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Is replacing the rear windows with commercial panels a DIY job?

MisterCruiser

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My cruiser has windows in the back but I'd prefer the metal panels that the commercial versions came with as from new. Mine is a commercial but was converted and so has glass windows as was originally passenger from new.

I looked into swapping the glass before with a panel beater but he wanted me to get a window fitter to remove the metal panels from a cruiser in the breakers as he thought he couldn't remove / cut them out properly, he thought they'd need to be cut out with the wire that's used to remove glass. So I sort of left it at that but have always wanted to swap them still.

I think the steel panels look way better than the glass, myself and a mate I done a good bit of sill welding and I'm thinking of Diy-ing the windows, just wondering if anyone here has experience of doing this? I suppose the main thing is to get a water tight seal on them, I'm guessing it'd be easy enough to weld in the steel panels and then just silicone the join on the inside too if needed. Is it difficult to cut the panels from a breaker cruiser?

I'm not sure if the UK got the "commercial" look so here's pics below to show the steel window panel I'm talking about on a random cruiser pic.
Maybe another option would be to get the darkest window tint either, or even paint the glass the same colour as the cruiser, is that possible? My crusier is black so the window tint option isn't completely mad.

Maybe another option would be to stick / bond a really light piece of tin / steel sheeting to the existing glass and just paint it the same colour as my cruiser or would this be too much of a bodge, I don't really see why I couldn't just do that though. Hmmmm!!!

rtfgh-plate-blanked.jpg
 

AdventureWagon

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Is just painting the windows white too much of a slack hack?
 

MisterCruiser

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Is just painting the windows white too much of a slack hack?

Well, I'd be painting them black as I want them the same colour as the rest of my cruiser, that pic isn't of mine, it's just a random generic pic to show the panel i'm talking about for the UK folk. But yeah, I'm wondering is painting the glass going to be a desperate looking bodge? Would be a very practical option though, no worries of leaking as not disturbing seals, etc...

How easy is it to paint glass and will it turn out the same colour even if I use the correct paint or will the glass affect the paint?


Here's my actual cruiser, I always hated the look of the rear glass, I wonder would the glass "take" the paint well, probably need to etch it up a bit first?
My-Landcruiser-field-1.jpg
 
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Jacob100

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Why don’t you just vinyl them? Quick and cheap fix. That way you can match the colour of the vehicle and you have the option to return to standard if you ever come to sell it.
 

nick_the_fish

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I put vinyl on mine years ago and it worked well. When i was rebuilding the vehicle last year for the next big trip I took out the glass and tried to replace with solid panels for security and storage reasons, but it was a disaster so in the end I ended up putting back the glass.

Long story short - no its not a DIY job unless you have specialist equipment and skills (in which case you prob wouldn't be asking the question)
 

Shayne

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Limo tint will make them look like solid panels . Removing the windows is very easy just open up the paneling inside and unbolt the hinge , i guess if i wanted to make them solid i'd use a grp sheet and glue it in then paint because you will have to strip out the interior big time for welding heat but either way i absolutely don't understand why anyone would do it ?
 
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Beau

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If you put two layers of 5% tint you won't be able to see through no matter the light or how close up you are. Cheap, and if you're handy relatively easy to install too. Plus tint holds up pretty well long term. Not sure how paint would be in the long run
 

Bob

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I vinyl wrapped the rear panels on mine for the exact opposite reason, as I thought the panels looked way worse than windows. Mine being silver is a different story I suppose, but it sounds like more trouble than it's worth, as all of the commercials were done on arrival in Ireland so had kits premade for them. Vinyl would be my go to for this.
IMG_20200729_114911.jpg
 

MisterCruiser

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I'll look into the vinyl thing, that could be a good suggestion, do the window tint lads do this and can they get the colour of my cruiser, Astral black, or will it just be black? Or can buy a roll and apply it myself, hmmm

The vinyl looks good on your LWB Bob; I prefer the commercial look on the SWB though, I think the white cruiser above looks great, I like the colour codedness of the panels. There's no seats in the back of mine as was converted to commercial but the windows were left as original.
 

Jacob100

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You can get 3M or similar high-quality automotive vinyl on eBay in any size, colour or finish. If applying it isn’t your thing any tint place or vinyl studio should be able to supply and fit it for under £100. I’ve thought about doing it myself and would probably get a sheet of window vinyl from a shopfitter/visual merchandising supplier.
 

Bob

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I see yours has the Colorado badge, meaning a UK spec that was converted later. I don't think the vinyl can be colour coded, it would be a case of gloss black. I see where you're coming from with the swb. Problem with Silver in the lwb was the back door window frame being black. Can't see sheeting being an easy job unless a very skilled person gets the job
 

TheBigLug

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I agree that painting the glass is probably simpler and just as effective
 
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