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MVP Rear Bumper Installation



So originally, the car came to me without bumpers.  But I wasn't worried because years before, I traded a spare LSD for a complete set of newly re-chromed bumpers for a pre-74 car.  These bumper pieces came to me in a custom-made wooden crate and although I had seen pictures, I didn't actually take them down from the rafters and out of the crate until just recently.  So after un-crating them, I realized that it was a mixed set of beautiful chrome bumpers, the front bumper was from an early car (no rubber strip holes on the end pieces) and the rear was from a later car (long end pieces and rubber strip holes on all three pieces with matching bumper horns).


Well the rear bumper wasn't going to work from my 1600, I wanted the short ends with no rubber strips.  So now what?  Here's what I did.  I ordered the rubber strip and clips and rubber pads for the rear bumper horns from Wallothnesch so I would have a complete rear bumper.  I sold that complete rear bumper on the FAQ and ordered a custom bumper from MVP.  MVP only made the early bumpers with the euro license plate lights in the center section.  I got them to make me a set without the license plate light holes, (new product now available).  Unfortunately, they were backlogged from Covid and these would not be available until March 2022.  So I went ahead and ordered my set in early January.  So now I needed the correct rear Bumper horns.  Fortunately, a gentleman @Sgtskid was selling/parting 2 1600's and I was able to purchase a set of correct rear bumper horns from him.  While I was waiting for the MVP bumper to arrive, I sent the bumper horns to Chrome Plating USA for refurbishment and ordered all the necessary mounting hardware from Wallothnesch.


After a few weeks of delay, I finally received my new bumper from Taiwan and was very pleased with the quality of this part.  I did have some issues with the assembly that should help others with this task.  First, I forgot to order new rubber for the rear bumper horns, which delayed my assembly while I waited for these from Germany.  Second, the Wallothnesch nuts and bolts kit had the wrong length carriage bolts for the bumper horns, so I found some stainless steel ones on Amazon (US Bumper Horns need M8 x 70mm).  Also, I ordered Part # 51125470060 from Wallothnesch.  If you are using MVP bumpers, you don't need to use 51125470065, MVP welds these pieces to the center section of their bumpers.  I suppose you could use 51125470065 on top of the welded piece, but you would need even longer bumper horn carriage bolts and the bumper would sit an additional 1.5" from the body.  I had 2 sets of 51125470060 brackets, one black and one silver zinc.  I went with the zinc set because the M8 hex bolt was easier to thread than the set with black overspray, more on that later.


Now that everything was here, I decided to bench assemble the entire bumper and then mount it to the car with the four M8 hex bolts that hold it from inside the trunk.  The space between the inner two mounting holes on the body is 32.75 inches center to center.  When I assembled the bumper for the first time, with the end pieces snug against the edge of the recess on the center piece, the inner holes on the 51125470060 were only 32" center to center.  What I had to do was loosen the carriage bolts holding the end pieces and pull them outward until the bumper horn carriage bolt was positioned on the far outside of welded in 51125470065 piece.  This leaves a gap between the center piece and the end pieces that is barely covered by the bumper horn.  I was able to stretch the distance between the mounting brackets to the required 32.75" using this method, but this would not be required if MVP welded their 51125470060 part farther out on the center piece to provide 32.75" between the inner mounting holes on the bracket with the end pieces tight against the center piece.  This would allow the bumper horns to sit correctly on the end piece and the center piece.


With help of my son, we slid the bumper on to the end piece carriage bolts and rubber spacers on both sides and secured the bumper with the four M8 hex bolts inside the trunk.  We did have some issues securing the last outside bolt on the driver's side.  It turns out that one side of the bracket that holds the captive nut was not tacked down and bent out allowing the nut to spin inside the cage.  I was able to bend it back enough to get the nut to stop spinning until the M8 hex bolt caught the threads.   Polished it up with a soft cloth and admired our efforts.














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I would love to see photos of your beautiful 1600. These teasers are not nearly enough. My first BMW, the only brand new one ever for me, was a 1971 1600 for $3,000. Bare bones but a beautiful Atlantik blue.


Steve O'Neill

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