DIY HDPE skidplate

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by Spam16v, Jan 26, 2014.

  1. Spam16v

    Spam16v Squid Rocket

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    Looking to add a low cost HDPE skid plate to my CRF150f I just got. There are some tabs on the frame, but I have plans to add some more "structural" tabs via Tig welding. McMaster has some 1/4" material available and two bikes worth is about $35. Anyone have an HDPE plate that can offer some advice?
    #1
  2. H96669

    H96669 A proud pragmatist.

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    Too far...I'd give you free HDPE,I have lots of that. That's what the commercial cutting boards are made of, I save the old ones and put them through the planer for different thicknesses.

    Any color, red ones to match the Honda colors???

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    #2
  3. Spam16v

    Spam16v Squid Rocket

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    I'd do some measuring and gladly pay my way/shipping & efforts. I was going to do black, but red sounds fancy:evil.
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  4. H96669

    H96669 A proud pragmatist.

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    They are about $25.00 new at restaurant equipment supply stores, 18"x24"x1/2". Red for meat btw.

    Not sure how impact resistant the 1/4" would be, probably pretty good. I planed some last week, I'll torture it tomorrow if I have time.

    I was more interested in bending/shaping it for projects, doesn't look too difficult.
    #4
  5. Motopsychoman

    Motopsychoman Not a total poseur

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    Use UHMW. It is WAY more durable than HDPE.
    Stuff is so study, I cut threads into it instead of using external fasteners.
    Unfortunately it only comes in black and white.
    McMaster carries UHMW also.
    #5
  6. H96669

    H96669 A proud pragmatist.

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    And about 3-4 times the price if not more.:eek1 Sure makes for lousy cutting boards, way too slippery.:wink: Someone had that bright idea at work years ago. Fine by me I took all the old yucky ones home instead of throwing them in the garbage.$2-300.00 of free UHMW.:wink:

    I gave some of both UHMW and HDPE to my friend. Unaware of the differences he used HDPE first to make blocks for the HF tire changer I gave him. We sure snapped one. All fixed with UHMW now that I pointed the differences to him.
    #6
  7. gravityisnotmyfriend

    gravityisnotmyfriend Long timer

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    It comes in yellow too. We use it here at work since it's tough and nothing sticks to it. Pretty cool stuff.
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  8. fritzcoinc

    fritzcoinc Enjoying my last V8

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    Starboard is a lot easer to work with. It's not as strong as UHMWPE but it is very strong. This is the plastic boat accessories like rod racks are made from. Starboard cuts and routers very well leaving a smooth finish. UHMWPE does not cut well or router well and can not be hot bent like HDPE and Starboard can. There is no good way to sand UHMWPE, it is just too abrasive resistant.

    I made these rear racks from Starboard. Made a wood template, rough cut and drilled, router to the template with a copy bit, router all the edges, then hot bent in a wood die. The same steps could make a skid plate.

    If you plan to use plastic, and plastic is a good material to use, use sharp tools, make straight cuts, and aim for no sanding at all so the finish will be uniform.

    Get your Starboard here:
    http://www.boedeker.com/?gclid=CKGUuNmAorwCFecRMwodl18AYQ
    They ship anywhere and take credit cards. Ask for Jake!
    It comes in white, black, grey, and putty ( computer case color ).

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  9. Motopsychoman

    Motopsychoman Not a total poseur

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    Cuts really well, routes okay. I use a chop/miter saw, band saw, router, hand tools, rasps, files, etc. on UHMW. Just use carbide bits in power tools.
    #9
  10. H96669

    H96669 A proud pragmatist.

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    Starboard???? Doesn't come up in their website under that name. We'd need another description/trade name??? I could have used some of that yesterday.

    But I played with the HDPE and the big hammer. Sure easy to break, one small hit with Great-grandpa's hammer. Shattered just like them blocks my friend made for the tire changer.:eek1

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    But now I know that I can make brackets & such out of HDPE.

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    But I disagree on the UHMW, always had good results cutting, drilling and even planing it. Drills very well with Forstner drill bits.And sands/shapes well with the proper woodworking "power" tools.
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  11. fritzcoinc

    fritzcoinc Enjoying my last V8

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    The trade name Boedecker sells is Seaboard. Basically med/high dense polyethylene.

