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Old 01-09-2005, 04:21 PM   #1
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DIY: Radiator Screen Install

Materials used:

1 - 2'x10' roll galvanized wire screen (1/4") - $9.60 (Lowes)
1 - Bag of 1/4"x12" zip ties - already had
1 - Can black Rustoleum High Performance Enamel paint - $3.95 (Lowes)
2 - Self tapping screws and washers - already had

It took me about 3 hours not including 1 1/2 hours of paint drying time. I'm not going to go through removing the bumper since that is covered in other threads.


I started by taping the headlights and cutting a rectangular piece large enough to cover the opening, :
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DIY: Radiator Screen Install-dsc00631.jpg   DIY: Radiator Screen Install-dsc00633.jpg  
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Old 01-09-2005, 04:24 PM   #2
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I then drilled 1/4" holes on the locations shown:
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DIY: Radiator Screen Install-dsc00634.jpg   DIY: Radiator Screen Install-dsc00635.jpg   DIY: Radiator Screen Install-dsc00636.jpg  
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Old 01-09-2005, 04:26 PM   #3
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I then zip tied it in and cut to shape:
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Old 01-09-2005, 04:28 PM   #4
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I took it off, painted it and then installed it using zip tied in all of the places I drilled holes and then put screws in the two areas indicated:
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Old 01-09-2005, 04:30 PM   #5
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And here it is finished. Please excuse the dirty car.
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Old 01-09-2005, 04:31 PM   #6
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I also did the oil coolers while I was in there.
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Old 01-09-2005, 04:33 PM   #7
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Oh, here is a pic of the air conditioning heat exchanger after six months of driving. Notice all of the dents.
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Old 01-09-2005, 04:52 PM   #8
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Wow, nice job man. I've had my 8 only a month, and when I looked at my oil coolers today I was sobered by the number of small dents they already have. Even if no pebbles actually penetrate the oil/AC lines, if those vanes get enough dents it will interfere with air flow and cooling. This is a soon-to-be-implemented mod for me too.
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Old 01-09-2005, 05:46 PM   #9
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Thumbs up Nice job of documentation

Nice job of documenting that process. Thought I could do the job without removing the bumper, put I guess I was optimistic in my thinking. Now to research the removal of the bumper.

Thanks for sharing your approach.
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Old 01-09-2005, 05:54 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dark8
And here it is finished. Please excuse the dirty car.
I noticed the floor jack in this picture, where are you lifting the car?
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Old 01-09-2005, 07:09 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nemesis8
I noticed the floor jack in this picture, where are you lifting the car?
There is a center point on a cross member that portrudes down a little. You need a long jack. And I also run the car onto a couple of 2"x6" pieces so I can get the jack under it. I've attached the page from the shop manual.
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Last edited by Dark8; 01-09-2005 at 07:12 PM.
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Old 01-09-2005, 07:25 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dark8
There is a center point on a cross member that portrudes down a little. You need a long jack. And I also run the car onto a couple of 2"x6" pieces so I can get the jack under it. I've attached the page from the shop manual.
OK, I see it. The 2x6 is a great idea - thanks.
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Old 01-10-2005, 09:22 AM   #13
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With a bit more patience and a bit of modification to the backside of the bumper, you won't need the zip ties and you can make the grilles contour the rounded shape.
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Old 03-14-2005, 10:19 PM   #14
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Alright, I am starting my own radiator / oil cooler mesh install. I picked up this Gutter Guard Mesh @ Home Depot. It is already nicely shaped. The only drawback is that it is galvanized, and I used some RustOleoum primer & metallic black to finish it. I don't know how long that'll last.

The first pick shows the original sheet:
http://www.rx8club.com/attachment.ph...chmentid=43713

The second one, shows the sheet after its first paint layer & primer. I will probably apply another layer tomorrow during the day to finish it up. Irish & I will try to do the install during the weekend. Hope this mesh works -although it is too good to be true!

http://www.rx8club.com/attachment.ph...chmentid=43714
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Old 03-15-2005, 12:55 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RX8-TX
Alright, I am starting my own radiator / oil cooler mesh install. I picked up this Gutter Guard Mesh @ Home Depot. It is already nicely shaped. The only drawback is that it is galvanized, and I used some RustOleoum primer & metallic black to finish it. I don't know how long that'll last.
Lol funny you should mention GutterGard , I just picked up 3 strips yesterday to be used for the same purpose.. currently drying in my garage, to be installed this weekend if all goes well.

