What Are You Checking Before You Glue Pull?
The Second "C" is Check
Now that your paint is clean the next step is to check your tab adhesion area to make sure it meets the optimal requirements. There are four areas to check:
- Size of the dent
- Type of metal
- Where to start
One of the most overlooked elements of a super strong pull is temperature. When checking the temperature we need to look at the temperature of the panel, ambient air, tabs, and the glue.
The right temperature will guarantee a strong pull - too cold will crystalize the glue and too hot will prevent proper setup and solidification. An Infrared Thermometer or a heat gun is a handy tool for ensuring you have the right temperatures on everything.
- Panel – Between 70⁰ and 85⁰ F (20⁰ and 30⁰ C)
- Glue – Between 300⁰ and 350⁰ F (150⁰ and 200⁰ C)
- Tabs and Tools – Room Temperature (~60⁰ - 65⁰ F)
You should use heat guns, infrared lights, and/or booth heaters to get the temperature into the recommended range.
TECH TIP: Pay attention to the humidity! If it is humid you will get a much stronger pull by simply flashing the panel with a torch or heat gun to remove any moisture. Also, do the same thing to your tabs. Moisture WILL prevent a super strong adhesion. Get rid of it!
Size of the Dent
The size of the dent will determine two things:
- What kind of tab do you need?
- What size tab do you need?
Type of Metal
Determining the type of metal you are working with is important since different metals will behave differently while you’re repairing them. There are over 100 possible different metals and the same car can use various metals for doors, hoods, quarter panels, or chassis. You can use a magnet or check the OEM repair manual if you’re not sure.
NOTE: You cannot use GPR for plastic or fiberglass
Where to Start
Sometimes it is best to start in the deepest part of the dent but not always. It is typically best to start in the strongest spot, such as a body line or a double edge. The goal here is to find a place where we can pull that isn’t going to stretch the metal and weaken it. Moving the strongest parts first will bring your dent back as close to the original panel tension and require less work and technique later.
We recommend that you use a light panel to light up the damage from the side so you can look at the damage into the light. This will give the dents a raised profile you can see clearly in order to determine the best place to begin. Look at the whole area of the damage for details and small areas as well as where most of the work may need to be done. You absolutely need the light to be able to see the area clearly.