Cracked & damaged bodywork repair suggestions?

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Cracked & damaged bodywork repair suggestions?

Postby mjb666 » June 26th, 2018, 8:43 pm

Image

Across the front of my De-mountable it is showing signs of age & damage.

Has anyone got any idea's or suggestion's of how i might approach making it good/better?

Image

Mike
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Re: Cracked & damaged bodywork repair suggestions?

Postby wonkywheel » June 27th, 2018, 9:34 pm

Hi Mike,
I'm no expert but I would go for fiberglass and resin. Rough up the surface a bit for a key. Then resin, fiberglass (fine matt) and more resin.

It can be sanded smooth and even colour the resin.


Have a look at Trylon.co.uk they can give advice and information as well as supply the goods. :?:
They are only up the road from me and I used them to repair "Lightning" (my ex teardrop) :(


Best of luck

Mark
"Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm" .......(Winston Churchill)
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Re: Cracked & damaged bodywork repair suggestions?

Postby Toshbins » June 28th, 2018, 5:32 pm

Look up gelcoat repairs, usually on boats. There’s some step by step guides, although many are concerned with precise colour matching.
A bit like cracked plaster, if the damage is just on the surface, like the star cracks, then it stands a good chance of being successful, but cracks that show up a weakness in the underlying fibreglass will need reinforcing first.
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Re: Cracked & damaged bodywork repair suggestions?

Postby mjb666 » June 30th, 2018, 10:08 am

Thank you Mark & Graham for the two suggested route's of repair.

With my De-mountable being 40 odd years old and not knowing it's history, i can only go on its external visual appearance. It doesn't appear to have ever suffered any hard impact on the front end or any water ingress so my next question is, how can i asses if there is a weakness in the underlying fibreglass that would need reinforcing first?

Mike
2005 Mitsubishi L200 Single Cab 4x2
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Re: Cracked & damaged bodywork repair suggestions?

Postby wonkywheel » June 30th, 2018, 8:50 pm

Mike,

In my opinion, with the camper being 40 years old I would assume that it is well and truly dried out and cured. This will probably mean it could be quite brittle? That could account for the star-shaped surface cracks in your picture. These I would fill and smooth with a resin paste mix.

The straight line crack looks as if it is exposing part of the fiberglass thickness and, as such, I would treat differently. I think that needs support or reinforcing in some way. Personally, I would try to build up a little thickness on the inside(if that's possible) before smoothing the outside and filling with paste. I would be reluctant to cut out the damaged area and rebuild as I consider that beyond my capabilities or knowledge.

I must stress that I'm a precision engineer and toolmaker and have only dabbled at fiberglass builds and repairs. It's more in the line of a car body specialist or boat builder/repairer.


Hope this helps.
Mark
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