Since there was little information on this at the time, I'm documenting it here - AEV Snorkels and Bushwacker Flat Fenders have a fitment issue - one luckily that is easily resolved. I read a few people online making a big deal about fitting a snorkel to Bushwacker flatties, but no mention of a resolution, so here it is -
Delivered directly from AEV, the cost complete was $359.00.
The kit was complete, the instructions well documented - the stock setup did not fit with the Bushwacker flat fenders I had installed. More on that later
I must have measured that hood a hundred times before I actually did anything. AEV provides a full sized template for cutting the hood, and yes, you will be removing a chunk of hood approximately 6 wide by 2.5 tall. Measuring back 3/4 from the passenger side hood latch indentation, I temporarily secured the template and center punched two locations for a hole saw. I love my center punch, it keeps my drill from running around my hood like an errant tornado across an Oklahoma field.
I then used 2 blue painters tape along the templates outline to mark the cuts I needed to make, grabbed my drill and deeeep breath drilled my first hole. The follow-up drilling was with a 2 hole saw. The drill in both cases simple popped through the metal; not being a body guy I was surprised at how little there really was there, with both 2 holes being cut through the outer and inner hood surfaces in under 15 seconds each. I was committed now.
The rest of the cut on the hoods exterior was accomplished with a pair of electric sheet metal shears, and a Dremel equipped with a cutoff wheel. Both items were life savers, with the shears cutting a perfect line, and the cutoff wheel doing the trimming and smoothing. After marking the inner hood, metal was again relieved to instruction, this time using the cutoff wheel exclusively.
With the cuts (the hard, holy crap I hope I don't ruin my hood part) complete, I masked off the cut area and nuked it with a spray bomb to cover any newly exposed metal and prevent corrosion.
The next step is attaching the snorkel to the stock airbox it literally snaps in. Some thoughts? Were I to do it over again, I would have applied some grease to the mating surface of the snorkel where it snaps into the airbox it is a tight fit. Instead, I applied more pressure and BROKE my airbox.
Apparently the plastic they are made out of is easy to crack when manhandled by a gorilla. Luckily I had a spare nearby and was back in business quickly.
According to the instructions, I was then to seal the flange coming into the airbox with black RTV silicone sealant I used a whole tube to goop the crap out of it, and fill the drain holes in the bottom of the airbox. RTV is cheap no water was getting into that sucker.
Now the bad part a test fit of the AEV Snorkle revealed that my Bushwackers indeed sit higher than my stock fenders.
The brackets supplied were too tall by almost an inch. I had read there may be interference issues with Bushwackers, but considered it may only affect their pocket flares
Bzzzz I WAS WRONG
At any rate a simple solution was available on the spot on the snorkle main body, there are two brackets, and one bracket at the windshield pillar. By simply removing the forward most bracket, I could adjust the rear brackets to fit perfectly. The stock airbox fit into its mounts perfectly, no stress was put on the snorkel body, and installation was finished quickly with the two remaining brackets providing more than enough of a secure mounting, especially when combined with the stock airbox mounts and the hood lowered across the whole assembly.
A quick hint? Put a dab of grease on the 3 pins that mount the airbox into the inner fender it makes re seating the airbox MUCH easier.
I double checked everything, rerouted my winch leads and wiring for my front lights around the snorkle where it came through the hood, made some final adjustments, and tightened everything up after checking the hood to snorkel fitment. Since my install was apparently a tad bit higher due to my higher fender location, I had to relieve an additional 1/8 of an inch or so from the forward part of the cut, but otherwise, no issues.
6 holes drilled using the trim as a template, and a half dozen supplied pop rivets and the installation was complete. That trim ring is magic, it covers a lot of sins
AEV supplies a piece of rubber tubing that goes down over the antennae that prevents rattling, and the Ram Air top simply slips over the top and is secured with a band clamp.
So, time to complete taking my sweet time with no experience cutting into car bodies? About 3 hours start to finish.
In a nutshell, if I had known it was that simple of an installation, I would have done it a week earlier instead of putting it off. Having a pair of electric metal shears, a good corded drill, and a Dremel with a cutoff wheel also made life a hell of a lot easier and I highly recommend having them (or at least beg, borrowing or stealing them for the day). Cutting through the hood was like slicing through butter, and frankly, after drilling the first pilot hole, I realized I was committed and the rest was cake. Using 2 wide painters tape not only provided the outline of the template for the cuts, it also prevented damage to my hood where the saw rode along the cut lines. A huge cloth drop cloth also helped, covering my hood and engine, and providing a place to place tools and what not as I worked, while also catching dropped screws and shards of sheetmetal.
So thats the scoop if you have a garage and the basic tools, it's an easy job right after drilling that first hole into the hood. Enjoy!