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DIY: Do It Yourself
Post here to share or improve your wrench turning skills! All BMW E46 DIY tips, tales, and projects discussed inside. Learn to work on your car and know the right BMW parts you will need!

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Old 01-19-2014, 10:32 AM   #1
Torok.Designs
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- DIY : Denofa Fender Flares -

I have been asked by a few people about how I had my fender flares installed. So here is a write up. I did not take many pictures while my friend did it so I cannot include as many pictures of each step as I would like. But here you go for those who are wondering.

Please read the whole thread before attempting.

Have questions? Then just ask.






This is simply an informative thread about what was done to my car. (1999, BMW E46) Attempt at your own risk and realize I am not responsible for any negative affects that may occur.

Fenders refer to the front of the car. Quarter panels refer to the back of the car.

Get flares from Chelsea Denofa
ienjoydrifting@gmail.com

Place flares where you would like them to sit.

Tape them on best you can.

This will be difficult in the rear because the fender flares are not cut to fit around the connection between the bumper and quarter panel.


aDSC_0263 by torokdesigns, on Flickr

You do not need to cut the ones for the front. They fit nicely over the front bumper to fender connection.

I placed them as low as possible without leaving the original (flare) of the fender/quarter panel visible.

For the rears you will need to mark where you think you will need to cut the flare in order to let it sit flush with the quarter panel and rear bumper.


Project : E4 by torokdesigns, on Flickr

This is all eye balling, so make sure you start off very conservative with your cut because you can test fit and then cut more off if the cut is too small.

After you cut them to fit better place them back on the car. Trace around the top of the flares with some sort of marker. I used a paint pen.

Get an angle grinder with an abrasive cutting wheel.

For the front fenders there is only one layer of sheet metal and then a plastic fender liner.

The fender liner is tucked into the lip of the stock fender. You will want to reconstruct this shape after you cut the stock fender and liner.

So cut off the stock fender 1.25” below the line you drew. Then slightly bend back the metal to create a 1/4 inch lip or hem. Being careful not to warp the whole fender.

Cutting 1/4 inch deep notches along the newly cut edge every inch or so will allow you to bend the lip which holds the plastic liner without as much distortion to the fender.
Leaving the fender liner longer will allow you to cut it to match the outer contour of the new fender opening. Then push up the trimmed liner into the lip you created. Just like how it was before except now there are a few cuts which you will need to seal.

In other words…

A small notch was cut every inch to inch and a half along the hem line so that the fender could be folded back a little at a time. The folding was done with a body working dolly to back up the metal and striking it with a body hammer until it reached 90 degrees. Then the plastic liner was trimmed to match the fender shape and snapped up under the hem to hold it in place. The front and rear inner panels required a few cuts made perpendicular to wheel opening to allow the highly curved portions to stretch far enough. These are the cuts that need to be sealed shut with the sealant called "heavy drip check sealer".

Then place the front flares back on the front and drill holes where needed. You will want the holes in the metal to be smaller than the screw size so that it will have something to bite into. The holes in the flare should be big enough for the screw to fit through without the screw cutting into it.

Then for the rear quarter panels there are two layers of sheet metal.

Cut the outer sheet 1” below the line you drew. Then the inner sheet as long as possible below the line you drew. You want the inner sheet of metal to be longer because you will then have to hammer the inner sheet up to meet with the outer sheet and then tack weld them together. Mine was tack welded with a portable Lincoln MIG welder.


Project : E4 by torokdesigns, on Flickr

So hammer the inner sheet up, weld it to the outer layer and now cut the excess length of metal off, then seal it with the heavy drip check sealer.

Then screw on the rear flares like you did the front flares.

Make sure all bare metal exposed from this job is coated with sealant so it doesn’t rust.

Make sure all screws aren’t too long and too close to your tires.

Make sure all open holes to the inside of the car body are sealed.

Enjoy having flares which look good in my opinion and allow for much wider wheels.


