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Valance Panels between the trunk and bumper.

Guest Straight eight

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Guest Straight eight

Has anyone purchased valance panels for their 80-85 Riv that were satisfactory in fit, and where did they find them?

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????? (name)

I'm assuming that you're reference to valance panels is what the industry refers to as bumper fillers. After installing a couple of sets over the past three years, I can say that "NO" I haven't found any that were satisfactory in fit (which also makes them very expensive for what you get.)

Bobby Ward, owner of North Yale Auto, north of Tulsa, is working on some that should be equivalent to OEM quality, but they're about a year down the road. What you should know is that there is only one manufacturer of urethane bumpers and lots of distibutors. This is information I get from Bobby who has been looking for some good ones that he can stand behind.

If you need to do them now, I'd recommend that you go with the fiberglass ones. The 'glass ones are molded the way the OEM pieces were: One section for each corner; the urethane ones that are out there are cast in two pieces for each corner. Where the urethane pieces overlap on the sides makes for a very unsightly gap and bulge (The bulge is so close to the bumper it will scrape off brand new paint - been there done that.) Neither 'glass nor urethane have the holes drilled where they should be; I did a lot of grinding, redrilling, and shaving with a Dremel tool and some tapering stones to get them to fit together and look half way decent. Because of the way they're made, you also need to do some modifications to the OEM braces that support them.

If you really need to get this done quickly, contact me via a PM and I'll send you what I've written up as a future article for the ROA's <span style="font-weight: bold"><span style="font-style: italic">Riview</span></span>, and include some pictures of some mods you'll need to make.

I'm holding off publication until Bobby has his new ones ready. I'll install a set of them and rewrite what I've dones so far. Bobby is producing his own so he can sell something that he can stand behind. As he says, "If they're going to drill holes in them, they could at least drill them in the correct place and make them the correct size."

If you're not a member of the ROA, that $30.00 might be money spent on the best restoration tool you can buy. Lots of tech articles are "For members only." Just like AMEX, "Membership has its priviledges."


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