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Discussion Starter #1
For a while now I have been thinking to protect the front wheel arches from stones and dirt flicking up and causing more paint chips and surface rust. But the mud flaps on the market are expensive and far too big. I didn’t want something that would spoil the look of the car, after all the Brera isn’t a rally car. I also wanted to allow space behind the flaps so water doesn’t sit in-between the two surfaces a rot the arches.
I decided to make a set of my own.

00.jpg

Not bad I don’t think, but I’ll look to make some improvements, mainly in the spacing.

I’ve documented the install if anyone is interested in doing something similar. Sorry I didn’t think to document to initial stages of making the mud flaps.

I started out with two rubber strips, 100mm x 330mm x 3mm.

20160702_122153.jpg

Then cut them to match the profile of the bodywork around the wheel arch.
After cutting the shape, the mounting points were marked and cut. Leaving me with the raw flaps.

01 raw flaps.png

I decided the only real option would be to fix the flaps to the wheel arch liners. They felt sturdy enough for the job, although I thought it was too much effort removing the liners to fit the flaps with nuts and bolts so I needed to find a way to screw the flaps directly into the liners, without the need of a bolt on the other side.
The best solution I could think of was to drill holes in the liners and fit grub screws with internal treads as well as huge external threads.

02 Flaps side.jpg

The hope was the large treats would cut their own threat in the liner, with the thread being large enough to give a secure fit. I had thought I might need to put some superglue on the thread but it turned out the grubs were easily secure enough without.
Once fitted, the internal threads of the grub screw would allow me to use a bolt to fit the flaps, also making it easy to remove them if I need to.


to be continued...
 

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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
I also used some nylon spacers, to fit between the arch liners and the flaps, to ensure a good gap between the flaps and the arch, to stop water sitting between the surfaces and rotting the metal arch.

02 Flaps side.jpg

03 flaps bottom.jpg

04 flaps top.jpg

I next, made holes in the arch liner. To do this I lined up and held the flap into a correct position and marked through the fixing holes in the flaps onto the liner.
Using a boring drill bit, I made the initial holes in the liner

05 bore head.jpg

06 guide holes.jpg

To be continued...
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Holes widened to accept grub screws

07 correct size.jpg

Grub screws fitted

08 lugs.jpg

Now to install the first flap.

09 line up.jpg

Bolts line up with the grub screws well.

First bolt in place with nylon spacer. Left loose so the flap can be swung into place until the other bolts are secured.

10 spacer & fasten.jpg

Second bolt and spacer in place.

11 2nd spacer.jpg
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
Final bolts a spacers ready to be fixed.

13 final fitting.jpg

Note two spacers on the top outer edge, the liner seems to be further back in the arch here. A single spacer will mean the flap is held against the arch which I didn’t want.

Flap now in place.

14 finished.jpg

The double spacer is a little too much, I’ll need to reduce the spacing at some point, but this is only to improve the look. I’ll also spray the bolt heads with some black paint too.

To be continued...
 

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Looks good. I have a set of HUGE rubber mud flaps on mine. I might like to fettle then down a bit.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I can't honestly see what protection they offer given that they basically follow the contour of the wheelarch :confused:
Protecting edge of the wing from any more chips and therefore rust which would eventually spread to the outer edge of the wing.

As you can see in these pictures (painted red bits...) mine are in rather a poor condition. Now i have protection i'll get this fixed and not have to worry about it rusting again any time soon :biglaugh:
20160702_102151.jpg
20160702_102701.jpg
 

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Very good:thumbup:

I can see they'll offer a little protection to the paintwork and hopefully keep water out of the wheel arch.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Also what are the size of the nylon spacers?
3mm isn't required for protection purposes, i chose that purely as it would provide more stiffnss of the material.

I found the spacing was uneven around the arch lining. I used 8mm spacers, but i'm having a selection of sizes made up so i can even out the spacing where needed.

Haddn't heard of rivet thread before but looked it up and yeah that looks to be prefect!
 

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So a few days on, how do you think they are performing?

I have decided to give this a crack. I presume you took the wheel off?
 

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Discussion Starter #17
They're doing very well actually. I was at the NAD on Sunday which involved a little off roading. The flaps kept the dirt away from the painted parts of the arches, showing they're well protected.

I haven't adjusted the spacing yet, but that's purely aesthetic.

I left the wheels on as there was enough space to drill the holes using my dremel. But admittedly it would have been easier without them on.
 

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Great news! I am glad to hear they are performing.

I have ordered the parts and hopefully I will fit them this weekend.

I have had the lower wheel arch/skirting reprayed 2 times and I think I am due a third so for £20 or so worth of parts it seems worth it appose to £100 plus each time.

I have decided to get a selection of 3mm to 5mm spacers for tunable.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Yes, I'll be wanting to get my arches resprayed now too.

I need to get onto my friend who is supposed to be making my spacers, though I can't hassle him too much as he's machining them for free :)


I'm interested in seeing someone else's interpretation of this so keep me updated :)
 

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I'm interested in seeing someone else's interpretation of this so keep me updated :)
My interpretation of this is helicopter tape, as was originally fitted to the car, just a bit more of it.

Interestingly though, our Z4 has the very same system that you have developed fitted as standard by BMW and you have to accept that, in recent years at least, the Germans seem to know what they are doing. :jester:
 
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