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Discussion Starter #1
Been thinking about this for a while. Earlier models look much more sleek than the S3, I think mostly because of the "bumper car" bumpers that the U.S. Transportation Safety Board decided the Spider needed to be safe. Sorry guys, it will never be a safe vehicle.... here are a few pics of the transition I started today, a bit more to do but this is where the bumper will stay and when it goes to the paint booth I will paint both bumpers body color. I will work on the front next and probably do away with the Alfa badge center bumper and replace with something more traditional.
 

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Spent some time today working on the front bumper. Got the new mounting figured out and mocked it up so I can get an idea on what I want to do about the bumper emblem, fabricate one or use an earlier style. Will need to make a new side marker too since I basically cut all that away.... I think I it will look pretty good after it gets painted body color.
 

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You are in the same place I was several years ago with my '76 Spider. The black bumpers protruded too much so I found out how to retract them closer to the body. After removing the small chrome pieces that formed the outline of a grille at the upper and lower edges of the front bumper, I discovered there was a circular notch at the upper edge of the body that would accommodate the contour of a real grille. This, and the retracted bumper, made it apparent that an earlier grill would fit if I just cut a big notch in the rubber bumper. As you probably know by now, the rubber bumper is really several layers of heavy steel merely covered by a thin layer of rubber. The bumper was ruined once I began cutting the rubber, so I continued hacking
Cut notch.JPG
Spider.JPG
until there was just a small part connecting each side together and was able to mount a 1974 style grille. I never painted the bumpers, and eventually did the full stainless conversion, but will be anxious to see your car. An uncut, retracted body colored bumper, is a lot less work and should look really nice.

Spent some time today working on the front bumper. Got the new mounting figured out and mocked it up so I can get an idea on what I want to do about the bumper emblem, fabricate one or use an earlier style. Will need to make a new side marker too since I basically cut all that away.... I think I it will look pretty good after it gets painted body color.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for the pic and inspiration. I found an early grille on Ebay and put an offer in on it. I believe it will fit nicely between the bumper sections. I may paint them with some Alfa 530 before the whole car goes to the paint shop for an Alfa red with pearl. I already like the look much better without the tugboat bumpers.
 

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Earlier models look much more sleek than the S3, I think mostly because of the "bumper car" bumpers that the U.S. Transportation Safety Board decided the Spider needed to be safe. Sorry guys, it will never be a safe vehicle....
Luckily, it's no less safe now than it was before. 5mph bumpers had nothing at all to do with safety. They were a sop to the insurance lobby.
 

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Please give details on what modifications you made to the rear bumper. Did you only modify the mounts or did you modify the bumper? I have an S2 so I’m not familiar with the S3 bumpers, but I have removed the rear anchor on my 82 S2 and plan to either modify or replace. Thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I really think the way alfa Romeo set up the s3 bumpers were well imagined.. setting them back hurts the lines of the car..
There are some useless oil charged shocks mounted to the body and the bumper. I removed those and cut about 2 inches of the top side of the metal bumper underneath and used some all thread to reattach the bumper. The plastic part is only a skin and was attached with double sided tape. A few little things you have to trim to get it to fit well but nothing big. A also shortened the sides so I have a bit of tack welding of a little fill piece that used to be a side support of the bumper.
 

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Looking froward to seeing it with the front grill installed. So far it looks great.

I agree with the first part of what Bianchi says, that the S3 black wrap around bumpers are well imagined. It was a really a good, up-to-date 80's design. It is just the execution that is poor, with the spacing needed to comply with federal bumper requirements that stretches everything out from the body. I think they look better tucked in. Sleeker, returns the car to the correct length.
 

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Discussion Starter #16 (Edited)
Looking froward to seeing it with the front grill installed. So far it looks great.

I agree with the first part of what Bianchi says, that the S3 black wrap around bumpers are well imagined. It was a really a good, up-to-date 80's design. It is just the execution that is poor, with the spacing needed to comply with federal bumper requirements that stretches everything out from the body. I think they look better tucked in. Sleeker, returns the car to the correct length.
I bet to differ. They dont fit the car, there is nothing European about them. They look like they were designed by Lee Iacocca. With both bumpers done now it presents itself much closer to what Pinin envisioned in the 60's. I have a 70's Alfetta grille coming next week.
 

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The black plastic bumpers are very European, same as VW, BMW, Jaguar and others from the 80's. Not what Pinn envisioned but what the times required. Some of the touches pander to america tastes like the (Camaro) spoiler and tail lights. The front grill is terrible!
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Looking froward to seeing it with the front grill installed. So far it looks great.

I agree with the first part of what Bianchi says, that the S3 black wrap around bumpers are well imagined. It was a really a good, up-to-date 80's design. It is just the execution that is poor, with the spacing needed to comply with federal bumper requirements that stretches everything out from the body. I think they look better tucked in. Sleeker, returns the car to the correct length.
I bet to differ. They dont fit the car, there is nothing European about them. The look like they were designed by Lee Iacocca. With both bumpers done now it presents itself much closer to what Pinin envisioned in the 60's.
The black plastic bumpers are very European, same as VW, BMW, Jaguar and others from the 80's. Not what Pinn envisioned but what the times required. Some of the touches pander to america tastes like the (Camaro) spoiler and tail lights. The front grill is terrible!
Whatever.
 

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There is sure a lot of options on what a Alfa Romeo Spider is to look like. I guess that is what the hobby is all about. Make your ride match your personality is what I say. S2 and 3 are not terribly expensive cars. Why not have a lot of fun modifying them. My hats off to anyone who enjoys shop time.


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