Fitting Nova GSi front bumper
DISCLAIMER: The information in these documents are a collection from experience (friends or myself), magazine articles, mailing lists and internet web sites etc. So don't take these as 100% correct gospel, hence I don't take any responsibility for any of these guides.
     Difficulty Rating: 2/5 - Quite easy to fit.
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Created: 24 Dec 2000
Revision 1

Click on any of the pics for a larger view.

Before...
Before...

..and after.
...and after.

This is a step-by-step guide on fitting a Nova GSi front bumper (MK2) onto a MK1 Nova (i.e. Nova SR, GTE etc.). This can be done without replacing both front wings, headlights or the grille. So this is a cheaper alternative. The full nose job would cost £500+ (includes everything that you want), but as this is only replacing the front bumper, this is considerably cheaper (new GSi bumper = £110).

Because you'll be using the original front wings on your car, and you are fitting a newer spec front bumper, the old holes that are in the wings to hold the side of the bumper on are in the wrong location. The only solution is to drill a new hole in each wing. Also you can use the MK1 carriage bar on the MK2 bumper, saving you a bit of money. However, the two irons that are used will have to be replaced with MK2 irons, otherwise the front bumper sticks out too far. Using MK2 irons eliminates most (but not all) the gaps under the headlights.

The same grille can still be retained, but the three bolts that hold it on will have to be loosened. This is because the grille is deeper than the headlights, and it used to fit in a gap in the MK1 bumpers. The MK2 bumpers do not have this, so it actually pushes the grille up, but not very far. The bonnet can still be closed without damaging the grille.

Once the bumper is fitted, it can be tilted upwards to eliminate the gap under the headlights as much as possible. The amount of movement is limited by the bolts that hold on the front bumper. The only way to totally remove any gaps under the headlamp is to either

  1. Modify the carriage bar so that the irons travel further into the car
  2. Extend the bumper just below where the headlights will be (i.e. use fiberglass and then paint).
In the pictures on the left of the shot of the Nova GSi front bumper ('after' picture), the middle air slat was removed, i.e. this is not a standard GSi front bumper. Details of how it was removed and replaced with mesh can be found on the modificatons page.

PARTS
Nova GSi bumper MK2 irons Electric drill Drill bits
Various screwdrivers Axle stands Trolley jack Rust stopper

COST
New Vauxhall Nova GSi front bumper £100 The part number for a new GSi bumper is 90443248. That is the plastic bumper only (no carriage bar or fixings etc.). The Part number for a pair of MK2 irons is 90321305.
2 x Nova MK2 irons £11
Bottle of rust stopper £5

Just before you start, make sure you note the following:

  • If you've got the Haynes manual for your car, have this is front of you. You'll need it on how to remove the front bumper.
  • You may use either a MK1 or MK2 carriage bar on the Nova GSi front bumper.
  • You do need to buy MK2 irons if using the MK1 carriage bar, otherwise the bumper doesn't fit properly (the holes in the irons do not line up with the holes inside the arch).
  • When removing the carriage bar, on some bumpers it is either clipped into place by posts on the back of the bumper or it is bolted down in place.
  • When the two new holes are drilled in the front wings, put some rust stopper on the fresh cut to prevent it from rusting in the future.

OK, got all the above? Then follow the steps below (remember to click on the pics for a bigger view):


Step 1 Step 2 Step 3
Click for a bigger view Click for a bigger view Click for a bigger view
Jack up the car and remove the front bumper (2 bolts under each arch, 4 bolts for each side wing). Follow the Haynes book for details. With the bumper off, remove the carriage bar from the back. This is tricky, squash each plastic clip and pull the carriage bar off (may be different on some types of bumper). You can use the MK1 carriage bar on the new MK2 GSi front bumper.

Step 4 Step 5 Step 6
Click for a bigger view Click for a bigger view Click for a bigger view
However, you need to acquire the longer Nova GSi irons (2 off). Otherwise the bumper will not fit on the car (holes do not line up). The new MK2 irons do not bolt in the same place as the MK1 irons. Fortunately there is a hole for the MK2 irons to fit on the MK1 carriage bar already. Pop the carriage bar, with the MK2 irons in place, onto the back of the GSi front bumper (it snaps into place).

Step 7 Step 8 Step 9
Click for a bigger view Click for a bigger view Click for a bigger view
A new hole needs to be drilled on each wing where the bolt that holds the side of the bumper in place. This will be a trial and error approach on finding the correct location. Once the hole is drilled, put some rust stopper on the fresh cut. Slide on the front bumper in the normal manner again, but don't tighten all the bolts up just yet. With the all bolts lose, you should be able to pivot the bumper on the irons so that you can eliminate the gap under the headlights. Once in place, tighten all the bolts up.

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