: Anyone installed a rear bumper center filler piece on a 77?



jsherid1
08-29-10, 01:13 AM
I have it painted and ready to go but am wondering how it mounts, it looks like it bolts into the rear bumper from below? It is also considerably thicker than the flexible vinyl that was there--it is injection molded plastic--is that likely to be a problem? Any thoughts would be appreciated. Thanks.

Jim

jsherid1
08-29-10, 01:15 AM
As a clarification, the piece I am referring to is the gray/silver plastic piece that sits behind and below the license plate and fills in the cut out in the top of the rear bumper.

csbuckn
08-29-10, 03:09 AM
You get to take the bumper off and then take the back of the bumper out of the bumper

77CDV
08-29-10, 07:15 PM
^It's a real joy, too.

jsherid1
08-29-10, 08:58 PM
Because it is such a pain to put in, I have taken the extra step of putting 4 coats of Duplicolor clear coat over the paint on the filler to give it some extra protection/durability--not that this car sees a lot of UV in my garage! My wife says that most of the miles on my toys are put on between the house and the self serve car wash.

Am going to get a buddy of mine to be the "Spotter" when I undo the bumper bolts rather than have that thing drop on me--I imagine that would sting a bit. Are the relevant bolts easy to access? Am going to see if I can find a body diagram somewhere before crawling under the car.

deVille33
08-30-10, 09:12 AM
When I remove the rear bumpers of these cars, I remove the two retaiming bolts for the energy absorbers on the bottom of the frame rails,. then the four bolts at the end of the rail. The top 2 on the right hold the tail pipe support. Then you can pull the bumper out far enough that the absorbers support the bumper from inside the frame rail. Now you can disconnect all the taillight leads at the connectors and the optic cable from the taillight housing.
Makes it a lot easier than trying to disconnect while trying to hold up that heavy bumper.

deVille33
08-30-10, 09:24 AM
Because you are in Texas, and hopfully your car has been for the majority of it's use, you shouldn't have much problem with removing the support plate from the bumper. Try to spray a lubricant (WD40) on as many bolt ends as you can reach from the recess openings at the ends of the bumper and near the center. You should be able to remove most of those retainer bolts using an air ratchet, which will help speed things up a lot. If you snap a retainer clip you are in deep doo-doo.

jsherid1
08-30-10, 10:23 AM
I am now thinking that I should take it to a body shop to have this done....don't have an air wrench but do have a history of breaking bolts and clips. Any recommendations on a shop in the Dallas area?

csbuckn
08-30-10, 10:27 AM
you can do it yourself, its easy. If you break one, you still have 7 more to go.

77CDV
08-30-10, 03:46 PM
The procedure for replacing the piece is outlined in the factory service manual. It's not hard, but removing the bumper is definitely a two man job. Then the bumper backing comes off, then the bolts that hold the escuchon in place that holds in the filler panel. I don't expect you'll break any bolts as the car hasn't lived in a rust-producing area.

I was fortunate in that my filler hadn't rotted away, though it was getting tired. Just masked off the surrounding area and applied a good coat of silver paint covered with a couple coats of clear. Looks good, and the rubber is at least somewhat protected. What Cadillac was thinking with this design I'll never know.

csbuckn
08-30-10, 04:10 PM
What Cadillac was thinking with this design I'll never know.

I was thinking about that the other day while getting gas, I couldnt think of anything either. Maybe something to prevent gas from getting on the bumper?

jsherid1
08-30-10, 04:20 PM
Where did you get your copy of the factory manual? I just have the Haynes. May call and see if "Honest Johns" has one.

jsherid1
08-30-10, 04:29 PM
Where did you get your copy of the factory manual? I just have the Haynes. May call and see if Honest Johns has one.

jsherid1
08-30-10, 04:34 PM
Where did you get your copy of the factory manual? I just have the Haynes. May call and see if Honest Johns has one.

jsherid1
08-30-10, 04:40 PM
Where did you get your copy of the factory manual? I just have the Haynes. May call and see if Honest Johns has one.

jayoldschool
08-30-10, 06:05 PM
20 bucks on ebay (http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/1977-Cadillac-Shop-Manual-MINT-_W0QQcmdZViewItemQQhashZitem27b49ceb5bQQitemZ17053 3907291QQptZMotorsQ5fManualsQ5fLiterature)

There are lots more of them, too.

jsherid1
08-30-10, 06:39 PM
Thanks Jay--

Actually went a different route (am a little hesitant about eBay) and bought the service and body manuals on CD-ROM from Faxon Auto Literature.

BTW--were any of my simple minded ramblings useful on the dash lights for your Pontiac? I am guessing you did that list before...

deVille33
08-30-10, 09:41 PM
Service manuals can be found on ebay.
If you use the proceedure I sent you 1 person can do the job, if after you disconnect the light connectors and the fibre optic lines you can pick up and set the bumper and impact absorbers as a unit to the ground. Believe me, I know because I have done this by myself. It probably weighs less than 140#.
You don't need an air ratchet, it just speeds things up if you have one. There are a lot of 13mm bolts. You don't have to remove the impact absorbers from the support plate.

1980coupe
08-31-10, 12:01 AM
try ebay; they always have those up for grabs. that's where I got mine and for the 80 coupe!

jsherid1
08-31-10, 10:04 AM
Thanks guys--am waiting for my body and service manuals to come via Express Mail (bought them on CD-ROM, I keep an old laptop in the garage). Wife reminded me that it is our anniversary weekend so may not get as much done as I would like on the car. Would it be helpful if I took photos of the procedure?

jayoldschool
08-31-10, 11:41 AM
Always helpful to document with photos. You've seen my thread, I try and take pics of as much as I can so someone else can benefit.