*Help* in Glue and Repairing- Polyethylene?


Old 10-30-09, 08:26 AM
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*Help* in Glue and Repairing- Polyethylene?

I have a Polyurethane or Polyethylene(I believe) Wheel barrow that I am rebuilding. It has a stress crack ( in the bottom pan 1/4 wide x 8 inches long) that has been opening steadily overtime on the front bolt area. I would like to keep it from expanding. I have called two adhesive companies and both said their product would not work, Bondo and System Three epoxy. That saved me a bit of grief so far! I am thinking of putting a few stitches in with some stainless coil/wire.
Now I would like to know what can really bond this together. Then perhaps add some door screening as a( fiberglass cloth substitute) method of strengthening the whole area. I know there is adhesive for this plastic!
Thought I would pry some minds here for a sure fire method.
Would like not to repeat this chore!
Thanks All
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Old 10-30-09, 02:10 PM
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Your first problem is correctly identifying the type of plastic you have. There are many different forms of polyethylene and they each behave differently though none are considered glue friendly. It is possibly your wheel barrow tub is made from a recycled material or possibly a multi-layered plastic composed of several different plastics. Basically if you cannot find a solvent that will disolve it chances are there is not a glue to bond it. Most roto molded plastics are considered not glueable.

I would drill a hole (size is not important but 1/4" is good) at both ends of the crack. There is a stress in the plastic causing the crack and the crack will continue to follow the line of stress. Right now the end of the crack is razor sharp so it proceedes through the material easily. If you drill a hole at the end of the crack it spreads the stresses around the circumference of the hole reducing the chance that the crack will continue. When you drill you have to make sure you have actually drilled at the end of the crack. If even a microscopic bit of crack is on the other side of the hole, the crack will continue to grow.

After drilling the holes you could rivet on a plate of plastic or steel to reinforce the area. If you want to get fancy you could try bonding the patch plate with some high tech double sided adhesive tape.
Old 10-30-09, 03:28 PM
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My youngest son bought a house a few years ago and inheritted one of those type wheel barrows - it had several bad cracks What I did was take a piece of scrap sheet metal, cut it to fit and drilled and bolted it inplace. I don't know how often or how hard he uses it but the last time I was over there the wheel barrow was still usable
Old 10-31-09, 12:45 PM
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Super Glue sells a 2-part adhesive that will bond this and any plastic, including the 2 kinds that were previously un-gluable/un-epoxyable. And I have used it on those plastics, including yours, and it works. There is no mistake what the type of glue is, if you can find it. I bought it in an aisle at a True Value hardware store that had a huge glue section. It says it right on the label.

I can't say though the glue, by itself, would be effective in making a structural repair for your application, say, without using the glue to bond a similar or other plastic patch. But I am responding mainly to let you, and any other curious person know, of the actual availabity of a product that is out there, for this purpose, solving a previous unsolved problem.

Many kids toys are made of that previously ungluable plastic, just so you know.
Old 11-01-09, 06:36 PM
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Many kids toys are made of that previously ungluable plastic, just so you know.[/QUOTE]

I am curious. What do mean with this phrase?
Old 11-04-09, 06:11 PM
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Okay. There are big brand name toy companies (FP is one) that makes kids trikes, strollers, and stuff. They are made out of that oily polyxxxxxxx or polyyyyyyy plastic, that USED TO BE unglueable/unepoxiable......until Super Glue came up with that two-part adhesive (actually it is like a primer and adhesive)......that says right on the front lable that it glues ALL plastics, including polyxxxxxxxx, and polyyyyyyyyyyy plastics.

Those plastics used to be not possible to permanently glue. Even some epoxy companies(most people think a good epoxy will adhere anything to anything) printed on their instructions(probably due to complaints) that the epoxy will adhere a,b,c,d,etc., but not polyxxxxxxx, or polyyyyyyyy.

I had to also buy that newer two part Super Glue to repair a hole in one of those slippery-oily black plastic bases on those sand or water- filled- base basketball hoop stands. We had to rerepair the repair because a failure in the patch material. But the two-part Super Glue bit into that plastic so well I had to use a razor scraper and knife to clean the adhesive from the area. If any other adhesive had been used on this particular polyxxxxx plastic, it would have simply just pulled away.

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