Original door handles and exterior mirrors are components that are always exposed to the elements and as a result, they often look far more battered and worn than the rest of your classic GM car, especially if the final paint and body work has already been completed. Interior door handles, window cranks and mirrors can take a lot of abuse too, and they can also look pretty worn out inside an otherwise immaculately restored interior.
Although preserving original General Motors (GM) parts can be important to the originality of a restoration, brand new old stock factory replacement parts like handles and mirrors are simply not available anymore. Please note – the examples here are for Chevelle. You can select your year, make and model easily at OPGI.com.
There is not much that looks better on your ride than a brand new set of door handles. These jewel-like handle sets manufactured by RESTOPARTS® are triple chrome plated exact reproductions of the factory GM units. The handles feature case-hardened steel and die cast zinc alloy along with the finest stamped hardware and spring reproductions for a flawless fit, finish and function. Kits for four-door cars are also available. Each front set includes: A pair of chrome outside door handles, two door handle gaskets, chrome push-buttons with rods, and the O-rings, springs and retainers necessary to mount them.
Exterior mirrors always take a beating due to their location that is exposed to the elements. When they become worn and rust-pitted, they can really detract from an otherwise great looking car. This new RESTOPARTS-manufactured pair of exact GM factory spec mirrors will enhance the look of any car. There is simply no comparison on the market to our precision set (pictured above) for ’69-’72 Chevelles, El Caminos and Monte Carlos. OPGI also carries a wide selection of mirrors for all GM A, B, C, E, and G-Body vehicles. These factory-identical reproductions of the originals feature the correct factory “bump” or rib-line and a casehardened die-cast zinc end ball to protect against “mirror droop”. Each mirror set also includes a premium mounting kit with authentic molded (not pressed) gaskets, mounting brackets and required screws.
If you have damaged or worn out original handles and mirrors it might be possible to refurbish them or clean them up a bit, but only to a point. Chrome plated parts don’t really take well to vigorous scrubbing, although with some patience, luck and some #0000 steel wool, you might be able to revive the original chrome to the point where it might look decent from several feet away. However, if the rest of your vehicle is immaculate, it is highly unlikely that the old chrome parts will match the level of a good restoration. Instead, they will probably stick out like a sore thumb on an otherwise great looking car.
Because the factory replacement mirrors, door handles and window crank assemblies are no longer available from GM, Original Parts Group, Inc. (OPGI) has responded by manufacturing a wide range of new premium reproduction assemblies that are identical to the original equipment in appearance, fit and function, as well as being triple chrome plated for durability and long-lasting brilliance. Whether your car needs new door handles, or a set of mirrors, OPGI manufactures complete, factory-correct reproduction mirrors and interior/exterior handles and cranks for all of the most popular classic cars from Chevrolet, Oldsmobile, Pontiac, Buick, and Cadillac. The precisely cast steel or die cast zinc components from OPGI also contain all of the buttons, springs, gaskets and mounting hardware necessary to get your ride handled properly (pun intended).
No more droopy mirrors! Don’t forget that OPGI also offers new RESTOPARTS-manufactured interior mirrors that are factory-exact, stainless steel-backed reproductions featuring hardened zinc, die cast attachments and end balls to ensure the mirror stays in place, securely in the pocket – where you want it!
OPGI components are all top quality items that meet or exceed the original factory specifications and many customers have noted that the OPGI parts actually look and perform better than the original equipment did when new. Because your mirrors, door handles and window cranks (or power window buttons) are highly visible from just about any view of the car inside or out, it is important that they look as good as possible. Whether your car is a daily driver or a show vehicle, it simply won’t look correct with anything less than absolutely perfect replacement parts, and when you shop at OPGI, you can count on getting what you need the first time, and every time.
Interior window cranks (as well as power window push button assemblies) can often look worn and permanently dirty from years of use. New RESTOPARTS window crank handles (available with clear or black knobs) will cure that situation! Designed to fit and function just like the original equipment, each crank is precisely cast for a perfect fit.
Whether you drive a Chevy, a Buick, an Olds, a Pontiac or even a classic Caddy, OPGI has the bases covered when it comes to handles, mirrors and much more!
Shop for restoration parts at www.opgi.com.
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Rick Seitz is the owner and founder of Timeless Muscle Magazine, and has a true love and passion for all vehicles. When he isn’t tuning, testing, or competing with the brand’s current crop of project vehicles, he’s busy tinkering and planning the next modifications for his own cars.