G-Body Run Channel Research

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Master Mechanic
Dec 29, 2010
New River, Arizona
OK, So today I got serious about the potential run channel debacle. This was manifested through a conversation Jack and I have been having regarding the inability to purchase G-Body four door/wagon run channel.

A little history; Based on photos of the two cars, I made an assumption the early (80-90) Caprice four door/wagon run channel would be very similar to that of a 78-83 G-Body. I ordered a pair of front door run channels for an 80-90 Caprice four door and when they came in, and to my surprise, they were smaller than the OE GM G-Body left front door run channel I have to compare it to. They were nearly identical in materials but the top side was too short. So now I have one OE GM Impala/Caprice rear door run channel and a reproduction set of Impala/Caprice front door run channel I can’t use. It’s basically ninety bucks so it’s not the end of the world.

I got nosing around on the internet and came across Danno Enterprises website http://www.dannoenterprises.com/7883Mal.htm and was surprised to find a reference to flexible run channel that is alleged to fit 78-83 Malibu four door/wagon. Catalog calls for part number AS1336, so I ordered the specified quantity, one roll per door, four rolls.

It was on backorder but the stuff came in last week while I was gone and was in my box when I picked up the mail. Here’s what I found thus far; Remember, I have one NOS GM 20674357 Left Front Door Glass Run Channel I purchased before they were discontinued by GM I'm using to compare to. Danno’s recommendation of the AS1336 is similar to the long side of the OE run channel however it's considerably different from the top/short side of the run channel. That being said, the top/short side of the OE run channel is nearly identical to Danno’s AS1720.

The short side and the top are actually the same piece, i.e. there isn't a joint like there is on the long side so this is easy peasy, lemon squeezy. Beyond that, I really don't see the joint on the long side being tat big of a deal and especially with the improvements in weatherstrip adhesive technology.

More than likely by the time we get this figured out, someone will offer up the parts we need, but I’m headed down that road right now. In the interim and/or until I can find a better solution, I’ll be returning two rolls of the AS1336 to trade for the AS1720 which is a closer representation of the original GM product. I have attached photos for your review.

Constructive questions and comments always welcome. And by all means, if you've already gone here, please don't keep it a secret. I only need to keep the sun out, a lot of you PB's need to keep the rain and snow out. ...

Scott, ... :arrow: :arrow: :arrow: :blam:

I'm calling this the long side only because it measures longer than the other side. GM 20674357 - Long Side


This is an end view of the GM 20674357 - Long Side


This is an end view of the Danno AS1336



I'm calling this the short side only because it measures shorter than the other side. GM 20674357 - short Side
This is an end view of the GM 20674357 - short Side


This is an end view of the Danno AS1720



In case you thought I didn't have an OE piece.


I guess we know who makes the stuff for Danno now don't we.


Here's a photo of the GM OE inside corner (left side of the run channel in the photos)


Here's a couple of photos of the GM OE outside reinforcements



Scott, … :arrow: :arrow: :arrow: :)
Thank you very much for doing the research, and posting your observations...I truly appreciate it.
I have noticed by looking at my old run channel (what's left of it) the forward and top piece seems to be one size, and the rear channel is a wider version of the top/forward.

It's funny that you mentioned part # AS 1720. I actually had that number written down on some old notes that I taken last year some time.
So the AS 1336, as indicated in Danno's catalog, is similar to the front/ top channel? How about the back door channels, are they also similar to the fronts?

Will you be using the AS 1720 to replace the entire front door channel, and will you try to simulate the OE pieces by bonding the corners of the two sizes together together? What a conundrum. :?

A while back, a friend of mine mentioned a company that he found online that carried various sizes and shapes of run channel, etc. http://www.stanpro.com/windowchannels.aspx I think the downside was that they only sold in bulk over a certain amount.
They don't seem to indicate dimensions. From what I recall, they used to. The AS 1720 was not listed, even though their numbering system is the same. However, AS 1336 was listed.

BTW, were you able to figure out the spacer configuration on your bucket seats? I haven't seen a follow up post, so I assume that someone had given you the information.
Went into the website for StanPro and found both run channel variations referenced. The length is the same (96 inches) as Danno's parts but StanPro does have a reference to a standard package being twenty-five pieces. Not sure what the price break would be but I don’t need twenty-five pieces or even know twenty-five people that do. That said, I don’t mind paying the $15.00 per piece from Danno. If I had more free time, I'd be making these run channels myself and selling them to the usual suspects.

http://www.stanpro.com/Product.aspx?Pro ... egoryId=18

http://www.stanpro.com/Product.aspx?Pro ... egoryId=18

You are absolutely correct in your analysis that the forward and top (what I referred to as the short side) is very close to the AS1720. The rear (what I referred to as the long side) is very close to the AS1336. To answer your questions specifically, yes, I intend to purchase both available types of run channel and make finished pieces that closely resemble the OE GM pieces.

It’s probably difficult to see but the joint really isn’t all that sophisticated. I think by gluing the reinforcements on the outside of the channel, like GM did, the corners don’t necessarily need to be welded / fused together. From my recollection they’re stuffed inside of the frame so as long as the glass rolls up inside, shouldn’t be a functional or cosmetic issue.

