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Unread 10-06-2011, 12:43 AM   #1
R4TCHET
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2005 WK 
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Boulder, Colorado
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Expanded Sheet Grille mod

this is my first build/mod thread so be patient

I saw a picture of a jeep some time some place and it looked like it had an grille like this (not the overland grille). so i had this crazy idea to make this happen.

Supplies:
Drill with drill bits, something to cut plastic and metal with (wire cutters are perfect), loctite (recommended but optional), 8 carriage bolts (about 2 inches long) with matching standard nuts, a flat head screw driver, and large enough washers to stop the nut from slipping through the expanded sheet.

first i bought 2 "sheets" if you will of expanded sheet metal from Lowes for about $20 per sheet


to be specific

first after buying i decided a black finish will look better and stop it from rusting (yes it rusts). so i found some old all purpose black gloss spray paint, i believe it was rust oleum.


(i partly cut it already, enjoy the feet in pic too )

first remove the grille from the jeep by taking out all of those pushpin things and it should just come right off.
now you must take the grille cover (the painted part) off the grille to get to the "inserts". There are several little snap things that hold the cover to the grille, and a flat head screw driver does the best to separate the cover from the grille. I believe there is about 1 per side on the inside of the slots and 4 or 5 on the edges of the grille.
(no pic but easy to figure out if you look at the grille)

after separating the cover from the back you now start cutting (yes cutting) the "inserts" out



(sorry blurry)
and it's not very noticeable if you do or don't cut or sand the little nubs down from the grille so i just cut as much as i could without trying too hard.

after cutting all of the inserts out, now you must align the sheet metal and make measurements to find the right spots to cut. Leave enough room so one hole in the expanded sheet will be in the middle of the pillar (between slots), and i personally cut it so 1 sheet covers 2 slots on the grille. now if your good at math and know that the grille is a 7 slotted grille, then you must know that 2 will never go into 7. so what you do is you cut out 3 sheets that cover 2 slots (2X3=6) and 1 sheet that covers 1 slot (2X3+1=7 YAY ) make sure to cut it so all the pieces overlap.

now that you have all the expanded sheet cut, you may now start drilling holes in the grille. Using a drill bit that matches your bolts (they don't need to be threaded into the plastic grille) drill one hole while holding the expanded sheet down as a reference for where the sheet should go. After drilling 1 hole, bolt down the expanded sheet using the carriage bolt, washer, and nut so you can then move the expanded sheet accordingly for the next hole. Tighten said bolt enough so that the expanded sheet is flush with the grill, too much will bend it weird and too little wont look good. Repeat for the rest of the grille and you will get something like this. Don't forget to Loctite the bolts down so they don't loosen





(sorry i dont have any pics of the drilling of the holes)

Now that everything is bolted in, it is time to start to put the cover back on. You will notice there are little tabs that will interfere with you expanded sheet, use those wire cutters to cut away the expanded sheet for them to fit through. And snap as much back into place as possible but it doesn't matter much if not all snaps in. once your grille is one piece it is time to put it back on the jeep, just align the holes and put you push pin snap whatever they are called things back into place

and the finished product (with a plastidip finish on the cover for me )


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| (dark)KHAKI WK CLUB MEMBER 17 | 2005 4.7L QTII | JBA UCAs | Modified OME MD 3.5" lift | Rusty's Adj. track bar | 4XG Matrix | 285/70r17 Duratracs | 17" KMC Enduro Wheels | Rola Roof Rack | 21" Bean LED Light bar on Roof Rack | 2 12" Punch P3 Subs | Expanded Sheet Grille | SA Sliders |

Last edited by R4TCHET; 10-06-2011 at 01:37 AM.. Reason: license plate not blurred out
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Unread 10-06-2011, 01:37 AM   #2
DallastheJeeper
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Looks Good
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Unread 10-06-2011, 05:20 AM   #3
clbailey
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Wait so the painted piece covers the bolt heads? Fricken sweet! I wanted to do this, just didnt want to install it with mounting tabs held on by tape and zipties. Is the middle of each rib the only place you can put bolts? Like is the top and bottom to narrow if you try to put the painted piece on?
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Unread 10-06-2011, 06:51 AM   #4
R4TCHET
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clbailey View Post
Wait so the painted piece covers the bolt heads? Fricken sweet! I wanted to do this, just didnt want to install it with mounting tabs held on by tape and zipties. Is the middle of each rib the only place you can put bolts? Like is the top and bottom to narrow if you try to put the painted piece on?
Yeah it holds strong enough with just te bolts in the center b/c its somewhat thick steel. Plus then its springy so its more likely to last if a bird hits it

