Two Part Epoxy Glue for the Toughest Jobs
If you need to join two different materials together, or metal on metal, JB weld answers the demand quite nicely. This two part epoxy provides an industrial strength bond and is relatively easy on the wallet. In fact, when fully cured, the glue can only be removed by mechanical means such as grinding. It is widly available at hardware and home improvement stores and is easy to mix. Just sqeeze out equal portions of adhesive and catalyst and mix thoroughly. It smells funny but is not overbearing and hardly noticeable. The job I will discuss below was done with the JB weld for metals.
Busted Plastic Refrigerator Shelf
Me and my wife were really frustrated with the prospect of replacing a broken shelf that no longer could support storage. The fridge was there when we bought the place nearly 10 years ago. Who knows the difficulty or cost of finding a replacement shelf that covers the bottom crisper drawers. Whats more is it is really hard to justify spending wads of cash on a fridge that can fail at any time. So I though like MacGyver and improvised.
Tools and Materials Needed
What I did was looked in the jungle that is my tool closet to find a solution. The solution to my dilema presented itself as a lonely piece of 1/16 inch thick aluminum sheet scrap. Very quickly, I realized how I was going about this improvised repair. I needed a drill, drill bit, JB Weld two part epoxy, a Dremel rotary tool, aluminum scrap piece and a scrap piece of wood to use as a work surface.
Drill the Holes and Sand the Aluminum
I loved the serendipity of this project. Not only did I have the scrap aluminum that only needed trimmed by 1/2 an inch, I also found some sheet metal screws that I stashed from scrapping appliances. I drilled two 3/16 inch holes in the trimmed aluminum sheet scrap where it would be mounted on the plastic frame. The plastic felt cheap like it was likely ABS or polystyrene. I knew if I drilled some holes a little smaller than the threads of the screw that I could manually screw them in like they were self tapping screws. To do this, I drilled two matching 1/8 inch holes in the plastic frame. The screws fit nicely into the aluminum but not to snug. The real trick was getting a tight bond to the plastic. I used an abrasive ginder bit on my Dremel to roughen up the underside of the aluminum plate. This so the epoxy had a rough surface to bond to creating a much tougher bond.
Everything is in Place
I mixed up equal parts of epoxy with hardener in a portion the size of a dime. I applied some to the roughened side of the aluminum, dropped in the screws, and positioned it onto the frame so the screws would line up with the holes. I promptly tightened the screws until they were tight. This served two purposes, one it created a bond with the plastic, and two, it applied pressure to the aluminum plate against the frame. This in important in gluing to clamp work pieces together tightly. It squeezes out air bubbles but also creates a thinner adhesive layer assisting in shorter drying and curing times.
After it was in place, I let the shelf air cure at room temperature for 24 hours. I reinstalled in fridge, and placed the glass back on it. Although not asthetically pleasing, it is as good as new.