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Username Post: 2012 Tahoe Piller Trim w/Handle        (Topic#359089)
bluegoose 
Poster
Posts: 83

Age: 30
Loc: Texas
Reg: 12-13-14
12-09-19 04:24 PM - Post#2781814    

Does anyone know if there is such a thing as a driver's side windshield A-pillar with a handle built into it? Basically, a mirror image of the passenger's side.

A few months back, my dad purchased a 2019 Silverado. It has a handle on the driver's side to help the driver enter the vehicle. Since my mother has severe back trouble, it has proven to be an asset, and I'm trying to figure out if we can retro-fit her older Tahoe with the same setup.

Any input will be appreciated!



 
someotherguy 
Senior Moderator
Posts: 29141
someotherguy
Age: 50
Loc: Texas
Reg: 08-01-03
12-10-19 08:59 AM - Post#2781868    
    In response to bluegoose

I haven't seen any older model GM trucks with this. Ford has been doing it since the 2008 model I think? I know that in wreckers equipped with this handle I've smacked it a few times while maneuvering in parking lots and bent fingers backwards hurts pretty badly.. the Ford handle is grossly oversized, though.

If you look at the passenger A-pillar grab handle you'll find there's a decent amount of support behind the trim panel. On GMT400 trucks (88-98 body) there's a bracket welded to the pillar with a couple captive nuts in it, and the handle which is vinyl-covered plastic bolts into those. I retrofitted a 1994 cab (pre-handle) with a handle and interior from 1995-up; it was a bit of work! You could do the same thing for the driver side, though. I chopped the pillar out of a newer cab which allowed me to drill the welds out (windshield in the way otherwise), made a template for where to place it, and welded it to the older cab. The interior trim will be the tricky part if you want it to look factory since there's no existing driver side A-pillar trim with grab handle. Otherwise, a couple of carefully marked and drilled holes, shaped afterwards with a Dremel, would probably work out just fine.

Just for clarity's sake here's the GMT400 pillar bracket after being welded in. Notice how the captive nuts are on the back side of the bracket so there's no chance they can pull through; the bolts sandwich them to the bracket itself.



Just be sure to cover everything well before welding! I taped cardboard to the windshield, covered the dash, floor, etc. with heavy moving blankets so that no weld spatter would damage the interior. It's just a few good welds (5 in my case) so it didn't take long.

Richard

06 Silverado ISS / 06 Silverado SS / 06 300C SRT8


 
rockfangd 
"7th Year" Gold Supporting Member
Posts: 2899
rockfangd
Age: 34
Loc: Utica ny
Reg: 04-13-10
12-13-19 09:04 PM - Post#2782110    
    In response to someotherguy

I think GM was about the only ones to not have one until around 2010.
My 03 Tundra has one, Fords, Dodges, Nissans have them.
Being a 2012 you may have the bracket there.
If you do it will be as simple as buying the handle and trim.


Old School GM fan FOREVER


 
bluegoose 
Poster
Posts: 83

Age: 30
Loc: Texas
Reg: 12-13-14
01-06-20 05:54 PM - Post#2783852    
    In response to someotherguy

Wow....I have to ask: was all of that work worth the handle? That got involved fast lol.

Seriously, thank you for the information. I searched all over the internet and I couldn't find where anyone talked about it being aftermarket or, in your case, custom. I figured there would be drilling, but not as much welding.

Anyway, I guess she is going to have to live with it until the new Tahoe comes around....



 
rockfangd 
"7th Year" Gold Supporting Member
Posts: 2899
rockfangd
Age: 34
Loc: Utica ny
Reg: 04-13-10
01-06-20 07:27 PM - Post#2783862    
    In response to bluegoose

lol

Old School GM fan FOREVER


 
someotherguy 
Senior Moderator
Posts: 29141
someotherguy
Age: 50
Loc: Texas
Reg: 08-01-03
01-06-20 10:15 PM - Post#2783882    
    In response to bluegoose

  • bluegoose Said:
Wow....I have to ask: was all of that work worth the handle? That got involved fast lol.


Excellent question! Yes, it was - I converted the interior from 1994 to the 1995-up style, while at the same time converting from a 6.5 turbodiesel to a Vortec 7.4. Other than the VIN you pretty much couldn't tell the truck's true year.

The grab handle was just a tiny piece of the bigger picture.





Richard

06 Silverado ISS / 06 Silverado SS / 06 300C SRT8


 
rockfangd 
"7th Year" Gold Supporting Member
Posts: 2899
rockfangd
Age: 34
Loc: Utica ny
Reg: 04-13-10
01-07-20 08:11 PM - Post#2783954    
    In response to someotherguy

Jealous.
Sounds just like me

Old School GM fan FOREVER


 
bluegoose 
Poster
Posts: 83

Age: 30
Loc: Texas
Reg: 12-13-14
01-26-20 07:31 PM - Post#2785250    
    In response to someotherguy

Wow....you did a helluva nice job converting it. Once again, thank you for your input.

This is a little off topic, but what made you change the interior? It seems people are none to fond of the '88-'94 setup.



 
someotherguy 
Senior Moderator
Posts: 29141
someotherguy
Age: 50
Loc: Texas
Reg: 08-01-03
01-27-20 04:14 PM - Post#2785301    
    In response to bluegoose

  • bluegoose Said:
Wow....you did a helluva nice job converting it. Once again, thank you for your input.

This is a little off topic, but what made you change the interior? It seems people are none to fond of the '88-'94 setup.


Thanks for the compliment! The truck actually looked pretty good in person though I'll admit it was maybe a 10-footer; no shame in it though as it was meant to be my shop wrecker and would be worked hard. I built it in my "spare" time (read: middle of the night after a long day of work) literally out of parts my customers didn't buy because of flaws here or there.

I personally prefer the 88-94 interior, but the existing interior in the truck was absolutely trashed. The idea of converting it to the Vortec 7.4 also brought the challenge of differing wiring, which includes steering column, A/C controls, and more - so I figured the best thing to do in terms of a smooth conversion and also serviceability later was to convert the whole truck, not just the engine. Having plenty of parts donors smooths the way.

While essentially I converted the truck from a 94 to a 96, parts came from a 92, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97, 98...you name it. If you've got time to kill, the whole story is told in words and pics here: http://www.someotherplace.com/bb/proj/35hd.html - it's funny, each time I look at a part I remember the truck it came from.

Richard

06 Silverado ISS / 06 Silverado SS / 06 300C SRT8


 
Matt 
Member #2440
Posts: 7827
Matt
Loc: SAV
Reg: 09-26-01
01-30-20 12:09 PM - Post#2785464    
    In response to someotherguy

Richard, I remember that truck and bowtie breakers! Hope all's well with you.



 
someotherguy 
Senior Moderator
Posts: 29141
someotherguy
Age: 50
Loc: Texas
Reg: 08-01-03
02-01-20 10:34 PM - Post#2785658    
    In response to Matt

  • Matt Said:
Richard, I remember that truck and bowtie breakers! Hope all's well with you.


Not too bad! Stupid busy but somehow I still find myself missing the shop (and those trucks) all these years later.

Richard

06 Silverado ISS / 06 Silverado SS / 06 300C SRT8


 
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