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Mesh Grille Fabrication

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Scott's 1993 Nissan Maxima

This took 4 hours time and $20 for mesh material, and the GTR symbol. You may use any symbol if you even want a symbol there. The tools I used were a Dremel tool, sheet metal cutters, wire cutters, and a hacksaw. The mesh can be purchased from a hardware store. The mesh I bought was marketed as a house gutter protector, and came in a pack of four. I obtained the GTR symbol from an online company, but I am sure that most automotive stores have these type of symbols.

Step one: Remove the grille from the car by disconnecting 5 snap-in clips.

Step two: Remove any "loose" symbols that you don't want, or don't want to be destroyed.

Step three: Draw the cuts that you want to make. This will ensure that you don't mistakenly mess up the grille and have to start over with a new one.

Step four: Begin the cutting. I used a Dremel tool to cut through the thick parts quickly, but one precaution: the speed of the tool melts the plastic, so you may have to take a 30 sec. break every now and then. I used a hacksaw for the parts that the Dremel tool could not get to. One more precaution: make the cuts rough. The plastic is easy to sand, so don't mess it up by trying to make the cuts too close. Also, make sure that you leave the tabs that project toward the engine of the car, these will be used to hold the mesh on.

Step five: Sand down all of the parts that are not smooth. Painting is an option. I had the grille painted at a body shop by a friend. I don't know how much they will charge seeing as this was done as a favor. I can't imagine it would be too much.

Step six: Cut the mesh so it will fit on the area tightly. Line up the mesh with the tabs and cut the corresponding mesh piece to clamp the mesh to the tab with pliers. The tabs are only on the top of the grille, but that is all that is needed. I have driven 10k miles plus some, and mine has not budged. You may want to spray paint the mesh at this point. Mine eventually started looking really cruddy with the original finish, so I did a reinstall, but I spray painted it black with outdoor paint. I think it looks better.

Step seven: Reattatch the grille to the car. You will now be missing the center attatchment clip, but it doesn't affect the sturdiness of the attatchment. One precaution you must take from now on is never to lean on the top of the grille because there is not any center support for it. You WILL break it if you lean on it.

Step eight: Place the symbol of your desire on the grille, I measured to the center of the grille to ensure that the symbol would be centered. Also, a good idea would be to use an electrical tie that blends in with the symbol to hold it on while the glue sets up. That way you don't loose a $15 symbol out on the road.

GTR Grille tools

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