Cadillac Detailing and Bodywork - Interior and Exterior including Body and Wheels Discussion, 1980's Fleetwood Filler Panel Replacements in Item Specific Cadillac Discussion; Hello All,
This is most first post in the Cadillac Forum after being a long time viewer, and collecting large ...
This is most first post in the Cadillac Forum after being a long time viewer, and collecting large amounts of information from the rest of the members. I have decided to share my personal experience with replacing the common filler panels that are often in poor condition in the rear bumper of 1980's Fleetwood's. The panels I am referring to are those found on the bottom half on the license plate, and the flat panel below, inside the rear bumper. These are commonly cracked and dried from years of over filling the gas tank.
First off I ordered replacement parts from a company known as Plastic Parts Inc which makes replacement panels for a variety of Cadillac's. The panels were around $50 a piece, and come delivered primer black. After painting them with the appropriate color match paint from a company called Paint World located in New Haven, who will mix any factory paint into a spray paint size can which actually works very well. I went to install the panels.
To install you need to drop the rear bumper, which is done by disconnecting the tail light connections and removing 4 bolts on each side that connect to the rear bumper impact absorbers, then dissembling the covering on the inside of the rear bumper, exposing the screws to the chrome plate that hold the filler in place. Unfortunately the flat panel that fits here from Plastic Parts Inc does not fit, its to thick and not cut properly to fit the curve of the bumper. Luckily my father is a master sheet metal mechanic that works primarily in the residential field with stainless steel. After making a quick template we were able to cut a piece of commercial grade stainless to fit this panel and I have to say it looks way better then any plastic piece that would replace this panel.
I am posting because I feel there are a number of owner of older Cadillac's that are facing this issue and would love to help and even make fillers for those that are interested.
Pictures to follow, it got dark and I will snap some in the daylight for everyone to get a good look.