In the previous post, I mentioned that I intended to take the Laguna for repair to a franchised panelbeating organisation. According to what I could discover about them, they have about 40 branches throughout ZA. A further bit of googling on a local consumer site showed up scores of all kinds of customer complaints but the branch where my car was intended to go, had only 1 logged customer complaint.
So, I got cold feet and decided against this firm and cancelled. I did get a very nice reply from the manager/franchisee, pointing out they repair more than 3000 vehicles every month.
Anyway, I left it at that and made some more enquiries with a panelbeater's close to my home.
After getting confirmation about hydraulic removal of damage, I took the car there on Monday this week and got it back on Wednesday - as a shoddy repair.
They got the dents pulled out OK'ish but then they failed miserably with applying rubberising properly due to crooked and wavy masking between the rubberising and the paintwork.
This caused much anxiety and disappointment but the owner kept his cool and stayed friendly and co-operative.
So this morning, I delivered the car there again and spent the day unable to concentrate on work and expecting the worst.
At 4 0'clock, the firm's secretary rang, saying their driver was on his way to pick me up from home. (They offered several times to send two drivers - one driving my car and the other bloke to provide transport back for the second driver).
I declined this offer, preferring to view my car at their premises.
Anyway, when I saw my car this afternoon, they had done a magnificent job to correct the earlier effort. I don't know how they did it in the few hours since this morning, but they somehow managed.
I'm sure members here will agree that the damage caused was a difficult repair where straight lines and smooth contours are essential to restore.
Anyway, here's the Laguna, none the worst for wear and safely back in my garage.
Lesson to myself: Buy a Haynes manual (not available here) and resume diy as I've done with all my other Renaults in the past.
I also take this opportunity to thank all Forum members for their contributions to this saga.
Regards to all.