Cutting Flaring and Welding Stock Fenders - MR2 Owners Club Message Board
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 77 (permalink) Old August 4th, 2014, 23:07 Thread Starter
Wilhelm Raceworks, LLC
click here to visit the sponsor page
 
Alex W's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Bozeman, MT
Age: 34
Posts: 12,545
OldTrader Rating: (120)
Cutting Flaring and Welding Stock Fenders

THANKS PHOTOBUCKET FOR BREAKING ALL OF MY IMAGES! All of the pictures that were here (and a few more) are on my blog at:

3. Bodywork Phase 1 - Flared Fenders
4. Bodywork Phase 2 - Paint


The Goal:
Fit, at least a 9" front / 10" rear, as easily as a stock MR2 fits 8/9 (~ same offset front and rear), and without needing much if any tire stretch.

Additionally, I want some room to push the front wheels out a little with longer control arms. This will move the steering axis out and should alleviate some of the rubbing common when fitting larger diameter front tires.

Also, I want to keep at least some of the "edge" that the stock fenders have, rather than pulling them so much that it disappears as so often happens. I want it to look "almost" stock

The Car:
A completely stock 91 NA in very rough condition, and my wrecked 91 Turbo for experimenting on. Having something to try things and make mistakes has been critical to this process. It turns out, my first guess at how the metal will move has been wrong more often than right, especially early on.

The Starting Point:
10th Anniversary Cobra Replicas *Cough* Mustang wheels *Cough* in 17x9 +30 (+24 with spacer) and 17x10.5 +28, with 235/40-17 fronts and 275/40-17 rears (Federal ss595 tires). They are a little on the heavy side, but considering the price ($500 for a full set), it's hard to complain too much. These will be my street setup, at least initially. I'm not yet sure if I will get another set for race rubber, or get something else.

The car is lowered 1.25" from stock 91 ride height, and will probably end up another 1/4" or so lower when done. In these pictures, the rear tire is touching the un-rolled fender lip, so it's not going any lower. Camber is approximately -2 front and rear. I will likely run a bit more than that, especially in the front, but I didn't want to have to rely on that for fit. Keep my options open.









Measured from a straight edge placed across the wheel, they are poking ~5/8" front and rear.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Specializing in suspension and handling for the MKII MR2

Custom Koni coilovers and coilover housings, suspension geometry correction kits, camber/caster plates, big brake kits, and more

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
A retro-active build thread for my track / autocross car

Last edited by Alex W; October 19th, 2017 at 10:38.
Alex W is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 77 (permalink) Old August 4th, 2014, 23:12 Thread Starter
Wilhelm Raceworks, LLC
click here to visit the sponsor page
 
Alex W's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Bozeman, MT
Age: 34
Posts: 12,545
OldTrader Rating: (120)
First off, grind paint off to bare metal where the fenders will be cut, for easier welding later.




Remove paint and drill spot welds holding the rear inner and outer fenders together. I found that I really like the "end mill style" spot weld cutters (like these). They leave a nice flat surface on the inner panel, and if you are careful it's pretty easy to cut the weld without drilling through the inner panel.



To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Specializing in suspension and handling for the MKII MR2

Custom Koni coilovers and coilover housings, suspension geometry correction kits, camber/caster plates, big brake kits, and more

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
A retro-active build thread for my track / autocross car

Last edited by Alex W; August 10th, 2014 at 18:15.
Alex W is offline  
post #3 of 77 (permalink) Old August 4th, 2014, 23:16 Thread Starter
Wilhelm Raceworks, LLC
click here to visit the sponsor page
 
Alex W's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Bozeman, MT
Age: 34
Posts: 12,545
OldTrader Rating: (120)
And start cutting and pulling.



Cutting the box structure inside the front fender is key to letting it move outward.


Three slits cut in the rear inner fender allow it to be hammered up and out to meet the new fender contour and provide extra tire clearance when the suspension moves.


