Either the second builder is guilty of extremely poor workmanship or did not realize he purchased a pig in a poke and eventually sold it to the next unsuspecting builder.
This lack of pride and professionalism in building, especially in an area as critical as the firewall is totally unacceptable and then selling it off to someone else in my opinion is unethical.
However, I must question the inspection made prior to the last purchase since most of the area is visible with an inspection mirror, flashlight and knowledge of what is acceptable in simple aircraft construction and maintenance.
I'm surprised there have been so few posts registering concern that this blatantly poor workmanship might exist in this group.
I expected better.
Build 'em light, keep it simple
I'd rather fly than tinker.
"There's a big difference between a pilot and an aviator. One is a technician, the other is an artist in love with flight."
- Elrey B. Jeppesen,