I had a grommet inside my Tacoma tailgate that was guiding the opening rod from the handle to one of the side locking mechanism but messed up its housing in an accident so I can't really fit a replacement. So now the metal rod is macgyvered on with some chicken wire. It works but the wire rusts every couple of years or so.

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Would you recommend using half pipe (so I can fit it around and not over) plastic tubing between the rod and the body part it's rubbing on and which also has a tendency to rust? E.g. something as simple as a pen tube.

  • I think you have answered your own question. The idea in itself of using a pen tube has merit. However, will it wear through something like in short order or will it last long enough that it is acceptable? Jan 14, 2016 at 22:40

1 Answer 1


I would do one of two things (or maybe a combination?):

enter image description here

It doesn't look like the tab which holds the rod does anything structurally. Either remove it (green line) or cut it back (maroon curve). In either case, this would leave the rod hanging free where it's not connecting with the body panel. Make sure you keep the hole at the top where you have it strung through right now so you'll still have a mounting point for the rod. To reconnect the rod, get some stainless steel wire to tie it up. This will ensure it doesn't rust again. Should never have to worry about it afterward.

Something else you could try is, cutting the area back (like I was suggesting above). You'll want to go to a hardware store and buy a stainless steel washer which is about the right size to hold the rod but still have some slop around it. Cut a notch in the washer so it will go over the rod, then weld the washer onto the tail gate housing to hold the rod in place.

In either case, get something like POR15 and coat anything which looks like it could rust except the rod itself. Since it is on the inside of the tail gate, you should have to look at any ugly stuff. After this you should never have to worry about it rusting again and I would think it would last for what ever life is left in your truck.

  • 1
    out of the box. wish I would have thought of it. Jan 15, 2016 at 0:59

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