1. #1
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Default 3rd. door removal on pick-up trucks.

    I have read numerous articles on how to remove this door, but I have not actually got to do this myself yet. One of the articles was saying that the front door has to be off before you can work on the 3rd. door. I don't know if I believe that or not. It looks like that you could remove the 3rd. door just like removing the rear door on a car. Has anybody actually got to cut on one of these pick-up trucks yet and if so what way was the best for you.
    In the same article they were saying that you have to cut the B post at the top and on the roof line where the locking mechanism is.Then pop the bottom locking mechanism. Why can't you pop the the top locking mechanism just like the bottom, that way you do not have a piece of the door hanging from the opening. Will this work or do you have to cut that post in those places. I know it all depends on the situation the vehicle is in and the damage that the vehicle has. I just want to hear if anybody has tried anything different and see what the best way might be in case I get to run one in the future.


  2. #2
    Firehouse.com Guest


    I would think that you should be able to make your opening in atleast one of two methods; 1st. I think I would try to attack the door right where they meet... In the middle. This should be (depending on the damage) the weakest point, as there is no center post to deal with. 2nd, if that is not possible I think you could do exactly what you were saying, attack it at the rear hinge, and peel the whole side off... I look forward to playing with one myself. I'll let you know.

  3. #3
    Firehouse.com Guest


    attacking the problem from the middle may not be the best or first choice. The third door is latched top and bottom, so going in as in a regular door won't get you to the pins. Attacking from the rear of the third door does not get you to the hinges easily it would seem. I understand Houston FD gets the front hinges and cuts around the latches at the roof then tries for the rear hinges and rolls the doors down off the bottom latch, taking both doors off as a unit. Maybe someone from HFD could comment as they seem to have an abundance of these style trucks there

  4. #4
    Firehouse.com Guest


    Had the unfortunate opportunity to work on one of these trucks while it was on its driver side. Attempted a roof flap by cutting through the AB&C post on the top side and relief cuts on the bottom side. Lesson learned: cut through both door uprights @ B post position. If just cut one you cannot flap. If truck was on all four wheels would probably cut top hinge due to lack of structure for jaws. It would be mucho faster. Intersted in hearing other opinions.

  5. #5
    Firehouse.com Guest


    Has anybody tried a vertical crush on one of these third doors? (Vertical Crush-spread vertically btw roof/top of window, and window sill) Doesn't seem as if it would work quite as well than on a conventional door.

  6. #6
    Firehouse.com Guest


    I've removed one during training but not during an actual call. Like Mark wrote, trying to get to the hinges of the third door is next to impossible. They are hinged most of the time on the inside of the truck so unless the door is already partially open, then you are not going to get to them. As for a verticle door crush, once the side glass is out, the door is like any other door, just smaller. Shold work.

  7. #7
    Firehouse.com Guest


    Cut one up in training and two in the real world.

    You really can have problems with trying to remove the rear door if it is attempted to be removed before the front door is. The rear door hinges are alomst always hidden inside so you really don't have access to them. What about a Noahs Ark job on both doors or just the back on if you get the front one clear? Just a thought.

  8. #8
    Firehouse.com Guest


    Have now done one in training and one in the real world. the Vertical crush was used on the training scenario. It gave access enough that we were able to cut the top latch with a sawzall, but the bottom latch was very difficult to access. After two tries, we were able to get the spreader tips between the base of the third door and the rocker panel and with some careful maneuvering, were able to pop the latch and open the door. In the real world incident, we simply decided that it would be easier all around to do a total rook removal and vertical extrications. It worked well for us. A third option is to go to the rear of the cab and remove the entire rear panel instead of messing with the sides. Yes, it does require cutting thru the end of the box and then cutting straight down to the floorboards at the edges of the rear window opening. We used this technique once on a conventional cab pickup, and suspect it should work fine on a super-cab sytle or 3-door as well.

  9. #9
    Firehouse.com Guest


    To answer your question regarding the front door. No, the front door does not have to be off. It should however be displaced/opened to reveal the leading edge of the third door. This would normally be the "B" pillar.

    The third/forth door will not open without the front door open. As mention in other replies the door is secured at the top and bottom.

    As a suggestion, try stopping in at a local Dodge Ram dealer. When ever I have a question I don't know, this is usually my first stop, the nearest showroom. Introduce yourself as a firefighter and explain that you are trying to learn more about their vehicles to help during extrication. Most all managers and sales persons willing to help you out or assign someone to help you if they are not busy.

    Having a good relationship at the local level may get you closer to the industry, service personel need to know questions on the spot especially with airbags. Questions you would never be able to acquire the answer to! There are also valuable tech books in the service center showing exploded views which will help you understand things a little easier.

    Also many manufacturers have a rescue manual for first responders, have your department write to them requesting a copy. There maybe specific extrication information you are looking for there.

    Ron Shaw

  10. #10
    Firehouse.com Guest


    Hey nbfd131,
    I'm new to this stuff...would you mind explaining what a "Noah's Ark job" is?

  11. #11
    Firehouse.com Guest


    Noahs Arc is when you open the whole side up..doors and post in on shot from the best i can figure here. If im wrong correct me, never heard it called that though. Sometimes opening the whole side is faster..sometimes not. Bot makes a big hole to work in.

  12. #12
    Firehouse.com Guest


    If you have the chance - check an area dealer and see if your department can get a pickup with third and/or fourth doors. Many of the dealerships are able to get vehicles from the manufacturer for learning purposes - (mechanics in school/ auto body students) Anyway - if you can't get an actual pickup - practice and pretend on any normal sedan - and never say never - you can. Third doors on pickups can be tricky - a couple of pointers:

    1 - DO NOT force these doors at its hinges - the hinges on third doors which are generally rear swinging (except some are now coming of the line with doors that open like a normal car) and they are concealed which makes for a difficult spread due to the fact that the doors are still LATCHED.

    2 - ALL factory third and fourth doors have TWO nader pins... one at the top (roofline) and one at the bottom (rockerpanel area)... similiar to a Chev Beretta... the only way to beat the third door is to take the pins.... not by cutting them! - remember - pop'em. Then again - try it before you pry it.... pending on the scenario - the door just might be open.

    3 - If applicable - Total roof removal is an "easy out" vs - pulling apart these doors... this makes for a rapid vertical extrication...

    4 - When both the front door and the rear third door are open there is no "B" post... if inverted, remember that for its' structural integredy...

    5 - As far as opening the front door first - technically you have to in order to open the third door..... the only make and model to date that is coming off the line with outside handles is the Toyota T150.

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