Notices
'80-'86 FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) Calculators, specififications, automotive terms and acronyms.

FAQ - Tailgate replacement, tail light swap

 
  #76  
Old 04-16-2010, 08:00 PM
Rogue_Wulff's Avatar
Rogue_Wulff
Rogue_Wulff is offline
Post Fiend
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Lost
Posts: 8,514
Rogue_Wulff is a splendid one to beholdRogue_Wulff is a splendid one to beholdRogue_Wulff is a splendid one to beholdRogue_Wulff is a splendid one to beholdRogue_Wulff is a splendid one to beholdRogue_Wulff is a splendid one to beholdRogue_Wulff is a splendid one to behold
Originally Posted by fellro86 View Post
I took one, drilled holes from the inside ends of the gate, then plug welded the pieces back together. I did it at the inside curves of the center structure rather than at the outer edges and it held up to being used as a work bench... Only reason I don't use it right now is because the pivot mount rotted off the box, so there is nothing to hold the gate up when you open it... Sure, doing this will burn the paint, but there really isn't any way around that.
Yeah, I was planning to do the basic thing. The only real issue is the outer skin has started splitting where it goes into the depression for the "FORD" logo. The gate was like that when I bought the truck (in 1997) and by using a little extra care to open/close, and not leaving anything heavy on it, it hasn't gotten any worse.
I'm not too concerned about the paint, as I plan to respray the whole truck, after patching a couple small rust spots on the bed rear lower corners and over the wheelwells.

The factory spot welds weren't the best, and many of the orginal gates I have seen are far worse than mine.
 
  #77  
Old 04-16-2010, 10:05 PM
fellro86's Avatar
fellro86
fellro86 is offline
Post Fiend
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Marengo, Iowa
Posts: 11,692
fellro86 has much to be proud offellro86 has much to be proud offellro86 has much to be proud offellro86 has much to be proud offellro86 has much to be proud offellro86 has much to be proud offellro86 has much to be proud offellro86 has much to be proud offellro86 has much to be proud of
As long as it pulls back together ok, that will be a fairly easy weld, mine had done that as well.
 
  #78  
Old 04-16-2010, 10:36 PM
Rogue_Wulff's Avatar
Rogue_Wulff
Rogue_Wulff is offline
Post Fiend
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Lost
Posts: 8,514
Rogue_Wulff is a splendid one to beholdRogue_Wulff is a splendid one to beholdRogue_Wulff is a splendid one to beholdRogue_Wulff is a splendid one to beholdRogue_Wulff is a splendid one to beholdRogue_Wulff is a splendid one to beholdRogue_Wulff is a splendid one to behold
I figured it would be pretty simple for a decent welder.
If I could weld, I'd be a good looking welder, were I good looking.........
 
  #79  
Old 06-10-2010, 03:37 PM
Grubbworm's Avatar
Grubbworm
Grubbworm is offline
Postmaster
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Acworth, GA
Posts: 2,935
Grubbworm has a great reputation on FTE.Grubbworm has a great reputation on FTE.Grubbworm has a great reputation on FTE.Grubbworm has a great reputation on FTE.Grubbworm has a great reputation on FTE.Grubbworm has a great reputation on FTE.
Okay, here goes; after a lot of searching here I simply cannot find this information again. I have read and reread a lot of postings for this tailgate information, to no avail.
I have an ’85 f150 and I am looking to replace the tailgate and taillights with some from a newer model. I like the clean look of the ‘95’s, but I do not wish to change the mounting hardware for the tailgate (I would like to keep it somewhat original). The information that I am seeking are what year tailgates are a direct bolt on with no hardware change?
As for the taillights, I like the look of the ’90-‘97’s. Will they work with the same bulb sockets, or do I need to use the ’87-’90 model lights? Or would it be just as easy to wire the new bulb sockets in (again, I would prefer to keep the original ones)?
Please forgive me if this information is posted some where else, I just can’t seem to find it. Also, I am posting this here as I think this information should be in this thread along with the other good info that is in here.
 
