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Jeep JK - Katie Cuts Her Fenders

Posted in Features on September 12, 2015
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Photographers: Levi Jansma

As Jeep owners, we can never just "leave it alone." After I put the 37-inch tires on my Wrangler there were a few other things that needed to get fixed. First on the list were the full-width fenders. While waiting for my new MCE Fenders to come in, I checked out the company's website to read up on how it recommends installing of its fenders so I wouldn't ruin anything. I bought a jigsaw to cut them so there would be a nice clean cut. However, before I got too crazy, all the fenders were taped off to make sure the cut matched on both sides.

Green painters tape was used because it's bright, easy to see, and that will help me not mess up the cut. The turn signal lights were removed from the fenders before cutting. That was simple. First, the fender liner was carefully removed so it wouldn't get damaged. Then I cut the wires from the lights and threw the lights away because I knew they were not getting reused. The wires were zip-tied out of the way.

My whole whopping 110 pounds doesn't make cutting fenders an easy task because the vibrations from the saw cutting through anything rattles me around me like I'm a salt shaker, and it requires a great deal of focus to keep the saw on track, even with the tape lines. Some of the plastic was a bit thicker than other parts of the fenders, so at one point I switched out my jigsaw for a reciprocating saw to cut those parts of the plastic that help hold the fenders up.

Once the cutting was done, I used some fine-grain sandpaper to clean the edges on the fenders. No one likes a sloppy job, and cutting plastic with a power tool does kind of mangle the edges. This project took about three hours because I'm a little picky and took my sweet time about it. It has to look good, right?

So, for Jeep Girls thinking of cutting their own fenders, I can tell you it's a simple task if you have the right tools and take your time. Just remember to forget about any of life's little frustrations (rowdy kids, too much laundry, or whatever) for a while, so you don't end up taking it out on the poor fender.

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