As far as the rear doors are concerned, I need to find the stuff I took off to determine what's needed for those. Knowing GM the way I do, I’m going to say they didn’t stray too far from the front to the rear. The only real difference I can speculate on is the fact the rear windows were fixed on every G-Body I’m aware of. Somebody correct me if I’m wrong but even the sedan rear windows were fixed right?

That said; let’s blow one bridge up at a time for the time being. Some rear door run channel photos would be helpful.

And no, nobody has come forward with the magic map of where the seat spacers go or what dictates whether they got tall, medium or short spacers for what applications. The parts catalog only lists two part numbers but isn't specific enough as to where they should be located. ...

Scott, … :arrow: :arrow: :arrow: :wink:
My research skills are questionable to say the least.. :oops: I guess at that point when I was looking thru Stanpros's site, I was kinda bleary eyed from the day's activities. You certainly found the correct run channels we were discussing...and the dimensions as well...good work, my friend. :)
Being that the channels are sold at a minimum of 25 pieces. Trying to find 25 interested parties could be difficult. I guess buying them individually from Danno works out economically. I guess to get a price quote, one would have to contact the company and speak to a representative.
Perhaps I should look into producing kits. :idea: and selling them to the usual suspects... :wink:

I'll check my back door channels and see if they're similar. I suspect they are. G-body 4-dr/ wagons all have fixed rear side windows.
As far as bonding the two separate pieces in the corners, I'm sure there's some quality adhesives out there that would work well for this purpose. Although, once the pieces are glued into the channels, they're not going anywhere.
As you also indicated, the pieces weren't bonded together in any kind of sophisticated manner. Bonding them from the outside like GM did should work out just fine. Besides, it's undetectable once it's in place.

Regarding the seat spacers. Does the track need to come apart from the seat in order to make an assessment as to how the spacers are configured? I have Monte Carlo seats in my wagon currently. I can take one out and look at it.
Scott, I can't help you with the run channel issue, but yes, you are correct, in that the rear door glass is fixed on any A/G body sedan/wagon that I've ever seen. The only thing that moves are the rear vent windows. As you know, most are manual, but some are power operated. Years ago, I had a '79 Malibu sedan with the power rear vent wndows-wish I'd hung onto those parts now, instead of letting them go when I scrapped the car. Oh well, hindsight is a great thing.
Hey Jack,

Said Hi Jack to a friend of mine one time on an airplane, that was a big mistake, but I digress.

You don't give yourself enough credit, you had the site and that's more than I had. This is a collective effort. If we pick up one tidbit from everyone on the site, we'll all be that much smarter for it. This is one of the parts that's needed right now and will be needed on every restoration of a G sedan or wagon. If you've got the time, you sure have the audience. Most of the best products are born from necessity. Would be a great side job, not a lot of stress, no real physical labor and a guy could probably make some money to fund his or her pet project.

I will appreciate any reference on the rear window application. I haven't looked yet but as stated previously, doubt that GM strayed too far from the front to the rear.

Regarding seat spacers; I'm not sure the G Malibus or wagons had the spacers. There's no reference to them in the parts catalog but it seems like after a specific year, yet to be determined, the Monte Carlos and El Caminos used the spacers. Not sure what the change was that drove the spacer addition but that's what it looks like. Granted I haven't spent a great deal of effort researching the year breaks.

I appreciate your offer to take a seat apart, really, I do, but that's not necessary. If nobody provides an answer, I'll experiment until I get the seat angle I'm looking for. However, if anyone has Monte Carlo or El Camino seats with the tracks still installed, do me a favor and have a look between the seat track and the seat base. If there's spacers, let us know where they are (position on the seat) and how thick they are by position.

This http://www.nosreproductions.com/page/about-us is a cool site. Didn't have a lot for the Malibus (not even a search option) but did have some interesting stuff just the same. As suggested, I'm thinking these could be the guys to offer what we need. Unfortunately, I don't have the time to invest for the long term growth of G-Body parts availability.

Thanks everyone, get out there and work on your cars. ...

Scott, ... :arrow: :arrow: :arrow: :)
Hi Scott,
I always tell people never to greet me by saying "Hi Jack" at the airport.. :lol: I hope it was overlooked when you said it. :D
I'm giving it some thought about possibly reproducing these pieces for G-bodys', or at least wagons and 4-drs.
I'm no longer part of daily the work force, so this might be an opportunity to supplement my hobby, or at least my project.
And as you you stated, it's not backbreaking work by any means. There is certainly a need for these parts. I could put the word out there, and perhaps take a poll before delving into this venture head first.

Stanpro also seems to have the window sweeps as well. I suppose I could offer those in kit form, too. I actually have 3 good ones that have lived in my garage for the past 10+ yrs.

I will get around to looking over the back window channel to make a size comparison. I spent the weekend trying to tidy up my garage in preparation of painting my rolling wreck. Also worked on the car aligning and fitting my replacement fenders.
I will pull a seat tomorrow and take a gander at the spacers, and determine the width of them. I think I do recall seeing spacers between the track and seat.

I had a look at the website that Steve (pontiacgp) posted. They do seem to have some nice stuff, but again, not much for our year Malibus.

We'll continue this discussion later.
Jack :)
If NOS doesn't have something you are looking for ask them about it. I have been to their store a few times and have talked with the owners. They really are car guys and enjoy what they are doing, they have helped me out in the past...
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