  #80  
Old 06-10-2010, 04:13 PM
LARIAT 85's Avatar
LARIAT 85
LARIAT 85 is offline
Postmaster
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Florence, SC
Posts: 3,323
LARIAT 85 is a splendid one to beholdLARIAT 85 is a splendid one to beholdLARIAT 85 is a splendid one to beholdLARIAT 85 is a splendid one to beholdLARIAT 85 is a splendid one to beholdLARIAT 85 is a splendid one to beholdLARIAT 85 is a splendid one to behold
A few things to keep in mind about tailgates and tailgate trim:

1980 - 1986: tailgate handle located lower than the later models
I. Two different aluminum trim panels:
a. 1980 - 1984: narrow trim panel with F-O-R-D stretched across it
b. 1985 - 1986: full width trim panel with ribbed red reflector, "FORD" off to the right side, tailgate handle opening cut-out

1987 - 1991: tailgate different, tailgate handle located higher than the earlier models
II. Aluminum trim panel had "FORD" off to the right side in a different script and a smooth red reflector

1992 - 1996: same tailgate as 1987 - 1991
III. Aluminum trim panel has "FORD" off to the right in yet another different script and a smooth black reflector

The full-width 1985 - 1986 aluminum tailgate trim incorporates a tailgate handle cut-out. That means the tailgate trim from 1987 - 1996 (higher mounted tailgate handle, no cut-out on the aluminum trim panel) will not work on an earlier tailgate and the 1985 - 1986 tailgate trim will not work on the later models. The more smaller, more narrow 1980 -1984 tailgate trim doesn't go up to the tailgate handle like the 1985 - 1986 tailgate trim (with tailgate handle cut-out) does, so it should fit the later models, if you are so inclined.

As for the tail lights, the 1980 - 1986 tail light housings are more squared off than the later ones. The later curved ones will fit, but they will stick out more from the body because of the subtle differences in sheet metal between the earlier and later years.
 
  #81  
Old 06-11-2010, 07:30 AM
Grubbworm's Avatar
Grubbworm
Grubbworm is offline
Postmaster
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Acworth, GA
Posts: 2,935
Grubbworm has a great reputation on FTE.Grubbworm has a great reputation on FTE.Grubbworm has a great reputation on FTE.Grubbworm has a great reputation on FTE.Grubbworm has a great reputation on FTE.Grubbworm has a great reputation on FTE.
Thank You Lariat 85 , I now understand that any ’87-’96 tailgate will work on my ’85 as long as I use the hardware for the replacement tailgate.
As for the taillights, I understand about the looks lights and fit of the body lines. But, my question is, will the bulb sockets be the same or fit the housing in the same manner? Or do I need to wire in new sockets with the new housings?
 
  #82  
Old 06-11-2010, 11:00 AM
Rogue_Wulff's Avatar
Rogue_Wulff
Rogue_Wulff is offline
Post Fiend
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Lost
Posts: 8,514
Rogue_Wulff is a splendid one to beholdRogue_Wulff is a splendid one to beholdRogue_Wulff is a splendid one to beholdRogue_Wulff is a splendid one to beholdRogue_Wulff is a splendid one to beholdRogue_Wulff is a splendid one to beholdRogue_Wulff is a splendid one to behold
Originally Posted by Grubbworm View Post
Thank You Lariat 85 , I now understand that any ’87-’96 tailgate will work on my ’85 as long as I use the hardware for the replacement tailgate.
As for the taillights, I understand about the looks lights and fit of the body lines. But, my question is, will the bulb sockets be the same or fit the housing in the same manner? Or do I need to wire in new sockets with the new housings?
Tail light units are direct swap, the sockets fit just fine. I have 92-96 tail lights in my 80.
The only difference is the previously mentioned area where the 80-86 has the flatened surface, and the later models are curved. From 5-10 ft away, this isn't noticeable. If you have the narrow chrome trim above the the lights, it's also not noticeable.

The later tail light units seem to be much brighter. This is partly due to being 25 or more years fresher, but also due to the bright chrome-like coating inside the unit, where the 80-86 was just white plastic.
Reverse lights are way better. The lens is almost clear, rather than white-ish. They're brighter and light up the area behind the truck much better.
 
