Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Body Kits and Vertical Doors

Other than a vertical doors conversion kit, an auto body kit is one of the most exciting upgrades you can do to your vehicle. A good aero kit or body kit can really transform the appearance of the vehicle, and the installer will determine if this is a good or bad transformation.
I would personally suggest you find a reputable shop experienced in your type of body kit work. They should know how to work with the material you selected, and how to color match, prep and paint the kit. They should also know how to, if necessary, make adjustments to ensure a proper fitting. Your finished product will be as good as the effort put into it.
Having said that, it is never a bad idea to learn something new. Before you begin, make sure you designate enough time to the project to install your body kit right the first time. This type of body work requires a lot of patience if you are inexperienced at it. Here are some instructions to help you get started on the project.
The first thing to do is to prep the body kit for painting. It will be much easier to work on before it is installed. If you do not intend to paint the whole vehicle, it may be wise to color match and paint the body kit prior to installation.
Start by removing the pieces that will be replaced. This may include the front and rear bumper covers. You can find the bolts for the front cover in the fender wells and underneath the cover near the frame. Remove these bolts and loosen the cover. Depending on the application, be sure to remove any of the lighting that is attached to it, such as the headlights, side markers, fog lights, etc. Now check to make sure that there isn't anything else holding it in place, such as a grille or license plate holder. Carefully remove the front bumper cover and set to the side. Keep the hardware handy, as you will need it later. Remove the rear bumper in the same manner, as well as the trim panel located just above the bumper (if applicable). Most cars won't have side skirts at this point, but if it does, remove them by removing the bolts that hold it to the vehicle. They are located on the back of the side skirts.
Take your replacement cover and carefully align it to the car and check the fitting. Some of the kits will have 3M adhesive to help hold the kit in place during this process. You may find that the foam inserts are an obstruction to the new body kit. You can either remove them or trim them to size, depending on the application. I have found that if possible, it is better to trim them to fit because they will help sturdy the body kit so it doesn't appear as flimsy. If you have done your research and purchased a good kit, then you should line up almost perfect. Make some markings as to where you will drill your holes. You can also use the old bumper cover to line up the holes but it may not be as accurate as the fitting approach.
If you find yourself in a situation where the kit doesn't line up exactly, there are some things you can do to correct the problem. First, locate the problem areas. They will be most noticeable on the sides where it matches up to the fenders or in the very front where it matches up to the hood. If you notice one side has a bigger seam in these areas than the other side, try moving the cover to the larger seam side in very small increments until there is no longer a difference. The seam should be the same width as other seams on the car, most notably the same size as the seam from the fender to the door, or the fender to the closed hood. Using these same widths for the seams will create a "seamless" look for the finished product.
If your problem area is in the front, you will have to adjust the body kit in small increments until it lines up. If you have too larges of a seam, try gently pulling the kit from the two sides to tighten up the front. it should have a little bit of play in it since it is not bolted down. If the seam is to small, try pushing the sides in towards the front of the vehicle to free up any space. Once the front is adjusted, look to see if the sides are aligned property. If you are happy with the fitment, place the bolts in the holes and tighten them down. Start in the middle, and work your way out to the sides making sure that your seams line up properly. If your kit comes with 3M adhesive on the back side, adhere the kit to the car once the proper alignment is made. This will help hold the kit in place and allow the seams to be smaller in width.
In some unfair and unfortunate circumstances, you may find your kits not lining up after all these adjustments. These kits will require some body work or fiberglass work to be done for proper fitting, such as trimming or sanding up the side edges and refinishing them, or repositioning the bolts. Hopefully you won't encounter any of these types of problems, because they tend to have to be solved on a case by case basis. If you find yourself in dire straights, contact and we can help guide you to the best solution.
With your front piece of the body kit installed, you can concentrate on the side skits and rear bumper cover. The side skirts should be fairly simple, and will require drilling pilot holes in the bottom of the car. To ensure proper alignment here, attach the side skirt to the vehicle using the 3M adhesive (if provided). It should line up exactly with a small seam in the front and rear next to the fenders. If the seam is larger on one side, split the difference and drill the pilot holes for the bolts and secure it in place.
Now move to the rear bumper cover. Follow the same procedures as above until you get a goof fitting. Again, you may need to remove or trim the rear bumper foam inserts, depending on the shape of the body kit. Secure it in place and enjoy the finished product.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Vertical Doors Installation Instructions

