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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
So I got the look every time I drove by the local cops and started getting paranoid. I'll be damned if I'm gonna drill holes in my mint front bumper I said :mad:

Seriously, when the cops are chasing you it's always usually from behind :D so what is the point of a front plate anyways :rolleyes:

I looked around and the only no-drill option that looked serious enough to be an option was from GMG Motorsports. After installing it I can honestly say it's a high-quality product and some thought went into the design. It could use some improvements though and I am happy to provide my feedback in the pursuit of product development.

Home - GoMiniGo-Home of Innovative Products for your car

Installation notes:

- I used a regular 3/8" ratchet with a 1/2" adapter (didn't feel like buying another ratchet) as I could only find 19mm sockets with a 1/2" drive. Make sure to buy a 6-sided socket if possible as the 12-point is easier to damage (or the bolt head) if alot of torque is used when tightening etc.

- I used some Permatex copper anti-seize (good for most metals) on the 2 main studs. I really don't know why GMG does not just make one length for each application instead of the 2 studs they give you. Maybe they made one for the Mini and just added an adapter stud for other cars??? Anyways, after torquing the first stud down (I'm not even sure that I used all the threads so the thread pattern may be off slightly) I was able to torque the second "adapter" stud down without the first one spinning out of the tow-hook threads as opposed to other people's experiences. This was one reason I DID NOT use my long torque bar that I use to break my wheel bolts off with. I actually have the install tools in my hatch in case I ever have to get the car towed so I can use the proper tow hook and not have to worry about the flat bed hooks damaging my suspension from an improper hook up.

- More anti-seize on the big plate bracket bolt. I used all 4 washers provided as I don't believe the kit was tested on a Turbo S: 3 washers were not enough and the bracket was making contact. The install should be a bit easier on a non-TS bumper and less or no washers may be required for the bracket to clear the bumper skin.

- I ordered the "offset bracket" just in case and you can see why it makes a difference. If I had used the normal "symmetrical" bracket the plate would have stuck too far out the side of the car and looked goofy plus be a hazard in case someone ever brushed up against your bumper.

- I did have to bend the bracket to maintain an equal distance from edge to edge of the plate. I did this after bolting up the rectangular plate bracket to make sure the bend was only in one plane only and made sure it was far enough out so that wind would not cause anything to rub or abrade the paint. The degree of bend is individual obviously. I tried to match the line of the bumper as best as I could

- Once you have the plate backing installed MAKE SURE ITS PERFECTLY LEVEL before you install your plate. Otherwise you will have to remove 4 of the 6 allen key bolts again. Also don't try to turn it once it's bolted on to make any adjustements as it will come loose.

- If I can remember I used the plate mounting holes right above the ridge on the rectangular plate bracket. I did not want the plate sticking up too high nor too low and blocking my intercooler vents + fog.

- More anti-seize on the plate-holding bolts

Here are some shots from the install on my 04 TS. I'm going to take some clearer pics of the finished product tomorrow. Enjoy!:D
 

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~Feel the Sting~
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It feels...... off balance ... *eyes it*

I personally am very finicky about symetry .. and I've been eyeballing a hide-away variety and some similar ones.. ( Swift Motorsports

When you get to a car show, want to take photos or wherever, you just flip your plate down and stow it away. When you need to drive, you just flip it up.

They even make an electric version where you flip a switch inside and it pops out.YouTube - Altec Remote Show n Go Retractable License Plate Holder
 

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Probably MIA
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Thanks for the install info and pics. I really need to order one and have it on hand. I've been driving with no front plate for almost 4 months now...haven't had problems with the Coppers yet but I'm sure the day will come. Most likely in some affluent suburb of the Twin Cities.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
It feels...... off balance ... *eyes it*

I personally am very finicky about symetry .. and I've been eyeballing a hide-away variety and some similar ones.. ( Swift Motorsports

When you get to a car show, want to take photos or wherever, you just flip your plate down and stow it away. When you need to drive, you just flip it up.

They even make an electric version where you flip a switch inside and it pops out.YouTube - Altec Remote Show n Go Retractable License Plate Holder
I hear ya man! I would have preferred a center-mount also, however: My goal was absolutely no drilling or modifying the car at all though to keep it pristine and original. I don't see how it could be installed without drilling a couple of holes at least if you look at the review ( Retractable Front Plate - evolutionm.net ) Also, my TS's front lip is about 1" off the ground (in summer performance mode) so I would probably destroy/rip out the mounting bracket the first speedbump I encounter. Just to be clear, I am not a road warrior and baby my TS (not even a scrape on my oilpan), it's just that we have some bad roads up here in Toronto, and some nasty speedbumps/humps where approaching at an angle (like steep driveways) is not always an option.

Second objective (equally important) was to not disrupt airflow to the rad or intercooler at all so a product like the Swift Motorsports unit was not on my list. It does look pretty cool though and I like the concept + ease of "removal".

I probably only do about 5 shows per year so it's not really a big deal for me (thus the anti-seize) to remove the plate once a month in the spring/summer.

It did take some time to get used to but I found a nice indestructible smoked license plate cover made in the USA that tones down the white of the plate and it's domed so it matches the round curves of the bumper somewhat also (more pics coming soon if I can ever get out of work early lol).
 

