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Reproduction apron repairs
#1
I have been reading and examining the fender aprons for our Mustangs and it appears that the top surface does not have the slots for the fender clips. Is this true? How do you put them in?

Or would a better repair, specifically to the battery side apron, splice the lower part of the apron that is rusted to the top part of the apron that is good? This also saves the little re-inforcing steel under the top lip of the apron that seems to be missing on the reproduction aprons.

I also found a couple of NOS aprons for the battery area. Do these have the slots and the reinforcement on the top lip?
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#2
1973grandeklar,

Yes, this true. The re pops do not have the slots. The NOS panel does. You might could use a Dremel tool to cut out the slots. The reinforcement part is spot welded to the apron. Make sure you use the spot weld cutter to remove the apron. Checkout this YouTube video on the apron subject.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4K7CDZQc7So

NOS Panel-

http://www.ebay.com/itm/1971-73-NOS-Must...16&vxp=mtr

Also, if you are welding, make sure you have this stuff.

http://www.nationaltoolwarehouse.com/Cop...7AodI3sAwQ

mustang7173-
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#3
Thanks mustang7173. So the NOS panel has all the proper holes, but I will need to reuse the reinforcing piece from my old apron. Correct?

I saw that video and it is good. Wish they had a little more detail about the actual panel. I am finding that I can find a lot of good information on how to replace, where to get reproductions, and even some advice on adjustments to poor fitting panels. But to actually find detailed descriptions of what the factory panel has and what the reproduction panel is missing can be sparse. I can get all kinds of stock images of these panels, but these images do not always highlight what the differences are. In this particular case, I would have cut the apron off (with my spot weld cutter) and then fit the reproduction panel on focusing on the alignment. I may have noticed the missing slots or not. Certainly would of noticed when I try to refit the front fenders back on. But more than likely I would not have even realized that the backside lip was missing the small reinforcement edge. Only after reading other's work here on this site did I really look at my apron and notice the extra lip on the top back side. Then I spotted that the battery area has a backside reinforcement as well. I believe this comes with the new battery box, but I cannot be sure until I research this as well.
I am hoping to try and document this in my build thread so maybe others can find it when they search for comparisons of original to reprodution panels.
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#4
The NOS apron panels do not have the slots either. I used NOS aprons for the front two panels and repos for the rears on my 73 Grandé. I measured the old panel holes and drew them out on the new panels after welding them in. I used the dremel tool with a cutting wheel to cut the slots out. Followed it up with a file to smooth them out more.
Measure twice and cut once!
The battery apron does not come with the reinforcement for the battery tray. It mounts to the underside of the apron below where the tray goes. It is an L shaped part. You will have to fabricate that yourself if yours it rotted out. They are not reproduced. The rails that go under the top of the front aprons are not reproduced either, never seen NOS ones nor do they come with the NOS aprons. Luckily mine were just surface rusted so i just bead blasted them and reused them.
Michael
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#5
yup you have to cut the holes yourself. use the originals as a template. but what you want to do is mock up the fender after the aprons are in. then mark the bolt holes, then using the old aprons as a guide trace out the clip holders, it is possible for something to be way out of alignment so that is why you mock the fenders up before you cut as a double check.

for me i had an issue with this as well, i did a half hearted mock up and trusted the clip placement on my passenger side using the original aprons as a guide. when i went for fitment of my pass fender i found i was about 1/2" off, for the drivers side i did a real mock up then really carefully laid out the cutouts so the drivers side was dead on.

Its the joke of a monday or friday car never trust anything verify before cutting mount holes.
I made this mistake with my roof trim pieces i trusted the factory and it wasn't until later i realized my trim is totally out of wack side to side.
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#6
Michael,

Did the NOS have holes in that area? On the NOS link from above, I can see holes there.

mustang7173
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#7
mustang7173;187943 Wrote:Michael,

Did the NOS have holes in that area? On the NOS link from above, I can see holes there.

mustang7173

Those holes on top of the panel are just round holes for nothing. The fender u bolt bolt holes are square and are not put in the panels. You need to cut out 2 square holes for each one of the u bolt clips to mount the fenders. You would have thought that at least the Ford panels would have the holes prepunched since they did prepunch the holes for the starter solenoid, regulator and windshield washer bottle such.
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#8
1973grandeklar how damaged is your battery tray? I also purchased the whole apron but only used a section of it because there's no great way to replicate the spot welds where it welds to the shock towers.I didn't want to have one side smooth and the driver side original. Just something to think about.[Image: vg678n.jpg]
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#9
Yes Stevehcode, that is what I was thinking of doing to my apron. buy the reproduction and only use the bottom battery portion. One difference is I was thinking of removing at the front radiator support and plug weld this area bask together and butt weld the rest of the cut out just as you have it. I believe this alleviates any angst I may have of putting holes and reinforcements back onto a reproduction or NOS part. I already know that my current fenders should go back on this side and align with the existing holes. I am reusing my front fenders as they are in good condition.
   
This is the extra reinforcement I keep referring to. The extra lip of metal on the outside edge.
   
Veiw from underside of apron. I do not see this on the reproductions.
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#10
1973grandeklar;188073 Wrote:Yes Stevehcode, that is what I was thinking of doing to my apron. buy the reproduction and only use the bottom battery portion. One difference is I was thinking of removing at the front radiator support and plug weld this area bask together and butt weld the rest of the cut out just as you have it. I believe this alleviates any angst I may have of putting holes and reinforcements back onto a reproduction or NOS part. I already know that my current fenders should go back on this side and align with the existing holes. I am reusing my front fenders as they are in good condition.

This is the extra reinforcement I keep referring to. The extra lip of metal on the outside edge.

Veiw from underside of apron. I do not see this on the reproductions.

That does not come on the repro or NOS panels.
It is a separate part. It is not reproduced yet.
Heck if you bought a NOS fender the headlight mounting bracket was sold separately too, that is how Ford sold parts.
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