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Old 02-03-2008, 06:13 AM
nugz's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Vallejo, California
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How To: Mesh Grill (upper)

1/4" Ratchet
10 mm Socket (deep socket better)
12 mm Socket
1/4 socket
S3 square head socket
Tin Snips or Wire Cutters
Dremel or similar tool
Grinding wheels for Dremel
Small Fine Toothed Saw

Wire Mesh - I used mesh for gutter protection (No other mesh was available on short notice)
Plastic Paint - I used Rust-Oleum
Primer for Mesh* - Optional - I used Rust-Oleum
Paint for Mesh* - Optional - I used Rust-Oleum
Bondo - Not sure of what brand, I haven't done it I will update
Epoxy - preferably fast dring


I don't have pics of some of this due to the fact I started outside in the rain and finally got some garage space to work in. I will update as I get pics.

First thing to do is remove the snap plugs that you see in the top of the grill along with the two rubber stoppers. The plug have a small circle that you can pry up with a screwdriver or use pliers like I did. Once you get the center up then just pull them out.

Next you want to pull off the hood latch mechanism. it will get in your way the whole time if you don't. There are 3 bolts that hold it in. The bolts are 12 mm and are circled in the pic. When you get it off just put in in the engine bay to get it out of the way.

Now that the latch is out of the way, there are two more bolts to get that are located on the inside of the grill at the bottom. They go through the grill into the foam under the grill (I am waiting for approval from someone on another site who has great pics of these bolts to use his pictures)Finally remove the bowtie with the 1/4" inch ratchet and 12 mm socket.

Now comes the interesting part. There are tabs that have to be unclipped to get the grill out. In the following pic I have the grill unhooked but still in there so you can see where they are. To get them out, I folded small pieces of cardboard and stuffed the cardboard in the front of the grill where the tabs are to keep them from reattaching.

When you get the tabs unhooked then pull the grill out, it will take some wiggling to get it out. A good piece of advise is to practice getting it back in to prevent damage to the paint when you re-install it. Now you have a big open space in the bumper...I circled on this also where the tabs are.

Now that you have the grill out, it is time to start removing the slats.

My wife sneaked a pic of me sawing away...Notice the state of the art work bench...

I used a small saw to remove the slats up to 1/2 inch from the side and then a Dremel with grinding wheel to get the rest off. You are going to scratch and possibly gouge the side of the grill while doing this, it is to be expected. After you get the pieces out then you are left with this.

Now take your sandpaper (250 - 500 grit) and sand the areas where you hit the grill with the grinder. Get them semi smooth. Clean the areas where you sanded and use the Bondo to smooth it out. I didn't do it so I don't have pics, I will update.
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Old 02-03-2008, 06:14 AM
nugz's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Vallejo, California
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Now get all of your supplies together and get ready to get busy.

You are going to need to cut the mesh to just bigger than the grill openings. You will need to leave opening for the tabs to go back into the grill when you re- install it. Also you have to leave room to get the socket in there to re- install the front badge. I forgot until right before installation and then had to trim the mesh to allow the tabs to go through.

After you get the pieces cut out then you will be left with this.

With the mesh out of the way its time to paint the grill the color of your choice. I chose black to go with my Blue/Black theme.

Let the paint dry completely and then lets attach the mesh. I don't know how but my pics of this step disappeared off my camera...but you can figure out how to do that.

I just placed the mesh on the back of the grill and placed heavy-ish objects on it to hold it in place. Then I mixed and applied the epoxy to hold it in place. I didn't use the epoxy on every inch of the grill to hold it. I just put some on every 3 or 4 inches, It is strong stuff so use in a ventilated area.

When you are done with the gluing, you will have this. I dented the mesh while gluing (as you can see) so be was easily fixed though

Now wait about an hour or so for the epoxy to really dry and then install it in your bumper. It is a little harder to get it back in than it is to get it You have to get it back in at the perfect angle to get the grill to sit on top of the foam and line up the tabs.

To get the tabs back in, just hold the front of the frill and the back of the tab and push together, some may not click together until you get a lot of the tabs back in. Now reinstall the bowtie and then the hood latch...IN THAT ORDER!!! it is hard to get the bowtie back in with the hood latch back on. I also dented it putting it back in the car(as you can see) but it too was easily fixed.

I will update the DIY as soon as I get the Bondo and mesh painting done.
Old 02-03-2008, 08:46 AM
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Great DIY,def adding it to my list, how much was the mesh?

-5% Tint Tails, Blacked out Headlights, 35% Tinted Windows, Flat Black Exhaust, Blue Painted interior trim, Blue Interior floor neons, Blue Cupholder Neons, Rebadged "COBALT" Inside, Shorty Antenna, Metallic Black Mesh Grille-
Old 02-03-2008, 09:03 AM
nugz's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Vallejo, California
Posts: 561
It depends on what mesh you use, I used some gutter mesh that I bought from OSH for like $3..I would recommend using a higher quality mesh. You can get grille mesh from various places for $30 -$40. That is what I recommend people to use.
Old 02-03-2008, 10:08 AM
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Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: White Bear Lake, MN
Posts: 768
Great DIY nugz!

I also recommend using stuff actually made for grilles. It's a lot harder to bend (which is a good thing)
Old 02-03-2008, 11:32 AM
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Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Newburg, ND
Posts: 47
where would you find this mesh stuff just for grilles? I imagine you can find the cheaper stuff at the hardware store...

Nice write up!! I will be doing this since mr. birdy decided to fly straight into my grill and break it in a few spots....
Old 02-03-2008, 12:14 PM
nugz's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Vallejo, California
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Originally Posted by dduffy2005 View Post
Great DIY nugz!

I also recommend using stuff actually made for grilles. It's a lot harder to bend (which is a good thing)
Great point..that is what I found on short

Skindad88, you can find it at PepBoys or some places online have it precut for the cobalt.
Old 02-03-2008, 08:41 PM
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Location: Weddington,NC
Posts: 52
Very useful mod, I will definitely use it.

Car: 2006 Chevy Cobalt LS
Mods: Apex N1 Muffler,Debadged,New pedals

Coming soon: 17" Proline alloy rims and Performance tires,35% tint,Louvers,SS/SC spoiler, and lots more
Old 02-03-2008, 09:15 PM
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Yeah i was looking at doing this. I was actually thinking to do the lower part, like by the license plate. Anyway, just go on Google and search "auto grille mesh" and you should find something.

RIP Cobalt Totaled Sept. 2011
Current Car 2011 WRX

Project Victory_Red_SS Keep the dream alive.
Old 02-03-2008, 10:16 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: medina,ny
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i like it, def adding it to the to do list for this spring thanx nugz

yeah i mod, it's called having style.......
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