making hole in outer fender panel for snorkel - best method ?

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Got a snorkel for the 80 - its a nice metal one not a fugly plastic one. Actually had it for a bunch of years and put it up for sale a few times but no takers except for low-ball bogan offers. So might as well fit it to my vehicle instead now.

Will require nutserts/rivnut in the a-pillar and a suitable hole cut in the rhs outer fender panel. For anyone who's done such a mod, how did you go about making the big hole in the fender panel and what did you to to make it safe, and finish it properly so it's not a generator of (more) rust?

I have a step drill to make an initial hole, and both left and right curving sheetmetal snips. I've got a rudimentary template to give me a bit of an idea where the hole needs to go. Tempted to try and get a spare fender panel first as a backup, or maybe even to make the hole with the panel not even fitted.

When fitting nutserts to the a-pillar, obviously there's going to be metal swarf dropped down the inside of the pillar. Should the freshly drilled holes for the nutserts be treated in any way prior to installing them? I have some stainless m6 wide flange ones (sourced as part of researching nutserts for the checkerplate door trim panel job I've got going).
 
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I can't speak to the right way to do it, so I'll just tell you how I did mine. After I got the template lined up by using the snorkel, I used blue painters tape to hold it in place and mark everything, and laid painters tape over the place where I would be cutting the big hole in the fender. I then used a hole saw to make that cut. Just spun it as fast as necessary to do the job. Did the same for the holes for the nutsert and rivet holes. On the big hole, I used a fine rotary rasp to clean up the edges and all of them with clear to try to keep it from rusting at all.
 
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Measure twice - drill once. I helped a neighbor and his kid to cut the hole in a Jeep Liberty for a snorkel kit that he bought for it. I think it's a lot easier to call someone else over to drill and cut on the fender, because it's not THEIR truck!

Seriously, invite a buddy over that you trust to get things right and save the beer for AFTER it's installed correctly.
 
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The snorkel I have is made from 4 inch stainless tube sections. It attaches in only two places - where it secures to the a-pillar and where it connects to the air filter box. It's got a truck-type inlet at the top of the pipe to make it forward facing (and boy did that aspect cause a shed load of arguments in some other forums and in FB groups!), not upwards or backwards or sideways or down-at-15-degrees-down-bubble to the ground facing.
 
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Like one of these? If its just like this, it appears they cut a rather long and shapely hole it sets into. Looks like a ton of set, trim, set, trim, ect.
Then paint the rough edges and put weatherstrip over them.


IMG_0101%5B1%5D+copy.jpg
 
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Similar, but the outlet faces up and there's a truck-type 90 degree intake fitted to it to make it forward-facing. One good thing is the Toyota outer fender panels are not flimsy crap steel. Pinchweld around the opening maybe is one way to deal with the remaining raw sharp edge after painting.
 
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I'm running with a Safari plastic snorkel, so it's not as fussy around the opening as the stainless ones, but for what it's worth I just took a template, drilled a pilot hole in the centre of where the hole was going to go, then used a very big holesaw to cut it out. Afterwards a light file and a liberal messy spray of some primer and a bit of white paint for good measure, then covered up by the snorkel itself fitting over it. In your case, more attention to filing and properly finishing that edge would be good. The biggest thing to pay attention to is making sure it all aligns properly. I spent quite a bit of time quadruple checking the template and the alignment of all the holes. You need to make sure that the holes on your a pillar are properly aligned with the opening for example. Probably best to make sure everything's aligned, drill the big hole first, then doublecheck the positioning on the a pillar before drilling those out. I also went with nutserts on the a pillar like you are, the best way to go by far IMO.
 

DSRTRDR

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snorkels are for dorkels
 
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Agree on doing the big hole first as that will determine the fine-positioning of the a-pillar mount.

I haven't been able to find any nearby wreckers with spare right side outer panels. Never tried removing either of the outer panels so that could be interesting with russ tee fasteners .
 
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Agree on doing the big hole first as that will determine the fine-positioning of the a-pillar mount.

I haven't been able to find any nearby wreckers with spare right side outer panels. Never tried removing either of the outer panels so that could be interesting with russ tee fasteners .
Yeah, finding a straight clean panel can be tricky. Most of these seem to find their way to a wrecker through a frontal collision or rollover, meaning those panels are often wrecked. The ones that aren't usually already have holes cut in them these days it seems. You don't have to remove the panel though, or at least you don't for a plastic snorkel. I left mine on doing the snorkel personally. I've taken the one on the other side off before though, wasn't too bad.
 
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Got a snorkel for the 80 - its a nice metal one not a fugly plastic one. Actually had it for a bunch of years and put it up for sale a few times but no takers except for low-ball bogan offers. So might as well fit it to my vehicle instead now.

Will require nutserts/rivnut in the a-pillar and a suitable hole cut in the rhs outer fender panel. For anyone who's done such a mod, how did you go about making the big hole in the fender panel and what did you to to make it safe, and finish it properly so it's not a generator of (more) rust?

I have a step drill to make an initial hole, and both left and right curving sheetmetal snips. I've got a rudimentary template to give me a bit of an idea where the hole needs to go. Tempted to try and get a spare fender panel first as a backup, or maybe even to make the hole with the panel not even fitted.

When fitting nutserts to the a-pillar, obviously there's going to be metal swarf dropped down the inside of the pillar. Should the freshly drilled holes for the nutserts be treated in any way prior to installing them? I have some stainless m6 wide flange ones (sourced as part of researching nutserts for the checkerplate door trim panel job I've got going).


I have a Fleabay Dorkel and OEM Birdfeeder

Most folks put their trust in the template and try to get the big hole perfect on the first attempt only to find that they have to do some nasty trimming/cutting/filing afterwards

When I did my install, I used a larger 4 inch hole saw rather than the recommended 3.5 inch

I figured I'd be better off with a larger hole that I can easily position the tube and reduce it using some door edge trim since you only get one shot at it

Used a Uni-bit on the bolt holes and enlarged each of them one step at a time until all of the dorkel studs lined up

For each hole, I cleaned up all the rough edges with coarse sand paper, then coated it with touch up paint

Went with Nutserts/Rivnuts for the A-pillar mount


dorkelinstll7.jpg
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mudgudgeon

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Did you start a thread for your paint job? Looks sharp for bed liner
I have a few threads since I did it in stages

First the flares, then the 2-tone in black/white, then eventually black/tan

Unfortunately the photo links are dead since they're over a decade old, but I'll be uploading them to an album soon
 
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Interesting that radius snorkel requires a massive cutout in the panel. Mine should only require one big hole and then three nutserts at the a-pillar.
 
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Righto located the template that was supplied. I've taped it on and roughly marked it out with a paint pen.





I'm going to presume that removing the air box before starting to make the hole is a good idea. Nobody seems to really say yay or nay to leaving it in place. I don't have a big enough holesaw though.

One thing to keep in mind is I'm keeping the standard air box so hopefully I have the right bits to adapt the bottom end of the 4 inch pipe to the inlet port of the air box after I take off the actual inlet bit that lives inside the fender space above the wheel.
 
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