    I don't think I made my point very well.
    What I meant was you need good, sharp tools for clean cuts on plastic.
    #11
  12. andrewgore

    andrewgore Gôremā

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    I made a skid plate for my WR450F out of UHMW Last year. I used 1/8" sheet and not once worried about it not holding up. Though if I were to do it again, I'd go with 3/16 or even 1/4" for the sake of being able to counter-sink mounting hardware better.

    The sheet was purchased from www.mcmaster.com (Item 4296A48). 24x24 was plenty for me.

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    Like Fritzcoinc, it's a bit of a pain heat forming it. It just takes time for the heat to dissipate, and when it does, it still doesn't hold the shape the best. We have a giant band saw at our shop, so cutting it was no issue. Drilling holes with standard drill bits is easy enough, and finishing can be done with a dremel.

    I cut out a template out of cardboard. I then cut out the UHMW Sheet to size & added my mounting holes. I fixtured the lower mounting holes to the bike, and then applied heat to the skid plate. I slowly bent around the frame rails until I could screw in my upper mounting holes. I had tried to add some more side engine protection, but without having a plug\mold to hold the plastic in place while hot, it's a real PITA. Compound curves with any of this forming is a trick to say the least :lol3

    It is nice and slick stuff though. Going over rocks\logs, it didn't grab like the aluminum would.

    Hope that offers some sort of help.

    Andrew
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  13. Spam16v

    Spam16v Squid Rocket

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    That's exactly what I'm going for! Flawless.

    What method did you use to heat it? Oven or heat gun?
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  14. dhallilama

    dhallilama Been here awhile

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    the only complaint i had about the UHMW skid plate on my bike: i forgot how slippery the stuff is... slipped off the work stand more than a couple times.

    sure is nice sliding over stuff, though...
    #14
  15. andrewgore

    andrewgore Gôremā

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    It was far from flawless. :lol3

    I used a small propane torch & kept the flame constantly moving. Very easy to go too far with the heat. It'll start to brown\bubble like a creme brulee. An oven would have been a better choice, as I would have gotten a better flex out of the entire thing, but for some reason I didn't think to toss it in our oven here.

    Andrew
    #15
  16. DennisK_ID

    DennisK_ID Old and In the Way

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    I thought I posted this this morning. Am I spacy or banned?

    Great post. I've been going to order some 6061-T6 AL to make a rack for my GS. I'm also considering a sandwich of fiberglass over 1/4" ply. After reading this post I immediately ordered a piece of black Starboard. I did a search for starboard plastic and found it at Boat Outfitters. It looks to be HDPE so I'll see how impact resistant it is.
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  17. H96669

    H96669 A proud pragmatist.

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    Seabord!!!...you bunch of landlubbers!!!:devildog

    Same specs as commercial cutting boards:

    "High density polyethylene sheet formulated to meet the specific requirements of marine and other outdoor environments. Stress relieved and UV stabilized specifically for harsh marine environments. Impervious to the salt and moisture on boats. Resists "softening". Resists scratching. Meets FDA requirements for use in applications where it may come in contact with food. Extruded and exhibits consistent color and dimensional characteristics. Great for ship and boat components exposed to outdoor environment, playground equipment, swimming pool equipment, food industry and food service equipment, park and recreational outdoor equipment....."
    #17
  18. Spam16v

    Spam16v Squid Rocket

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    McMaster distributes HDPE listed as Starboard.

    "Also known as starboard, these sheets won't degrade when exposed to salt water, humidity, and UV light. They have a textured finish that won't show scuffs or scratches. Width and length tolerances are +1/16". These sheets are an excellent electrical insulator. They're also FDA compliant and meet UL 94HB for flame retardance and ASTM D4976."

    Going to yank the engine out of my frame to hang upside down and glue some structural tabs on and make one plate & a template to use with a router for replacement for the mighty CRF before it thaws. I'll probably hole saw at least a drain and leave the back able to shed mud and muck out from being held in. I know I'm not going to see any real rock gardens here in my area to speak of, but sliding over logs and such is very common and my main goal. $100 for an aluminum one seems foolish and I'm far from a fan of how they mount.
    #18
  19. Spam16v

    Spam16v Squid Rocket

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    24x24" sheet of 1/4" startboard on the way. Plan is to use 8mm stainless buttonhead Allen screws to secure.
    #19
  20. fritzcoinc

    fritzcoinc Enjoying my last V8

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    Price Seaboard from Boedecker Plastics before you pay twice as much for the name Starboard at a boat place.
    #20