Fiberglass flat fenders for the TJ - Jeep Wrangler Forum
Jeep Wrangler Forum

Go Back   Jeep Wrangler Forum > TJ Jeep Wrangler Forum > TJ General Discussion Forum

Join Wrangler Forum Today


Reply
 
Thread Tools

Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about them on WranglerForum.com
Old 11-15-2013, 05:50 PM   #1
Jeeper
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 595
Fiberglass flat fenders for the TJ

As an outgrowth of another fiberglass project I've been working on, I've been thinking of doing some fiberglass flat fenders for the TJ. I've been working on the design and I'm going to post some drawings and mockups in this thread to get everyone's input and feedback.

I've got three main design requirements for this project:

- Stay as true as possible to the design of the original Willys MB flat fenders while at the same time integrating with the lines of the TJ so the fenders have a factory look and fit.

- Provide the same tire coverage as the factory Rubicon/Sahara flares to be street-legal.

- Total bolt-on installation, no cutting or drilling on the Jeep. Therefore fenders will consist of both outer flat fenders and TJ-style inner fenders so all engine compartment components will bolt right up. (A possible exception to this would be the forward-facing turn signals; signals could be either mounted on the front edge of the flat fenders, or they could be installed in the grille CJ-style).

Here's a concept drawing:


jscherb is online now   Quote Quick Reply
Old 11-15-2013, 05:51 PM   #2
Jeeper
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 595
I've done a cardboard mockup in my workshop; it's a little rough but it will serve to test the overall proportions and lines of the fender design. Because it's simple cardboard, the edges are sharp; on the finished fiberglass fenders the edges would be rounded a bit just like the original MB flat fenders.

Here's a front 3/4 view of the mockup. Details you can see include:

- a recess in the side of the fender to accept a factory CJ (or YJ) fender-mounted side marker light.

- the gusset between the fender and the grille to provide additional strength and rigidity for the fender.

- I've drawn some round CJ-style turn signal/marker lights onto the TJ grille. An alternative would be to mount small turn signals on the front edge of the fender.

- there's an original flat fender photo inset for comparison.



Here's a closer 3/4 front view:



And here's a 3/4 front view from a higher angle, also with an original flat fender photo inset for comparison:



I did the inset photos of original flat fenders to show that I've tried to keep the design true to the shape and proportions of those fenders as much as possible.

jscherb is online now   Quote Quick Reply
Old 11-15-2013, 05:51 PM   #3
Jeeper
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 595
Here are some front views. One of my main design requirements was to provide the same tire coverage as the factory Rubicon/Sahara flares to be street-legal. On the left is my TJ, you can see how the sidewalls of my 265/75-16 tires are just outside the edge of the flares. I've drawn a dashed line showing the outline of the flat fender against the photo, and on the right is a front view of the cardboard mockup with tires drawn in. (Full disclosure, I only made one cardboard mockup, then I cut it out of the photo, flopped it, and pasted it back in on the other side ).



And a larger version:

jscherb is online now   Quote Quick Reply
Old 11-15-2013, 05:52 PM   #4
Jeeper
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 595
Here's a rear 3/4 view you can see how the bottom of the "flare" portion of the fender curves in towards the body.



And a side view:




I'd like to hear what you guys think of the overall design... do you agree with the main design criteria in the first post? What do you think of the shape and features of the design (like the recess for the CJ marker light)? Any questions or things I haven't thought of? I'm looking for input to help me finalize the design before I make the molds.
jscherb is online now   Quote Quick Reply
Old 11-15-2013, 06:31 PM   #5
Jeeper
 
windingwilkie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Davidson NC
Posts: 197
fenders

I think they are perfect.They really keep the overall "jeep" theme going. Very much in keeping with past design of jeep lines.One question----in front view of picture #3 are the front amber round signal/running lights smaller and if so what is your thinking on them being smaller. Every time you put in a new post of your fg work I'm even more amazed.Keep on keeping on!!
windingwilkie is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 11-15-2013, 06:37 PM   #6
Jeeper
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 595
Quote:
Originally Posted by windingwilkie View Post
I think they are perfect.They really keep the overall "jeep" theme going. Very much in keeping with past design of jeep lines.
Thanks - that's what I'm shooting for - a design that echos the factory flat fender designs of the past while at the same time looking "right" on a TJ.