I missed getting a good picture of the cuts in the rear outer, but here they are after starting to re-weld.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Specializing in suspension and handling for the MKII MR2

Custom Koni coilovers and coilover housings, suspension geometry correction kits, camber/caster plates, big brake kits, and more

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
A retro-active build thread for my track / autocross car
Alex W is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #4 of 77 (permalink) Old August 4th, 2014, 23:25 Thread Starter
Wilhelm Raceworks, LLC
click here to visit the sponsor page
 
Alex W's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Bozeman, MT
Age: 34
Posts: 12,545
OldTrader Rating: (120)
A closeup of one of the welds, with a piece of sheet metal cut and bent to wrap around the lip of the fender. The tighter the fit on these pieces, the easier they are to weld. You can also see the piece of copper through the gap. This makes it so much easier to prevent burn-through when welding on thin sheet metal like this.


The front fender with four pieces welded in at the lip. As you can see, I ended up cutting in two more places than had shown originally, one at the top and one behind the molding on the back side. These let it move a little more, but mostly they are there to keep the panel gaps at the hood and door from disappearing.

The RPF1 in the picture is a 17x9.5 (+32 with spacer) with a 255 that I was test fitting. I'm not sure I will end up going that big, getting anywhere close to full steering angle gets tough with that size tire, but maybe

One more cut added in the center of the rear fender to let it pull just a little more.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Specializing in suspension and handling for the MKII MR2

Custom Koni coilovers and coilover housings, suspension geometry correction kits, camber/caster plates, big brake kits, and more

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
A retro-active build thread for my track / autocross car
Alex W is offline  
post #5 of 77 (permalink) Old August 4th, 2014, 23:28 Thread Starter
Wilhelm Raceworks, LLC
click here to visit the sponsor page
 
Alex W's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Bozeman, MT
Age: 34
Posts: 12,545
OldTrader Rating: (120)
And here's where it sits now.








Measured from points inside on the chassis to the fender lip I pulled about 1", but part of that was up, not out. Measured from the straight edge, the tires are now tucked about 1/8", so total gain is about 3/4" out.

Lots of work still to go, but overall I'm happy with the progress.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Specializing in suspension and handling for the MKII MR2

Custom Koni coilovers and coilover housings, suspension geometry correction kits, camber/caster plates, big brake kits, and more

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
A retro-active build thread for my track / autocross car
Alex W is offline  
post #6 of 77 (permalink) Old August 5th, 2014, 01:13
Registered User
 
sonicboom141's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Morton, IL
Age: 31
Posts: 12,018
OldTrader Rating: (87)
Good stuff so far! Cant wait to see some more progress.

mr2 madness in action.
sonicboom141 is offline  
post #7 of 77 (permalink) Old August 5th, 2014, 08:45
Registered User
 
mkIIJDM3sgte's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: The Village, MD
Age: 37
Posts: 356
OldTrader Rating: (1)
Garage
Hi Alex- Was there a specific reason why you chose to "pie" cut your fenders rather than using the "Radius" method? It would seem like everyone has their own method of madness but your in the thick of it all and just wanted to hear thoughts on both methods.

-J
mkIIJDM3sgte is offline  
post #8 of 77 (permalink) Old August 5th, 2014, 09:13
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Lakeland, FL
Age: 42
Posts: 1,638
OldTrader Rating: (2)
Alex, looking good so far. I was actually thinking about going through the same process a couple weeks ago since I'm going to be doing body and paint to one of the TWO's here soon.

Did you really find it a need to cut the rears as far down on the fore and aft sides as you did?
CJMR2T is offline  
post #9 of 77 (permalink) Old August 5th, 2014, 09:27
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: LI, NY
Age: 42
Posts: 1,051
OldTrader Rating: (7)
subscribing
hotnickels is offline  
post #10 of 77 (permalink) Old August 5th, 2014, 09:49 Thread Starter
Wilhelm Raceworks, LLC
click here to visit the sponsor page
 
Alex W's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Bozeman, MT
Age: 34
Posts: 12,545
OldTrader Rating: (120)
Quote:
Originally Posted by mkIIJDM3sgte View Post
Hi Alex- Was there a specific reason why you chose to "pie" cut your fenders rather than using the "Radius" method? It would seem like everyone has their own method of madness but your in the thick of it all and just wanted to hear thoughts on both methods.

