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Old 02-14-2012, 08:30 PM   #1
E30 Wagen
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: West Michigan
Posts: 2,733
My early model plastic bumper swap

I had started this about the end of the summer 2011, having cut the bumper to length, but when I bought my '89 I put it off. Yet, I ended up driving my '86 full time, and with only the rebar mounted. For a long time I didn't care because my car is so crappy anyway, but I've finally gotten sick of looking it. Hopefully starting a thread about it will keep me motivated enough to finish it this time.

I'll be doing the rear bumper assembly in pretty much the same way Janderson did in his excellent thread: http://www.r3vlimited.com/board/show...t=75117&page=6.

Having cut the pieces to length and ground off the flanges, I was ready to glue them together. I used two rulers and clamps to line up the pieces as perfectly as I could. My plan was to first glue the butted ends together to try and reduce any gaps in between the pieces before reinforcing it with fiberglass on the back side. I used to some plastic welding epoxy for this, but first I roughed up the backsides and the ends with an old wire wheel on a drill.

I had to do one side at a time because I didn't have enough clamps and I couldn't find any more straight edges I could use as splints. After letting it dry and removing the clamps so I could do the other side I was happy with the result, glad I'd spent the extra time doing dry runs to make sure it would line up. It was the same for the other side, except my cut wasn't as square, so I ended up having to fill in about a 1/8" gap with the epoxy, which was messier and smellier.

Other side:

And so it's left to dry overnight. Next up is some fiberglass reinforcement, and smoothing the outside with some long strand Bondo hair.

I have a few other plans that will require likely much more piece-work than this. Stay tuned.
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Old 02-16-2012, 10:56 PM   #2
E30 Wagen
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: West Michigan
Posts: 2,733
After fulling drying, I removed the excess and did some light sanding. It looks good, and it's really solid.

Did some fiberglass work next. I've never done it before, so hopefully I didn't screw it up. The resin started hardening up faster than I expected, and I think is what caused a lot of air bubbles on one side . And, after it dried it was like it weakened the plastic epoxy weld. Before it wouldn't budge at all, but now I'm able to flex it just enough to make a hairline crack at the seam, but only on the top. I think I'm just going to have to find some way to remove the epoxy and fill it back in.

Anyway, going to start work on the trim next, as well as seeing what I can do about repairing this rear apron.

And getting back to work on this: http://www.r3vlimited.com/board/showthread.php?t=215884
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Old 02-17-2012, 03:36 AM   #3
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I suggest taking a look at this:

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Old 02-20-2012, 04:35 PM   #4
E30 Wagen
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: West Michigan
Posts: 2,733
I've gotten so sick of looking at my e30 without any form of a bumper cover that I couldn't resist mounting it. Fitment is perfect. It's been months of driving around with the just the rebar and I just couldn't take it anymore. Next are my plans for repairing the rust on the rocker panels and fenders . Any ideas on what glue I should use to mount those side panels, as well as the spoiler?

I just want this e30 to die so I can have an excuse to find a rust free early model to mod properly.
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Old 02-22-2012, 01:21 AM   #5
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nice i like it.
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