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BMW E24 US front bumper tuck / lipo

Posted: Thu Oct 24, 2019 5:05 pm
by 635sharknose
Hope my experience helps you guys a bit. I did read quite some different stories about tucking a E24 US bumper and some of them were pretty strange.

It is quite a simple job that anybody with some technical knowledge can do.
Original front.jpg
Original front.jpg (73.28 KiB) Viewed 5359 times
The original US diving board front bumper
New front.jpg
New front.jpg (91.77 KiB) Viewed 5359 times
Tucked US bumper (1,5 inch / 3,5cm)

Remove the front bumper spoiler, do not forget to unplug the cables connected to the bumper first.

Then remove the bumper itself.
Simplest way is to remove the two M14 bolts (22mm head) of the bumper shocks, they are located near the battery and the other one just on the other side of the front. You also need to take out two smaller M8 screws (head 13mm) on the side of each shock.
Then easily pull out the bumper complete with shocks.

# shock shortening information removed, do it safe, do it right, buy new shocks at BMW for the later '88 and '89 models, these shock are shorter. #

Now place the bumper back on to the car and you will find some new issues to tackle.
One of the issues is the cover plate that is on top of the bumper, a gap of a few mm will be visible from the left to the right side of the bumper, not very nice!
When you take off the cover, you will notice that the first inch of the inner surface is trimmed down a bit to give space for the bumper. But as the bumper is now pushed in much further, it will exceed the trimmed edge and therefore the cover will touch the bumper, pushing it upwards.
I cut the trimmed edge much further out to give it more space. This cannot be grinded, you will have to look for another solution. I did it with an electric wood planer which worked out very well.

Image

Another issue you will be facing is a gap between the side bumper trims and the bumper.
As the bumper is pushed further in, the corners of the bumpers are pushed in a bit too, causing them to drive a bit away from the side bumper trims.

For Europeans (like myself) this can easily be solved. I solved it by exchanging the US license plate holder for a European license plate holder of a European Highline (world bumper) model. These fit to these bumpers perfectly and also fit to the original rubber trims.
After installing the much wider license plate holder, the rubber trims can be moved more to the outside (you have to drill some new holes). Now the thicker (front/corner) part of the rubber trim will be moved to the side of the bumper (the rubber is narrower there originally) causing the gap to close completely.

I will add a new post about the rear bumper in a while as well.

Re: BMW E24 US front bumper tuck / lipo

Posted: Thu Oct 24, 2019 9:09 pm
by 87Shark
Good write up, but your pics did not come thru. Any way to re-post them or can an admin. help with this? Would like to see the before and after.

Re: BMW E24 US front bumper tuck / lipo

Posted: Fri Oct 25, 2019 3:30 pm
by 635sharknose
Thanks! Uploaded them to another server, I hope they are visible to you now.

Re: BMW E24 US front bumper tuck / lipo

Posted: Fri Oct 25, 2019 4:25 pm
by GRNSHRK
Only a few pix still coming up :-k

Why not just load them directly instead of using a photo hosting site :-" :-"

Definitely interested in this as well [-o<

Re: BMW E24 US front bumper tuck / lipo

Posted: Sat Oct 26, 2019 5:08 pm
by 635sharknose
Hope now the 5 pics are visible. Didn't know it was possible to upload to the forum as well. Managed to upload 4 pics max. the 5th is on a server.

Re: BMW E24 US front bumper tuck / lipo

Posted: Sat Oct 26, 2019 6:27 pm
by hornhospital
If you want to upload more than 4 pictures (I thought it was 3) just make a second reply to the thread, and upload the pictures 3 or 4 at a time.

Re: BMW E24 US front bumper tuck / lipo

Posted: Sat Feb 08, 2020 7:25 pm
by sauber
Have you finished the rear bumper?

Re: BMW E24 US front bumper tuck / lipo

Posted: Sat Feb 08, 2020 7:30 pm
by 635sharknose
Not yet, working on a different item on the Shark first. As soon as I have it ready I will post it.

Re: BMW E24 US front bumper tuck / lipo

Posted: Sun Mar 15, 2020 12:30 pm
by Slownrusty
On the front bumper, it looks like about 1.5inches were tucked?

Re: BMW E24 US front bumper tuck / lipo

Posted: Sun Mar 15, 2020 12:34 pm
by 635sharknose
Yes, in fact it was 3.5cm but that is close to 1.5 inch.