-J
Well, this is the first time I have done something like this, so take it for what it's worth, but it seems to me that the radius method would be more applicable to fenders that already have a more pronounced flare, such as the MKI fenders. Also, it helps that the MKI fenders are one continuous piece of steel down to the ground. On the MKII, your radius cut would have to end at the bumpers / side vents / molding strips. In the rear especially, I think pie cuts will work better.

The pie cuts also cause the fenders to pull up a little in addition to out. I'm sure some people won't like that since it will increase the fender gap a bit. But that also improves tire clearance, and should make a larger diameter tire look a little bit more natural. Radial cuts will make the fender pull down and out, which really isn't the direction I wanted to go.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CJMR2T View Post
Alex, looking good so far. I was actually thinking about going through the same process a couple weeks ago since I'm going to be doing body and paint to one of the TWO's here soon.

Did you really find it a need to cut the rears as far down on the fore and aft sides as you did?
The lowest one on the back might not have been needed, but I did that one before I did the upper one on the back. Generally speaking, those are needed to allow the metal to move, otherwise even with the cuts at the top the front and back portions of the fender are just too well constrained. It's actually pretty surprising how small of a movement at one area might be needed to enable another area to move a lot. For example, the cuts on the front and back only opened up by maybe 1/8", but without that small movement the top would barely move at all.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Specializing in suspension and handling for the MKII MR2

Custom Koni coilovers and coilover housings, suspension geometry correction kits, camber/caster plates, big brake kits, and more

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
A retro-active build thread for my track / autocross car
Alex W is offline  
post #11 of 77 (permalink) Old August 5th, 2014, 13:08
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Lakeland, FL
Age: 42
Posts: 1,638
OldTrader Rating: (2)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alex W View Post
The pie cuts also cause the fenders to pull up a little in addition to out. I'm sure some people won't like that since it will increase the fender gap a bit. But that also improves tire clearance, and should make a larger diameter tire look a little bit more natural. Radial cuts will make the fender pull down and out, which really isn't the direction I wanted to go.
^^^ This is the exact reason why I'll be doing Pie cuts too if I end up doing it. Although Radial cuts are easier to do, the results aren't the same. With the Radial cuts, it really depends on how much natural flare there is to the fender prior to cutting. The more vertical the area is that you are radial cutting, the more the gap just pushes the lip down and the less out. More horizontal the area being cut, the more it will push the lip out and less down.
CJMR2T is offline  
post #12 of 77 (permalink) Old August 5th, 2014, 19:59
Registered User
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Illinois
Age: 33
Posts: 609
OldTrader Rating: (6)
Garage
Very cool! I wish I knew how to do stuff like that!
myslow1 is offline  
post #13 of 77 (permalink) Old August 6th, 2014, 09:31
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: LI, NY
Age: 42
Posts: 1,051
OldTrader Rating: (7)
What are you going to fill the gaps with? Wouldn't a pie cut be easier to fill with metal?
hotnickels is offline  
post #14 of 77 (permalink) Old August 6th, 2014, 10:08 Thread Starter
Wilhelm Raceworks, LLC
click here to visit the sponsor page
 
Alex W's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Bozeman, MT
Age: 34
Posts: 12,545
OldTrader Rating: (120)
Quote:
Originally Posted by hotnickels View Post
What are you going to fill the gaps with? Wouldn't a pie cut be easier to fill with metal?
The gaps in the fenders where I cut it? Small strips of metal, and at some of the smaller points it will be filled with weld filler. The piece of copper backer makes it much easier to do this than it would be otherwise.

