Can the GEM plastic rear fender be repaired? Our local streets are very rough and the plastic has cracked in multiple places, but is still intact. I ran across something called “plastifix” on the web has anyone used this?
The GEM plastic parts are made of ABS and can be repaired with plumbing ABS cement and scraps of ABS material. Slather the cement on the back of the area that needs repair and stick a scrap piece over the crack. Sand down the surfaces first to give the cement a good surface to work with.
ABS cement is a solvent that melts the surface and will make a permanent repair. It’s far easier if you remove the part and cover the outside with tape so the ABS cement won’t leak through and get all over the place. Use weights or clamps to hold the patch material in place for a few hours till the cement hardens.
I fixed a big crack in the front hood/fender on mine this way. Seems to have worked quite well.
Thanks Bob, exactly the information I was looking for. I’ll give this a try and post the results.
I tried the repair that was described and it worked quite well, but within 3 to 4 months our rough streets had broken the cracked fender open again. Now it’s worse than ever. I’m afraid that the only solution is to replace the fender. Does anyone have a suggestion for reasonably priced used parts?
I had cracks on my Bodywork. In the process of painting my Gem I fixed all the cracks. As you found fixing a crack can be temporary Unless us repair or support it from the back. Using abs glue works good but it’s real hard for it to glue it all the way threw. This is what I did.
- I took a dremmel to the crack (on the front side ) and opend it up wider so I could get the glue deep in the crack.
- Then from the back I used a grinder, made some real deep scratches so the fiberglass could bight into the plastic.
- Then I used fiberglass resin and fiberglass mat to make a support for any cracks that had been repaired from the front side.
- All mounting points I decided to re-inforce. Like the hood and the rear fender mounts all have patches of glass where ever a bolt runs threw it or it mounts to a mount.
Here are 2 examples of what I’m talking about
Front side of the crack.
Thank you, given the cost of a replacement fender I’ll try again. Note that I had cut PVC pieces and had reinforces the back side, but our streets are just plain brutal. I’ll post the results…
Do you have rubber washers on the bottom and rubber washer and body washer on top at the attaching points. I also use self locking nuts and only draw them up snug.
Ace is the Place.
[quote=OLD HOUSEBOATER;23141]Do you have rubber washers on the bottom and rubber washer and body washer on top at the attaching points. I also use self locking nuts and only draw them up snug.
Ace is the Place.[/quote]
Grainger supply is also good for these washers. Its the same setup on 4 wheelers. Rubber spacer washer under the body part, rubber washer on top under the steel washer and bolt or nut. If you can located the correct sized rubber shoulder washers, they work the absolute best to stop this. They fit under the body and inside the drilled body hole to stop the mounting screw from hitting the the plastic at all. Grainger has a few options for his also.
Another helpful trick is to fiberglass matt some reinforcement plates under the fender. Pick up some flat stock steel fairly thin 1" by 1/8th usually 3 feet long, its easily bendable with a vice or by hand. Form it to fit under the body part and use fiberglass resin and matt to bond it to the body, it will act as a stiffener. Home depot sells the flat stock. I have done this on golf carts and 4 wheelers to repair fenders without having to drill screws through the fender.
To confirm the fenders are ABS not PVC.