  #83  
Old 06-11-2010, 11:13 AM
Grubbworm's Avatar
Grubbworm
Grubbworm is offline
Postmaster
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Acworth, GA
Posts: 2,935
Grubbworm has a great reputation on FTE.Grubbworm has a great reputation on FTE.Grubbworm has a great reputation on FTE.Grubbworm has a great reputation on FTE.Grubbworm has a great reputation on FTE.Grubbworm has a great reputation on FTE.
Thank you Rogue and Lariat, This information clears up any confusion on my part. This will be a future upgrade that I will do, and I will post before and after photo's when it happens.
 
  #84  
Old 06-11-2010, 11:38 AM
Rogue_Wulff's Avatar
Rogue_Wulff
Rogue_Wulff is offline
Post Fiend
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Lost
Posts: 8,514
Rogue_Wulff is a splendid one to beholdRogue_Wulff is a splendid one to beholdRogue_Wulff is a splendid one to beholdRogue_Wulff is a splendid one to beholdRogue_Wulff is a splendid one to beholdRogue_Wulff is a splendid one to beholdRogue_Wulff is a splendid one to behold
I consider the 92-96 tail lights to be an upgrade in the safety dept. They are more visible at night, and far more visible in the day. I did this on mine out of need, since 1 of my old tail lights got busted. The slight mismatch isn't annoying enough for me to spend the money for the "Correct" lights, since this is something that gets driven as needed.
For a true restoration, the correct lights would be desireable.

I noticed that I can actually see the tail light glow at the end of the bedside in my mirrors, which is something that I previously could not do. I had to get out and walk back to see if the tail lights were working, now I can check them even running down the highway.....
 
  #85  
Old 06-12-2010, 01:42 PM
81-F-150-Explorer
81-F-150-Explorer is offline
Post Fiend
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Northern California
Posts: 8,791
81-F-150-Explorer is a splendid one to behold81-F-150-Explorer is a splendid one to behold81-F-150-Explorer is a splendid one to behold81-F-150-Explorer is a splendid one to behold81-F-150-Explorer is a splendid one to behold81-F-150-Explorer is a splendid one to behold81-F-150-Explorer is a splendid one to behold
There are tailgate and hardware differences between 1980-1982 and 1983-1986 that I previously posted elsewhere.

1987-1991 and 1992-1996 tailgates are different to the 1980-1982 and 1983-1986 as previously mentioned, but are vitually identical with each other 1987-1996 except the 1987-1991 has Ford stamped into the metal.

As for the taillamps, Check the DOT number printed on the taillamps. The taillamps were changed in 1984 due to safety reasons. The 1984-1986 taillamps will have a DOT number of SAE-AIP2RST-84-TK or equivalent. These taillamps are much brighter and better made than the 80-TK counterparts used on 1980-1983 trucks and bronco. The only way to tell the difference is by the DOT number printed on them as they look vitually identical. The 84-TK taillamps are a direct replacement for 1980-1986 and should be used instead of the 80-TK taillamps if searching in the wrecking yards for one.

As with any taillamp make sure they are not oxidized and turned opaque. They should be relatively clear. Hope this helps.
 
  #86  
Old 01-30-2017, 09:52 AM
Cowboybrad351
Cowboybrad351 is offline
New User
Join Date: May 2016
Posts: 4
Cowboybrad351 is starting off with a positive reputation.
In order to do the swap from the 80-86 tailgate, to the 87-90's... I would think that you would need the tailgate latches from that year. The tailgate "hinges" that are on the truck already SHOULD work, but don't quote me. My thing is, why not just keep within the year? The 80's tailgate would fit the look a whole lot better.
 
 
Related Topics
Thread
Thread Starter
Forum
Replies
Last Post
1972fordhighboy
1980 - 1986 Bullnose F100, F150 & Larger F-Series Trucks
11
12-27-2017 04:16 PM
Montync
WTB - Parts & other
11
08-03-2017 04:10 PM
bobs 80 f250
Ford Truck Parts for Sale
0
06-08-2017 09:22 PM
xjpilot
WTB - Parts & other
16
05-11-2017 10:50 AM
droppedf100
Ford Truck Parts for Sale
4
09-23-2016 10:55 PM


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Quick Reply: FAQ - Tailgate replacement, tail light swap


Contact Us - About Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

© 2019 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands

We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.
 
  • Ask a Question
    Get answers from community experts
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: