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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
The Spider has been running pretty well lately (knock on wood), so I've turned my attention to some cosmetic things. One issue that has been bugging me is the front bumper. As you can see from the picture below, the outer side parts of the bumper droop down (more pronounced on the passenger side).

Is there a procedure for adjusting this? I read a prior post in which Tifosi indicated that tilting the bumper by adding washers between the bumper and the bumper shock can be used for up/down adjustment, but would that address this outside droop issue?
 

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Looks like your entire car is leaning to the passenger side in addition to the noted bumper issue. Also looks like the center portion of the bumper is raised.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
John, the leaning appearance may be my questionable photography skills, but I'll check it out. I agree that the center of the bumper appears raised relative to the sides. Can that be adjusted? Looking at the shop manual, it doesn't appear that the sides are intended to be adjusted relative to the center structure. So maybe the PO ran into something and messed the bumper up.
 

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Sloboy,
I have several spare front bumpers and turned one over and examined it carefully yesterday. The shock mounts attach to the center section and there are 4 10mm studs which atttach each side. These have zero adjustability and hold the center section firmly in place. The side pieces are riveted on to the center section with HUGE rivets at the factory and the wrap around ends attach to the bodywork with the infamous Vee headed bolts in the slot with the big round O. There seems virtually no way for the side pieces to droop as in your photo unless the huge factory applied rivets are loose or have been replaced with something which is too small for the job. It they were replaced with some form of attachment hardware in place of the factory rivets; something with a diameter too small to fill up the hole made for the rivets, then this would allow the side pieces to droop like yours are in your photo.

If I were working on your Spider, I would remove the bumper assemble and examine the rear of it, looking closely at how the side pieces are attached to the center section. Just guessing, but I am leaning toward someone having de-sectioned the assembly and replaced the huge factory rivets with hardware too small in diameter for the job. These huge factory rivets are so big that it would be very hard to duplicate them if you ever drilled them out for whatever reason.

The front bumper is relatively easy to remove on your model. unplug both front lamp assemblies and side marker assemblies. Remove all 8 of the 10mm nuts holding the center section to the shock mounts. The Vee headed bolts will slide back to the O in the slot and the bumper comes right off whole. It helps to have 2 people handle the removal so as NOT to scratch up any of that beautiful red paint.

I will take some photos after first light and add them to this post, showing what I am takling about.

Robert Hill in Memphis, TN
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks, Robert. I had the bumper off a few months ago but didn't think to examine the rivets because the assembly is very rigid. I'll try to get after it this weekend, but it is really hot here. (We're about to break our record of 42 straight days over 100).
 

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Your bumper is not original. The front, at least, has been painted black. The original had silver on the top that blended down next to the rubber triangle. Perhaps there was some collision damage that's been "fixed". The bottom air **** also looks a little suspect. Can you lift the bumper ends into the correct orientation by hand?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
John, I painted the bumper a couple of months ago. Before that, it was the original silver color, but it still had the same side-droop problem. The bumper sides are solidly attached to the center piece and cannot be moved (i.e., if I push down or lift up on the side portions, the entire front of the car moves correspondingly).
 

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rivets

FWIW , I R+R'd my front bumper the other year , The HUGE rivets I replaced with 6mm x16mm - seemed to fit OK
My rivet gun coped with them just fine , my arms needed the assistance of some pipe to get sufficient leverage to get them to "pop" ( more like "BANG" really !)
Looks to me like the side sections are not correctly on the aluminium girder section , although the plastic sections can distort a bit.
David
 

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Here is a picture of my 89 for reference.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 · (Edited)
Thanks, everyone, for your help. I've taken te bumper off, and perhaps a photo will explain what I'm dealing with. The top flange of aluminum bumper itself droops down toward the outer edges. As you can see, there is about a one-inch gap between the top of the bumper in the center and a straightedge between the outer portions of the bumper top flange. Is this correct? I wouldn't think so given Alfabeach's photo.

If this isn't correct, any ideas on how to straighten the bumper?
 

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I think if you mount the whole assemble at an "angle" it might straighen out some. ie a washer or two on the bottom shock mounts? I noticed on mine I also have three spacers per side, between the bumper and sheetmetal. These do not show on any shop manual or parts list.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I did a little experimentation with the washer adjustment. I put a single washer on each of the top studs between the bumper and the shock mount. That angled the bumper down, which in effect raised the sides since they are aft of the shock mounts. I think that it looks better, but it still isn't perfect. I tried two washers on each, but it was too much and created a big gap between the bumper and the body.

Alfabeach, I do have those same rubber spacers, but they are extremely brittle. Thanks, everyone, for your help.
 

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Hi I have a 1990 spider and the passenger side bumper is about 1/4 below the rubber spacer. Do you think loosening the 4 bolts to the bumper to shock and trying to lift it will work? Or does it need a shim washer? It is ok on the driver side and center looks fine too. any suggestions?
Jeff
 
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