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Old 09-09-2016, 06:16 PM   #1
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Dent removal

Has anyone ever repaired a dent in their Airstream? I bought a "Super PDR" dent remover, but when it arrived in the mail, it didn't come with instructions on how to use it. I'm not having luck finding anything on the internet or the manufacturer website.

If you've successfully removed a dent from your Airstream, would you please advise on what the best tool is?

Thanks!
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Old 09-09-2016, 06:38 PM   #2
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Suction cup worked for me
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Old 09-09-2016, 07:29 PM   #3
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I have a set of PDR hot glue sticks and puller "tabs". They did not work for my hail dents on my polished Airstream. The glue would separate before the metal moved. I tried different glues and tabs and pullers to no avail.

I had a big dent due to a construction cone. The suction cup had the strength for me to pull it out quite a bit. It would not repair creased metal, but did allow quite a bit of it to "oil can" back to form.

Some folks have good luck "rolling" a hail dent out from the inside. These are folks who have their trailers completely gutted, or are willing to take the interior apart to gain access to the dented area. I've read about metal rollers and even basketballs used to gently roll out the dent.

But by and large the best way to fix a dent on an Airstream is make an appointment with the factory at Jackson Center, OH. They can do any repair and make it just like new. Many Airstream dealers have body shops that can do the work. All you have to do is bring a big basket of $$$$$$.

Here is a photo of a trailer in the service shop when I was at Jackson Center getting my trailer repaired. I had a great experience with them.

David
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Old 09-09-2016, 09:00 PM   #4
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Look up your local Dent Wizard shop. A friend of mine has used them with success on his Airstream. Turned out good.
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Old 09-10-2016, 12:56 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alymorales View Post
Has anyone ever repaired a dent in their Airstream? I bought a "Super PDR" dent remover, but when it arrived in the mail, it didn't come with instructions on how to use it. I'm not having luck finding anything on the internet or the manufacturer website.



If you've successfully removed a dent from your Airstream, would you please advise on what the best tool is?



Thanks!

Here's what I've done. If this does not all post with the photos, it's posts 30, 31 and 33 in forums, exterior, skin and rivets .

Quote:
Originally Posted by Howard L. View Post
Attachment 266388Attachment 266389Attachment 266390
Above a photo of the basic gear I think you need for the hot glue PDR repair on small dents/hail damage. Look on Amazon, there are knock off brands of the Mini Dent Lifter. The total for what you see here will be around $100-150. It does pay to buy the best plastic puller tabs.
The work shown was on a contiguous pair of dents the size of a silver dollar and quarter. Not deep, just a pair of smooth indentations caused by my knee when a step ladder slipped. There are a number of good YouTube videos on the process. Here is a very good one:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Howard L. View Post
After watching this video again, do not use a sharp snap to pull the glue tab. That's OK for steel, but for our aluminum, which is much softer, just use a slow pull while watching the surrounding metal. There is no need to over pull with a sharp snap of the puller or handle. You can re-glue and re-pull as many times as necessary without overdoing it using one big snap.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Howard L. View Post
No, the glue will not pull the clear coat off--unless the coat is already compromised from underneath (in that case, a dent is not the worse problem). Use denatured alcohol to release the glue from the metal or pull tab.
As stated above, the Aluminum will not "knock" (tap) back down as well as steel will. Therefore, watch your pull and stop/remove tab when the dent looks pulled near flush. Pull again if not quite there. Better to make several easy pulls than to over pull and then have to knock the hump back down (over pull then knock back down is the procedure for steel). I know a pro can work the aluminum as well as steel, but AL is tough to work with for that final spotless finish-especially for a beginner. The dents I've worked out are probably 75-80%, where a pro's work would be 95%. Not even near perfect, but I have to look closely to see work on dents from dime sized hail, to a deep tennis ball size spot up high in back where dealer dropped an AC unit during install.
Looking for, but yet to find, a U Tube video on aluminum.


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