Your Vertical Door Kits will Include
􀂾 2 SHOCKS _________ PSI
􀂾 2 PINS

􀂾 1/4 TORX BIT
􀂾 9/16 WRENCH

"Installers with experience recommended"
1) Disconnect the battery.
2) Remove fender:
3)Remove all Phillip’s screws or fasteners from the wheel well. Usually you will have to remove bolts to loosen the bumper. Remove all the bolts from the top of the fender. Remove all bolts from the bottom of the fender by the door. Usually you will have to remove bolt holding the fender. At this point you should be able to remove the fender
4) Remove the door catch: Open the door and remove bolts from the body and from the door. Push the door catch inside the door. You will need to remove the door panel to retrieve the door catch.
5) Usually you will need to more wire slack: Remove foot trim, under it you will find wire harness use the fork to undo the wire harness and pull some wire. This will give you the necessary wire slack to fully open the new lambo door system. Some times you will have to remove the door panel and speaker and gain the wire from inside the door cavity.
6) Close door and use painter’s tape to secure the door in preparation for factory hinge removal.
Usually you will need a 13mm socket to remove the factory hinges. Hint* (You can make your spacer out of paint sticks and about 8-10 turns of blue painters tape)
7) Install new vertical door kit: In order for the vertical hinge to sit flat against the apron you might have to cut, drill or well depending on you particular vehicle. The new Vertical Doors Inc. system should sit flat against apron to work properly. Hint* Tighten the bolts on the door first and then install the bolts on the body. Important! Make sure you put grease on the body of the bolt and locktite on the threads of the bolts. Put grease on the bottom side of the shock end.
8) Once hinge is locked in place, break nut #1 then turn Allen set screw #2 on fig until it hits the block then open the door and continue to adjust until the door matches with the striker, open and close door making sure it closes like factory. Hint*(leave #1 nut loose until shock is installed Allen set screw will have to be re-adjusted after shock is installed.
9) Install the shock. Hint* (You will need a helper to raise the door). (Slip the spherical rod mount into the spherical ball bearing. Using a 1/4 Allen wrench, tighten the screw into the swing arm. After the shock is installed secure it by installing the pin in the bottom shock end.
10) After shock is installed re-install door panel and lift the door. Adjust door opening screw clockwise until distance between nub and swing arm is enough so that the swing arm moves up and down freely. Hint* (Fine tune the Allen Adjustment screw to realigned striker with door. After the door is align test door by opening and closing, lifting and lowering door several times.
Note: Do not install fender until the adjustment of the door is accurate, and the set screw is tightly secure. Also make sure everything is tight, adjustment is set and everything is Locktite.
11) Modify factory wire loom: In order to be able to open and raise the door, cut the factory wire boot in half and add wire loom to protect exposed wires.
12) Cut the inner lip of your fender to make room for the new Vertical Doors hinge. Note: After you have cut the fender use a sander or grinder and make sure the surface is completely flat.
13) Close the door and replace the fender by reversing step 2. Hint*(Make sure the electrical wires don’t get pinched enough to damage wires)
14) For the other side just follow steps 2-12.

With a little patience and luck, you should be able to install your vertical door kit successfully. These instructions came in a universal kit from Vertical Doors, Inc. and were exactly what we needed to install our vertical doors. We do again strongly reccomend professional installation of these lambo door kits.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Featured Vertical Lambo Door Kit

This Week's Featured Product:

Universal Lambo Door Vertical Door Conversion Kit

Click GT Factory Vertical / Lambo Door for more details and installed pictures

The Lambo Door Kit Includes:
Manual Kit -
(2) Diablo Hinges
(4) 150lb Gas Struts
All Necessary Hardware
(130) High-Rez Install Pics
Installation CD/Instructions
(2) GT Factory Stickers
Automatic Kit -
Manual Kit and
(2) Rod Bearing
(2) 8lbs Actuators
(2) Switches and RelaysNote: The door will have to be opened before the automatic actuators will lift the door up. To have the door open automatically and lift automatically please purchase the Automatic Kit w Door Poppers.
Showstopper Kit -
Automatic Kit and
Shave Door Handle Kit
(2) Door Poppers

These kits have Exceptional Features
Designed for universal fit & quick install
Limited lifetime warranty
The ONLY kit that goes 90 degrees vertical
Keeps doors straight up instead of hanging to the side
Totally reversible
Dual nitrogen gas lifts per door rated @ 300lbs force
4 infinitely adjustable points allows for unique look
100% CNC machined 4130 chromoly steel construction
Lifetime show quality finish
Electroless Nickel plated for corrosion protection & show
Maintains factory safety, accessories & function
Detailed install CD w/ over 130 high rez pictures
Up to 90 degrees Vertical / Lamboly
Up to 25 degrees Horizontally
Fits any vehicle
Doors continue to utilize OEM latches & accessories
Jawdropping results. Available in Manual, Motorized, and ShowStopper
Vertical / Lambo Doors Movie to see kit in action

Click here for Step-by-Step Installation Instructions.

