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Fitting Rear Fenders

Wray, I have rear fenders off and the rear clip on its side for close inspection, measurements, and above all trying to make sense out of how they put these things together. First, I don't think I'll ever understand what happens where the inner fender collides with the spare well and the rear valance. Lots of "shop fit" pieces and pounding with a mallet on the assembly floor...some little scraps of brackets, and remains of a spacer at the rearmost mounting point that Sam Bell said he uncovered. A careful look at the joining strip between fender and inner fender leads me to conclude that the joining strip was spot welded to the inner fender before being "offered up to" the tonneau (or vice versa). The tonneau was tacked to the joining strip...I'd say oxy-acetylene...every three inches. I'm trying to reconstruct the order of assembly here...I'd say the tonneau was the last permanently joined piece to be added to the rear clip, or maybe second to the last, with the rear valance last. Further notes....the rear end hump is not symmetrical as I had assumed...the input arch to inner fender measurement on the left is about 7/8" greater than on the right. The occassional/jump seats then aren't symmetrical either!! I made templates for the sheet metal beneath the seats...identical except for the 7/8" shift at the input arch of the diff. hump. For what it's worth.. - Jim Warren '55 140 dhc, '83 XJ6 vdp

Jim, The confusion at the spare tire tray / inner fender interface is probably related to three "hidden" pieces located between the inner fender and the side pieces of the spare tire tray. I found them when I removed the rotted sides of the tray. The DHC and the FHC are probably similar in that area, and I can probably give you a sketch of what I found (and replaced) in that section of my car. Wray produced replacement pieces that worked beautifully. The joining strips on my car were (are) welded to the inner fender and the tonneau; it's what holds them together and fills in the space that would otherwise exist between them. I don't know which weld should come first, but the sequence will probably be dictated by your particular approach. There were some clips tacked to the top of the inner fender that I think served as aids for positioning the strips. Again, Wray supplied replacement joining strips that I have installed in segments because I couldn't fit them as one piece. I used a small MIG outfit to spot weld. Give me a call so I can show you my progress and prove to you that yours is not the rustiest Jag in the Northeast! - Sam Bell

Jim, I was thinking about your car's present condition. I recommend that you replace the rear clip onto the frame before you take it apart. Be sure that it's lined up and bolted down. Otherwise, the trunk lid opening and the spare tire lid opening could get racked. In other words, use the frame as an assembling jig. - Sam Bell

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