Re: BMW E24 US front bumper tuck / lipo

Posted: Tue Mar 17, 2020 12:22 pm
by Slownrusty
Thanks for the reply - good reference.
I removed the US Bumpers from my car and in the process of fabricating my own brackets to mount a set of Euro bumpers, I hope to complete them in a few weeks.

Re: BMW E24 US front bumper tuck / lipo

Posted: Tue Mar 17, 2020 12:26 pm
by 635sharknose
That's great, please share photos when ready.
You are going to update to old style chrome Euro bumper correct? Not the late model world bumpers?

Re: BMW E24 US front bumper tuck / lipo

Posted: Tue Mar 17, 2020 4:11 pm
by GRNSHRK
635sharknose, can you please share a photo from the front showing how much space is remaining between the bumper and side cover [-o<

Agreed that it does look great from the side, but I am concerned that there may be too much space showing :(

Re: BMW E24 US front bumper tuck / lipo

Posted: Tue Mar 17, 2020 4:35 pm
by 635sharknose
On my car the gap is zero, see photo.
The reason for this is that I have added a Euro license plate holder (of a 88/89 model) and moved the existing rubber strip outwards.
When moving them outwards, the thicker piece of the strip goes around the corner and closes the gap.
With a US license plate holder you will have a gap, it will be about 5mm if I remember correctly.

BMW part no. of the 88/89 Euro license plate holder: 51111967620

Re: BMW E24 US front bumper tuck / lipo

Posted: Tue Mar 17, 2020 6:28 pm
by GRNSHRK
Ah, interesting, more to the story :-k

But 5mm isn't much of anything, might be that much in original (stock) condition [-o<

Now you're gonna make me go out and take a look :roll:

Edit: just looked, and it's tight :-?

I would have to measure to see if the tuck would create a space there, as it appears that the rubber does start to curve within a couple cm's :-({|=

Re: BMW E24 US front bumper tuck / lipo

Posted: Tue Mar 17, 2020 6:52 pm
by 635sharknose
Glad it helped!

The original license plate holder is 33.5 cm wide.
The Euro model is 56 cm wide, much wider than the US model.
This results in a difference of 11.25 cm per side (4.4 inch).
I am sure the rubber is thinner at the end, I do not know how much though and am not able to measure it as it is inside my bumper now :D
If you measure the thickness at the point where the side trim starts and then 4.4 inch inwards, you will know.

Re: BMW E24 US front bumper tuck / lipo

Posted: Wed Mar 18, 2020 9:39 am
by sauber
Is this part 51111967620 avaliable new?

Re: BMW E24 US front bumper tuck / lipo

Posted: Wed Mar 18, 2020 10:02 am
by 635sharknose
Yes, it is, and it is not an expensive part.

Re: BMW E24 US front bumper tuck / lipo

Posted: Sat Mar 21, 2020 6:50 am
by 86_6series
Looks like the air dam was replaced. World air dam on a US spec bumper.

Re: BMW E24 US front bumper tuck / lipo

Posted: Sat Mar 21, 2020 7:12 am
by 635sharknose
Yes it was replaced. I am doing a total world bumper conversion, just like you :D
I do have almost all parts for it, just miss the right rear bumper trim and the 2 strips on the front bumper.

Re: BMW E24 US front bumper tuck / lipo

Posted: Fri Jun 05, 2020 2:56 pm
by sauber
Hallo.

I also moved the bumper more inside, only I didn’t cut the rubber, but the aluminum bumper.

Re: BMW E24 US front bumper tuck / lipo

Posted: Fri Jun 05, 2020 3:02 pm
by 635sharknose
That is also a good idea to cut the bumper instead of cutting out the top cover plate.
End result looks very good, well done!

I see you also used the Euro Highline model license plate holder. :D

Re: BMW E24 US front bumper tuck / lipo

Posted: Fri Jun 05, 2020 3:13 pm
by sauber
Yes of course, I had good instructions, thanks :D Now it will be necessary to fix the rear bumper :-k

Re: BMW E24 US front bumper tuck / lipo

Posted: Sun Jun 07, 2020 2:16 am
by rrrs
Hey, this really looks great; I actually prefer the look to World bumpers!
On the photos all the rubber trims look like new; did you replace them all or you got any tricks to share how to restore the old rubber?
Mine are all faded/gray/hard; not very nice :(

Re: BMW E24 US front bumper tuck / lipo

Posted: Sun Jun 07, 2020 7:55 am
by sauber
There is no trick here. Yes, these parts are rubber, not plastic, so I coated them with tire cleaner. You can coat them several times because they are very absorbent.