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Grill Insert (Customcargrills)

Discussion in '2nd Gen. Tacomas (2005-2015)' started by Timboslice, Mar 8, 2018.

  1. Mar 8, 2018 at 5:34 AM
    #1
    Timboslice

    Timboslice [OP] Active Member

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    So I purchased a grill insert off customcargrills and I've been doing some research and yet I still have a few questions. I watched their tutorial https://youtu.be/CNWKBWoTEQMon the installation but I want to hear from personal experience with this.

    First off is a dremel the ideal tool to use here? I'm nervous that the bottom portion of the grill that I'm cutting out would break. It's such a small strip of plastic.

    Secondly How does the glue adhesive hold up? The after product just looks kinda sketchy to me after all said and done. Any particular adhesive better than the rest?

    Following their guide on where to cut, is that pretty accurate? Anything else I need to know that they might've failed to mention?

    I'll be going at this weekend or early next week and just want to get everything straightened out before I go at it. So any advice or tips are greatly appreciated. How does your grill insert hold up to this day? Any issues?

    Thanks for taking the time to read this and you're inputs are greatly appreciated
     
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2018
  2. Mar 8, 2018 at 5:57 AM
    #2
    T4RFTMFW

    T4RFTMFW Well-Known Member

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  3. Mar 8, 2018 at 11:40 PM
    #3
    customcargrills

    customcargrills Well-Known Member

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    I know you're probably looking for a first hand experience other than my own but here's my 2 cents, after doing doing probably 100 of them myself and selling 1000's of the mesh pieces.
    --------------------
    Dremel: Yes, it's what I personally find to be the best tool. On occasion I have resorted to just hand sawing the inner portion but it's harder to do by hand and not as accurate imo. A more powerful electric rotary cutting tool, like Rotozip is overkill and generally tougher to use. Reciprocating saws are probably more trouble than what their worth if I had to guess but it's probably possible to use if there's no other choice.

    The thin strip that the bottom can be intimidating for first timers. I wouldn't psych yourself out on it, the piece likely won't break unless you cut through it. I suppose if you did break it, you could just Goop it back on =)

    *Bonus Fact* I use the #543 Cutting Wheel for the Dremel. Don't use the cheapo grinding wheels. Available at Home Depot , Lowes, or Amazon
    --------------------
    Goop: Goop is (as advertised on their bottle) AMAZING stuff. Despite their low price and questionable name, it's honest to goodness one of the best adhesives out there for mixed materials like this. Last year, we went through ~5000 bottles of it, many of which were on Tacoma parts. It's not to say that it hasn't ever happened, but I've yet to have a report of a failure of it when applied with a meaningful amount. One of the best testimonies I can personally give for the product is a gas door that I glued onto its hinge back in 2001, and it's still on the car today and daily driven.

    One of my favorite pictures showing the strength of Goop is this one from a 3rd gen customer of ours:
    [​IMG]

    Full Disclosure about the Goop, the 2012-15 Tacoma's is one of the trickiest ones to Goop for 2 reasons.
    1) all the angles that make the goop flow away from the mesh. On the sides and top, multiple passes may be needed
    2) the margin for error on the lower edge is, on occasion, nerve wracking. The only way I can accurately get it in there is with a toothpick.

    *Bonus Full Disclosure* On most of my 2012-15 Tacoma installs nowadays, I use Pliogrip instead of Goop. The ONLY reason I use Pliogrip on these is because of the cure time and because its viscosity is much thicker which doesn't lead to runniness. Pliogrip is great and all, and I'd probably recommend it more highly, but at $35 a tube and the need for a special dispenser gun, it's a hard one for most owners to swallow.
    --------------------
    The Video Guide: Oh boy... these have always been a tricky topic with us. The 2012-15 Tacoma is the only video I recall getting so much negativity about that I completely re-shot the whole thing from scratch. The original first video can be seen HERE; it's not worth watching, don't bother. The first video is less than ideal, but at the end of the day I felt that it got the job done. It didn't really matter what I thought though, we were taking a bunch of returns because customers thought the install was impossible or that it would take weeks to do right. In a fit of rage, I remade the video and timed myself (I think the only time I ever have done that for a video).

    I'm pretty happy with how the newer video you watched and linked turned out. One of the most important parts of the video is that silver cut line. If you don't get that dead on, you might need to go back and trim some plastic back because the mesh piece won't fit well. I'm always open to suggestions on how to improve the videos.

    The videos from the past 18 or so months have been much improved but a common criticism still remains that I speed through it too fast, or I don't show it in real time, or I don't show the mess-ups. Of course I try to make these look easy, I'm in the business of selling these and it's generally a tough sell if you see me fumbling and bumbling. The truth is, of course it's not as easy as I make it look. To me I feel that the video is accurate, fair, and complete in the shortest time I can condense the video down to.
    --------------------
    Tips & Tricks: There aren't many but I've got one tip and one common mistake.

    Tip: If you use the Goop, get yourself a big ole fan to blow on the grill while the goop cures. The Goop cures through evaporation like a contact cement. The more air flow you can get it on it (to a certain point of course) the less runny it will be and the faster it will cure.

    Also, Goop after it's cured losses a lot of volume. If you think you put just the right amount on initially, you probably didn't; likely it was too little. Nowadays I go pretty thick with it. There is a bit of a balancing act though of too much vs. making a big mess. It's hard to explain but the point is that quite a bit of the Goop is needed, probably 2 full bottles.

    Common Mistake: Those lower corners, where the subtle bend is. When we do the bends, we TRY to get them close. Sometimes they're bent too much, and sometimes not enough. Odds are, those lower bends won't be perfect right out of the box. It's not uncommon for me to massage the mesh a little bit before an install to get it just right.

