Nov 10, 2014

Project 180SX: Front Wide Fenders pt. 4

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Project 180SX:

Wide Fenders pt 4

by Dustin Mankin

 It's almost midnight here, so I'm gonna pound away on this keyboard a little before heading to bed. I have two more entries in this ongoing fender madness, before we draw this portion of the project to a close.

I've been talking endlessly about how much I hate the cheap vents that EVERY aftermarket wide fender has. I was thinking about filling them in, and there are some other people that have done excellent jobs at this such as Toby Broadfield. Let's look at my entry into the foray.

Above you can see that I have sketched a line around the vent. This will be my cutline. This is my guide to insure that I make a somewhat decent cut. I'll not lie, cutting a straight line is not my strongest skill... hell, if you look, I can't even draw a straight line.

On the corner I'm going to drill a circle. I will do this on the opposite corner as well. This hole serves the purpose of letting the blade into the hole, and also gives me room to turn the blade to cut the corner.

I put the blade of my air saw into the fender, but you don't wanna push to deep, or you will bend the blade when it bangs off of the unibody inside. You also want to be careful, if you have not tucked your body harness over the metal inner fender. Cutting into it is a real possibility.

Two pictures of the cutting in progress.... just take your time. It's a lot easier doing it to fenders that are already messed up, I'm sure. Custom is taking risks, though.

And here is a wide shot of the fender with the vent cut out. I'm going to resin in a flat piece of cured FRP in behind it. This will give the fender rigidity for the body filler to stick to. It will be getting aluminum body filler, the same as other places that I have shaved on my car.

Here's the plate fiberglassed into place. This is my first time working with fiberglass, and I have to admit, I really like it. I'm really thinking of molding some parts, one day.

And here's the wide shot.

Naturally, we have to do the other side, as well.

So the plates are fiberglassed into place. Next time, I will be focusing on filling these in, and making the whole thing look smooth like it came from the factory  (in China) with no vents in it. Stay tuned, that's coming in a few days. Then a few days later, I'll have the final part where we gel coat the fenders. Exciting and fun stuff!

Sound off below about how you feel about the progress!

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