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Puma wing removal and rust repair.

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Hi guys.

just put a deposit down on a defender: a 2010 puma 90CSW.


after looking at dozens of them, the best one in my price bracket had just one fault: a small isolated bit of rust in the passenger footwell. Otherwise it’s mint with very low mileage.


its a small patch about 2” long along the outside edge of the reinforcing plate. So plan is:

1) drill out spot welds and remove reinforcing plate inside footwell.

2) clean surrounding area back to bare steel

3) cut out rust and butt-weld in a small piece of new steel

4) prime and then paint footwell in correct red colour (but leaving bare patches under the reinforcing plate spot welds)

5) refit reinforcing plate with puddle welds and touch up over the linished welds


hassle I didn’t need, but necessary.


to do the job properly I’d like to wire brush and repaint the rest of the outer-skin of footwell: buried deep in the back of the arch (passenger side). This will also give me access to weld on the outside too (I’ll need 100% penetration so that I can linish back for an invisible-ish repair).


...unfortunately that will likely mean removing the passenger wing. Up to now I’ve only ever had series land rovers, the defender is a bit more complex with inner wings and eyebrows.


I've watched a few videos on YouTube and they all say that I’d need to remove the eyebrow to access the wiring loom. But I also read that TD5 and later models have a single plug at the back of the wing.


does anyone happen to know if when removing a puma wing whether I can disconnect a multi-plug and thereby leave both the inner wing and the eyebrow attached when removing the wing?


thank you!



Edited by twodoorgaz
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Dealer. I found the rust during an inspection - the pics show it after I’d poked it through and they’d removed the carpets and as a result got significant money off the price. While they’d be happy to do it, it would just end up being a patch over. I’ve rebuilt plenty of series bulkheads before and know I’ll take the time to do a more careful job so would prefer to do it myself. Had it up on ramps and spent an hour going over it: this is the only rust on the car.

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4 hours ago, Lightning said:

Fair enough. A bit worrying that the floor can already rot out on a 2010 Defender, even one that’s been looked after....

Better get outside and check my TD5

A 10 year old vehicle built to 70 year old standards it's not *that* surprising :huh:

  • Haha 1
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Had a rear crossmember replaced on a 13-plate 90 last year. Rotten through :(

As for the question - it sounds like you have the skills required to do the job and know what you are doing. I would add in application of seam sealer to help keep any return of rust at bay. The double-layer construction of the footwell is hellish for trapping water and encouraging rust. 

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Having taken the nearside wing off a td5 in the last couple of days, one bit of advice i can give you: The alarm siren is mounted to the wing, it'll come with it but if you just disconnect the loom at the multi-plug (clipped to the heater box, you need to slide it off the mount before unplugging it, the tab it's slid on locks the connector together, to get it off you need to lift the little clip that latches it to the bracket it's on.  You won't be able to see what you're doing, you do it by feel) the alarm will sound until its internal battery dies.  To get around this, you need to turn the ignition on, then off and within 10-15 seconds disconnect the vehicle battery.

The inner and outer wing are connected by the wheel arch eyebrow, it's very awkward if not impossible to remove the outer wing and leave the inner behind without removing the eyebrow.  You can lift the complete inner and outer wing off as one and that is possible with the eyebrow still on but it makes getting at the wing to bulkhead bolts very awkward.  Having removed countless defender wings over the years, i would now always remove the eyebrow. (Buy new plastic rivets, you WILL lose all the centre pins when you push them out, britpart ones are a bit poorly made, i prefer the bearmach ones but genuine are best). 

I think if i was working alone on a car with nice paint, the safest method i have found is to remove the outer and leave the inner to remove later if it's in the way.  Removing the whole assembly requires wiggling it past pipes and the shock turret and presents many chances to scratch the paint.

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Guys - that’s incredibly useful, thank you!

I'm picking up the 90 on Tuesday, once back I’ll have a weigh up on access to see which parts I need to remove to access the rust but will bear All the above in mind. The point on the alarm is really handy to know - I’ve never had a LR with an alarm before so all new to me.

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