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Thread: Driver Fender alignment

  1. #1
    Supporting Member Zedyone_kenobi's Avatar
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    Default Driver Fender alignment

    I have been wanting to fix this since I bought the car. Not sure why it is out of alignment. Perhaps shady assembly when it was repainted 20 years ago, maybe a fix from a fender bender did not go well. But I would like a stab at fixing this. Any advice?



    THe front fender just barely is on top of that door finisher piece. I wonder if this is just alignment issues, or if this is a sign things were not properly assembled years ago. Either way, I want this to be fixed. Now it may mean I will have to wait until I repaint it. I currently do not see any way to adjust that body panel.
    1971 240Z HLS30-38691
    93.9% done and getting better every day
    Now with 100% more DATSUN SPIRIT L28 Power
    1968 Datsun 2000 SRL311-03416

  2. #2
    Fired Up! JLPurcell's Avatar
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    How is the alignment on the front of the hood and the hood to the cow top grill?
    It looks as if the fender needs to slide forward slightly and the bottom of the fender given a little more curve.
    If you loosen all the fastners for the fender you should be able to slide it forward, take the two bolts out on the bottom and try to give the metal just a little more curve then replace the bolts. The problem is if this was the result of a bad body repair past, it could cause other more noticable alignment problems with the hood and door. JLP
    Jerry Purcell
    1970 HLS30 00029 Owner since 1976 Now owned by Les Canaday (Classic Datsun Motorsports)
    1972 HLS30 93606 IZCC Registion #105 Original owner back home after full restoration by Classic Datsun Motorsports

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    Registered User ajmcforester's Avatar
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    Jerry on the spot. Start with lining the doors to the body then the fenders to the door then the headlight buckets, then the hood the the fenders to the hood.

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    Supporting Member Zedyone_kenobi's Avatar
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    Okay, great advice, I will check all my gaps to see if there is any play room. Then I will report back. The passenger side is perfect. So is every other body gap. Well perfect is a strong word, it is rather stock looking. I will give your words a day to soak in. I will get my body manual to see where the front fender attaches to the unibody and go from there.
    1971 240Z HLS30-38691
    93.9% done and getting better every day
    Now with 100% more DATSUN SPIRIT L28 Power
    1968 Datsun 2000 SRL311-03416

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    Supporting Member Zedyone_kenobi's Avatar
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    Just one question, what is the cow top grill. Are you referring to the cowl grill where the windshield wipers stick out?
    1971 240Z HLS30-38691
    93.9% done and getting better every day
    Now with 100% more DATSUN SPIRIT L28 Power
    1968 Datsun 2000 SRL311-03416

  6. #6
    Registered User cozye's Avatar
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    be careful. If the previous repair on the bottom of that fender was not done correctly, or the rocker rotted out behind the fender, you may open up a can of worms when loosening the fender. It does need to slide forward just a hair, but equally important is that the fender bolts on from the bottom and you have to really pull it in tight to the rocker when tightening the bolt. If that bolt or the bottom of the fender where it mounts too is not clean and strong looking, I'd wait until you have it painted. You may get it loose and twist the bolt of out the rocker if it's seized or rusted badly, or the thin tab in the inside of the fender could be weak and barely hanging on too.

    Here's a couple pics of whats behind there as I was repairing the area on mine



    1978 280z 4sp

  7. #7
    Fired Up! JLPurcell's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zedyone_kenobi View Post
    Just one question, what is the cow top grill. Are you referring to the cowl grill where the windshield wipers stick out?
    Yes.
    jlp
    Jerry Purcell
    1970 HLS30 00029 Owner since 1976 Now owned by Les Canaday (Classic Datsun Motorsports)
    1972 HLS30 93606 IZCC Registion #105 Original owner back home after full restoration by Classic Datsun Motorsports

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    Supporting Member Zedyone_kenobi's Avatar
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    That is what I thought. I will get pics of all the corners and how the fender compares to the hood as well.

