What to do with this fender
Stripped ther paint off a front fender of a 1966 mustang. It has a rust repair of a hole 2-3" in diameter done with fiberglass. I have not removed the fiberglass. Should I leave the fiberglass, remove the fiberglass and weld in a patch or replace the fender. It is a classic restoration that I want to look good but not a 100 point car. Thnaks for your thoughts.
I wouldn't imagine those fenders being hard to find. They'd probably cost $150 new and $60 used.
I think it all depends on you and what you'd like to experience in your build. If you're not accustomed to fixing rust or doing bodywork you may want to limit yourself or if you like a challenge why not? Just be sure if you decide to weld it make sure the edge of the metal you plan on welding on is strong. If the guy fiberglassed the repair he may not have been so sure to make sure the edge had strong metal cause he didn't intend on welding on it. So your 2-3" hole is probably a little bigger than that. The guy probably cleaned it up however with a sander, grinder, wheel, etc... then he probably fiberglassed what was revealed. I'd say for sure the edges are weak.
The least expensive replacement part will be an aftermarket or used fender and if that's not available then you can probably get a repair panel if the damage is behind the wheel opening. Fixing it with fiberglass won't last as long as metal.
Originally Posted by RustRunner
One other thing to consider is the condition of the rest of the fender, things like the gap to the door and hood, and any other dents or dents that were fixed before and may need to be redone.
The reason I say this is because sometimes when you replace a fender it can be a lot of work to make everything line up right. (even with supposed high quality parts)
So if this one hole is all the fender needs fixed, and you have the tools, just cut it out and weld a patch in.
I investigated the prior repair further and not only is their a hole in the fender across a body line but the structure behind the hole has also be rebuilt with fiberglass. I think it is to far gone to fix. The hole is down low on the fender where the fender and the door come together.
Pricing replacement parts I find reproduction fenders for $169 and ones made with genuine Ford tooling for $349. Anyone had experience with one vs the other?
If the rest of the fender is in decent shape and you have the ability to weld you can probably purchase a repair panel (with the body line) for less money and make a good repair. I would use the backing strip method shown in the link below.
If you can't weld it then I would replace the fender.
Don't be fooled by the "genuine ford tooling" gimmick. That's not always a good thing. A lot of times that tooling is just as old (or older) than the car you're buying the parts for, and tooling wears out. Not saying that all of those parts are junk, just don't choose a supplier solely based on that fancy quote.