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Do-It-Yourself Projects
Mounting Pre-painted Fenders
By Mike Bumbeck/autoMedia.com
Printable version
Degree of DifficultyDifficult
Difficult
Estimated Time240 minutes
240 minutes
Shimtastic
Unlike modern cars built with state-of-the-art computer-aided design, with fenders and body panels carved out with lasers or other space-age technology, the classics were built in a more classical manner, complete with the imperfections that make good ol' things so good. Even fresh off the assembly line, any two classic cars were never exactly the same. Parts made in different places required a bit of coercion to get them to line up correctly. This coercion came by way of shims placed on this spot or that to adjust the way the fender or panel sat on the mounting points. In the case of disassembling a car or truck for restoration, one good method is to keep track of how many shims came out of what spots on disassembly and put them right back in when the time comes.
 
This method will help only if using the same fenders that came off the car. If reproduction or used fenders come into play the process will have to be started all over again. Trial and error is often the only way to get the right number of shims in the right places to get body panel gaps the right way and make the fenders line up properly. While this process is not rocket science, great care must again be taken in the case of adjusting pre-painted fenders. The results will be worth it.
Step 7 - Install shims to position the fender in correct relationship to adjacent body panels.
Install Shims to Position the Fender to Adjacent Body Panels
Step 8 - Snug up but do not fully tighten the mounting bolts on the shims. This will allow for fender adjustment.
Snug Up But Do Not Fully Tighten the Mounting Bolts on the Shims
Step 9 - Install shims as required to bring the fender in line with the doors.
Install Shims as Required to Bring the Fender in Line with the Doors
Step 10 - Unless you have three hands, installing some parts and bumper brackets may require a helper.
You May Need Help Installing Some Parts and Bumper Brackets
Step 11 - Once everything is lined up, cinch up all the bolts.                              
Cinch Up All Bolts
Step 12 - The old Camaro is starting to look new again.                                              
The Old Camaro is Starting to Look New Again
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