Project : E4 by torokdesigns, on Flickr


Project : E4 by torokdesigns, on Flickr


Project : E4 by torokdesigns, on Flickr


Project : E4 by torokdesigns, on Flickr


Project : E4 by torokdesigns, on Flickr


Project : E4 by torokdesigns, on Flickr


Project : E4 by torokdesigns, on Flickr
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Old 01-19-2014, 11:34 AM   #2
Torok.Designs
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I definitely forgot to mention that if you run wider wheels you will most likely have to cut the corners off your rear bumper also. I did. The front is fine though. Depending on how wide you go.

The corners of the rear bumper hit the wider wheels.

When you cut the corners off the rear bumper make sure you don't cut them too far back and mess up the guiding rails that are used to slide the bumper cover onto the car.
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Old 01-19-2014, 05:59 PM   #3
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Dude, you're missing your rear bumper insert, your grilles, badges, and are running a primered hood and primered bumper. These fender flares have definitely secured your nomination as a riced vehicle. Get it cleaned up, please. Prove me wrong.

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Old 01-19-2014, 06:51 PM   #4
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Old 01-19-2014, 07:03 PM   #5
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Let him enjoy his car. We all have different taste.
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Old 01-19-2014, 07:19 PM   #6
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Let him enjoy his car. We all have different taste.
Unfortunately, that's not going to happen. If OP had posted this in "Showroom" or "DIY", he might have found a bit of love, but it's not going to happen in "General".

As much time as we spend in this forum debating the best way to get the longest life out of your BMW, a car that has the sheet metal cut up is not going to draw many positive comments.
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Old 01-19-2014, 08:14 PM   #7
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I had my friend and bodyshop owner cut, pull, and shape the fenders on my 328Ci, but it was done purely out of necessity (and on a coupe) following the engine was being built and the custom twin screw supercharger install. The actual sheet metal work was a last resort following every trick we knew for getting the widest possible wheels and tires under the car. With the 19x8.5 and 19x10 J-Line 7SL2's wrapped with PSS 245's and 265's already barely clearing with the fenders rolled as much as possible without sacrificing the integrity of themetal, tthe car was still making enough power that wheelspin was the special of the day, and that's with a not-so-aggressively geared 3.15 OS Giken.
The only way to get more traction was with more tire, and I am not so keen on having drag radials or R-Comps on a street driven vehicle at all times.
Therefore, increasing the contact patch was necessary, especially since what spins during Street driving will be undriveable on the track, which is where much of the car's life is spent.

I was hesitant to screw with the fenders more, but having seen countless examples of my friend'swork and kknowing his talent, I reluctantly decided that the only way was to widen the car. The only stipulations were that it remains as factory looking as possible, and that it be done without the use of bolt on flares or anything else like that.
So, what was done was the fenders were cut vertically, systematically and slowly pulled outward with cuts made as needed to allow the metal to bend, once the appropriate amount of clearance was gained shaping the fenders began, then identical metal to the factory used type was purchased in the same thickness, it was cut into the proper sizes and then the pieces were shaped to match the progress made on the car before they were welded in to fill the gaps, the fender forming was finished followed by a LOT of sanding of the fenders to eliminate the traces of the welds and create the appearance of a single uniform flowing shape, and finally they were prepped, primed, and painted with OEM paint on the outside and inside (and properly blended).
The result is that I can, with -2*/-1.6* Street and -3.7*/-2.4* (max) track camber, run up to 19x9x5f/19x10f and 19x11r/11.5r wheels, and with 18" diameter I can add half an inch. The offsets are M3 typical offsets as the front and rear axles are M3. That gives me the room to run 255-265 front and 265-295r.
The combination of the extra camber and significant increase in surface area of ground contact resulted in a transformation, in terms of traction under acceleration, and a surprising increase in sustained lateral acceleration. Braking distance decreased by a fair amount with the exact same StopTech Trophy 6P 365mm 2pc front and 4P 348mm 2pc rear setup, w ST Street Performance and PFC race pads.

If it hadn't been a friend who did the work, I would have been footing a bill upward of 3500 plus paint costs. It can be done for less than half that using other techniques, but I felt the way I chose would result in the best compromise between looks and functionality.


