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Author Topic: Kenny's custom front grille project  (Read 16773 times)

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Offline Kenny

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Re: Kenny's custom front grille project
« Reply #25 on: August 13, 2009, 07:41:21 AM »
I'll be interested in how this turns out as well. If it works, I might try it myself, though I have another slight change I might want to make...

if the weather is nice i may be able to finish tonight

what's your idea?
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Offline Uranium-238

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Re: Kenny's custom front grille project
« Reply #26 on: August 13, 2009, 07:52:08 AM »
Do you mod, but remove the plastic back so it's open to the engine compartment. Then buy the dejon intake, making a sort of ram air intake. I'd also make some sort of shroud so only the intake has access to this air/opening, thus not upsetting the supposedly very tweaked airflow in the engine compartment.

Moisture entry is my biggest concern, must do more research.
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Offline Kenny

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Re: Kenny's custom front grille project
« Reply #27 on: August 13, 2009, 10:40:18 AM »
This is been discussed many many times. From what I've read, and please correct me if I'm wrong, is that RAM air doesn't really help because the turbo is pulling way harder than you can RAM air in. Water is not an issue. There are ton's of cars that have RAM air from the factory and they don't have problems with water.

That being said, supplying colder air is definitely a good thing and you don't need an aftermarket CAI to accomplish this. You can feed cold air to the stock intake just fine. I believe the stock intake is designed the way it is to intentionally pull air from the coldest place possible.

The problem is, opening up the backing where the stock parts attach requires some major cutting which would require you to replace the entire front bumper if you wanted to go back to stock. It could also make attaching the grille even harder, or easier actually, I'll have to look around again and see how it would work.

So if your goal is to get in more cold air the easiest way is to install an Opel GT grille. This will give you a hole where cold air can come in. Information on how to do this is here:

http://www.skyroadster.com/forums/f2/ultimate-opel-gt-grille-installation-thread-23984/
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Offline Kenny

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Re: Kenny's custom front grille project
« Reply #28 on: August 13, 2009, 08:36:48 PM »
Uranium...

So I just saw that behind the grille even if you cut the bumper, that there is a very solid piece of hard metal which i assume is attached to the strong metal bumper in the chassis. So you wouldn't get that much flow into the engine compartment, so the Opel GT grille isn't too helpful unless you really hack.  Also it would be a challenge to attach something that way.

I have never seen what it looks like to have a bumper removed, I'll have to search for some photos and see. Or we'll take a closer look at the Mod Meet and brainstorm.

I am going to start cutting my metal right now.
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Offline Uranium-238

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Re: Kenny's custom front grille project
« Reply #29 on: August 13, 2009, 09:27:30 PM »
Hey, if it's too hard or not worth it I'll just do it your way. Keep us posted.
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Offline Kenny

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Re: Kenny's custom front grille project
« Reply #30 on: August 13, 2009, 11:51:55 PM »
Well, I started cutting the backing aluminum tonight, and it was tough. But I got it pretty close. You don't wanna cut too much so I was going very slowly. Speant 3 hours and it still isn't perfect.

Now i want to use some sort of grinder to smooth the edges and take the last bits off so it slides in cleanly without catching anywhere. I know by folding the tabs it should stay on, but it will shake around... not sure what i can do about that...

The only other choice I have is to take the stock piece and grind it out and lay my mesh on it... I thought that would be harder than this, but I am starting to think it might be easier. Just don't know what kinda tool to use for this....

Either way, I am still not sure how i will attach the grille to the backing, weather it's stock or my piece.


Pictures tomorrow
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Offline Sol Asylum

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Re: Kenny's custom front grille project
« Reply #31 on: August 14, 2009, 12:21:35 AM »
Do not use a grinding wheel on aluminum, the aluminum will fill up the wheel, the wheel will overheat and then come apart in a big way.  Read that as sudden urgent trip to see the doctor no appointment necessary.

Aluminum is soft so a hand file will do a nice job get a bast@rd and a mill file.  If you are in a hurry then use a belt sander or sanding wheels you can also use a palm sander or a DA.  If you are going to fold a tab over, radius the inside corner where the tab meets the main part of your material, this will help keep cracks from forming in the corner thus prevent your tab from braking off.
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Offline Chemist

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Re: Kenny's custom front grille project
« Reply #32 on: August 14, 2009, 07:43:21 AM »
I might suggest using pieces of a silicone baking pad on the tabs to reduce/eliminate vibration.
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Offline Helios

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Re: Kenny's custom front grille project
« Reply #33 on: August 14, 2009, 10:06:56 PM »
Do not use a grinding wheel on aluminum, the aluminum will fill up the wheel, the wheel will overheat and then come apart in a big way.  Read that as sudden urgent trip to see the doctor no appointment necessary.



They make grinding wheels made specifically for aluminum.
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Offline Kenny

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Re: Kenny's custom front grille project
« Reply #34 on: August 15, 2009, 10:54:53 AM »
ok update. the tabs are out. i am going to use the stock piece and just slap it on top. best way to get a good fit.

secondly. i can't bend the mesh around the backing plate. it will break. i tried on the corner. so i either need to find an adhesive that will stick the mesh to the metal. or just put screws through he mesh that you would see. which could be cool if they are decorative screws.
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Offline Kenny

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Re: Kenny's custom front grille project
« Reply #35 on: August 15, 2009, 04:29:19 PM »
Well... i'm either lazy, or a genius. The grille is complete is a hacked way, but it actually ain't too bad. All my schemes for attaching it have been thrown out the window. But before we skip to the end, let's continue the story where I left off....

The block behind the saturn logo needs to be cut out as follows (also notice my cut airbox behind :devil:)



You can see that it's not too open behind the plastic so you aren't magically getting tons of air into the engine bay by cutting this part or any of this area out.

