Cracked Luggage

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by MrBob, Nov 6, 2012.

  1. Twilight Error

    Twilight Error Going nowhere slowly

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    The salesdrone at the dealer won't know. He may say yes, if he does, probe for the type and grade of plastic so you can get some welding rod and a heat gun. The National Office probably won't know, but they could get you in touch with the designer/engineer that sepc'd the plastic - they'd definitely know.

    Except then they wouldn't be able to sell you another $600 case to replace the one you broke.
    :norton

    But all that aside, if you're going to try and repair it, don't use a soldering iron; it isn't the right tool for the job. Plastic welding is done with a high temperature hot air gun equipped with a fine nozzle and a rod of filler material of the same type you're trying to weld. Go to McMaster-carr and search through their plastics selection until you find one that matches what you've got, thats your best bet.

    Good luck.
    #21
  2. MrBob

    MrBob Out there

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    The guy who ID'd the plastic was a repair technician at a local plastic wholesaler. He wasn't interested in selling me anything. It never occurred to me to involve the dealership in this process. I knew that aggravation would be the result.
    I hear what you're saying about the hot air welder but I'm not planning to put any more money into this little adventure. There is a used bag on the Connie member forum for 75.00, as a last resort.
    The ultrasonic welding process remains intriguing but I couldn't find anyone in the area who does it.
    I just wanted to see where this quest would take me and hoped to come out the other side of it knowing more than when I began.
    #22
  3. Twilight Error

    Twilight Error Going nowhere slowly

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    Of course you'll know more, you asked the question "what do you think this is?" and if you got a reply, you're quids in :thumb

    Ultrasonic welding is very, very good and would fix the crack. Trouble is, you're going to spend more than the entire bike is worth on fixturing to make a repair worth your time. Its a great process for manufacturing, not so great for repair.

    The hot air gun is handy elsewhere - use it for heat shrink tubing, solder splices in wiring (think crimped connection, but soldered and sealed in one shot with hot air) and heating metal to break bolts free. It really is a useful tool, an adequate one can be bought from Harbor Freight, a quite good one is available at McMaster-Carr.
    #23
  4. MrBob

    MrBob Out there

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  5. Twilight Error

    Twilight Error Going nowhere slowly

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    Yeah, Harbor Freight can be hit or miss. The stuff without moving parts or a need for precision seems to be okay.
    #25
  6. James Adams

    James Adams ɹǝsn uʍop ǝpᴉsdn Administrator

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    Why not fiberglass it? Maybe I'm looking at the picture wrong, but I would stop-drill the crack and then use a small strip of fiberglass and epoxy on the inside. With good surface prep, it should adhere just fine.
    #26
  7. MrBob

    MrBob Out there

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    From my post in the Concours Owners Group forum:
    I stopped at Home Depot and picked up an epoxy billed as a plastic welder. After carefully preparing the crack with grinding and an acetone wipe I laid down a nice bead of epoxy and let it set up for a few hours. It took almost no effort to peel if off.
    #27
  8. kantuckid

    kantuckid Long timer

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    I often use a elec soldering gun with the "paddle tip" to weld plastics. A water spray btl at hand helps to set the welded areas as you work. Clamping is essential to allow working when melted, then set-up/hardening. It's possible to make very strong and esthetically decent repairs this way & for me often exceeds what a plastic welder offers to the job. I've saved some very pricey parts this way.Working from both sides can help & also having some scraps of the same thermoplastic material as a "filler rod" can help. I built wrecks & always saved scraps of the various plastics to use as fillers. A trip to a AB shop will get you some scraps to use as such. The AP store plastic epoxies work at times but a pricey solution.
    #28
  9. MrBob

    MrBob Out there

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    I'm hoping another Connie owner can come up with a scrap of broken luggage I can use for filler.
    I like the paddle tip and I'm also looking for a used heat gun because I want to have on anyway.
    Learning how to make this repair has been a good learning experience for me.
    #29
  10. kantuckid

    kantuckid Long timer

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    Look for the plastic symbol type on the luggage then find the same plastic to use for repair-doesn't have to be the same item, just same plastic. Take a look at some other plastic items and see what they are made of or google the symbols.
    #30
  11. MrBob

    MrBob Out there

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    I looked a few weeks ago and no luck on the symbols. If I had found them this would have been an easier task.
    #31
  12. Twilight Error

    Twilight Error Going nowhere slowly

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    Those are identification for recycling, they tell the processor what it is so it can be treated appropriately. Durable goods tend to not have these marks, as the likelihood of them landing in the recycling stream is very slim.
    #32
  13. Terry

    Terry Long timer

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    #33
  14. MrBob

    MrBob Out there

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    It does look like a great product. Their Youtube video is pretty interesting, too. Unfortunately, it doesn't work with polypropylene, but if I had an ABS or similar plastic to repair I think it would be a good choice.
    #34