Anybody ever "roll" their fenders?

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Jul 5, 2010
In the low-slung sportscar world they do something called "rolling" their fenders. Not sure where the term originated from, but they will typically use a baseball bat or something to bend the lip of ther fenders from horizontal to vertical to lessen the chances that their tires will catch on the fenders as they tuck up during bumps or cornering.

I'm contemplating doing this on my 40. Basically I would be taking the lip across the top of the rear fender and bending it upwards, which would effectively create an additional nearly half inch of clearance for the tires. I'm only running 33x10.50's so the tires aren't super-wide, I don't have much lift, and I don't want to cut my fenders. I have seen some people cut off the lip on their front fenders right at the bend -- this would serve effectively the same purpose. I may for that reason try to do it in the front as well, but with the complex curves I'm worried I'll do more harm than good. Has anybody else done this?

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Just wait long enough and your fenders will roll themselves by rusting through. If they're not rusty yet trade them to someone in the midwest and you'll be all set! :hmm:

all seriousness, the aftermarket flares look pretty nice and require quarter panel trimming. This would accomplish what you're interested in doing.
No and no. The purpose of rolling fenders is to retain the stock look. No flares. The only diffference is on the inside of the fender, not the outside. Right now I have rust-free, uncut fenders and I want to keep it that way.

Here's a picture taken from behind the fender to show what I mean by bending the lip upwards. Outside the fender looks the same, but the inside has been modified to give the tires more clearance.

Here's a picture of one way to roll a fender.

Just wait long enough and your fenders will roll themselves by rusting through. If they're not rusty yet trade them to someone in the midwest and you'll be all set!

I'm afraid if I do nothing the first major bump will accomplish the roll for me, but the problem is it will also bulge the tops of the fenders outward like they were when I first bought the cruiser.
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Wow! I learned something. I understand now.:doh:
Well based on the pic you showed at top I don't see how rolling the fenders is going to do anything for you- it looks like it is still gonna hit because it sticks out past the outer fender anyway.

I have a few friends here in Japan that have the same tool a pictured above (2nd pic, working on blue car) and we use them to create flares not to roll the fender inwards. takes some time, but it's effective and makes some very clean flares.
When the tire travels Upward it will also travel in an arc, likely rubbing on Just the outside of the tread. I say great idea. Roll 'em and be done with it.
That's correct about the tires travelling upwards in an arc, at least during articulation. A major bump that sends both tires up at the same time would still cause trouble. I'm thinking about also spacing the bump stops down so that in that scenario the tires wouldn't be able to contact the fenders. I'm not looking to build a hard-core machine, but I do want it to be capable off road, as that is where it will be spending most of its time.

Because of the clearance behind the fender it is going to require a special tool to roll the fenders that I plan on making by hacking up and rewelding a prybar. I don't want to use a hammer/dolly to do it. I'm already basically committed to doing it, I am just wondering if anybody else has already done it and if there may be something I'm overlooking related to rolling the fenders on landcruisers.
Now I am getting popcorn for this.:popcorn:
I see only wife logic now.
Havent done it on a 40 as mine were opened up when I got it, but have done Several late 80's - mid 90's Mustangs.. Lip looks to be very similar. I'm sure as long as you dont try to move too much metal too fast you should be Golden. Kudos for doing it the not-so-easy way. You'll be much happier with the results. :cheers:
i have done it on plenty of vehicles. you lay the ball bat on the tire and hold down as another person drives forward and as the tire turns it rolls it. it will take more than one pass but you get almost 3/4 inch of extra clearance and less chance of chewing up the side of your tire
I rolled the fenders on my S2000 using the Eastwood tool shown in one of your pics. I wouldn't use the baseball bat method with those tires. You will not get a smooth result, as the bat (or pipe) will bounce on the tire lugs. One of the tricks is to use a heat gun to make sure the paint is soft before you roll or else it will crack. Move the heat gun back and forth along the fender arc so as not to overheat the paint or it will burn and discolor.

Never heard of rolling fenders on a solid axle vehicle, but if you need 1/2" or so for tuck go for it. There are Youtube videos on this subject.

Good luck and take pics! :cheers:
Previous owner did that to mine, and did not do a very smooth job of it. :( Didn't discover it until I removed the plastic fender flares, which I disliked even more.

i rolled my front one...wait...that was a tree :) and it was unwanted LOL

if you live in an area that has'll regret doing it if its going to be your DD...its a long flat on top that will just hold the wet salt there
I understand the reasoning behind what you're trying to do and I have heard of it on sports cars; however, I don't have any experience with it.

I would recommend thinking about the salt, mud, and water being trapped up there as JohnnyC mentioned. But if you're not worried about that, go for it!
I live in southern Utah (think Las Vegas climate) so I'm not terribly worried about salt or mud getting trapped, but it is a concern. 1911, I think your fenders were cut first, then rolled, which could explain the unprofessional looking job rolling them. I would be rolling them before I paint the tub so I wouldn't have to worry about cracking the paint.
Hi there,

First post, so please be gentle!

I did this on an old mercedes coupe. It looks like your rig is in a state where you'll be painting later anyway, correct? If so, no need for a heat gun. Heat gun is only necessary if you're trying to preserve the existing paint. I had a body shop do my car and they didn't use a heat gun (like they said they would). The paint was crumbling off... it was a bit of an ordeal.

Second, it definitely creates a pocket for mud and moisture to accumulate over time (as already stated). Obviously that means you'll eventually have rust problems in that area. Worse yet, you won't even know rust is forming until it's too late because the area will be hidden. For this reason, I wouldn't roll the fenders on my rig.

So my recommendation is to cut the lip off (again, only if you still plan to paint the rig later). I know you don't want to cut your fenders. But to be sure, I'm not saying you should modify the wheel well opening. And rolling your fenders is a permanent modification anyway, so this either way the rig isn't going to remain stock.

I'd start by rough-cutting the lip. Then hit it with a grinder to finish it off, but I think it's a good idea to keep your tools moving so you don't create too much heat and warp the panels.
1911, I think your fenders were cut first, then rolled, which could explain the unprofessional looking job rolling them.

You're right, that is exactly what the PO did.

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