However I just realized, that I did NOT use any primer.. but I did use the Rustoleoum Flat Black Enamel paint.

I was planning on putting 2-3 layers on the mesh to be safe.. but now I'm thinking about picking up two more and priming them first... what difference will that make on Galv metal? (Pretend I know nothing about metal and paint... ok, well no need to pretend).

I also noticed that one strip does not look long enough to run along the bottom of the appearance package bumper, I'm going to have to break it up into sections I think and use 2 pieces.

BTW for those interested, the Gutter Guard runs about $1.29 per strip, and it's 6" by 36" or you can buy it in packs of 25 for about $10.00 currently (25 pack is on clearance in my store).
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Old 03-15-2005, 01:23 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaGnome
I was planning on putting 2-3 layers on the mesh to be safe.. but now I'm thinking about picking up two more and priming them first... what difference will that make on Galv metal? (Pretend I know nothing about metal and paint... ok, well no need to pretend).
I searched a little bit on painting over galvanized metal, and what I came up with is that, the galvanization(sp) process leaves a residue (oil?) on the metal surface. This residue makes it hard for any paint to "bond" with the surface.

I am not completely sure the primer will make any difference at all. I guess I am hoping that the primer has a better adhesion to the galvanized surface than the RustOleoum alone.

One tip though, and I don't know how practical it may be, is to brush the surface of the strip with a metal brush to roughen up the surface (I am not going to do that....). Others suggested bathing the surface in a substance called "yellow death" -which I discarded immediately- or using some form of acid substance to remove the galvanized film.

In short, painting galvanized surfaces, that are going to be exposed to the elements and possibly some high temperatures is not piece of cake.

In any case, we'll see how it turns out after this Summer.

Quote:
I also noticed that one strip does not look long enough to run along the bottom of the appearance package bumper, I'm going to have to break it up into sections I think and use 2 pieces.
Same here. I bought 2 strips only, hoping to use one for the 2 oil coolers & 1 for the lower dam...doesn't look like it'll cut it that way.

Just in case I bought some wire mesh used for fencing (same galvanized surface, but smaller wire gauge). It has a different pattern, but should be enough to do some "trial & error" test fitment first. It is not contoured, but that part shouldn't be difficult.

Another quandary is whether to mount the mesh flush with the oil coolers or not. I know it would look times better curved but, I don't want to make them any less efficient by placing an air restriction too far in front of them. Blah...maybe its not enough of a restriction anyways.

BTW, if I don't mount them flush with the coolers, I may try to use the fog light screw holes to mount the mesh -any comments will be appreciated!

And I had one last question...but I forgot what it was, so it was probably not important.
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Old 03-15-2005, 01:55 PM   #17
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Now I remember! I was going to ask if anyone has any good ideas to 'frame' the mesh once it's been cut to fit properly.

I've seen someone using door weatherstrip. Any material, size, spec in particular?

Thanks!
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Old 03-15-2005, 02:30 PM   #18
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has anyone done this in a tiGrey? what color did they paint the mesh, I'm planning on doing it this weekend and need ideas as to what color to paint the mesh, I'm thinking of going with a flat black, what kind of paint did u guys use? Thanks...
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Old 03-25-2005, 11:42 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RX8-TX
I searched a little bit on painting over galvanized metal, and what I came up with is that, the galvanization(sp) process leaves a residue (oil?) on the metal surface. This residue makes it hard for any paint to "bond" with the surface.
I used a paint surface preperation cleaner and it seems to have held up through the winter pretty good. I've noticed a few silver spots but I think those are rock chips.

I think I am going to make one to fit closer to the radiator next. I couldn't get the bra on very easily with the front closed off. And I won't have to worry about painting it.
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Old 03-25-2005, 01:20 PM   #20
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A little cruder/brute force, and invisible from outside the vehicle.....

I cut some stainless mesh to size, rolled the edges so they don't poke the aluminum, and tie-wrapped in place. (It helps if you can tie one with just one hand!) :D

Just about bullet-proof, and covers the whole condenser - the top grille holes are too big to provide stone protection.

S
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Old 01-07-2007, 03:58 PM   #21
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A little cruder/brute force, and invisible from outside the vehicle.....

I cut some stainless mesh to size

S
Where does one get stainless steel mesh?
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Old 01-07-2007, 03:58 PM
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