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question about metal vs plastic grills


joseph08
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When I started with the resto of my 76, I decided to change the front and rear to roundie specs...My wallet, however decided against it, after talking to many people. (I even had a front and rear clip, NOS tailights, trim, and badges accumulated).

However, at some point, I'm pretty sure that you could buy a patch panel from BMW/aftermarket for the nose-grille section only, for roundie repairs. I remember seeing one on a German web site, but didn't like the price, and bagged the whole idea. SO...If you can graft one into the center section, I think it could happen, it you want that much work. I guess it depends on work and money versus reward...Dave V. in NC

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You can always paint the plastic ones to simulate the early ( roundie ) side grille appearance; takes a little prep work, masking, and will need to have them off of the car for probably a day or so. I did this quite a while ago, with a '76 2002 I had; picked up a pair of used '74-'76 side grilles from a salvage yard ( place charged me $15 ) and painted them to have the pre '74-'76 grille look; when the project was done, I swapped them out, they came out very nice.

Tim.

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I didn't take any photos after the project was done but might have a photo or two of the car with them on the car. I have a few photo CD's kicking around at home, will take a look and post if that '76 2002 I had is among those photos. You can pick up side grilles for '74-'76 2002's very cheap; so if you get that idea, pick up a pair, this way you can leave the current ones on your car and do the project bit by bit., really taking your time to ensure they come out nice.

Tim.

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It can be done. A PO converted mine, likely due to minor front-end repair. I don't think you can get away with it by also using the early kidney grills, but it looks ok with the late kidneys. When I restored mine I tried painting the grills original (early) paint scheme, but it never looked right to me. Most people don't even notice unless they notice the reflectors.

post-18663-13667630641975_thumb.jpg

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I should also add that if I had a good set of original plastic grills in mine when I restored it, I probably would have stayed with those. For the older set, sheet metal screws hold the grills in place for the 74 to 76, which to the trained eye is far from concourse. From a utilitarian perspective though, which I am, hitting small birds and bending them back into place with a shot of krylon semi-flat black is very appealing.

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