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Grill Repair. GREAT SCOTT (Smith)! IT REALLY WORKS!!! #1255379
06/22/12 01:45 AM
06/22/12 01:45 AM
Joined: Dec 2003
Posts: 10,903
Spokane Valley, WA
Big Bad Bee Offline OP
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Big Bad Bee  Offline OP
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About a year ago, there was a post about how to mend an ABS plastic grill. My neighbor Scott Smith provided a solution and remembering best I could, I replicated the process yesterday on my 1970 Superbee grill, which had complete cracks all along the bottom row of vertical ribs. So what follows is a step by step description of what I did.

This is an example of what I started out with. 3/4 of the ribs on the lower side of the grill cracked in half.



First I washed them with water and dish washing liquid, then sanded the paint off broken areas to insure a good bond. Definitely the slowest, most tedious part of the project.

Next, grabbing a stick of 2.5" diameter ABS plumbing pipe I bought at the Home Depot and my leatherman tool, I spent about 45 minutes scraping off shavings. I did some like little wood chips and others very fine shreads by running the blade edge perpendicular to the surface of the pipe.


The fine shreads worked really great, the worked chips ok, but they took longer to melt. I poured a couple tablespoons of acetone into a glass jar and began mixing in the ABS shavings with a piece of all-thread. The shavings melt super fast.



I made it a about the runny consistancy of salad dressing.



Note two things here. I took some clothes pins and took the spring out, turned the wood sides backwards and inside out, put the spring back on. Now I had little wooden needle nose clamps. I shaved some down to fit in slots that were tight, sometimes cutting one tip shorter than the other. Then starting on one end and working my way across, I applied the goo to 3 or 4 breaks and then applied a clamp. I applied the goo with a Starbucks coffee lid stopper. they are made of soft rubberized plastic and the acetone doesn't melt them. They have a nice flat paddle end on them to hold and a broad tip, unlike a toothpick.



Toward the end, it got a little tricky but working quickly, I got all the joints glued and placed the last two clamps. I used 6 in all.



The ABS goo skins pretty fast and I had to add a little acetone and stir it up about 2/3 of the way through the process on each grill. Once I got the whole thing glued and clamped, I went over each spot building up the surrounding area of each break.



I finished both grills and let them set over night.



The results...





Lest you think I am a crazy man (you may be right. I may be crazy...), I did test it out on a grill piece before I attempted the whole deal. The acetone takes a few days to cure really hard and it's very strong.

Next I will file away the blobs with a fine, flat rattail file, sand and spray with SEM black.

Thanks for your suggestion on this, Scott! It works great.

Last edited by Big Bad Bee; 06/22/12 01:46 AM.

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Re: Grill Repair. GREAT SCOTT (Smith)! IT REALLY WORKS!!! [Re: Big Bad Bee] #1255380
06/22/12 02:09 AM
06/22/12 02:09 AM
Joined: Sep 2003
Posts: 1,166
Vancouver, WA
MoparMarq Offline
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Vancouver, WA
Not only nice work, but you even had time to share pictures with the rest of us. I, for one,
very much appreciate it.

Re: Grill Repair. GREAT SCOTT (Smith)! IT REALLY WORKS!!! [Re: MoparMarq] #1255381
06/22/12 02:32 AM
06/22/12 02:32 AM
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 166
Los Altos Hills, CA
Dans 68 Offline
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Agreed! Thanks for taking the time to share.

Dan

Re: Grill Repair. GREAT SCOTT (Smith)! IT REALLY WORKS!!! [Re: Dans 68] #1255382
06/22/12 03:11 AM
06/22/12 03:11 AM
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 42,707
Spokane Washington
ScottSmith_Harms Offline
Mr Wizzard
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I'm glad it worked out for you Lindy, if you need any pointers getting the final finishing results you are after feel free to stop by and I'll try to help you out.

Re: Grill Repair. GREAT SCOTT (Smith)! IT REALLY WORKS!!! [Re: ScottSmith_Harms] #1255383
06/22/12 07:15 AM
06/22/12 07:15 AM
Joined: May 2009
Posts: 369
Lexington NC
twinscrew698 Offline
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Lexington NC
Thanks for posting and sharing your tips!
I am sure some of us would either keep this as a future reference or be using it now!
Thanks for taking the time to post the pics also!

Re: Grill Repair. GREAT SCOTT (Smith)! IT REALLY WORKS!!! [Re: ScottSmith_Harms] #1255384
06/22/12 12:27 PM
06/22/12 12:27 PM
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pa.
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dan9 Offline
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I envy and appreciate people who can figure this stuff out!

Re: Grill Repair. GREAT SCOTT (Smith)! IT REALLY WORKS!!! [Re: dan9] #1255385
06/22/12 12:41 PM
06/22/12 12:41 PM
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dogdays Offline
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Congratulations, it worked for you. Probably as strong as original.
This was the subject of an article in Mopar Muscle a few years back, thanks for the reminder.

