Renault 5 Mk1 - Wheelarch Liners

The focus of these restoration pages has been repairing the rust that made Mk1 Renault 5 famous. Most of the rust I've been dealing with has been caused by a build up of mud in rust traps in the wheel arches. Wheel arch liners are a very effective way of preventing mud from settling in these rust traps so I'm making some wheelarch liners for this car.

I've not figured out a way of reproducing dimensions for these liners online. They are a complex shape. I'll aim to make a copy on paper before fitting the liners this time in case anyone else has ideas. in the meantime here is a guide to making them from scratch. It takes a weekend.

You need to leave plenty of room for the wheels to move up and down and steer. I've taken a strip of plastic and held it in position so it touches the metalwork at the top.

The metalwork is a funny shape on the RHS of the Renault 5 Mk1 and the ends of the plastic strip ended up pointing outwards. I trimmed these to toughly fit inside the wheelarch and pressed them into place so they touched whatever was in the way and made sure they tucked inside the bumpers. In this case a washer bottle was the main obstacle.

Finally a check that the wheel still had plenty of clerance.

Setting up to make wheelarch liners

Once the plastic strip was sitting in position I extended it with bits of cardboard to the metalwork at the sides of the wheelarch. After a lot of card and tape I ended up with a template for the liner.

The template was used to cut a wheelarch liner from 2mm ABS plastic.

Template for wheelarch liner

Here is the ABS wheelarch liner in place. It touches the sides of the weelarch still but does not offer any seal or any protection from paint rubbing away in service.

Once it is adjusted to fit nicely I'll cut the edges back by about 15mm and fit a rubber edge seal. I've added a small mud flap to the rear but I'm not sure if it will stay. It's easier to remove it than add it later on.

New front wheel arch liner

For Renault 5 fans here is the other side. There is much less in the way at the top and a lot of clearance is needed for the exhaust so the shape is different. There is not enough room for the standard TX exhaust with the silencer inside the wheel arch liner so I'll need to make up a new exhaust pipe.

The main rust problem at the front of the car is the front wing and sill. It would be possible to retain the original exhaust on the TX by forgetting about full liners and just screwing on a plate to cover the nasty rust trap between the wing and the sill.

LHS front wheelarch liner

At the rear there are a couple of good rust traps to try to cover. The worst is the rear suspension mounting at the front, but the rear of the outer wheelarch also rusts. I'm working on a liner that will cover both. The damper tower also rusts but is more tricky to cover without getting all 3D with the liners.

Tmplate for rear wheelarch liner

Last update 10th August 2012

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Other Restorations:

Renault 4 Gordini

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Renault 5 restoration

As found

Rear suspension mounting repair

Damper tower repair

Front sill rust

Welding the RHS


Battery tray and longeron welding

Engine Rebuild


Wheelarch Liners