Quote:
Originally Posted by windingwilkie View Post
One question----in front view of picture #3 are the front amber round signal/running lights smaller and if so what is your thinking on them being smaller.
I just drew those lights in the photos sort of as placeholders - there are lots of threads around where people have moved their turn signal/marker lights to the TJ's grille, so I think there's a lot of options out there. I'm really focused on getting the flat fender design right at the moment, there are plenty of ways to do the turn signals in the grille .

Quote:
Originally Posted by windingwilkie View Post
Every time you put in a new post of your fg work I'm even more amazed.Keep on keeping on!!
Thank you very much!
jscherb is online now   Quote Quick Reply
Old 11-15-2013, 09:35 PM   #7
Jeeper
 
Bask's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 62
Love em... I'd definitely buy em
Bask is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 11-15-2013, 09:44 PM   #8
Jeeper
 
Deep's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 87
Thumbs up Wow

They look amazing. I love them.
__________________
Deep's Jeeps:
2013 Wrangler Sport 2dr Black (now gone)
2001 TJ Sport
Yellow

also: 2013 Ram Sport 4x4 Copperhead

Deep is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 11-15-2013, 09:52 PM   #9
Supporting Member

WF Supporting Member
 
PHILDABEAST's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Farmington N.M.
Posts: 789
Those look awesome! A highline version would be really cool as well.
PHILDABEAST is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 11-16-2013, 06:21 AM   #10
Jeeper
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 595
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bask View Post
Love em... I'd definitely buy em
Quote:
Originally Posted by Deep View Post
They look amazing. I love them.
Thank you very much!
jscherb is online now   Quote Quick Reply
Old 11-16-2013, 06:25 AM   #11
Jeeper
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 595
Quote:
Originally Posted by PHILDABEAST View Post
Those look awesome! A highline version would be really cool as well.
I've already done the molds for the inner fenders, and when I did them I made provisions for the inners to be used with a highline version of the fenders.

On the left below is a commercial highline fender (AEV) and on the right is one of my inner fenders, you can see the raised flange on the top edge just like on the AEV fender.



My inner fenders are shown below after trimming as part of my previous fender project, but for highlines the flange would be left tall as shown above.



jscherb is online now   Quote Quick Reply
Old 11-16-2013, 07:00 PM   #12
Jeeper
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Hill Country
Posts: 705
very nice design with clean lines. I think you have the correct concept of tire coverage and 100% bolt on. I always enjoy reading about your projects. Any potential for production?
Tdog02 is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 11-17-2013, 06:18 AM   #13
Jeeper
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 595
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tdog02 View Post
very nice design with clean lines. I think you have the correct concept of tire coverage and 100% bolt on. I always enjoy reading about your projects. Any potential for production?
Thank you. Three of my previous fiberglass designs have been picked up by companies and are now on the market, and this one is a possibility too. I'm going to discuss the fenders with a company I talked to at SEMA this year, we'll see if they're interested. And if they're not interested, maybe some other company will be.
jscherb is online now   Quote Quick Reply
Old 11-17-2013, 04:28 PM   #14
Jeeper
 
Medixtj01's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Pennsylvania
Posts: 594
Will these withstand the "200 lbs gorilla test" as your other fenders hav
__________________
2001 Sahara 3 speed auto
Medixtj01 is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 11-17-2013, 06:50 PM   #15
Jeeper
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 595
Quote:
Originally Posted by Medixtj01 View Post
Will these withstand the "200 lbs gorilla test" as your other fenders hav
I've worked bracing into the design, including the gusset between the front of the fender and the side of the grille and some other braces underneath, so they should be plenty strong. We'll have to wait until I mold a pair to see how they stand up to the actual gorilla .
jscherb is online now   Quote Quick Reply
Old 11-17-2013, 07:06 PM   #16
Jeeper
 
Medixtj01's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Pennsylvania
Posts: 594
Ok will you sell these (other than if you sell to a dealer if so will they be up to your standards of durability)
__________________
2001 Sahara 3 speed auto
Medixtj01 is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 11-17-2013, 07:39 PM   #17
Jeeper
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 595
Quote:
Originally Posted by Medixtj01 View Post
Ok will you sell these (other than if you sell to a dealer if so will they be up to your standards of durability)
When I've licensed my fiberglass designs to companies in the past, in addition to delivering mold master parts to them I do a very detailed document describing the details of the design and my recommended fiberglass layup and reinforcement. And usually I've met with their fiberglass people to make sure they understand the critical molding factors of the parts. But in the end it's up to the company to decide how they want to mold their product.

