Making your own truck grill begins with a design concept. From there, you have the choice of a wide range of materials to suit your design. You may prefer the look of horizontal rails or diamond mesh in chrome, natural or a painted finish. Many older trucks have recessed headlights or turn signals that can be trimmed with the original rings. Newer truck grills are one-piece inserts that can be replaced with any type of self-venting material. Decide on a design and obtain the material to make your own truck grill.
Things You'll Need
- Utility knife
- Grill material
- Felt tip marker
- Electric jigsaw (variable speed)
- Finish jigsaw blade
- Flat file
- Electric drill
- Drill bits
Make a template for the grill using cardboard and a utility knife. You can make the template to fit the grill opening or lay the existing grill on the cardboard and trace the outline with the knife. A template ensures you fabricate the grill to the correct dimensions and have correct locations for any lights.
Place the grill material on a worktable or workbench. If you are making a grill with sections of tubing or chrome strips, space the pieces according to your design.
Position the template atop the material. Transfer the outline of the template onto the material using a felt tip marker. Use a yellow or white marker for outlining darker material.
Cut the mesh or individual pieces with a variable-speed electric jigsaw and a finish blade. Use the slowest speed possible to prevent the edges of mesh from chattering as you make the cuts.
Smooth the cuts with a flat file. File downward from the finished side of the material using light strokes. Avoid filing upward along the edges or you may ruin the finish.
Position the grill in place on the truck. Mark any areas or sections that need to be detailed to ensure a tidy fit. Mark the locations of attachment bolts or clips.
Detail the grill as needed using the flat file. Drill the holes for the attachment bolts or clips using an electric drill and the appropriate size drill bit.
Tips & Warnings
- Solder vertical bars on the back of a spaced grill and drill the bars for attachment bolts or clips.
- Attach the manufacturer's logo or designer logo using stainless steel bolts with nylon washers and lock nuts.
- Look at truck project websites or magazine for design ideas.
- Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images
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