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bumper cover help needed
I have a question about bumper mounting.
I have just done some rust touch-up on my 1987 VW Quantum Syncro (Quattro
in Disguise). I use POR-15 clear. Brushed on because I prefer not to
poison myself. Top-coated with regular Tornado Red spray-can paint
because I am not a concours enthusiast, I just want this thing to not rust.
To accomplish this task, I took off the front and rear bumpers. The front
bumper's left wrap-around section was not fastened to the fender due to
the failure of the body-half mount. I was unable to get this mount to
stay in the fender using the factory method, so I made it work with the
help of a few fender washers, bolts and Nylock nuts. Hey, my other car is
a Lotus, so I know how to creatively re-engineer things. Works perfectly.
The bumper can be removed and refitted the way VW intended.
The right rear had the same problem at the left front (side extension of
the bumper cover bouncing around, beating the paint to death) but with a
different cause. The body-side mount (which lives just abaft the rear
wheel opening) is OK. The half on the bumper cover is broken.
Perhaps I should explain how the bumper is removed, so you all can see if
it is like your car. You crawl under the car and remove the two bolts on
each side that hold on the bumper. Each bolt goes through the frame rail
and into a nut welded to the bumper bracket. Then simply pull the bumper
to the rear. This withdraws the two bumper brackets from the frame rail
box-section, leaving two large square holes in the back of the car.
Meanwhile, the bumper-cover mounts slide off of the body-half mounts.
WARNING: Bad ASCII ahead.
^ body-half mount.
^ sheet metal car body
^ bumper cover
^ bumper-cover half mount
The problem is that one of the "ears" on the bumper-cover half mount is
broken off. Since you need both ears to slide around the body-side half
of the mount as the bumper is pushed forward, I have a problem.
Body-side half mounts are available through the dealer, but that is the
half that is not broken.
Bumper-cover half mounts are not cataloged separate from the bumper cover,
which is several hundred dollars. They are attached to the bumper cover
by a sort of monolithic rivet theory. The mount is made of plastic. It
has some holes in it which are fitted at the factory over tubular
extensions in the molded soft plastic bumper cover. Then the tubes are
flared/rolled out by melting to form rivets.
There seems to be only two ways to fix this:
Repair the mount in situ by somehow fabbing a new ear. Maybe one can be
bent out of metal, but several problems occur to me. There seems no easy
way to attach it. Pop-rivets are not going to hold in the plastic.
Access to the back side of the mount is pretty well blocked for nuts and
washers. Clearance for the body-side half to slide in must be maintained.
Care must be taken that a metal ear does not scratch the body paint
during bumper installation.
The other possibility is to remove the broken one and replace it. How the
heck would you hold it on? You would drill out the "rivets" to remove the
old one, and have nothing left to fasten. Plus the problem of getting an
unbroken one in the first place. Junkyards may not take kindly to me
removing one from a bumper cover.
Any ideas? Anyone done this in the past?
Phil Ethier, THE RIGHT LINE, 672 Orleans St, Saint Paul, MN 55107-2676 USA
h (612) 224-3105 w (612) 266-6244 firstname.lastname@example.org
Have not been there, nor done that. Have not even seen the T-shirt