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Probably MIA
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This seems like the most logical place to me. :)
 

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Many of the two plate states, have considered, at one time or another, doing away with the front plate. Cuts the cost of producing the tags directly in half.

However, today, with the design of the front end and headlights of most cars, the plate is the only vertical and flat surface off which to bounce a laser beam. Users are trained to aim for the tag first, and if non, a headlight. If you have no tag and headlight lens or shields heavily angled, sloped, etc, there is nothing off which to bounce and return the beam to the laser gun.

Vola, no tag, no headlights, laser gun no workie! Police departments that don't use laser probably will refrain from giving you a ticket.

Remember - IT'S ALL ABOUT THE MONEY!

FYI - The same company that developed the coating for the Government's Stealth aircraft program, to render them invisible to radar, sells on the open market, a coating for the front of your grille, tag, headlights, etc, to render radar and laser useless. I have the link if anyone wants it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks J!

Some more pics from diff angles. You can see why I can't use the Swift Motorsports plate holder. BTW, those are not HID's: Just LED city lights ;)
 

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LkäPORSCHE
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. . . I personally am very finicky about symetry .. and I've been eyeballing a hide-away variety and some similar ones . . .
I'm the same way when it comes to symmetry.
I purchased the Hide-Away Plate and placed it right in the centre.
Here are shots with it up and down. As you can see when it's down it still sits considerably higher than the skid plate.
I guess your right though Kev, depending on the angle of a driveway or something it could get hit too but, It's like anything else. Just be carful driving around I guess!
Although the one your using looks pretty durable. Knowing me, I would probably smack my knee on it a few times getting around the car.
 

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Probably MIA
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I'm the same way when it comes to symmetry.
I purchased the Hide-Away Plate and placed it right in the centre.
Here are shots with it up and down. As you can see when it's down it still sits considerably higher than the skid plate.
I guess your right though Kev, depending on the angle of a driveway or something it could get hit too but, It's like anything else. Just be carful driving around I guess!
Although the one your using looks pretty durable. Knowing me, I would probably smack my knee on it a few times getting around the car.
Got any pics of how you attached it underneath? I'm trying to decide between these two before I get pulled over one of these days. A Bear pulled out in front of me a few months ago and clocked me doing 63 in a 55. He got over on the shoulder, then pulled me over after I passed by him. Surprisingly he didn't notice that I didn't have my front plate on. He just gave me a verbal warning on the speed.

I'm going to be spending some time down in the Twin Cities suburbs soon...I met a wonderful gal! :D Cops in the 'burbs are notorious for giving you trouble on this sort of thing, I don't think they notice much here in outstate MN.
 

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LkäPORSCHE
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Got any pics of how you attached it underneath? I'm trying to decide between these two before I get pulled over one of these days. A Bear pulled out in front of me a few months ago and clocked me doing 63 in a 55. He got over on the shoulder, then pulled me over after I passed by him. Surprisingly he didn't notice that I didn't have my front plate on. He just gave me a verbal warning on the speed.

I'm going to be spending some time down in the Twin Cities suburbs soon...I met a wonderful gal! :D Cops in the 'burbs are notorious for giving you trouble on this sort of thing, I don't think they notice much here in outstate MN.
Yeah it comes with the hardware. Not sure what their called. Rubber nutz :D but they work really well.
Looks like this
 

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LkäPORSCHE
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I've considered that hide-away setup, the only thing is on my YELLOW car, that little rail that the plate rides on sticks out like a sore thumb... or a fat lip, either way you want to look at it :D

Grr.. stupid front plate law >_<
Yup! I know what you mean. That's just the way it is. It peeks out a little bit for the plate to fold up at 90* angle. It's not that bad though.
I'll include a picture from the top looking down.
If you flush it with the edge of your bumper or tuck it so it doesn't show, then the plate ends up tilting down ward on a 45* angle. Which could maybe pass cause as long as you car read it.
You can play around with it though.

Sorry Kevin for HighJackin' your thread!:eek:
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Sorry Kevin for HighJackin' your thread!:eek:
Hey no worries bro. I only made this thread so the rest of the .org crew can made an informed decision if they go down this road (no-drill). The only thing is that if they try to find info on the Hide-Away plate via the search it might not make it on the list.

I think the GMG plate bracket is a well-made product but I'm not getting paid to advertise or anything so we could always get a mod to change the thread title to GMG vs Hide-Away comparison or something. These look like the best 2 options for the NB anyways from a build vs function standpoint without going crazy on a motorized setup.
 

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LkäPORSCHE
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Hey MiG. I wanna see some more pics of how you attached the Hide-Away plate. My install is reversible so who knows :D
There's really nothing to it. I just centered it in the middle.
-Marked the position where the holes were going to go.
-Drilled a hole. Placed the rubber nut thinggy's and fastened the first screw to secure it in place.
-Drilled 3 more holes and secured it with the last 3 screws and done.

Oh I also used a black plastic zip tie at the back of the plate rail.
Because the rail extends past the edge of the bumper, It was kind of sagging down just under the skid plate. The use of the zip tie brings the rail end up and presses it up snug agaist the skid plate.
All I did was make a tiny hole through the rad support for the tie to pass through. (it's plastic so it was easy to drill) I plan to use a longer bolt and nut in the future. The tie was just a quick fix for now.
 
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