If by pie cuts you mean removing a triangle of metal instead of just cutting a slit, I wanted to keep the amount of metal to be added as low as possible, otherwise I would have that much more new metal to shape.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Specializing in suspension and handling for the MKII MR2

Custom Koni coilovers and coilover housings, suspension geometry correction kits, camber/caster plates, big brake kits, and more

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
A retro-active build thread for my track / autocross car
Alex W is offline  
post #15 of 77 (permalink) Old August 6th, 2014, 10:18
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: LI, NY
Age: 42
Posts: 1,051
OldTrader Rating: (7)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alex W View Post
If by pie cuts you mean removing a triangle of metal instead of just cutting a slit, I wanted to keep the amount of metal to be added as low as possible, otherwise I would have that much more new metal to shape.
True...you don't have an english wheel?
hotnickels is offline  
post #16 of 77 (permalink) Old August 6th, 2014, 10:45 Thread Starter
Wilhelm Raceworks, LLC
click here to visit the sponsor page
 
Alex W's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Bozeman, MT
Age: 34
Posts: 12,545
OldTrader Rating: (120)
Quote:
Originally Posted by hotnickels View Post
True...you don't have an english wheel?
No, neither my metal working skills or tools are that advanced. Hammer and dolly is where those sorts of tools start and end, and my experience with that is limited and entirely self taught.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Specializing in suspension and handling for the MKII MR2

Custom Koni coilovers and coilover housings, suspension geometry correction kits, camber/caster plates, big brake kits, and more

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
A retro-active build thread for my track / autocross car
Alex W is offline  
post #17 of 77 (permalink) Old August 7th, 2014, 06:26
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: NW metro...
Age: 52
Posts: 4,046
OldTrader Rating: (8)
that looks cool. Basically you're cutting from the bottom to top, pulling it out, then welding the gap...sound about right?

Silly thought- I once thought about cutting off existing fenders on another "bad" car and somehow welding/fab'n/blending them over the fenders on the good car maybe a wide body, but retaining the oem lines... I don't know, crazy thought..
Raising Arizona is offline  
post #18 of 77 (permalink) Old August 7th, 2014, 08:39
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Lakeland, FL
Age: 42
Posts: 1,638
OldTrader Rating: (2)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Raising Arizona View Post
that looks cool. Basically you're cutting from the bottom to top, pulling it out, then welding the gap...sound about right?

Silly thought- I once thought about cutting off existing fenders on another "bad" car and somehow welding/fab'n/blending them over the fenders on the good car maybe a wide body, but retaining the oem lines... I don't know, crazy thought..
If you can find one that match, it works well. The problem is finding ones that match. One to real commonly done ones like this is on the MG's (I've actually done two of them to date). People use either the flares from the old VW rabbit's or the Dodge Omni's and weld them on to cut MG fender / quarters and gain about 1.5" per side. When done, it looked factory cause the flares matched up very well to the MG bodies.

I've tried looking for something along those lines for the TWO but have not been able to find anything that even seem's close to a potential candidate.
CJMR2T is offline  
post #19 of 77 (permalink) Old August 7th, 2014, 09:09 Thread Starter
Wilhelm Raceworks, LLC
click here to visit the sponsor page
 
Alex W's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Bozeman, MT
Age: 34
Posts: 12,545
OldTrader Rating: (120)
Quote:
Originally Posted by CJMR2T View Post
I've tried looking for something along those lines for the TWO but have not been able to find anything that even seem's close to a potential candidate.
The other issue is with the bumpers and side vents being part of the fender arch, you would need to continue the flare into those. By pulling out the structure under those items they will follow along.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Specializing in suspension and handling for the MKII MR2

Custom Koni coilovers and coilover housings, suspension geometry correction kits, camber/caster plates, big brake kits, and more

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
A retro-active build thread for my track / autocross car
Alex W is offline  
post #20 of 77 (permalink) Old August 7th, 2014, 09:16
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: NW metro...
Age: 52
Posts: 4,046
OldTrader Rating: (8)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alex W View Post
The other issue is with the bumpers and side vents being part of the fender arch, you would need to continue the flare into those. By pulling out the structure under those items they will follow along.
totally see your point. I was actually thinking cutting off rears of an MR2 that was dead and welding those in place, but again, I'm sure that would be a tough like up process. It was just a thought. I've seen other fenders fab'd into the MR2's though and they do look pretty good.
Raising Arizona is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the MR2 Owners Club Message Board forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in











Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: (0 members)
 
Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome