Perhaps surprisingly, we all slept very well last night, and when it came to getting up we all sprung out of bed in seconds. Sebastian had contacted the owner of the Radical car here in Quito, and he was going to be at the hotel in half an hour to come and see the SRZero and to ascertain how he could help. So, after a quick breakfast, we rushed out to meet him.
Alfonso, as he is known, is a smartly dressed business man, and from the moment we met him, we knew he was a no-nonsense character. He was extremely keen to help us out, and so without further ado, we drove over to see the car. On the way, he made a call to the guy who does all the fibreglass bodywork repairs on his Radical, and asked him to meet us at the garage.
Upon arriving at the disabled SRZero’s new abode, a quick look from Alfonso elicited the exact same reaction as we had; the car was very fixable. And in an extremely generous gesture, he offered to give us the suspension components that we need from his car so that we wouldn’t have to ship them in from America. We still need to check if the components are the same, but if they fit this will cut out a lot of wasted time and money in having to order in the components from abroad. Unfortunately, his car model uses the old bodywork and impact attenuator, and so he was only able to offer replacement parts for the suspension. The discussion then moved over to how we would fix the fibreglass bodywork and splitter; cue entry of Victor, master fibreglasser (we hoped!).
Victor is a loud Ecuadorian with a potbelly, but the way he came in, looked at the bodywork and manipulated it showed that he was a professional. He was adamant that he could have not only the bodywork, but the splitter as well, completely repaired as new by Tuesday. Seeing is believing as the saying goes, so we wait with bated breath to see what he comes up with, but rest assured that we will be in his workshop every day to make sure the job is done and done well!
Next up, we dismantled the left front suspension to fully inspect the damage. Our initiall prognosis the day before remained accurate; the only damaged components we could see were the 2 wishbones, and other crucial suspension and braking members were kept fully in tact. So, assuming we can use suspension components from Alfonso’s car and that the bodywork and splitter are repaired correctly, the only thing left to fix is the impact attenuator.
We have 2 choices when fixing the attenuator; we could either get a new one shipped in from the US, or we could repair the old one. Given that the chances are that we will not have to order any components from abroad, shipping just one component that we can fix seemed a bit pointless, so we made the decision to fix it ourselves. It is a crucial and difficult component to get right as it’s also a structural member of the splitter, but he have a great design which we are going to get working on tomorrow!
This concluded our day in the garage; it was productive and helped us set everything up for the rest of the work still to come. Having solutions to the problems has made us feel a lot better, and we are really excited to carry on fixing! Just like the problems we had in Cartagena, we are determined that the car will come out better than before!