Do you think you could manufacture small parts with, say, a plaster of paris mold and possibly adding a bit more solvent to your goo? I'm curious.

R.

Re: Grill Repair. GREAT SCOTT (Smith)! IT REALLY WORKS!!! [Re: dogdays] #1255386
06/22/12 01:32 PM
06/22/12 01:32 PM
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Posts: 2,536
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wunderless Offline
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Awesome stuff!

I plan on pulling out my cuda grille this winter and doing it. I suppose this technique would work for that.

Thank you!


But existing is basically all I do.
Re: Grill Repair. GREAT SCOTT (Smith)! IT REALLY WORKS!!! [Re: ScottSmith_Harms] #1255387
06/22/12 02:06 PM
06/22/12 02:06 PM
Joined: Dec 2003
Posts: 10,903
Spokane Valley, WA
Big Bad Bee Offline OP
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Big Bad Bee  Offline OP
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Thank you guys for the kind words.

Quote:

I'm glad it worked out for you Lindy, if you need any pointers getting the final finishing results you are after feel free to stop by and I'll try to help you out.




Scott, I'll take you up on it! Any suggestions on paint choices? I've been told Pentastar Reproductions Argent Silver is good and I was thinking of using SEM Trim Black for the black areas. Let me know what I need?


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Re: Grill Repair. GREAT SCOTT (Smith)! IT REALLY WORKS!!! [Re: dogdays] #1255388
06/22/12 02:16 PM
06/22/12 02:16 PM
Joined: Dec 2003
Posts: 10,903
Spokane Valley, WA
Big Bad Bee Offline OP
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Big Bad Bee  Offline OP
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Spokane Valley, WA
Quote:

Congratulations, it worked for you. Probably as strong as original.
This was the subject of an article in Mopar Muscle a few years back, thanks for the reminder.

Do you think you could manufacture small parts with, say, a plaster of paris mold and possibly adding a bit more solvent to your goo? I'm curious.

R.




Hmmmmmmm. Interesting idea. I think so. As far as I can tell, the ABS hardens just as good as the original product once the acetone is gone, which takes a while. I left a good amount in the jar from the first go round just to see what it would do, and because I knew that it would be easier to get out in one big chunk. It hardened to a shiny, hard consistancy just like a plumbing fitting (elbow, coupling etc.). If I knew anything about plaster molds I would probably give it a shot. The limiting factor probably being how big the part is. It would take a lot of shaving and mixing to get an 8 ounce cup going and I don't think you would want to risk filling the mold in more than just one batch.

Scott might be able to address it. He used to work in the injection molded plastic industry. Scott?

Last edited by Big Bad Bee; 06/22/12 02:20 PM.

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Re: Grill Repair. GREAT SCOTT (Smith)! IT REALLY WORKS!!! [Re: Big Bad Bee] #1255389
06/22/12 05:19 PM
06/22/12 05:19 PM
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 42,707
Spokane Washington
ScottSmith_Harms Offline
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Quote:

Awesome stuff!

I plan on pulling out my cuda grille this winter and doing it. I suppose this technique would work for that.

Thank you!




Yes it works on Cuda grilles as well as most other muscle car era plastic Mopar grilles.

ABS thermoplastic resin is not engineered to be chemically broken down and reused/reconstituted, it is meant to be heated and molded under pressure (hence the term "thermo" plastic) and even when reheated it will lose a percentage of it's original properties each time. It WILL also lose some of it's original characteristics when melted chemically and allowed to harden, but the changes are subtle enough that it works quite well as a repair material. In some cases you could make small molded parts as suggested (I'd use a silicone mold as opposed to plaster) but the outcome and durability will be variable.

Re: Grill Repair. GREAT SCOTT (Smith)! IT REALLY WORKS!!! [Re: ScottSmith_Harms] #1255390
06/22/12 06:08 PM
06/22/12 06:08 PM
Joined: Dec 2003
Posts: 10,903
Spokane Valley, WA
Big Bad Bee Offline OP
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Big Bad Bee  Offline OP
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Good explanation. I was concerned about chemical breakdown, especially after repeated applications of the acetone.

I was curious to note that the acetone smells like PVC and ABS plastic cement. When I worked in plumbing I was told that the cement actually melts and creates a chemical bond between two parts. I'm guessing that the light amount of acetone in the "Goo" I made is not only acting on the melted ABS but also on the surface of the grill parts.


