My Beetle Restoration

Removing the Last Three Fenders

by on Oct.03, 2010, under Disassembly

Finished removing the rear fender on the driver side. Of the three bolts left from the first attempt, I was only able to remove the one on the rear side. The two bottom bolts on the front side were in an area that is severely rusted. The upper one is frozen and so rusted that the head is partially gone, but the fender is rusted away there and not being held by it. The bottom one had barely any metal to attach to and when I had the other bolts free, I just broke the few strands of metal away to free it and leaving it attached to the fender. The bolt that is still attached to the quarter panel can be left there as the quarter panel replacement will include that area as well. This wheelhouse is going to need several panels replaced. One, maybe two panels on the front side and one on the rear side that will include the bumper bracket.

Rear left Wheelhouse, front view.
Rear left Wheelhouse, front view.
Rear left Wheelhouse, front view.
Rear left Wheelhouse, center view.
Rear left Wheelhouse, center view.
Rear left Wheelhouse, rear view.


The passenger side fenders were removed a little easier than the driver side fenders. Since the rear fender had been swapped by the previous owner in the last couple of years, it was much easier to remove. The front fender was a little more difficult with most all of the bolts being very rusty. The only real issue was with the bolt going from the front fender to the running board. It was much too long and the threads were very rusted. After fighting with it and getting it almost all the way off, it snapped in two (of course!). The running board was not attached at all to the heater channels and the rear bolt to the fender was put on just before I purchased it (just to hold it on) and was removed without tools.

The wheelhouse on the front passenger side will need at least one panel replaced on the lower rear section. There is an area that has completely rusted away, leaving a large hole near the firewall. That whole area with any rust will need to be replaced.

Front right wheelhouse, front view.
Front right wheelhouse, center view.
Front right wheelhouse, rear view.
Front right wheelhouse, bottom center view.


On the wheelhouse on the rear passenger side, at least two areas will need replacement panels. The front section will need at least two panels and the rear section will need a panel which includes the bumper bracket.

Rear right wheelhouse, rear view.
Rear right wheelhouse, center view.
Rear right wheelhouse, center view.
Rear right wheelhouse, front view.


With all of the fenders off now, I just need to decide what to do next…



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