I do these projects as a hobby, I'm really not in business to sell anything. Once I make one prototype/test set of parts to prove out the design, if someone comes along with a project Jeep that seems worthwhile I might be willing to mold another set or two, but other than that I'd much rather move on to my next creative project than spend my time molding more of the same parts I've already molded, tested and proven. I do always keep a set of molds here in case I ever want to make more parts in them.

BTW I've talked to a fiberglass company that's been in the high-end hot rod parts business for about 30 years; they're interested in doing the manufacturing for these fenders, but since they're not in the Jeep business they aren't in a position to sell them. But if someone or some company wanted to sell them, they'd be happy to do the manufacturing, so these fenders could be licensed by a company/someone without any fiberglass capabilities internally and the manufacturing could be done for them.
jscherb is online now   Quote Quick Reply
Old 11-20-2013, 03:41 PM   #18
Jeeper
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 595
Almost all of the current flat/tube fenders on the market "re-use the factory inner fenders", which means you need to use a sawzall to cut to factory outer fenders off. Then the new fenders attach to the remains of the cut-off fenders.

Here's a photo from the Smittybilt XRC fender instructions, which BTW start with the following warning: "Major modifications are required to install this product and itís recommended to be done by an experienced mechanic/installer."



And here's a photo I found from a Genright install showing the amount of the old fenders that has to be cut off:



Here's a quote I found in a write-up of a Genright install: Gen-Right calls this install at 10 hrs. It took a bit more than that maybe 12 hours total working time. It could be done in 10 hrs if you have ever done one before but trust me, it is a big job... If you have not tackled a large job like this or are afraid of taking a cutting wheel to your or your buddy's Jeep then avoid this project."

Genright also offers an inner fender kit, but it seems to be less of a "kit" than a set of raw materials, because this is what they say about it:

- This product was designed to be universal, meaning it is not pre-cut for the factory shock/spring mount. Therefore, it can be trimmed to fit your particular Jeep.
- Some trimming may be required, depending on how modified your Jeep is.
- This product was extended to close the gap between the frame and the inner fender, so if you are not running a body lift you will need to trim a little off the bottom.



I'm not writing this to criticize those products in any way, and I just chose those two as being typical of the amount of modification and work that's required to install almost all of the tube/flat fenders that are on the market, so please don't interpret this post as being a criticism of those products.

As I've said earlier in this thread, one of my main design criteria for these fiberglass flat fenders is that they be a complete bolt-on, with no modifications necessary to the Jeep - no cutting, drilling, etc. The fenders would include fiberglass inner fenders which match the Jeep factory inner fenders, so all of the engine compartment components that bolt to the inners would bolt up in the factory locations.

Here's a photo of the fiberglass inner fenders from my earlier CJ-style fender project for the TJ, these same inner fenders would be part of the flat fenders:



So my questions...

Using the same flat fender molds I've designed, it would be possible to also make these fenders without the fiberglass inner fenders so they install the same way as the other on the market - in other words, they'd require the same cutting of the factory fenders and they'd re-use the factory inners.

If these were to come to market...

1. Would it be worthwhile to offer a fiberglass "outer fender only" flat fender kit that would install with major cutting just like the other fenders on the market?

2. Have you wanted to install flat/tube fenders on your Jeep but not done it because of the amount of cutting and work required?

2. Or would people rather have the flat fenders include the factory-style inner fenders and be a complete bolt-on with no cutting or modification of the Jeep?

Since almost all of the flat-type fender kits on the market don't include inner fenders and require major cutting, I'm just wondering how worthwhile it is to have this kit include fiberglass inner fenders and be a 100% bolt-on installation or if the kit should be like all the others on the market and just include the outer fenders.
jscherb is online now   Quote Quick Reply
Old 11-20-2013, 03:57 PM   #19
Jeeper
 
