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 Do-It-Yourself Tech: Plastex Plastic Repair

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Joined : 2008-01-15
Posts : 10988
Age : 54
Location : Knoxville, TN

PostSubject: Do-It-Yourself Tech: Plastex Plastic Repair   Wed Aug 19, 2009 9:07 pm

By: Rick Sieman
If you've got a dirt bike [or ATV or snowmobile] with any off-road time on it, chances are some of the plastic parts on it are cracked. Fenders and side panels take the most abuse and many bikes are riding around with wounded parts. Have you priced a tank shroud or side panel lately? You can spend around a hundred bucks for a rather ordinary piece of plastic, or you can fix it yourself.

Up until recently, most plastic repairs have been crude, at best. You squeezed some sort of goop out of a tube onto a cracked piece of plastic, let it dry and hoped it would stick. However, ordinary vibration would normally cause the plastic to split again, leaving a trail of snot-like goop dangling from the plastic.

Here's the cracked side panel from our Project TTR230.

Now there's a new generation of plastic that leaves the repaired area actually stronger than new. Since I had a side panel on our Project Yamaha TTR230 that had a crack in it, I figured it was a likely candidate for the Plastex repair kit that we found out about.

The Plastex kit has two components; a powdered gap-filling material and an aggressive solvent that fuses everything together. It sticks to just about anything short of polypropylene or polyethylene.

It solidifies quickly, so you have to mix it in place. You don't have time to mix it like epoxy and trowel it in, as the solvent evaporates very fast and the edges would not weld a good bond with the plastic. I carved out a "V" shaped channel on the backside (so the pieces would lay flat again and leave a trench for the material), and taped over the area from the front side.

Our repair was for a side panel that had a split about eight inches long. First the cracked plastic was cleaned thoroughly with parts or plug cleaner. Then the front side of the plastic was taped together to keep the break clean. Any kind of tape will do, but we ended up using clear packing tape to hold the damaged plastic in position.
We cleaned all the broken/cracked areas of the side panel properly.By using a blade cutter, we started a cut in the cracked area of the side panel.

A V cut was made in the cracked area to give the bonding agent a greater repair surface.Matching V cuts were made in both sides of the break.

You can use a file or a small grinder to make the V trench in the break.
We put some clear tape on the front of the cracked plate to keep it perfectly lined up.

Then we applied the powder (in this case we used the white powder) to the v-shaped trench we had carved in the damaged side panel. Here you have to be careful, as the powder comes out of the bottle very easily.We'd suggest a very small hole in the tip, instead of the larger one that we did. We applied too much and were a bit worried that would cause a problem.

First, the white powder is applied to the crack in the damaged plastic.Then the hardener is gently squeezed over the white powder.

The hardener/activator was then squeezed over the powder. It's a clear liquid and when it hits the powder, it turns the mixture almost clear. It takes about 20 minutes for the Plastex to cure. We were worried about applying excessive hardener, but its not an issue. During the mixing of the powder, an excess of liquid hardener can be applied and will eventually evaporate without trace. After curing, we took the tape off the front edge and flexed the plastic a bit. It seemed plenty strong. Because we had applied too much powder, the back side of the plastic looked over done. Not to worry. You can sand, grind or carve the excess off.

Do one section at a time.Prop the plastic up so the area being worked on is level.A few cans worked well for this.
.After about 20 minutes, the Plastex cures and is dry to the touch.

Here's the finished repair.The tape can now be removed from the front of the plate and the fix is completed.

This is the basic Plastex kit, which includes white, clear and black powders.
The master kit has everything you need to make repairs in clear, black or white.

Plastex has created a new plastic-repair kit that not only allows you to fix cracked and damaged parts, but also re-created parts with missing pieces. The Plastex kit is available in three different colors of plastic powder material (White, Black, Clear), the trigger material, applicators, quick release pads, and even fiberglass fabric for repairs requiring structural support.

For cracked areas, repairs can be made in a matter of minutes, with plastic hardening taking two to three minutes. Best of all, the new Plastex material is tougher than the surrounding plastic.

For Black use part # 102713 (High strength and heat resistant)
For Clear use part # 104948 (Transparent for general repair)

Colored powders are available in kit form without liquid or each as refills. Available colors are yellow, red, blue, green and orange. Single Colored kits with all components can be special ordered by calling the order line. All kits include an instructional video CD.

Price:$29.95 Part# 2001 Standard kit white

Check for all kinds of kit sizes, prices and colors


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Joined : 2008-10-05
Posts : 263
Age : 54
Location : Southeastern Tn

PostSubject: Re: Do-It-Yourself Tech: Plastex Plastic Repair   Thu Aug 20, 2009 6:07 am

nothing some cable tie stiching won't cure in a pinch hehehe .

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Bald Eagle
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Joined : 2008-01-15
Posts : 3057
Age : 53
Location : Murvul

PostSubject: Re: Do-It-Yourself Tech: Plastex Plastic Repair   Thu Aug 20, 2009 6:32 am

S.C. wrote:
nothing some cable tie stiching won't cure in a pinch hehehe .

Yep, I've seen Nascar Attic himself do this method on the trails. I've also seen the finished product of a plastic weld like above. The color didn't match, but it bonded pretty strong.
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V.I.P Member

Joined : 2008-02-29
Posts : 1667
Age : 51
Location : Junction City, KY

PostSubject: Re: Do-It-Yourself Tech: Plastex Plastic Repair   Thu Aug 20, 2009 12:10 pm

I ve used a heat gun and a color matched plastic handle from a toothbrush in the past
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