Update: To avoid a ‘cold weld’ that has the potential to tear out while finishing the repair or while sliding on snow, it is very important to make sure the Ski (and Snowboard) Mender RP105 has enough time to achieve proper temperature and to carefully heat the area around a repair before injecting the welding material. LDPE has a very low adhesive property, so we need the heating of both base and repair materials to form a proper weld.
You need about 430 degrees F/220 degrees C to get a proper weld, so it is important to let the smaller Ski and Snowboard Mender RP105 heat up for 20-25 minutes and then use the front or waxing iron on teflon sheet to preheat the base before injecting the material. DO NOT FORCE the trigger and the material. Wait until it is molten and easier to extrude.
The larger, professional grade ski and snowboard base repair gun (Base Mender RP 360) does run at a higher temp and heats the base of the ski or snowboard much faster.
Originally posted 1/30/08 (edited): We just received a few guns and performed some low tech initial testing of this new consumer level ski & snowboard base repair gun by Power Adhesives from the UK.
Talk about a nice size, lightweight, brainless and low tech. After less than ten minutes of heating up the 11mm/7/16″ welding rod/stick, it was smearing the material with it’s 440°F temperature. The directions say 10-15 minutes (which probably is wise to wait) and implied there was a switch, which there is not. I just tested it on the packaging plastic for better contrast for pictures. Without a damaged ski at the moment, I’ll try that out when the time comes and give the bases some mileage to see how long the repair lasts. It certainly isn’t a bomber/industrial grade tool, but like a decent glue gun that if taken care (ie, don’t drop on trigger) of seems adequately built for the home tuner and ought to last a while. No telling about the heating element though.
After initial extrusion and smearing of the provided proprietary welding material, I tried using the tip as a soldering/welding iron on metal grip, welding wire, ribbon & typical rod/stick (did not think to try it on ptex candle material). The tip is not as hot as soldering irons I’ve used and definitely did not smoke as much…very little in fact which was nice.
Regardless, it did seem to melt the material fine but not quite as fluid as the hotter irons have, though looks promising, especially for applying metal grip into the bottom gouges. I’m pretty sure the metal grip has a lower melting point than the other materials anyway.
Welding gun with metal stand. Fifteen minutes to heat up and melt 11 mm welding rod/sticks. Clean tip showing recessed fan shaped flow area. Linear smear of melted welding rod from gun & droplet/pool in background. Using heated tip as soldering/welding iron. Left to right: metal grip, welding wire, ribbon & rod/stick and smear through heated tip.
Below is a video overview of the SkiMender RP105 Base Repair pistol: