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Fender Rolling 101

> some day when you have some time (no hurry) could you describe the process
> you used to roll the rear fenders?  and by how much?

OK, lessee.  Materials needed (what I used anyhow):  (1) 1983.5 - 1990 ('91 if
not a TQ) Audi of your choice, (1) 2 1/4 ton hydraulic jack, (2) sturdy
jackstands, (12) bottles of your favorite ale, (5) hours of free time, (1) old
wooden softball bat, (2) scrap pieces of wood (dimensions approximately 5
inches by 5 inches by half inch thick), (1) 6" C-clamp, (1) 17x7.5 Borbet Type
C (or enormous wheel of your choice.)

Put car in first gear (or park I guess), lock both diff's (if you've got 'em),
set E-Brake.  Uhh, better turn the car off at this point.  Jack the rear of the
car up with the hydraulic jack, so that there's about five inches under the
rear tires (suspension completely relieved.)  Place the jackstands under the
frame of the car, let hydraulic jack down.  Remove stock wheel, install the
monster you want to eventually fit on there.  Place hydraulic jack under the
new wheel, and jack the wheel up to where the bat will just clear the wheel and
the wheel well.  Start rolling the bat back and forth between the wheel and the
inner fender.  Whenever the bat is no longer touching (or doing anything to)
the inner fender lip, jack the tire up a tad.  Every once in a while remove the
bat & jack the wheel up all the way inside the well, and check your progress.
 When you've rolled the well about a half inch, let the wheel down & remove the
jack.  Put one of the scraps of wood inside the well, just at the bottom, and
place the other scrap on the w\outside of the well, at the bottom.  The scraps
should be placed so they're centred over the part of the well that curves in
towards the wheel.  With your third hand, place the C-clamp so each part of he
clamp is on either side of the curve of where the fender curls in.  Clamp
firmly, but don't bust the wood.  Do this both ways in the well, to the frot of
the well, and to the rear of the well.  You won't get that curve straight, but
you'll get it much straighter than it was when it left Nekersalum.  Put the
jack back under the wheel, start rolling with the bat again.  Roll with the bat
until you can compress the wheel the entire way, so untill you actually raise
the car off the jackstands (this means the suspension is fully compressed.)  If
you can do this without the tire ever touching the fender, you're set.  You
don't need much clearance, if the wheel goes by the fender without touching,
even though it looks like there's not even enough room to fit a hair between
the two, you're golden.  Let the wheel down, remove the jack from the wheel,
jack up the car, take out both jackstands, let down the car, drnk six of your
twelve beers.  You're half done.

To fit a set of 17x7.5 wheels (30mm offset) with 215/45 tires, I had to roll my
fenders about an inch.

Caveat:  The drivers side took me 4 1/2 hours to roll.  The passengers side
took me half an hour.  I don't know why, it just rolled much easier, and turned
out just as nice.  If you try to rush the job, you'll wind up with a crease in
your fender (saw some botch jobs at a QC event last summer.)  My fenders turned
out nice & smooth.  Also one thing to remember, the passengers side is where
the fuel fill is, that fender is stronger than the drivers side is.  A friend
of mine had more problems with the passnegers side than the drivers side.  I
had just the opposite, and we did it on identical cars (both were metalic black
'87 5kTQ's.)  YMMV.

Caveat II:  When you've got the car jacked this far up in the air, don't do
anyhting so as to knock it off the jackstands.  A 4,000 lb car falling two feet
wouldn't be fun, especially if you're near it.  Happy metal bending.

87 5000CS TQ - Metropolitan Washington, D.C.
84 5000S - Boulder, Colorado
90 80 - Bethesda, Maryland