Base Repair Options

4/8/09: New! Soldering Iron Base Repair video can be viewed here.

Long the low tech and easy to implement method for the home tuner to make temporary base repairs has been burning and dripping Ptex candles. Common problems are the inclusion of carbon and discoloration of clear Ptex repairs, burning hands and fingers and the simple fact the repairs do not last (largely due to the wax included in the material, reducing the bonding). Typically, repairs need to be frequently repeated.

If you get a core shot (through the base material and into the core), additional steps are necessary, either by adding epoxy or cutting out and gluing in replacement base sheet material.

A more durable and easy option for smaller repairs is Base Welding. Metal grip, with it’s heat actuated adhesive can be melted and adhere to core and edge material and serve as a primer for base repair materials that can provide a virtually permanent repair.

Welding can be performed with soldering irons, welding guns and hot air welders. The soldering iron approach requires a lower temperature iron than those used for conventional soldering. Though still fairly ‘low tech’ and easy, care needs to be taken to avoid damaging the bases Welding guns and hot air welders may be easier to use, but can get pricey.

Coupled with a welding option, cutting and finishing tools need to be employed to clean up and blend the repairs with the existing base and base structure. For a more detailed explanation and How to Repair Bases and tools & supplies needed, please visit our Base Repair page.

2 Replies to “Base Repair Options”

  1. I had a friend who needed to repair a board, so I told him to do what this article says and solder it, but he used the Ptex candle method instead.

    Two months later, and the board is broken again. What a surprise.

  2. Yeah, the wax in the candle as well as the carbon simply cannot provide the same bond as a weld, coupled with the adjacent area heated to reduce the temperature differential. Some have reported decent results with welding/soldering their ptex candles versus throwing the material away.

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