How To Replace Inner Fender Panels On 1965 Chevelle

New Inner Fender Panels and Billet Hood Hinges Can Immediately Clean Up The Engine Bay of Your Project Car

By Brian Brennan   –   Photography By the Author

Anyone working with vintage sheet metal, something that is more than 30 years old, will most likely have to deal with corrosion, packed-on dirt, cracks, dents, and other impacts. Our 1965 Chevelle is no different. While swapping out power plants it became obvious that the inner fender panels needed help. So, a quick call to Golden Star Classic Auto Parts was a great solution to quickly solving our problem.

02 We ordered a driver side and passenger side replacement inner fender panel
We ordered a driver side and passenger side replacement inner fender panel. They come coated and ready to use (PNs IF03-64R-RH and IF03-64L-LH).
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Why We Choose Golden Star Auto

The Golden Star OEM-style inner fender panels (PNs IF03-64R-RH and IF03-64L-LH) are designed to protect the engine bay and other related sheet metal from corrosion. These panels come stamped to match what was there from the factory and come with a protective coating that can be left as-is or can be prepped for painting.

Read More: How To Install An Electric Vacuum Pump On Your Hot Rod

03 Here is our 65 Chevelle engine bay with the old panels already removed
Here is our ’65 Chevelle engine bay with the old panels already removed. (Note we are dropping in a Chevrolet Performance LT1 for power.)
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Hood and Fender Removal

In our 1965 Chevelle project we looked at fitting the inner fender panels while the sheet metal fenders remained on the car. It didn’t take us long to realize that the removal of the hood and fenders would make the project go more smoothly. So, off came the factory sheet metal, hood, and both front fenders. Our Chevelle, while sporting lots of patina, is in truly good condition. The factory inner fender panels did their job and have sacrificed themselves to save other components throughout.

15 Golden Star Auto inner fender panel and the Eddie Motorsports hinge are all bolted together for a test fit
Here our original passenger side fender, Golden Star Auto inner fender panel, and the Eddie Motorsports hinge are all bolted together for a test-fit.

Test Fitting The New Inner Fender Panels

Once the hood and fenders were removed, we fit each inner fender panel to its respective fender. The initial fit was very good and required a minimal amount of fitment. Remember we are dealing with a car that is 57 years old and over time things change. It was to be expected that the mounting holes from the new inner fender panel to the original sheet metal fenders matched up very closely.

07 the Golden Star Auto inner fender panel were slightly off on one of the mounting holes
The two overlapping holes; original factory hole (beneath) in the fender and the new hole (top) in the Golden Star Auto inner fender panel were slightly off on one of the mounting holes.
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Modifying The Mounting Holes

We did find that one hole needed a bit of massaging. Now, the first reaction might be to elongate the original inner fender mounting hole and possibly the new inner fender panel hole. Don’t. This can cause fitment and allow the panels to move on their own, introducing new fitment issues. As you go through the accompanying photos you will see how we trimmed a small portion of the new Golden Star Auto inner fender panel, thus allowing the new hole to align with the factory original mounting hole. From here it was a simple matter of aligning and completing the project.

Read More: 1978 Trans Am, Worthy Of Its ’Bird On The Hood

Billet Hood Hinges Installation

14 These billet aluminum hinges utilize sealed bearings and stainless steel nitrogen gas struts
These billet aluminum hinges utilize sealed bearings and stainless steel nitrogen gas struts. They are available in raw machined or bright polished finish.

At this time, we also installed our new hood hinges that came directly from Eddie Motorsports. We opted for the aluminum billet hood hinges that utilize sealed bearings as well as stainless steel nitrogen gas struts. While these hinges come in an assortment of finishes, such as bright polish, raw machine, or anodized, we opted for the black anodized versions.

Well, there you have it. Follow along with the photos for this truly easy-to-perform inner fender replacement project on our 1965 Chevelle. MR

Sources
Eddie Motorsports
(888) 813-1293
eddiemotorsports.com

Golden Star Classic Auto Parts
(972) 315-3758
goldenstarauto.com

Hot Rods by Dean
(800) 362-9709
hotrodsbydean.com

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