bad with this problem? Please Help!!!!!!
 

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Get the presassembled door panels. The others are just basic panels (will fit Chevelle and El Camino) and require you to do some work to make them fit. This will vary but usually means punching the window crank holes, adding your chrome parts etc. This will vary from one manufacturere to the other.

I recommend you Get a free Year One catalog 1-800-950-9503 24 hrs. They explain the difference and they have an excellent returm policy if you mess up.
 

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Since you don't have panels to begin with, I would recommend getting the preassembled ones. With the standard ones, you need the steel top backing piece from your original door panels. I think the assembled ones come with a plastic repo backing piece; not all that important, as when it's installed you can't see it. For a 68, there's also a chrome horizontal strip that runs the length of the panel above the armrest, plus a model emblem near the top of the panel. You may need to check to see if either of those pieces are included (I doubt the model emblem would be).
 

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I have been looking into interior parts for sometime now (about a month). I have not recieved them yett, I just ordered on Friday. Iseem to think after talking to most every one that Ted williams Chevelle parts had the best qaulity, also the price was fair at $249.00 for them and they use a thicker plastic than the others. If you can still get the metal or try true connections in Riverside Ca. they may even have metal parts in stock (they carry used parts too)they assemble the panels for $35.00 per panel.If you go to the suppliers page on this web site they have links to both of these fine suppliers, don't get the true connections suppliers mixed up there are two listed the one I am talking about is in Riverside.
 

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I believe that Gene is pretty much on target here. The assembled one have plastic upper arches. If you can find a set of shot panels in a salvage yard, you can get the original steel arches. These are not hard to install, but they do take some time.Chuck Hanson did a good article on this in Chevelle World last year. If you get your panels from a good supplier such as Year One they will fit well. If you go second tier they may need some extra work-- this is from experience.
 

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I have been told not to use the preassembled panels becasue of the plastic top they use. The best way is to get a pair of used panels and then purchase unassembled panels. The panels with plastic tops will bend if you like to put your elbow out while driving
 

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When I spoke to the people at Ted Williams they told me they assemble the panels them selves and know of the thin plastic problem. This is why they do them in house they use a thicker plastic and their own original brand fuzzies. They seem to be very honest up front people and said they wound not make them if they were not right. Also told me they have had some problems with parts but are always willing to try to help out as much as possible to satisfy the customer.

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Joe has brought up an interesting point. If they really do what they told him that might also be why their preassembled panels cost less than many suppliers (YearOne etc.)I think maybe they can get the unassembled ones at a lower price and then by assembling themselves they don't have to mark them up as much to make a profit. This makes sense to me. Has any one purchased assembled from Ted Williams to know of the quality?
Steve
 

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I will let everyone know very soon my order should be here in the next few days, I will be taking some pictures e-mail me if you would like a copy of the pictures sent to you of the door panels.

[This message has been edited by Joe Harrison (edited 11-11-98).]
 

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I recieved the door panels and the quality of plastic and its thickness was good and the window fuzzies sold by Ted Williams (their original brand)are excellent. I have seen the repop and PUI ones that are supposed to look like originals but are not even close, these are very close the cut tip at one end could have a little more care taken when cutting them, but I did about 5 min of work on it and they look great. The door panels are nice, I had a problem with the panel being to long from the plastic down to the bottom of the door, when I called they told me no problem and to send them back and they will get me new ones sent out. That's what I call customer service. I decided to go with the unassebled door panels and use my metal from the old panels, I think the qaulity of the metal will be better and have a snugger fit at the top of the door. The preassembled panels are fine and I would use them on a daily driver, I just did not like the over all fit,don't get me wrong the parts are good parts but they just did not meet my picky standards. I have had a hard time finding aftermarket parts that I like, my car was so original I compare every thing I get with the old part. If there is a way to refurbish it or crome it I will redo the old part before buying a new one. I wish I had not invested in emblems for instance, I would rather have spent the extra money having mine redone.
The inerior I have no choice about and I know it's going to give me a headache. My car is not even going to be frame off I just want every thing that I do to be the best possible part available, or workmanship that myself or others can do.
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[This message has been edited by Joe Harrison (edited 11-16-98).]
 
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