    Cozye, I have looked under the car and I think the metal under there is right as rain. I do not have much rust anywhere on this car that I know of. I looked it over pretty well, but your words are noted and saved in my mind. I will get some better pictures of the area and see what I can see. THANKS very much to all of you for your wisdom on this.
    1971 240Z HLS30-38691
    93.9% done and getting better every day
    Now with 100% more DATSUN SPIRIT L28 Power
    1968 Datsun 2000 SRL311-03416

  9. #9
    Supporting Member Zedyone_kenobi's Avatar
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    I looked at my hood, and it seems to line up evenly with the front headlight scoop. I will try to losen everything up and do some wiggling this weekend. I will update as necessary.
    1971 240Z HLS30-38691
    93.9% done and getting better every day
    Now with 100% more DATSUN SPIRIT L28 Power
    1968 Datsun 2000 SRL311-03416

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    Registered User 240ZX's Avatar
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    Here is something I encountered during my refresh. The fender support (the ones with the rubber flap on the bottom and foam insulation on the outer edge to support the fender) may have had the insulation (sticky backed foam) replaced. If it is more dense or too thick, the fender will stick out a bit more. Hope this make some sense!

  11. #11
    Registered User Walter Moore's Avatar
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    I know that your car is in really good shape compared to where mine was when I started, but to reiterate what cozye said, when I pulled the fenders off of my car, the bolts on the bottom of the fender snapped clean off at the first twist of the wrench.
    '71 240Z, Because any fool can drive fast in a straight line.

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    Supporting Member Zedyone_kenobi's Avatar
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    Bolts came off fine. I am in pretty good shape there. However, It appears that this fender was removed before. I know the car was repainted about 15 years ago. The hood alignment rubbers on the fender facing the engine bay were about 1/2" off. They apparently snapped the orignal bolt heads off where they mounted them from the factory and then decided to drill a hole next to it and put a big freaking bold on to hold it there. I think I am going to try to get some easy outs to fix that situation.

    ON a happy note when I pulled off my cowl panel in front of the windshield, it was surgically clean under there. Not a drop of rust, or discoloration. I am pretty impressed by this. There is some VERY light surface rust on the underside of the cowl. The kind you can almost wipe all off with your fingers. I think I will POR the whole underside and then not worry about it any more.

    The fender is 50% better now. I was able to get it aligned much better, but the bottom of the panel, I mean the absolute bottom looks like it just needs to be curved more. if I had the panel off, I could probably bend it easy enough. But that will have to wait until I am done. I could get a light on the back side of the panel, and I am happy to report it is all steel and very rust free. Yippiee. I did have an issue with my windshield washer squirters, but I will start a new thread on that.
    1971 240Z HLS30-38691
    93.9% done and getting better every day
    Now with 100% more DATSUN SPIRIT L28 Power
    1968 Datsun 2000 SRL311-03416

  13. #13
    Registered User black gold man's Avatar
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    The end of the rocker right there were it meets the fender bottom .
    Its a tight fit no room for error there. I bet some welding was done to the end of rocker
    and its holding the fender out.

  14. #14
    Supporting Member Zedyone_kenobi's Avatar
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    Perhaps. But the metal looks untouched. If I had to bet, I would say it was a replacement fender that just does not fit 100% perfect. But that is only a guess.
    1971 240Z HLS30-38691
    93.9% done and getting better every day
    Now with 100% more DATSUN SPIRIT L28 Power
    1968 Datsun 2000 SRL311-03416

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    Fired Up! JLPurcell's Avatar
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    In my first post I had mentioned the that the fender did not have enough curve at the bottom. Some shops just bolt on new parts, sometimes they need to be tweaked to fit well. It just looks as if this was not done with this fender. The bottom should be easy to reshape it just needs a little tweak. jlp
    Last edited by JLPurcell; 05-01-2011 at 06:47 PM.
    Jerry Purcell
    1970 HLS30 00029 Owner since 1976 Now owned by Les Canaday (Classic Datsun Motorsports)
    1972 HLS30 93606 IZCC Registion #105 Original owner back home after full restoration by Classic Datsun Motorsports

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