So my 3rd plan was to use the stock backing and attach the metal sheet to that, then attach the grille to that. What I didn't realize is now you will run into a clearance issue with the hood! The top of the mesh would rub against the hood if you open and close it. If you pull it down so it doesn't hit, then there is a gap and it looks stupid.

So I knew I had to ditch the stock piece. So I was going to just put the aluminum flat where the stock piece is and screw away. But then how will I attach the grille to the aluminum... Maybe an adhesive? who knows. So I said F it because I've spent 3 nights and now my entire saturday on this and thought, maybe I can just TIE IT.

So i cut the mesh to fit into the space where the stock piece fits. And grab some wire and tie it over the top like this.



Why didn't I just think of this from the start!





When you close the hood you can't see it. And it seems to be on there pretty solid. It doesn't move around at all...



The mesh isn't cut too straight. It's very hard to get a perfect edge with the snips. The only way to get it perfect is to have a better cutting device or use a grinder. I just ran out of time.



So I think it looks pretty good but the silver color is too "blingy" for me. It really makes the car look meaner. Painting it dark grey should help even more. I was thinking of going black, but I really want some accents to break up all the black.

I have to decide if I want to paint the grilles below the same color as the mesh. I suspect I will. I wonder if they can be easily removed to paint...

What needs to be perfected

- I need to work on my hand strength, it's killing me from those snips!
- There has to be a way to make a better pattern, because cutting to fit and getting a good edge is impossible.
- I should have looked into what the aftermarket kits use to attach. Could have learned something. Does anyone have an aftermarket grill and have photos of the back?
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Offline Kenny

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Re: Kenny's custom front grille project
« Reply #36 on: August 18, 2009, 01:11:38 PM »
Bump? What do you guys think of how it looks?
2007 Sky Redline - Wester's Tuned - GMPP sensors - RMR Roll Bar - Kirkey Seats
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Offline Uranium-238

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Re: Kenny's custom front grille project
« Reply #37 on: August 18, 2009, 01:42:31 PM »
I like it, but I agree, it needs to be painted.
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Offline Kelu

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Re: Kenny's custom front grille project
« Reply #38 on: August 18, 2009, 01:51:37 PM »
Bump? What do you guys think of how it looks?
Uh oh, I didn't thought the movie is over, I thought will be more to come and kept my mouth shut  :lol:

I would make it black too, I have decided, I will go for a grille from scratch, a trunk lip and eyelids for head and backlights all custom work  :D
I will share my grille when will be ready but will be pretty much different.

To your grille, I would try to make it to continue the shape of the hood but I can't image if will be better or not and I'm sure is a pain to do it curved :)
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Offline Kenny

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Re: Kenny's custom front grille project
« Reply #39 on: August 18, 2009, 02:27:48 PM »
I just gotta pick a color. And decide if I'm going to start to paint other parts of the car to match.
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Offline Sol Asylum

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Re: Kenny's custom front grille project
« Reply #40 on: August 19, 2009, 12:28:06 AM »
You know since that is expanded metal you might be able to paint one side one color and then turn it over and paint the other side a different color.  Thus giving you an easy multi color effect, you would just have to make sure you apply the paint from the right angle so that it doesn't overcoat the paint on the other side.
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Offline Kenny

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Re: Kenny's custom front grille project
« Reply #41 on: November 13, 2009, 03:11:25 PM »
I just painted the grille with some cheap duplicolor for autozone. Turned out great in my opinion! Looks like plain black in that photo because my clearbra is so faded.

Really happy with it. Full gallery of the whole process here.

http://gallery.me.com/kennysabarese#100206

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2007 Sky Redline - Wester's Tuned - GMPP sensors - RMR Roll Bar - Kirkey Seats
Schroth Harnesses - SSR Wheels - Dunlop Direzza Z1 Star Specs - Complete Mod List
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Offline Kelu

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Re: Kenny's custom front grille project
« Reply #42 on: November 13, 2009, 03:50:48 PM »
Looks sweet to me, Kenny.
I didn't managed to try to make a custom grille locally but will not be far away from yours.

Great job  :thumbs:

P.S. See you are not a post killer :)
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Offline Kenny

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Re: Kenny's custom front grille project
« Reply #43 on: November 13, 2009, 03:59:26 PM »
HAHA not a post killer on my own threads. Making the grille was so easy. just cut a peice of metal, anyone can do it.
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Offline Brazen17

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Re: Kenny's custom front grille project
« Reply #44 on: November 13, 2009, 05:45:45 PM »
I think you did a great job and I will have to let my wife take a look at it.  She has been wanting to do something with her grille on her redline for awhile now and doesn't really like what is currently out there on the after market.
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Offline Kenny

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Re: Kenny's custom front grille project
« Reply #45 on: November 13, 2009, 06:03:03 PM »
Thanks :) I do want to put a logo, not sure if it should be of the tuner or of the turbo kit i choose to go with
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Offline Brazen17

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Re: Kenny's custom front grille project
« Reply #46 on: November 13, 2009, 06:25:53 PM »
What I did for hers in the interim was to paint her Saturn emblems the same color as her car (bluestone).  It turned at pretty nice but she wants to make a "bolder" statement!
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Offline Kenny

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Re: Kenny's custom front grille project
« Reply #47 on: November 13, 2009, 06:49:38 PM »
You can paint or vinyl cover the shiny plastic chrome peice. that's easy and cool to do.

i wanna paint my emblems the same color as the grille
2007 Sky Redline - Wester's Tuned - GMPP sensors - RMR Roll Bar - Kirkey Seats
Schroth Harnesses - SSR Wheels - Dunlop Direzza Z1 Star Specs - Complete Mod List
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