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Boil your Bumper

 

The white patterns on the SRB, Super Champ, Sand Rover and Holiday Buggy bumpers are a very common problem for restorers. It does not look good on a shelf queen, and the whitening often comes before any serious scuffs.

So, is it really possible to get if of ??

(I know the pictures maybe are hard to interpret, but believe me, it really works!)

This is my "Before" picture. It's a fairly nice bumper but with some serious whitening due to being bent, presumably from crashes.

the white marks are signs of stress in the plastic, and a common way to relieve stress is to use heat treatment. This is also done to metal, but of course at much higher temperatures, and more complex procedures.

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So, I put my bumper in a pot of boiling water!

I watched the process for 1-2 minutes, and the white in the plastic disappeared before my eyes. This is really cool!

And now I know that the plastic does not melt in boiling water. (phew...)

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And here is the result after a few minutes of cooling. No white left at all!

I did no active cooling, just left it to air cool.

Please note that the scratches will of course not disappear... ;-)

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Written by Larbut

Comments  

#4 BramMeijer 2013-03-31 15:32
Hi guys, worked like a charme on my bumper! Boiled it for about 5-6 min no sweat. Result is good. Should have taken before after pics...Tnx for the tip Lars!!

Cheers, Bram
#3 larbut 2012-11-14 23:40
Shame on me, ABS melts at 221 Farenheit, not Celcius. So Notch's advice to be careful is spot on. (again, if the bumpers are ABS, which I am not sure of.)
#2 larbut 2012-11-13 15:57
I am not sure if the bumpers are ABS, but if they are; ABS plastic has a melting point at 221 deg Celcius, so it will not melt by boiling in water.
#1 Notch 2012-11-12 21:21
I would warn that this kind of plastic (which I think is ABS) will indeed start melting and bend/shrink/war p if boiled for too long! A quick 1-2 minute boil is probably
perfect for fixing the surface, but a good 5-10 minute boil may permanently reshape your precious item!