    To compound the lower corner issue more, I frequently see customer installs a little gap there, even with a perfect bend. I've found that multiple ties can be needed down there to keep the mesh tight. Furthermore, I'd REALLY tie those specific ties tight.
    --------------------

    Anyway, I hope that helps some. If you need any help along the way, call, text, or email me. My business card is in the box, and you wouldn't be the first or the last person to reach out in need of a little help along the way.
     
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2018
  4. Mar 9, 2018 at 6:02 AM
    #4
    PurpATL

    PurpATL Well-Known Member

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    Talk about customer service! I plan on making this mod soon too, if there is one thing I could add OP..from my research, anything that seems less than perfect to you, is basically unnoticeable by everyone else. Just gotta dive right in!
     
  5. Mar 9, 2018 at 12:47 PM
    #5
    TacomaMike37

    TacomaMike37 Well-Known Member

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    Very true!
     
  6. Mar 10, 2018 at 2:53 AM
    #6
    PunjabiTaco

    PunjabiTaco Warthog

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    You'll be fine and don't worry about the thin strip at the bottom, it's sturdier than you think. I bought a spare chrome grill to put on the truck while I worked on my color matched one. Took my time with it. Goop is strong as hell.

    If you want my spare, let me know, just pay shipping, it's been sitting around doing nothing for over a year now

    20170919_210829.jpg
     
    moondeath likes this.
  7. Mar 10, 2018 at 5:19 AM
    #7
    Monkeybutt2000

    Monkeybutt2000 Well-Known Member

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    I can't wait to kick mine out come spring. I hate it.
     
  8. Mar 10, 2018 at 6:20 AM
    #8
    moondeath

    moondeath The answer to divorce...... Tequila!

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    5100 @ 1.75", 1.5" Icon Progressive 3 leaf, Procomp Wheels, Grill Thin Lip (Custom Car Grills Mod), Access Tonneau Cover, Pop & Lock Tailgate Electronic Lock PL8521
    I’ve had mine in since 2013 and it still just as sturdy. Way better than grill craft junk!
     
  9. Mar 10, 2018 at 7:28 AM
    #9
    DuttonCD

    DuttonCD Well-Known Member

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    2552957C-2315-4304-B66A-DECFAFC92235.jpg Love mine
     
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  10. Mar 10, 2018 at 8:01 AM
    #10
    PoweredBySoy

    PoweredBySoy Well-Known Member

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    I've purchased two grills from these guys and have done the process twice. The revised install video is excellent and all you need to know. IMO the hardest part is the Goop, since the applicator sucks. I used toothpicks to try and spread it around.

    Awesome product and great customer service.
     
    moondeath likes this.
  11. Mar 10, 2018 at 8:19 AM
    #11
    Tamytacoma

    Tamytacoma Well-Known Member

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    Best mod I did. It’s been 3 years and mine is still holding up. I just followed their video online. It has protected my radiator from bugs and small rocks from getting in as I drive a lot. Plus, their customer service is excellent.

    5CCF98E8-53BA-4807-ACA5-C40655E8CA87.jpg
     
  12. Mar 10, 2018 at 9:21 PM
    #12
    moondeath

    moondeath The answer to divorce...... Tequila!

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    This is one of the nice things about this grill. It’s heavier gauge and really does serve as protection to the radiator. To top it off, customer service is top notch.
     
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  13. Mar 13, 2018 at 2:16 PM
    #13
    3rd Rail Ops

    3rd Rail Ops Member

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    Monkeybutt,

    I was thinking about doing this mod myself come spring. I've heard all the good things so far, but what about this grill do you hate? I'm looking for an objective opinion. Thanks.
     
  14. Mar 14, 2018 at 5:01 PM
    #14
    Monkeybutt2000

    Monkeybutt2000 Well-Known Member

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    It just didn't fit right. And IMO theres just not enough material left to properly glue in the insert. I posted about my issues in another thread,and got some ideas to try,but nothing worked. Hopefully the knock-off Pro grill is available soon.
     
  15. Mar 15, 2018 at 3:23 PM
    #15
    moondeath

    moondeath The answer to divorce...... Tequila!

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    I’ve had mine in for almost 4.5 years with no issues what so ever. Fits just fine. It’s still as sturdy as the day I put it in. If your not good at fabrication then this grill may seem hard to install for some.
     
  16. Mar 15, 2018 at 4:17 PM
    #16
    Monkeybutt2000

    Monkeybutt2000 Well-Known Member

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    See,that's the funny part. I'm a PDR tech and a heavy body repairman at the Subaru factory here in Indiana. Fact is,mine just did NOT fit right,period.
     
  17. Mar 15, 2018 at 9:13 PM
    #17
    customcargrills

    customcargrills Well-Known Member

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    Just out of curiosity, do you have any pictures of the problematic areas?
     
  18. Mar 16, 2018 at 3:53 PM
    #18
    moondeath

    moondeath The answer to divorce...... Tequila!

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    I didn’t have any real fitment issues. You’re making a custom cut on the factory grill, so it’s not a precision fit like a part made in a vehicle plant. Once everything is in place with zip ties and everything cures, it’s pretty close though.
     
  19. Mar 16, 2018 at 4:21 PM
    #19
    Monkeybutt2000

    Monkeybutt2000 Well-Known Member

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    I could get some if you'd like,although I'm not sure how to post a pic on here anymore. And for the record,I'm not knocking the part. I know LOTS of members have had great results with the grill,unfortunately it didn't work out for me.
     

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