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Old 03-22-2008, 05:28 PM   #1
vmpolesov
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Has anyone tried that harbor freight 'plastic welder' which is some sort of hot air gun, and can weld some types of thermoplastics?

Would this work to weld a plastic fitting into a rubbermaid?

I'm interested because WELDLESS FITTINGS SUCK! You can't tighten them enough to get a good seal without the o-ring squishing out.

 
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Old 03-22-2008, 05:44 PM   #2
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This is going to sound weird, but try backing off on the connections. Overtightening a bulkhead will often distort the wall of the cooler, and make a leak. Mine is just snug by about hand-tight + 1/4 turn, and it doesn't leak a bit.

 
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Old 03-22-2008, 05:45 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vmpolesov
Would this work to weld a plastic fitting into a rubbermaid?

I'm interested because WELDLESS FITTINGS SUCK! You can't tighten them enough to get a good seal without the o-ring squishing out.
Really? I've converted two coolers, and neither leaks at all...not a drop. If the o-ring is misformed, you've tightened it way too much.

The plastic "welder" is interesting though, I may drive over the local Harbor Freight outlet and have a look. One of my kayaks could benefit greatly from such a product.

 
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Old 03-22-2008, 06:59 PM   #4
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A guy at work just bought one of those, its just a small tipped heat gun, along with a handful of plastic rods. I tried to use it a couple of times without any success at all, seemed like junk to me. But who knows maybe you can get it to work fine.

 
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Old 03-23-2008, 02:31 AM   #5
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I used to do a little plastic welding back in the day...about 12 years ago. I found that it worked good on thick plastic (1/4" - 1/2"). Also the cross section of the welding rod would be important depending on the type of joint. Could not say much about that as I have not done it in awhile. I would guess the type of plastic is very improtant to achive a good weld (e.g. to dissimilar plastic may require skill). I was mostly succsessful at burning my hands with the heat gun. I think you will melt through your MLT.

 
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Old 03-23-2008, 02:34 AM   #6
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I think it's possible to do some plastic welding on your cooler, but I doubt that it's practical. Give the fittings another try - they just take some finesse.
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Old 03-23-2008, 03:31 AM   #7
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I can live with the weldless fittings. The ones I got have an o-ring on the inside and outside, and I've seen others that sub the outside o-ring with a large fender washer, that seems like it'd work better.

 
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Old 03-23-2008, 04:33 AM   #8
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Try some silicone lubricant on your gaskets. It's often used in the food industry.
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Old 03-23-2008, 04:57 PM   #9
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At my old company we had 20 plastic welders going around the clock. It defiantly takes some finesse and works better in open areas. It would be difficult to get in inside a cooler and weld around a fitting.

 
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