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 Front fender removal

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59safaricat

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PostSubject: Front fender removal   Mon Mar 23, 2009 11:50 pm

New guy here. I inherited a 59 Catalina Safari several years ago when my grandfather passed away. The car sat from 1978-2004 when I replaced the entire braking system and put some tires on it there were a few decades newer. Engine was smoking a little so I decided to pull the valve covers and change some valve seals. Once the valve covers were off, I was staring at a lot of sludge (Pennzoil combined with lots of short trips). Well, time to pull motor. Might as well pull trans too. Next thing I know, the suspension has to come out (suspension and steering gear wear added up to 180 degrees of steering wheel play) and now the front end is nearly torn apart. Well, you know how it goes.....


Anyway, I'm trying to get the front fenders out and it appears that there may be a bolt or something under the windshield trim that is holding me up. Can anyone confirm if the front window trim needs to be removed? And if so, how do I go about doing that? Thanks!!
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starchief_59
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PostSubject: Re: Front fender removal   Wed Mar 25, 2009 7:02 pm

Open the door and you should see the bolt there.

Also, don't forget about the bolt at the bottom of the fender by the door. You have to crawl under the car and look through the subframe or whatever that piece is called.

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1959 Pontiac Star Chief 4 Door Hard Top
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59safaricat

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PostSubject: Re: Front fender removal   Wed Mar 25, 2009 10:31 pm

Thanks for the reply! I removed both of those bolts as well as all of the others in plain sight. As of this afternoon, the inner fenders are out as well as everything else (bumper, bumper brackets, radiator support, ect) so there isn't anything else that I can see. It seems like the both fenders are pivoting under the windshield like there's a lip caught up in there. Were you able to remove the passenger fender and lift it over the antenna stud when you tore into your starchief? I'll see if I can make a video clip of it and post it on youtube.

BTW, how do the wiper arms come off? The ones I have taken off in the past just require to lift up the rear cover at the base and remove the nut. I can't get that cover to pop open. Thanks!
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PostSubject: Re: Front fender removal   Thu Mar 26, 2009 2:47 am

I think I took my antenna off first. I don't remember??? I know it wasn't hooked up though.

Lets see, not counting the front bolts on the fenders there are only 3. The ones by the windshielf trim kind of by the hood hinges, the one under the door, the one on the very bottom.

I never could figure out how to get the wiper arms off but I never looked through the manual. My manual is in the garage but If you need me to' i'll look through it next time I'm out there.

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PostSubject: Fenders   Thu Mar 26, 2009 11:51 pm

59safaricat.....The wiper arms are only held on by friction. I usually am able to pry them off with a large flat blade screwdriver between the edge of the arm and the base. Sometimes it helps to push down on the arm near the base to relieve the pressure as you pry up with the screwdriver. There is a puller type tool for this but you don't really need it. After the arms are off, you can remove the 5 or 6 sheet metal screws that hold the vent grill to the cowl and take it off by tilting it up and pulling it forward. With the grill off you can see the clips that hold the lower windshield molding in place. The antenna can be removed by itself or with the fender. There is a screw at the base of the antenna housing. If I remember right, you can get at it from behind the passenger side kick panel. Hope this helps.....John
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PostSubject: Re: Front fender removal   Sat Mar 28, 2009 12:26 am

Thanks for the replys, fellas!

The drivers side fender came out after a little massaging. I'm 99% sure the antenna stud is preventing the removal of the passenger side fender. I'll take a crack at removing the antenna stud tomorrow. Wiper arms and cowl will come off to remove 50 years of packed in debris from the trees the car sat under. The front end came part much easier than I originally thought, however, I probably won't be singing that tune when it's time to put it back together.
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