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Offline r4pinto

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1980 Pinto grille center bracket
« on: June 22, 2014, 09:22:07 PM »
Hey guys,

I'm getting started on the 1980 Pinto Runabout I got two years ago & when I was fixing the hood latch bracket I noticed the center mounting bracket is missing completely. Does anyone know how it mounted?

I got a replacement grille for the car & the bottom passenger mount on the grille is broken, and the top passenger mount on the headlight bracket is broken so I don't have a way to secure the grille other than the left side. Does anyone know if the center bracket is metal or plastic?
 I got some sheet metal in my dad's garage so I can fabricate something if I need to but not sure what I'm looking for. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
Matt Manter
1977 Pinto sedan- Named Harold II after the first Pinto(Harold) owned by my mom. R.I.P mom- 1980 parts provider & money machine for anything that won't fit the 80
1980 Pinto Runabout- work in progress

Offline amc49

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Re: 1980 Pinto grille center bracket
« Reply #1 on: June 23, 2014, 06:35:16 PM »
Simple steel strap material from Home Depot metal section around nuts and bolts. Like 3/4" or 1" wide and various lengths, I usually buy the 3 foot ones for various bracket making and such. My '80 Pinto wagon had no middle grille mount either, I simply used some of that and a right angle bend in it and cut, drill to length. Someone put Bobcat grille on the car but I simply used it and made the bracket and solid as a rock now. Doesn't look OEM but cleaned up and painted it looks as good as anything you could pay for.

I use either steel or aluminum strap like that on every car or bike I have, it works wonders and super cheap. Max project was a Focus that was wrecked, the stuff used all over the left front corner including double fan shroud assembly that was shattered into like 6 pieces, the strap and some rivets and the whole assembly put back together and running fine since '08. I did it as a joke to myself about people wasting so much money on new parts at accident time. Coincidentally it made like $400 appear out of thin air too. How I was able to take a $5400 damage estimate car and have it up and running for close to $600, and it has run perfectly since then. Money is where you find it............

You don't care how the grille (or any other part for that matter) mounted before if you are making it solid in your own way. Often the OEM convolutes bends and curves in ways that are not necessary to actual implementation of the part at all. Many times the extra bends are for strength in substandard (thin cross-sections) materials used, if you use basic material strong enough to begin with you can dispense with all that.

Offline r4pinto

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Re: 1980 Pinto grille center bracket
« Reply #2 on: June 23, 2014, 08:33:16 PM »
Thanks for the suggestion. I'll take a look into that. I don't care how it looks as long as it holds the grille securely to the car.
Matt Manter
1977 Pinto sedan- Named Harold II after the first Pinto(Harold) owned by my mom. R.I.P mom- 1980 parts provider & money machine for anything that won't fit the 80
1980 Pinto Runabout- work in progress

Offline amc49

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Re: 1980 Pinto grille center bracket
« Reply #3 on: June 24, 2014, 02:03:25 PM »
Mine is stronger than the OEM part is. Take care to make sure you bend to make it just fit in a kiss and any angles match, if you force the grille to flex slightly to fit the new bracket, heat cycling will then crack the grille since it is made of plastic. Mine has been fine for many years now.