Best way to mark number plate for drilling holes without a template plate

Discussion in 'Bodywork' started by tjamesbo, Jan 22, 2020.

  1. tjamesbo

    tjamesbo Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Number plate fell off my daughters Quashqai+2 and I volunteered to reattach it. Obviously bodged to start with as it had about 12 or more stickies half stuck to both the plate and the car , ( but there were also 2 holes... in the car ) ...... but the plate did not have any holes . As time was of the essence ( she needed it for work ) I I heat gunned the stickys off cleaned and scrubbed with desolv it then meths to finish bit of heat with the gun again and on with the stickies and pressure job sorted but where the holes were were very slightly proud and may affect how well the plate stays on . With the holes being there on the car it makes sense to screw it on next time but heres the question , What is the best way to transfer the hole positions / spacing to the plate when you dont have an existing drilled plate I'm sure theres a nice simple solution Any Tips ????
     
  2. Will

    Will MB Club Veteran

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    Sounds silly but measure the holes on the car and mark the plate.

    If there’s only two I’d guess they’d be central.

    Use a felt tip to mark out with a ruler the middle of the plate, then work out the width of the plate minus the gap between the mounting holes on the car - bingo.

    Other option is to attach plate frames and the plates go inside those. They come pre-drilled for most models - not sure what they’d look like on a Qashqai though?
     
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  3. KennyN

    KennyN Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Measure the pitch of the holes on the tailgate

    Mark a centre line on the back of the plate both horizontally and vertically.

    Half the pitch size and mark this out either side of the centre line marked on the plate.

    Drill a small hole through from the back of the plate.

    Drill the correct size of hole (possibly 6.5 mm) from the front of the plate.

    Fit the plate.

    K
     
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  4. flowrider99

    flowrider99 Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Use a piece of paper as a template by pressing the paper against the number plate area and mark the hole positions on the paper. You then just need to align the plate with the holes.
     
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  5. MercedesDriver

    MercedesDriver Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Cut the thin cardboard/paper as a copy of a plate.
    Center the copy where you want a plate to be on a car. Punch the holes through the copy and use those holes to make markings on the plate.
    Drill the plate.
    Voila.
     
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  6. Bobby Dazzler

    Bobby Dazzler MB Club Veteran

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    Get some frames, much easier solution.
     
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  7. KillerHERTZ

    KillerHERTZ Administrator Staff Member

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    +1 for frames/dealer frames. Perfect fit, won't come off and looks the best.
     
  8. KillerHERTZ

    KillerHERTZ Administrator Staff Member

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    + also, you don't get water ingress with frames.
     
  9. OP
    OP
    tjamesbo

    tjamesbo Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Thanks ,several ways , i like the paper cardboard template option and yes forgot about the frame option which is probably the quickest as long as you have a frame ! which I have but its an MB Logo one .... not a good look on a Quashqai :eek:
     
  10. Will

    Will MB Club Veteran

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    Wurth make the frames. Available plain for a few quid tops, but in bulk they cost peanuts.

    Saves getting your drill out and as said helps the plates from delaminating! :)
     
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  11. SarahAnn200

    SarahAnn200 Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    I'm about to add new plates. I was just going to stick them on today.
    I just went onto Amazon prime so I can get next day delivery but a lot of them get bad reviews saying they rattle. Does the back plate just attach with something like self tappers and is there a 'go to' brand or do you all buy generic ones? Thanks anyone
     
  12. OneForTheRoad

    OneForTheRoad Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Put a dab of black paint on the 2 holes. Put plate upto them square and push on. You should be left with 2 black marks where you need to drill.
     
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  13. Petrol Pete

    Petrol Pete Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    How thick were the double sided sticky pads ? some people use the thin stuff, much like tape, which is no good as it will not follow the contour of the car or clear the plate grommets in the car body. You need the thick pads , about 8mm+. Last ones I used for my trailer were from Halfords, about 5 years ago and still holding.
     
  14. bob6600

    bob6600 MB Club Veteran

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    As said, paper template if you don't want frames or use frames. Why not stick them on? Use the right stuff and they won't come off
     
  15. SarahAnn200

    SarahAnn200 Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    I've bought unibond permanent strips. It says they hold 3kg per strip. I think I will just go with those
     
  16. Bobby Dazzler

    Bobby Dazzler MB Club Veteran

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    Quality wise “Wurth” branded are probably the best bet, these are used by most Mercedes-Benz dealers and some other brand dealers too. Brabus branded frames are the same too.

    If you have screws mounting the plates directly to the car then you can use these to mount the frame to the car. If not, then just buy standard number plate screws from your dealer, Halfords, or online.
     
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  17. Wolfie1

    Wolfie1 Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Wow talk about over complicating things! Hold your plate below the 2 holes and mark on the plate where they are at the top, then draw 2 lines vertically from top to bottom, then draw a line along the centre of the plate from left to right and drill your holes where the lines intersect
     
  18. MercedesDriver

    MercedesDriver Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    ^Yes that’s the easiest way if you have try square in your toolbox
     
  19. Will

    Will MB Club Veteran

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    And yet despite all of these tips, we still see plenty of cars on the roads with wonky plates :D :doh:
     
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  20. DITTRICH

    DITTRICH Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    when I removed MBE 300D from the s124, I needed a screwdriver to persuade the plates to come off. It was attached with 3 horizontal lines of double sided foam tape which sealed the holes in the panel too. 3 x 30+cm of double sided foam tape were very difficult to remove. Given that the plate is likely to stay on for along time, and given that screws can react badly with the fixings in the panel, sticky tape is imho the best compromise.
     

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