Front Inner Wings - Evaluation
With the pulling done, and the sills off, we now knew as much as we would ever know about the front inner wings. Time to make a decision - repair or replace?
Before getting into the details, Barry and I talked about pros and cons. Main problem with inner wing replacement is that they extend so far back toward the dash / bulkhead, and they obviously have a very visible join with the scuttle. So here's what I said to Barry:
My simplified thinking now is:
- there are disadvantages to replacement, as you say
- scuttle and its joins to inner wings are really good, and those original inners / welds are meaningful for originality
- front end twist is probably correctable, and we already knew we were replacing the entire front pan
... so it all comes down to how bad the inner wing damage is, hence how strong and neat the repaired damage is going to be.
If the existing front inners are so significantly weakened by damage, or will be so visibly sub-standard when repaired that neither of us will be happy, it has to be new inners. Otherwise I’m back to my usual preference for keeping as much original metal as possible.
So Barry took plenty of photos and we had a discussion about what to do. Here's part 1 of what he sent me:
I'm leaning towards repairing both front inner wings. The internal structure on both is perfect, both from luggage bay and inside the cockpit area.
We can get all the repair areas we need from Restoration Design. I'm thinking that both of them have so much % of good metal, I'm sure we'd end up regretting getting up under the dash where the replacement of inner wing is so hard to conceal.
(If the scuttle had gone, or the inner structure of the inner wings had gone (they often do), or if it looked impossible to get the correct alignment, I'd say replace. )
The accompanying photos looked like this: