Reply to "body repair questions"

Originally posted by Rocky:
Actually, I do have a question that perhaps you could help with.

I bought an L-model fiberglass bumper, and before I test fit it, I had your buddy and mine (Rick P.) paint it.

Then I went to try and mount it, and I found it was about 2" short!

I had read somewhere that you had run across this issue with some bumpers produced elsewhere, and had tips to get it to work...

It seems to me it needs to be split and lengthened...

Anyway - I'd appreciate any advice you might have.



I will do my best to outline what may have happened when you bumper was first made. It starts like this---A bumper gets taken to a fiberglass shop and is instructed to "build be a bumper like this but straight" The shop pulls a splash mold to build a new master plug that is straight. Now the original has shrunk from age, (shrink #1) the splash mold has shrink from the material used, (shrink #2). Next they build a thicker part which also shrinks. (shrink #3) Now the original was warped and most likely did not fit that well when it was new. All of the rubber bumpers required 3 small fasteners per side to pull them into the body for an acceptable fit, right? Now the mold maker is using a master that was never fit to a Pantera body so none of the edges are close to the correct shape, it has shrunk 3 times and is warped on top. He straightens the top, fills in the parking light warps and he now thinks it's a perfect master bumper plug. They build a new mold from the poor fitting plug. (shrink #4) Now the first part is made to the new mold spec. (shrink #5) It gets put up to a car that maybe was crashed in the front and repaired. It fits per crap. but with allot of grinding and work, it will work. The vender complains but the builder says, stick it where the sun doesn't shine. The mold gets paid for and taken to another hop where they make parts that are down the street from the ball park's parking lot. You get one thinking it should fit, paint it and here we are.

This is the correct way. Shrink 1 and 2 are normal. Now you take the warped thicker part made form the splash mold and match fit it to a non molested or crashed body. The builder has to make sure all of the light pod opening clear and the hood will not get nicked when you open it from the side pockets of the bumper. You add the necessary material to the ends so it will fit the body better than original since a two sided hollow fiberglass part has minimal bending ability and should fit with no stress when bolted up. Now you have a properly fitted master plug to build a good mold producing a well fitting part. It will not fit every car perfect but with minor edge fitting, it should fit every car perfect.

In this case, add what you need to the bumper that will make it fit your car or find a place in the archive of Boo-boo parts and look for a plan B.

Please PM me with the info where you got it and I will be happy to inform them that they should consider build a new mold. Sometimes a vender may no realize they have a problem.

Here's a shot of a bumper with only the seams repaired---no edge work at all has been done at this point.


Photos (1)