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Old 09-06-2020, 01:37 PM   #1
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Posts: 16
Custom Propane Compartment Door

The door for my propane compartment had gotten a bit rusted. Stripping and removing the rust on the door wouldn't have been too hard. But the piano hinge was rusted to the point it constantly needed oil and removing it and welding on a new one felt too much work...

Of course that meant I had to add another DIY project to my queue, which *always* saves me time

Here's the old door:

I broke out the ruler and captured the dimensions of the old door and latch hole placement. Then sketched the design within Fusion 360.

Here's a PDF of the design:

Luckily, I had a small piece of stainless steel sheet sitting around that would work for the door. I used Fusion 360 again to create the CAM to drive a Waterjet to cut the door.

Once cut, I bent the door on a press brake to have it match the curvature of the van. I again followed the original door design.

But then I wasn't completely satisfied with the look. I got the wild idea to give the door a swirl pattern like I'd seen on fancy parts. That meant going down the rabbit hole of the history and howto. Turns out it fairly easy to do and involves using using small sanding discs that you can mount on your hand drill. Getting the pattern correct takes a little practice but the result made me happy.

Instead of using a piano hinge, I found two small hinges that I bolted onto the door. Getting the right size and fit only took two or three different hinge purchases.

For the edge of the door, I had some 1/8" rubber trim left over from another project.

Finally mounted the door to the van and once again poured myself a beer for another time saving project

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File Type: pdf Propane Door Drawing v2.pdf (140.1 KB, 14 views)

2001 EB E350
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Old 09-06-2020, 01:44 PM   #2
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Cool, looks great.

2008 GMC 3500 Quigley Weldtec 4x4 Savana SMB
2006 BMW HP2 Enduro-Sold
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Old 09-06-2020, 10:19 PM   #3
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Nice!Big differance,all ways fun to get a job done that you can sit back and admire.
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Old 07-07-2021, 11:12 AM   #4
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Hey hansk,

Do you recall what type of hinges you used? I would love to do this to my 2001 E250.
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Old 08-01-2021, 10:41 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by tbrasher View Post
Do you recall what type of hinges you used?
Sorry, I don't recall. Shoot, I should have written the model down in my notes. I went to my local hardware store and found them.
2001 EB E350
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