Medixtj01's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Pennsylvania
Posts: 594
I would like a complete bolt on kit because them I could sell my old fenders to offset the cost of the flat fenders. Also this way anyone could install it. BUT it would be nice to have a cheaper option for the more experienced people who don't mind hacking up their fenders. So in my opinion I would offer both types, a bolt on kit and a diy kit
__________________
2001 Sahara 3 speed auto
Medixtj01 is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 11-21-2013, 05:42 PM   #20
Newb
 
mitch36's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: stinky illinois for the moment
Posts: 14
I would be very interested in these fenders if the price was right. I truley like the look of these as the front of the TJs look kind of bulky as they come from the factory. PLEASE bring these to fruition as I really like the look. Mitch.
mitch36 is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 11-21-2013, 06:25 PM   #21
Jeeper
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 595
Quote:
Originally Posted by mitch36 View Post
I would be very interested in these fenders if the price was right. I truley like the look of these as the front of the TJs look kind of bulky as they come from the factory. PLEASE bring these to fruition as I really like the look. Mitch.
Thanks, I'm glad you like them. I'll be making the molds and molding a few for testing, but I can't say if these will be commercially available or not, that depends on if there's a company or person who's interested in selling them. I just do these designs as a hobby, and if there's enough interest, maybe a company will pick them up to market. If not, I'll just move on to my next design project .
jscherb is online now   Quote Quick Reply
Old 11-21-2013, 06:26 PM   #22
Jeeper
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 595
I'll probably also mold matching rear flares to go with the front flat fenders, I can derive them from the same molds the flat fenders are made in.

Here's a photo again showing the cardboard mockup flares (ignore the TJ Wrangler/Commando hood) and an edited version showing what the matching rear flares would look like.

jscherb is online now   Quote Quick Reply
Old 11-21-2013, 06:41 PM   #23
Newb
 
mitch36's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: stinky illinois for the moment
Posts: 14
I can honestly say, those fenders are the shits. If you mold up a couple sets of fronts and rears, I would seriously be interested in buyinga set from you. I know this is a long shot but what the heck, you never know unless you ask. Mitch.
mitch36 is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 11-21-2013, 06:50 PM   #24
Jeeper
 
TJK8's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: North Georgia
Posts: 230
I dont want to ignore the Commando hood....do tell!
__________________
TJ diesel truck build in progress. Check out my build thread...

http://www.wranglerforum.com/f118/tj...ld-383474.html
TJK8 is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 11-21-2013, 06:56 PM   #25
Jeeper
 
Medixtj01's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Pennsylvania
Posts: 594
He has another thread called "jeepster commando grill on a tj" all about it
__________________
2001 Sahara 3 speed auto
Medixtj01 is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 11-21-2013, 06:56 PM   #26
Jeeper
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 595
Quote:
Originally Posted by TJK8 View Post
I dont want to ignore the Commando hood....do tell!
The details are here: Jeepster Commando grille on a TJ
jscherb is online now   Quote Quick Reply
Old 11-21-2013, 06:57 PM   #27
Jeeper
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 595
Quote:
Originally Posted by mitch36 View Post
I can honestly say, those fenders are the shits. If you mold up a couple sets of fronts and rears, I would seriously be interested in buyinga set from you. I know this is a long shot but what the heck, you never know unless you ask. Mitch.
I'll keep that in mind, thanks.
jscherb is online now   Quote Quick Reply
Old 11-21-2013, 07:08 PM   #28
Jeeper
 
Medixtj01's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Pennsylvania
Posts: 594
I might be interested in a set too
__________________
2001 Sahara 3 speed auto
Medixtj01 is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 11-21-2013, 07:20 PM   #29
Newb
 
mitch36's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: stinky illinois for the moment
Posts: 14
If you decide to pull off a set or two, I would want the full replacement style with inners and outer. I have followed your threads and feel your design and execution are top notch. I really like your safari style hard top, it would be the frosting on the cake on my LJ. Any ways, I got my fingers crossed. Mitch.
mitch36 is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 11-21-2013, 07:57 PM   #30
Supporting Member

WF Supporting Member
 
PHILDABEAST's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Farmington N.M.
Posts: 789
I'll jump on the grenade and volunteer to test a highline set.

PHILDABEAST is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Jeep Wrangler Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off




» Network Links
»Jeep Parts
» Featured Product

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 05:40 AM.



Jeepģ, Wrangler, Liberty, Wagoneer, Cherokee, and Grand Cherokee are copyrighted and trademarked to Chrysler Motors LLC.
Wranglerforum.com is not in any way associated with the Chrysler Motors LLC