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Old 06-28-2002, 04:46 PM   #1
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Dent Removal

My trailer had a basketbal sized dent in one of the curved panels in the rear above the rear facing window. It seems somewhat soft, so when touched the aluminum still has some give to it. i would liek to pull it out, or have it pulled out professionally.
Question:
Anyone had any luck with paintless dent removal companies working on an airstream?
Anu suggestions on removing this dent? It is not accessible from the inside very easily. It is behind some cabinetry on the streetside of my 71 tradewind.
So many projects, so little wine......
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Old 06-28-2002, 11:06 PM   #2
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Is it in the middle of the panel or along a seam? If its in the middle, try a plunger or smaller suction cup to see if you can "pop" it out.

The "dry ice" method will not work on aluminum. (I just know someone will recommend it)

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Old 06-29-2002, 10:57 AM   #3
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Dent Removal

I went and borrowed some professional dent suction cups last night, and I will try them out today.
One of them is air powered.......scary.
The dent is fortunately in the middle of a panel, not along the riveted edge.
I will let you all know how it went. maybe I try some " before and after" pics.
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Old 06-30-2002, 08:56 PM   #4
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Dent no more

Update:
I used the suction cups today, and was able to pull out the dents with relative ease. The biggest one of them ended up with a very slight circumference crease, but diligent and very light hammering of the crease with a plastic hammer took care of this as well.
Sorry, forgot to take pictures.
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Old 06-30-2002, 09:08 PM   #5
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Just like "New"

Great news. Glad things worked out right.

I really wanted to hear about the "Scary" air powered one. Sounds like a tool for frightening small children and pets.

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Old 07-01-2002, 09:00 AM   #6
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Suction

Hi Bobby,

I did not have to use the air powered one. That one uses compressed air to evacuate the area behind the suction cup, so that you get a stronger seal, and can use a slide hammer type apparatus. I used a wet towel to clean the area, and then a 4" suctioncup with handle to gently pull things into perspective......
The air powered one is also good for areas where the additional pressure needed to install the suction cup is not beneficial.
Thanks for everyone's tips and concerns.
Uwe
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Old 11-13-2004, 09:56 PM   #7
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Were your able to get to the backside? The paintless dent people that I talked to wouldn't try to work on mine because of the difficulity of getting to the backside.
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Old 11-14-2004, 10:15 AM   #8
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A dentless repairman successfully removed a dent in a rear curved top panel from my unit last year. You litteraly cannot tell it was ever there. He charged me a $150. Replacement of the panel would have cost over $1500.

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Old 01-17-2016, 11:40 AM   #9
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After having several PDR shops turn down my repair and also getting a $2,800 quote from the Airstream dealer to replace a panel, I decided to figure dent removal out on my own.

I used a Super PDR kit from Amazon (slap hammer type) with aluminum hot glue pullers. I removed the clear coat from the area of the dent, then cleaned the surface with rubbing alcohol. I next used a heat gun to heat up the area (I was working in 18F temperatures) hot to the touch to induce expansion. I next applied the aluminum glue puller tabs (use lots of glue) and let them set for 10 minutes. The final step was to use the puller (slap hammer feature) to pop the dents out. It worked so well, that I had to re-heat the glue tabs with the heat gun to get them off of the trailer. You can then use the heat gun to heat up residual glue and wipe off.
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Old 01-17-2016, 02:06 PM   #10
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I wonder how many dealers have used this same technique to repair dents in Airstreams and charged $1500-2500 for the job with the excuse they had to replace the panel...?

Good job, CCKlein!
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Old 01-17-2016, 02:44 PM   #11
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I also used a large suction cup to pull out a dent on the top of an end cap.

I didn't know it was there when I bought the trailer is it was not visible from the ground! I'm guessing someone kneeled on it!

I wanted to try pulling it out anyway since I new it was there even if no one could see it! I figure if I messed it up - so what!

It came out I would say 99%. Just a straight pull on the suction cup, I didn't need the slide hammer. no creases.

Brian.
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Old 01-17-2016, 02:48 PM   #12
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Nice job
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