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Old 08-03-2019, 11:21 PM
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mccutter mccutter is offline
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Question What adhesive do I use to repair a door panel (card)?

What adhesive do I use to repair a door panel (card)?

Working on a 2007 VW EOS. Sort of like a Rabbit 2-door but with retractable roof and way different (and unique). Do a search of it, you'll see the magic...

The tops of the door panels in this car were exposed to many successive days/nights of rain/sun/rain/sun, etc. because of inoperable windows and/or roof. The thin "fiberboard" or whatever they are made of got wet then dry over and over again until it "straightened" out. The sun kills everything here in FL, especially car paint and interiors.

The board should be "molded" against the plastic piece, clamped to show its location. The plastic piece supports the top of the panel and holds it into the inside window seal/track.

Compounding the issue is that the "glue" used by the OEM has been cooked into a gooey, waxy substance with NO adhesive qualities. It is shown scraped off with a putty knife but it still left a residue that would need to be removed before repair.

I had toyed with the idea of steaming or soaking it to bend the board back but came across some used panels in much better condition but still needing work. The plastic piece will still need gluing back but the board is not deformed.

And the glue is less melted so less mess.

Why not just get new door panels? Because they are $400 EACH and even used are $150 on debay needing work. I thought I paid a lot at $40 each but they did include switches. This is a low-budget $800 "beater".

First 4 pics show the old panel and the last is the new. These are the left side, front of the panel is to your left. Note how the new door panel board isn't warped...

(con't)
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Last edited by mccutter; 08-03-2019 at 11:30 PM.
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Old 08-03-2019, 11:27 PM
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Default What adhesive do I use to repair a door panel (card)? (con't)

What adhesive do I use to repair a door panel (card)? (con't)

First pic shows the better panel towards the rear. The vinyl has come away from the board.

What is a good adhesive to glue the vinyl back?

Next pics show the right side panel. this must have been replaced at some point in time as it looks like they wised up and used all plastic. BUT they still used the same old crappy glue.

Any suggestions on an industrial adhesive that would bond the plastic to the board? And plastic to plastic?
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TA Arcmaster 185 w/tig/stick kit
MillerMatic 252 w/3rd gen 30A
MM140 w/o AS, w/CO2
Hobart (Miller) 625 plasma
Hobart 250ci plasma
Victor O/A (always ready, but bored)
Lincoln Patriot autodark (freebie)
45ACP Black Talons for those stubborn jobs...

Last edited by mccutter; 08-04-2019 at 05:57 PM.
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  #3  
Old 08-04-2019, 12:11 AM
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epoxy.
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Old 08-04-2019, 09:01 AM
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I’ve had pretty good luck with contact cement for kitchen counter tops. Careful though 1 touch and you might be screwed.

Failing that some 3m spray glue. I believe 77 was number. Not sure on number.

Yes those are magical.

A buddy has one and the battery died with doors locked. No keys anywhere to get in. Jack up and put a starter pack on the main terminal on starter to power and open car.

Scott


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Old 08-04-2019, 10:17 AM
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Go to a local body shop to see what they use
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Old 08-04-2019, 11:01 AM
Lew Hartswick Lew Hartswick is offline
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If you do use epoxy, I highly recommend West System "GFlex" . It's great for that sort of application, where there is some flexibility needed.
...lew...
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Old 08-04-2019, 01:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by digr View Post
Go to a local body shop to see what they use
I agree. That is what I would do.
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Old 08-04-2019, 04:51 PM
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I repaired a Fiero panel for a buddy, with a hot glue gun and a bunch of clamps. It was a friggin nightmare, but we finally got it.

RED
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Old 08-04-2019, 09:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shade Tree Welder View Post
epoxy.
Yup. Got some JB Kwik black/white=dk grey. Good for small batches--fixed a bunch of car plastic stuff already with it recently (ie: headlight tabs, radiator/headlight support, etc)... It should work well plastic/plastic for the right side.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Scotts View Post
Failing that some 3m spray glue. I believe 77 was number.
Having my son get some as we speak... Had forgotten all about that! UPDATE: they wouldn't let him buy it as he was under 18...

Quote:
Originally Posted by digr View Post
Go to a local body shop to see what they use
I got a guy down the street--I'll ask him. Good suggestion!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lew Hartswick View Post
If you do use epoxy, I highly recommend West System "GFlex" .
Another miracle of modern science I forgot about. Used to use it all the time working on boats. My personal stash hardened about a decade ago and never replaced it...

PS: do these series of letters tell what the panel is made of?
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TA Arcmaster 185 w/tig/stick kit
MillerMatic 252 w/3rd gen 30A
MM140 w/o AS, w/CO2
Hobart (Miller) 625 plasma
Hobart 250ci plasma
Victor O/A (always ready, but bored)
Lincoln Patriot autodark (freebie)
45ACP Black Talons for those stubborn jobs...

Last edited by mccutter; 08-04-2019 at 10:06 PM.
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  #10  
Old 08-05-2019, 11:59 AM
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MetalWolf MetalWolf is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mccutter View Post
What adhesive do I use to repair a door panel (card)? (con't)

First pic shows the better panel towards the rear. The vinyl has come away from the board.

What is a good adhesive to glue the vinyl back?

Next pics show the right side panel. this must have been replaced at some point in time as it looks like they wised up and used all plastic. BUT they still used the same old crappy glue.

Any suggestions on an industrial adhesive that would bond the plastic to the board? And plastic to plastic?
First...
3M spray adhesive to glue vinyl back to the panel being old and one thing never mentioned and is why people have adhesion issues is because they don't know about using the adhesion agent first in order to get a good bond...
You must seal with the adhesion agent first!!!

Second...
If filling or repairing cracks in plastic door panels it's a trial and error for most
there is the right way and then temp patching...

cracks in plastic use a plastic welder to remelt the crack back together
if it needs a sandable filling use superglue and baking soda mixed together for a durable and sandable surface...

when plastic welding in the auto industry there are typically three types of plastic and common plastic being one door panels are usually one of the three
Plastic, ABS, and or PPVC-based material... all can be welded/bonded

If you have a larger broken piece weld with appropriate plastic filler
back with another piece of material using a good bonding epoxy flexible epoxies work the best over rigid epoxies.

Somewhere in here, I believe I posted the plastic dashboard build for my Tahoe took three broke to hell dashboards and cut apart all the good usable pieces and built one and changed the color of it too.

thats been a few years ago and is still in excellent shape and not cracking up or coming apart not even losing color form color change... using plastic welding superglue and baking soda and the proper adhesion agent for bonding color dies same adhesion agent for rebonding vinyl to panels or headliner board...

either way, it is only a feasible replacement to do all this over buying a new replacement... because it is costly and extremely time-consuming and you don't save anything by going this route.

But Not if the panels or cosmetics of something like this are not available used for a fair price or just not available at all then it is the route to go if it's worth the time and effort...

so sometimes it cheaper to pay the 400 and be done with it than to spend more on materials and labor...
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