Thursday, September 9, 2010

Wing removal

Disconnect the battery. If the existing wing is to be scrapped, then you can make its removal rather easier by cutting the bulk of the wing away with an air chisel or air hacksaw so that you can get a socket onto the bolt heads.
All four wings are bolted into place (yippee!) but the bolts are often seized to the extent tlnit they shear or the captive nuts break free (hiss!). Begin by cleaning the dirt away from the bolt heads then apply penetrating oil and leave this to do its work for as long as possible before attacking the bolts. Also apply oil to the bumper bolts, because these too will have to come out.
While the wing bolts are soaking up the oil, remove the light clusters, taking great care not to break the plastic rear lenses, which become brittle with age. The rear lamp reflectors (which hold the bulbs — remove these now to avoid breakage) can be fastened in a variety of ways: remove the screws and lift off the lips according to type. Disconnect the wiring from the terminals, and feed the wires back through the wing. Put tabs on the wires to remind you where each goes if necessary.
Remove the bumper mounting bolts from both sides of the car and pull the bumper and its brackets away. Remove the wing fixing bolts, starting with the nut and bolt to the running board and the bolt at the rear, then work your way upwards to the centre top bolt. Use brute force sparingly; not only can you shear bolt heads off but you run the risk of losing the captive nuts. If you manage to shear any of the bolts then you can either

154 drill them out afterwards and re-tap the captive nuts or try using a proprietary screw extractor.
Tip: if you can obtain longer bolts with the same thread as the original wing bolts, use these with spacers to hold the wing away from the bodyshell during the respray.

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