View our full line of car accessories for more great products, or pick out your vertical door kits at our Vertical Doors Lambo Doors Section.

Monday, March 19, 2007

USA Today Features Vertical Door Conversions

Doors are on upswing among car enthusiasts

By Chris Woodyard, USA TODAY
CORONA, Calif. — There's something about swinging your car door skyward like a jackknife blade that announces you've arrived.
At least arrived in the sense that you're making the latest cutting-edge auto fashion statement.

Along with big wheels and blaring stereos, car customizers are finding that upward-swinging doors are the latest must-have.

For those whose "ultimate accomplishment is to have a dream car," adding the door feature "definitely adds to the 'eye candy' of the vehicle," says Cory Nastazio, a BMX rider whose silver Mercedes S500 is equipped with the high-profile doors.

By Bob Riha Jr., USA TODAY
Customer Raj Shrikhande admires his modified Chevy Corvette at Vertical Doors in Corona, Calif.

The new fad has spawned companies such as Vertical Doors, started by some buddies who say they saw the trend emerging. The founders say that the 3-year-old business, located in an industrial park here east of Los Angeles, is on track for sales of $6 million this year. Several competitors are vying for auto enthusiasts, as well.

All receive their inspiration from the front-hinged, upward-lifting doors of the Lamborghini sports car. They call them Lambo doors.

But making the doors swing upward in other brands of cars involves some tricky engineering.

In the case of Vertical Doors, the challenge started with Samir Rai's 1997 Acura Integra. He was looking for an edge at car shows and was inspired by upward doors.

"I said, 'If a Lamborghini can do it, I'm sure a regular car can do it,' " Rai says. He and two friends in the auto-customizing business, Rob Baum and Paul Anderegg, created a simple hinge that allows the door to be pushed out a few inches, then upward. With another customizer friend, Louis Connole, Vertical Doors was born.

Connole says the business, financed without bank debt, has been consistently profitable. It has 22 employees, including draftsmen who design the hinges and machinists who make them. The firm is shipping anywhere from 500 to 800 kits a month to car dealers, body shops and individuals.

The kits consist of the hinges and a gas-filled shock that acts like a spring to make heavy doors easy to open or close. The company now has them for more than 100 models. They retail from $1,399 to $6,500 — the higher-priced units going to luxury cars, which can be more complicated — and generally cost another $500 to $2,000 to have installed.

Because the units bolt on, cars can be reversed back to hinged standard side-swinging doors, Connole says. "You would never know the difference," he says.

Some installations are difficult, he says, such as those for recent-model Cadillac Escalade SUVs. Installers need to cut away the existing door hinge. He recommends against trying to install the doors in new-model Ford F-150 pickups.

At the same time, Connole says new applications are becoming available. For instance, he says the doors have caught the attention of limousine builders.

By Bob Riha Jr., USA TODAY
Installers at Vertical Doors work on a custom-made door.

They are also proving popular in Hollywood. George Barris, the customizer who created the famous show cars for TV's Batman and The Munsters of the late 1960s, came to Vertical Doors when he was working on a new Pontiac GTO last year.

"Everyone gets a big kick out of it," says Barris, 80, about the upward-swinging doors.

Vertical Doors worked non-stop for nearly three days to design and install its hinges on a Lincoln Navigator owned by Shaquille O'Neal of the NBA's Miami Heat. Why the rush? Shaq wanted it done in time to be able to show off the SUV at a Friday night game.

"It looks really hot," says Albert Pineda, who owns Da Shop, a customizing business that claims O'Neal and other celebrities as clients. He came to Vertical Doors for the equipment. O'Neal liked the doors on the Navigator so much that he asked Pineda to have them installed on his Mercedes CLK 500, as well.

For now, Connole says Vertical Doors' challenge is to create as many applications for different vehicles as possible. It's also trying to fend off the competition with its patents. The company filed a patent-infringement lawsuit against five rivals last September. Vertical Doors' lawyer, Neal Cohen, says the defendants who have responded deny the allegations.

