OK, I got the usual VDO gauges for my Bug's dashboard, a couple of those little panels to put them in, and then when I popped the first panel out of the dashboard (the one on the left side of the steering wheel), I saw a metal brace running right across the space and blocking the gauges that I want to install.

I'd really like to get the oil temp, oil pressure, and cyl. head temp gauges in. When I broke the alternator belt yesterday, I hurried home before I ran out of battery, and only remembered after I drove into the driveway that the cooling system is also connected to the alternator. Happily I was only a mile from home when that happened. I think I'd really like those temp gauges. A helicopter pilot once told me of the "bang, stare, read" theory of engine management: "The louder the bang, the faster your eyes are drawn to the gauges and the faster they go into the red."
I'd at least like to know that that's happening in my engine.

OK, the question: will I compromise the strength of the dashboard if I cut out that brace to get the gauges in? I can't see that it's really important to the dashboard, but then I didn't see that drunk driver until just before he made contact with my motorcycle, either. Just coz I can't see it...

Should I make some sort of replacement brace that allows the gauges to fit? Or can I just cut, install, and enjoy?
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Did you stick your head under the dash to see what it connects to? I know it's a real tight fit under there but I'd make sure that it doesn't have anything to do with holding the dash in place. You can remove the panel that goes under the steering column to get a better look up in there.
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