Well you learn a few tricks as you get older and part a few of these out.. or 44 in my case. PB blaster is good... I've kinda migrated back to WD40 as it is almost as good and can get it pretty cheap. You didn't say why you had to cut the bolts off but guess you stripped them out. I always go out these 9/16" bolts with a 14mm 6 point socket and/or box end wrench in very good condition. 14mm is slightly smaller than 9/16" (just as 11mm is slight smaller than 7/16") and make sure you have a good grip on the bolt head. Often if say one end is stripping but you can get to the other end, you can put large vice grip pliers on the stripping side and attached the good side. I am of course almost always using large 1/2" impact tools and that sudden burst of power can quickly overcome a hard to break nut. In fact it will often break the bolt (which is cool) if it is too far gone AND I have a solid grip on it. I also keep air cutting tools, and the reciprocating saw handing. In terms of removing a front bumper, I disconnect the corner and park lights, unbolt the upper outer bumper end to inner fender hanger brackets, then blast off the 4 large bumper bracket to frame bolts and pull the complete 6 pc bumper end/lower grill, park light & cornering light assembly has one large section. After doing 40+ cars I generally just get right under the assembly and pop those 4 large frame bolts out and let it drop down across my chest... as I of course do my best constipated Hulk Imitation. As they say.. what doesn't kill ya, will make you stronger!
thanks for the tips.....
3 of the 4 outer bolts were not rusted too badly....one was almost gone due to rust....no corners for socket to bit into....the inner 4 were fine....and I had already broke them loose.
I soaked these with several cans of PB Blaster....and they have been soaking for weeks prior to my starting the disassembly. When I put the air powered gun on them, they spun.....the square locking properties of the bolt were apparently gone. I had to cut these out....a real pain since they were inside the bottom corner bumper pieces.
I figured this whole assembly would just drop out...but it hung up on the drivers side....and it took considerable convincing to finally come down.
now onto taking it completely apart.
Where can I get some new hardware? Are there links on this site for distributors for these fasteners?
I've never removed a lower grill while bumper still on the car, however, complete front bumper assembly with lower grill & extensions, park and cornering light assembly is pretty straight forward and not that many connections.
As far as the lower grill, if memory serves you have 6 serrated flange nuts across the bottom securing the main lower trill to the upper bumper center. You have a bolt and nut at the center that connects to a lower grill support bracket and intersects with a lower bumper bracket from beneath. You also have a bolt and nut at each corner beneath the lower grill extension. So if my math is right, you have 9 connection point from lower grill & extensions to the bumper.
If you want to remove the entire front bumper end:
- Remove lower radiator shield (4 1/2" hex head bolts)
- Remove splash apron behind lower outer bumper ends (you can just remove the one bolt and wide fender washer at the lower brace that runs diagonally across the bumper end and leave the splash apron attached at top to fender via the 2 bolts and fender washers, but is easier to get to everything if you remove all 3 bolts and washers per side)
- disconnect the park/turn and cornering light wire connectors attached to grill support bar,
- remove the outer bottom hanger bracket bolt (Right angle bracket that goes from inside front bottom of fender down to upper outer bumper ends). You can just remove the one bottom bolt or the 2 upper bolts at the fender. Either way it needs to either be disconnected at the fender or the upper bumper end.
- Remove 4 large bumper bracket to frame bolts at the frame. Be ready to catch the bumper assembly.. it is heavy. A helper is probably needed the 1st time you do it. I just let it drop down on my chest when I part a car out.
For some visuals of the entire front bumper end assembly off the car check out this photo album: