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Old 04-02-2013, 07:50 AM   #1
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Flat Fender explanation please

I'm trying to understand the benefits of a full flat fender flare setup like those sold by MCE or similar vs the bushwacker flat flares. I know with the MCE you actually cut the fender and the bushwacker are just bolt on basically. Do the bolt on flares offer the same amount of clearance as cutting the fenders or must you cut the fenders to get the additional clearance? Just trying to understand it best. Also, I'm assuming tube fenders are the same thing? Or are they a different thing altogether like the ones offered by Metalcloak? Thanks!

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Old 04-02-2013, 08:18 AM   #2
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This is my jeep w/ Bushwacker flat flares. Gives plenty of clearance, But as you can see doesn't really stop the mud splash.

Tube fenders tend to be solid steel or aluminum and are more durable... They offer more protection to the jeep then say my flares because they're steel. If I would've had the money I would've done tube right away...
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Old 04-02-2013, 08:28 AM   #3
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Flat fender flares just bolt on to the stock flare mounting points. You will gain the slightest amount of clearance where the stock flare hangs down below the mounting lip on the fender.

Flat fenders (MCE) or steel tube fenders get rid of that stock flare mounting lip. So you will gain that amount of clearance. Not much, maybe 1"-2", but the MCE's are flexible and will give a little. A lot of steel fender kits require you to cut into the the stock fenders keeping the inners. Some will replace the entire fender allowing you to sell the stock ones.

MetalCloaks design gives you a lot more added tire clearance, replaces the entire stock fenders, and does not require you to cut into your stock fenders. You may have to relocate a couple things under the hood I think.

Highline fenders give even more clearance as it raises the entire fender up and requires you to cut the stock hood or buy the AEV hiline hood with their kit. It definitely requires you to move some stuff under the hood.

Now they have hilined flat fender kits out. I want some aluminum ones. Best of all of the above.

Hope that helps.

Here is my MCE fenders. You can see the stock flare mounting lip that has been cut off when I hacked my fender.



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Old 04-02-2013, 08:32 AM   #4
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I forgot to add that Metalcloak also gives you the option of different sized flares. And they are removable.

Tire coverage and tire clearance.
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Old 04-02-2013, 08:36 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cpierich View Post
I'm trying to understand the benefits of a full flat fender flare setup like those sold by MCE or similar vs the bushwacker flat flares. I know with the MCE you actually cut the fender and the bushwacker are just bolt on basically. Do the bolt on flares offer the same amount of clearance as cutting the fenders or must you cut the fenders to get the additional clearance? Just trying to understand it best. Also, I'm assuming tube fenders are the same thing? Or are they a different thing altogether like the ones offered by Metalcloak? Thanks!
in uptravel + flex, there are a few major limiting factors.

1. suspension interferences (like track bar vs diff)
2. coil bind (can damage coils)
3. shock length (bottoming out the shocks will damage them or the mounts)
4. tire size.

if you work out #1-3, and find #4 is your limiting factor, you can modify the fenders to fit the tires better.
Usually, the fenders become a limiting factor in the follow ways:
1. tire vs plastic flare - this isn't really a major problem, because the flare is plastic and will bend/move or crack/break.
2. tire vs steel fender - this is a major problem because you can cause body or tire damage.
3. tire vs hood line - this is a major problem, and only occurs after you fix #1 and #2 by significant body modifications.

flat flares that bolt to the existing fenders fix #1 (sort of). they basically just eliminate the lip that rubs the tire, which some people seem to think is a problem...but it's really not. you can accomplish the same result with a razor knife and trimming your existing flares.

flat flares that require cutting the fenders fix #1 and #2. if you cut the interfering steel out and replace it with flexible plastic...you won't damage the steel obviously.

those all gain what i would consider either no clearance, or somewhat minimal clearance. Metalcloaks also fit into that #2 category - they move the fender so that the factory hood-line is the limiting factor.

the way to gain the maximum amount of clearance is to move the hood-line. this is called a fender lift, or highline hood/fender. Another option for even more clearance is to eliminate the fenders all together and go to Campbell fiberglass hood.

the question to ask yourself is, how much tire clearance do you need for how much bumpstop extension you have to run? and what are you trying to accomplish with up/down travel & travel ratio? the answers will dictate how deep you need to go.
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Old 04-02-2013, 09:50 AM   #6
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Thanks for the information everyone. Makes a lot more sense to me now.

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