So, I am apparently one of few who don't immediately hate flared fenders, but I also think that their use is extremely situation dependant, and the vast majority of the pretty small list of those situations involve the track or a power increase of at least 80-100 percent over stock.
"Stance" is, in my opinion, an incredible waste of a nice car and (on rare occasion) nice wheels, but fortunately it's possible to save most stanced cars by simply buying them and removing the ridiculous, unbolting the stupid, and applying a liberal amount of equal parts maturity and good taste.

So, while I applaud the DIY, get your hands dirty mentality, I do hope that the same brain which helped you do this, is doing so for the right reasons.
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Old 01-19-2014, 08:20 PM   #8
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Bro. We need to have a talk.

What's the reason for nearly every piece of exterior trim missing? Your car looks junked. It's got a nice flavor and might catch the corner of my eye, but the lust wouldn't last for long.

Fill in all the holes and rehost some decent pics.
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Old 01-19-2014, 08:22 PM   #9
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lol reminds me of my old ranger
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Old 01-19-2014, 08:23 PM   #10
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RIP E46

50 bucks says it's a 323, which is why he debadged it
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Old 01-19-2014, 08:51 PM   #11
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OP.
Why didn't you do this to a civic?
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Old 01-19-2014, 08:56 PM   #12
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not feeling this at all
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Old 01-19-2014, 09:19 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by nleksan View Post

So, I am apparently one of few who don't immediately hate flared fenders, but I also think that their use is extremely situation dependant, and the vast majority of the pretty small list of those situations involve the track or a power increase of at least 80-100 percent over stock.
"Stance" is, in my opinion, an incredible waste of a nice car and (on rare occasion) nice wheels, but fortunately it's possible to save most stanced cars by simply buying them and removing the ridiculous, unbolting the stupid, and applying a liberal amount of equal parts maturity and good taste.

So, while I applaud the DIY, get your hands dirty mentality, I do hope that the same brain which helped you do this, is doing so for the right reasons.


Why don't I see you post more often?
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dont listen to these fuQ faces... just go to a junk yard and get a used complete left rear end. i cracked my left rear control arm on the highway because i was driving w/o shocks... lol! ***Was too busy caking on these bitches instead of taking care my car!***
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Old 01-19-2014, 09:22 PM   #14
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No offense, but how can you drive around in that with a straight face?
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Old 01-19-2014, 09:25 PM   #15
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No offense, but how can you drive around in that with a straight face?
Be poor and/or 16
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Old 01-19-2014, 09:26 PM   #16
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OP: Installs fender flares to fit wider wheels/tires; Still buys the wrong size tires.
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Old 01-19-2014, 09:28 PM   #17
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The worst part is...is that it's not fixable... its done lol
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Old 01-19-2014, 09:33 PM   #18
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Old 01-19-2014, 09:47 PM   #19
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Nice work OP. I'm officially nominating you as having the most god awful looking E46 on the planet. As a matter of fact let me know how much it will take to buy that car from you so I can light it on fire. I'm willing to send a check for whatever it takes but there is going to be a contract signed by you stating that you will never buy another BMW again. I will be sending out invitations to the burning. Its going to be a potluck style party so everyone start thinking about what you will bring. There will also be door prizes given out which will include cooling system refresh kits and window regulators. The first 50 fanatics thru the door will also receive a complimentary gallon of BMW blue coolant. Hope to see all of you there.




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Old 01-19-2014, 10:03 PM   #20
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Nice work OP. I'm officially nominating you as having the most god awful looking E46 on the planet. As a matter of fact let me know how much it will take to buy that car from you so I can light it on fire. I'm willing to send a check for whatever it takes but there is going to be a contract signed by you stating that you will never buy another BMW again. I will be sending out invitations to the burning. Its going to be a potluck style party so everyone start thinking about what you will bring. There will also be door prizes given out which will include cooling system refresh kits and window regulators. The first 50 fanatics thru the door will also receive a complimentary gallon of BMW blue coolant. Hope to see all of you there.




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