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Old 04-14-2008, 07:25 PM   #1
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1966 17' Caravel
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ABS for the bath

The ABS panels on the side of my Minuet's shower have split and I am thinking of replacing them as repair doesn't seem to be much of an option. The split is parallel to the floor and completely through the panel making it two separate pieces. Two questions:
1) Does anyone know the thickness of the panels used? I can buy .06", .093", and .125" thickness in 48" X 96" panels. I think the .125 is too thick (1/8th inch), but can't decide on the other two.
2) Has anyone done this replacement? If so, how big a job is it? Looking at the bath it looks like drilling out rivets, taking the shower stall apart, using the old piece as a template to cut the new piece, then reassembling with many rivets, aluminum trim, nose insert, etc. Is there something I am not seeing that makes it more difficult?
As an aside, has anyone come up with a way to repair (glue, weld, etc) these panels? They don't have much rigidity once cracked.
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Old 04-30-2008, 11:44 AM   #2
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Have you gotten any answers on this?

We took all the abs panels off our 77 minuet, repaired small cracks on the back side with mesh and an adhesive, painted and are now ready to reinstall. Our cracks were minor compaired to yours. Do you have any pictures. I'm not able to visualize your crack, but don't see how it can be easily replaced. Our panels are molded with lots of curves. A patch or salvage panel may be your best bet. Geo...
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Old 04-30-2008, 07:07 PM   #3
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Repairs

Thanks for the reply.
I found that the thickness of the panel is about 1/8 inch and that there was an aluminum panel behind the ABS. I decided to do a temporary repair by riveting the ABS to the aluminum panel, then filling the crack with caulk. I really don't want to do a picture now as it looks pretty bad but should be serviceable until this fall when I can tear into it.
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Old 04-30-2008, 08:58 PM   #4
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Your '78 is a little different than our '77. We have abs panels up to the top of the sink and around into the shower, but then it's just a painted aluminum panel from there up to the abs dome. You could consider removing the split abs panel on yours and just paint the aluminum.

We repaired very small cracks, so I don't think what we did would work for your problem. If you want to try a repair, take a look at a post by fotochop on 4-6-08. I'd attach a link, but don't know how. Good luck. Geo...
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Old 04-30-2008, 09:33 PM   #5
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Methal Ethyl Ketone aka MEK

MEK will dissolve ABS. I've repaired an ABS panels on a camper (Apache) with a glue made from MEK and ABS shavings. I've also repaired the inside of my Norcold frig with this. It will bond and fill a 1/8 crack if you support the back side with tape or something. If you can find donor ABS for the shavings the same color as your bath it will blend in. You have to work fast as it drys quickly. I think I bought my MEK at a hardware store.
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