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Okay everyone, I promised an update on my fender rolling project so here goes. There are several good howtos on the 'net and they're not really car-specific. So rather than writing a full howto, I'll just show you some progress pics on my car.

First up, here's a shot of the fender roller mounted on the car. I started with this fender because it was the one that already rubs:



Here's a closeup of the rolling process. As you can see, this fender already shows some damage from a frustrated attempt years ago to bend back the offending fender lip using a hammer. All it accomplished was chipping the paint. (I'm going to have to sand this down and seal it so rust doesn't eat it out.)



This is a shot of the above fender finished. I took before and after measurements which shows that I gained an extra 3/4" clearance at the apex of the fender:



This is a shot contrasting the rolled and non-rolled sections. Again, the damage you see was already there and was NOT caused by the fender roller tool.



The fender roller rental included a heat gun which is used to heat up the paint so it won't crack when the metal bends. I decided to use some heat lamps to "prep" the side I would work on next. It worked very well:



Okay, these next few shots are of the second fender I rolled (rear driver side). One tip: It's a really good idea to clean the area before proceeding to roll it! I used Simple Green to wipe the area clean. Here's a "before" shot:



Another "before" shot showing about how much clearance there is at the apex of the fender:



And here's the "after" shot once the rolling was finished:



And here's the after measurement. As you can see, I gained a little over 1/2" of clearance. I could have kept going but elected to stop at this point:



When I did the front fenders, I found that I was able to roll the fenders out a lot further than I could in the rear. The struts made it difficult to get accurate before/after shots but as you can see from the next photo, the gap between the newly-rolled fender and the slash guard is considerable:



Here's a body shot to show that the lines of the car aren't visibly altered by the rolling process:



The original pictures are much, much higher res. If you want to see the full-res pics, visit the "gallery" here:

Fender Rolling Photo Gallery

I should also note that while using the lamps and heat gun did help, I still experienced paint cracking of various degrees on all four fenders. Part of this is probably due to the fact that I worked quickly when all the instructions say to go slowly and take your time. Also, let's face it, it's a 15-year-old paint job. On the upside, all the spots that developed those hairline cracks were on the inside of the fender and not visible with the tires on. So I will probably be able to sand them out and seal the metal without it being visible.

I haven't received the new rims/tires yet so I don't know if I gained enough clearance to prevent rubbing. They come in tomorrow and I'll update the thread when I get them on.

If you want to use this tool, rent it from the good folks at Induktion Motorsports. It's a 3-day rental for $49.95 plus shipping. If you have any questions, ask for Ed Fuhrman. He's a stand-up guy.

Here are some more resources for those looking into doing this:
A good pictorial tutorial on a Mazda
Another good howto on a Nissan
Good scans from a manual
Good instructions on a Beamer
Good directions in PDF Format
 

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xbot said:
Is it just me, or in that last pic.. doesnt it look like it pushed the lip out a bit?
i agree it does look like it pushed the lip out a bit, insed of it being flat...
 

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Yeah looks like you done a killer job on it bro. I never was able to do that but one time we had a Civic come in and he wanted Lambo doors on it and we had to roll in the fenders for the doors to go up properly. It was a really neat process and always wondered the process. Looks like you done it really accurately. Good job on the mod!!!!!
 

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i've wanted to build one of those for awhile now. no place in manitoba has one so. Looks like the hardest part to find would be the wheel, the rest i could fab up easy
 
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