One of them is KW Automotive North America in Sanger, Calif., which is owned by a German parent. Business is booming. "We can't make applications fast enough," says managing director Glenn Cox, adding that he can't comment on the lawsuit.

Another competitor —one not named in the lawsuit - is Wing Doors, a San Diego firm that says its door swings even higher, up to 90 degrees. It also offers a $1,300 automated power unit. "Business is doubling every two months," says general manager Nicole Ross.

KW's Cox says the doors passed German crash testing. Wing Doors and Vertical Doors haven't conducted the tests yet, but officials at both companies say they'll hold up.

There can be a downside to the tilting doors. BMXer Nastazio says his fiancée didn't like driving the Mercedes because it can be harder to get in or out of the car, and "she gets too much attention."

Customizer Pineda worries that some brands might sag or fall out of adjustment under heavy use.

Die-hard car enthusiasts, however, aren't put off. Dora Andrews, 24, a licensed vocational nurse from Loma Linda, Calif., says she needs Lambo doors to compete at shows in her new Honda Civic.

"It's noticeable when you do car shows," she says. "Not every car has them, so when you do, it's a plus."

Friday, February 23, 2007

The Butterfly Effect

How about something remarkable. Something never before experienced by most drivers. Something that makes waves. How about the butterfly effect?
Butterfly doors, also known as Vertical Doors or Lambo Doors, originated to solve a problem. The lamboghini had a very wide base, and a traditional door design would not allow for easy entering and exiting, especially if parked next to anything. They devised a door hinge system that lifts the doors vertically, and only slightly out war, clearing the door of the opening, and also allowing the wide body car to still fit in traditional spaces.

These doors catch a lot of attention. When door open vertically, you get the "butterfly" effect, making waves wherever you are. People stop and notice these types of modifications because they are rare, unique, and very appealing. These kits are now available for most cars, and come as a universal kit that can be fitted to almost any vehicle. Some of the kits will require a little body work, but others are a direct bolt in. The hinges, gas shocks, and hardware may not look like $750 to $1000 worth of materials, but the finished results is well worth the money for most car enthusiasts and tuners.

We suggest professional installation for these types of kits, mainly because in a lot of cases, the inner fender wells need to be rolled or modified to fit the new brackets and hinges. Most of the kits are adustable enough to create a unique vertical opening while keeping it fairly easy to get in and out of the vehicle. Look for kits that allow for both vertical and horizontal adjustments to be made for the best possible combination of style and comfort.

Butterfly doors are becoming the craze at most tuner events and shows. Some cars look better than other with the mods done to them, and you can probably find images of your car model with them installed somewhere on the internet. I would suggest seeing a finished product before investing the money. The kits are in most cases completely reversible if you are unsatified for any reason, or intend to sell the car at a future date.

If you want to turn you ride into a real showstopper, these kits are the way to go. They come in manual and automatic varieties, and if you are interested in purchasing your own lambo vertical door kit, visit our wide selection of car accessories and aftermarket accessories for the latest products.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

"Vertical" Door Kits

"Vertical" Doors

Vertical Doors are a great addition to any show car. Vertical Doors, Inc. is credited with the patent on the design we are most familiar with. There have been several company create similar products marketed under the product "type" called vertical doors. They are also refered to as butterfly doors, or 90 degree doors. Either way, they give our daily drivers a nice exotic sports car look.

There are some varieties of doors out there that will fit the bill if you are looking for that extra something to add to your show car. There are the traditional "vertical" doors which open vertically. See picture below. These kits use specially made brackets and gas shocks to open the doors outward slightly, then upwards. They can be adjusted to open further our before going up to make it easier to get in and out of, as a common disadvantage to the door kits is the increased difficulty of getting in and out of the vehicle.

There are other types of door modifications that can be done, such as suicide doors that open exactly the opposite of traditional doors. The hinges are moved to the other side of the door opening so it swings the other way. Also a cool upgrade.

Still my personal favorite is the Dalorian style door as seen in back to the future. These doors are hinged in the center of the roof, and raise straight up allowing for easy access in and out of the vehicle. This type of modification would call for some extensive mods to the roof system, as well as some fabricated doors, but I wouldn't put it past Majestic Modifications to try it in the future.

For cool products such as these, visit our online store for the full line of auto parts and accessories.

This post brought to you by Majestic Modifications.