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Re: Grill Repair. GREAT SCOTT (Smith)! IT REALLY WORKS!!! [Re: Big Bad Bee] #1255391
06/22/12 06:40 PM
06/22/12 06:40 PM
Joined: Nov 2011
Posts: 2,154
Its a TRAP!
DARTH V8Я Offline
Oh No!! I just had a moron attack!
DARTH V8Я  Offline
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Its a TRAP!
Awesome work! If you don't mind, I'll post later a very simple effective way to fix a grill with pieces missing. End results are a repair that's stronger then the surrounding area


When it takes more than a sweet mullet to prove you rule at the trailer park..
Re: Grill Repair. GREAT SCOTT (Smith)! IT REALLY WORKS!!! [Re: Big Bad Bee] #1255392
06/22/12 08:28 PM
06/22/12 08:28 PM
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So Cal
Sinitro Offline
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Awesome.. Great details..
Unfortunately we can't purchase acetone in LA County..

Just my $0.02...

Re: Grill Repair. GREAT SCOTT (Smith)! IT REALLY WORKS!!! [Re: Sinitro] #1255393
06/22/12 09:50 PM
06/22/12 09:50 PM
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Posts: 10,903
Spokane Valley, WA
Big Bad Bee Offline OP
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Ice, please do!

Sinitro, You need a road trip to San Berdoo!


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Re: Grill Repair. GREAT SCOTT (Smith)! IT REALLY WORKS!!! [Re: DARTH V8Я] #1255394
06/22/12 11:49 PM
06/22/12 11:49 PM
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Quartz Hill, CA
67Charger Offline
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Quote:

Awesome work! If you don't mind, I'll post later a very simple effective way to fix a grill with pieces missing. End results are a repair that's stronger then the surrounding area




I'm looking forward to it. I've got 3 '68 Charger grilles that all need some work like this.


11.33 @ 118.46 on motor
10.75 @ 125.35 w/ a little spray
Now, high Speed Open Road Racing - Silver State Classic Challenge, Nevada Open Road Challenge, Big Bend Open Road Race
Re: Grill Repair. GREAT SCOTT (Smith)! IT REALLY WORKS!!! [Re: Big Bad Bee] #1255395
06/22/12 11:50 PM
06/22/12 11:50 PM
Joined: Nov 2011
Posts: 2,154
Its a TRAP!
DARTH V8Я Offline
Oh No!! I just had a moron attack!
DARTH V8Я  Offline
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Joined: Nov 2011
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Its a TRAP!
Quote:

Ice, please do!





I should have taken more pics.. but its on a Chevy Vega lol. Anyways I was frustrated with trying to make plastic 'shelves' for grills that I have that were broken.. a real PITA to shape, bond, etc. I'm into make model RC WWII aircraft bigtime, and familular with balsa wood. When finished properly, it harder the thermo/abs plastic, and the balsa has the added bonus of easly shaped to conform to whatever I need.

Thats what I did. Shaped fit a piece of balsa wood, then covered with resine ( that kind one uses with fiberglass mat). I then used a sponge brush to spread out the resine. Its almost self leveling, after it dries theres very minimal sanding to do, and one ends up with a very strong repair that after painted, looks 100% factory.

Pic below dosn't do it justice, but there it is in a nutshell so to speak.



So theres my little contribution to the MoPar community


When it takes more than a sweet mullet to prove you rule at the trailer park..
Re: Grill Repair. GREAT SCOTT (Smith)! IT REALLY WORKS!!! [Re: Big Bad Bee] #1255396
06/23/12 10:02 AM
06/23/12 10:02 AM
Joined: Dec 2003
Posts: 765
Franklin CT
syleng1 Offline
super stock
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WOW! If I only knew that trick years ago (and 3 grills ago. I truely love the advantages of the brain trust there is here on MoParts.

My only questions is "why can't you buy acetone?"
is California that stricts with emmissions? Isn't nail polish remover acetone?

Great Job!

Joe

Re: Grill Repair. GREAT SCOTT (Smith)! IT REALLY WORKS!!! [Re: Sinitro] #1255397
06/23/12 10:25 AM
06/23/12 10:25 AM
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Rancho Cordova, California (Sa...
hemi71x Offline
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Quote:

Awesome.. Great details..
Unfortunately we can't purchase acetone in LA County..

Just my $0.02...




Wow, can't purchase acetone down there in LA.
It's readily available up here in Northern California (Sacramento) anyway.

Just bought a gallon of it at Lowes for $16.00
Expensive stuff, but available.
As for now, anyway.


[img]http://i.imgur.com/21dhAP3.jpg[/img]
RF-4C Phantom 69-370 Zweibrucken, Germany
Re: Grill Repair. GREAT SCOTT (Smith)! IT REALLY WORKS!!! [Re: hemi71x] #1255398
06/23/12 11:06 AM
06/23/12 11:06 AM
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 42,707
Spokane Washington
ScottSmith_Harms Offline
Mr Wizzard
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Spokane Washington
If you can't buy Acetone MEK (Methyl Ethyl Ketone) works just as well if not better but is more toxic so don't get it on your skin or inhale it.

*One of the main reasons Acetone has been banned in some areas is due to the fact that it's often used to process Methamphetamine.

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