Just look closely for the tabs ill get a pic up later after college
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| (dark)KHAKI WK CLUB MEMBER 17 | 2005 4.7L QTII | JBA UCAs | Modified OME MD 3.5" lift | Rusty's Adj. track bar | 4XG Matrix | 285/70r17 Duratracs | 17" KMC Enduro Wheels | Rola Roof Rack | 21" Bean LED Light bar on Roof Rack | 2 12" Punch P3 Subs | Expanded Sheet Grille | SA Sliders |
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Unread 10-06-2011, 08:30 AM   #5
08WKJGC
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That looks really good!
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Unread 10-06-2011, 08:55 AM   #6
Rak187INF
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Thanks for posting bro, great write up. Im looking into doing this in the near future, so this is def gonna be my guide
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Unread 10-06-2011, 09:17 AM   #7
Andywear
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Looks good. I went to Lowes last night to find that stuff and must of looked in the wrong section.

Will do this to protect my new rad.
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Unread 10-06-2011, 12:10 PM   #8
MileHighRango
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Do paint both sides if the sheet metal (I think R4CHET missed that part) we found we took his grille of last week to Plasti Dip the back was rusted, only surface rust.

For the bolts you'll want 1/4" carriage bolts, we tried 5/16" but the heads are too big to fit under the painted cover. We used a 5/16" drill bit and it was a perfect fit!
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Unread 10-06-2011, 12:46 PM   #9
R4TCHET
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MileHighRango View Post
Do paint both sides if the sheet metal (I think R4CHET missed that part) we found we took his grille of last week to Plasti Dip the back was rusted, only surface rust.

For the bolts you'll want 1/4" carriage bolts, we tried 5/16" but the heads are too big to fit under the painted cover. We used a 5/16" drill bit and it was a perfect fit!
Yeah i couldnt remember the size we bought. U can see the rust when MHR and i took it off to take more pics
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| (dark)KHAKI WK CLUB MEMBER 17 | 2005 4.7L QTII | JBA UCAs | Modified OME MD 3.5" lift | Rusty's Adj. track bar | 4XG Matrix | 285/70r17 Duratracs | 17" KMC Enduro Wheels | Rola Roof Rack | 21" Bean LED Light bar on Roof Rack | 2 12" Punch P3 Subs | Expanded Sheet Grille | SA Sliders |
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Unread 11-21-2011, 08:21 PM   #10
elbel86
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You can get similar material for much less. I bought Walmart's disposable BBQ topper for 2 bucks. Comes with 3 sheets of expanded aluminum. 3 sheets did my WJ's grill, but you might want to get 2 packs in case you mess up. You also have to do it in several small sections, but it is cheap and easy. Has been on my Jeep for close to a year now held on only by hot glue. I left it bare and it looks good, but I have been debating painting, just can't decide on a color.
20110529201033sm.jpg   20110529201046sm.jpg   dscf3108sm.jpg  
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Last edited by elbel86; 11-21-2011 at 09:13 PM.. Reason: Typos and resize images.
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Unread 11-21-2011, 08:42 PM   #11
daveWK42
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great thread...this will be my guide for something similar in the near future!
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Unread 11-22-2011, 05:20 PM   #12
GeeEssFore
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I just did this mod the other day, wish I would have seen this thread first would have saved me time. I left it silver but then decided to paint it satin black in the end.



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Unread 11-23-2011, 07:05 PM   #13
Budasac
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I did this mod today. I tried to be a little different and went with the 3/4" expanded metal instead of the 1/2". I left the grill chrome for now but when I get my hands on some Mopar spray paint I'm gonna color match it. PIcs aren't great since it was getting dark but, here ya go.
dscn4974.jpg   dscn4982.jpg   dscn4984.jpg  
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Unread 11-23-2011, 08:06 PM   #14
99FormulaM6
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I like the larger openings
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Unread 11-24-2011, 01:21 AM   #15
WKChris89
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Looks great buda!! man i like the bigger mesh alot better but o well, heres mine!!
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