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Old 09 July 2016, 15:28   #1
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Botched seam repair

I had a seam come loos on my Brig PVC inflatable RIB. I used proper PVC repair glue to fix it. However, I stupidly forgot to deflate that chamber before doing the repair! The fix didn't totally take as there was a small leak and air bubbles under the seam where air separated the seam piece from gluing to the rest of the tube. I have since glued again along the seam - this time with the chamber deflated - and it appears to be holding. However, I'm sketched out by the air bubbles under the seam piece where it didn't glue. I'm afraid one day the whole seam might give out because of this.

If it is holding air, should I do anything at this point? If so, what? Or should I just wait it out? I thought of putting a patch over it, but that seems tricky because I don't know how well it seal over the crease of the seam. I also thought of using a medical syringe to carefully inject glue in between the seam piece and the rest of the inflatable. Of course, that would create a small hole in the seam piece.

So, what do you think I should do?:
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Old 09 July 2016, 16:07   #2
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Think you've answered your own question. Seams are safety critical. Haul it apart, and do it properly.
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Old 09 July 2016, 17:54   #3
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You can cover the whole thing with a large patch and use storm sure to bridge the gap that the seam leaves. Is it still leaking or did you fix the leak. If it's still leaking do it all over.
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Old 09 July 2016, 21:27   #4
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The only safe way is to completely unglue and reglue the defective seam. Or replace the boat.

Glued PVC has a life expectancy... You eventually reach a point where literally everything is ungluing.
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Old 09 July 2016, 23:06   #5
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How would I un-glue and re-glue it?
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Old 09 July 2016, 23:20   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dudlet View Post
How would I un-glue and re-glue it?
With a heatgun.

Then, chemicals to remove the old glue. Either MEK and a lot of scrubbing or methylene chloride.

It sucks, but it's the best way. Everything else is a band-aid.
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Old 10 July 2016, 01:06   #7
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Yikes! I'm afraid if I do that I might go too far with the heat gun and MEK or methylene chloride and unglue the whole seam. Any suggestions on how to do it without making things worse? BTW, where do you get methylene chloride?
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Old 10 July 2016, 10:16   #8
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If you slowly heat up the area it will only come apart where you pull at it. I would use a blow dryer. It's not as powerful as a heat gun and makes you work slower. Take your time don't rush.
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Old 11 July 2016, 10:04   #9
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If you're sure you got the adhesive covering the entire area (talking about where the bubbles are), you may be able to adjust the integrity of the bond. Use a heat gun to warm the area (you're trying to use heat to soften and reactivate the adhesive) then burnish the area down while warm. A thin roller (like a 1/4" wide wheel) is ideal, but you can get away with any smooth rounded object that is long enough to get good pressure on.

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Old 11 July 2016, 18:36   #10
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Wow, you can reheat the glue and it will still work afterwards? Then, yes, I will definitely try this option first as I know I got plenty of glue in where the bubbles formed.
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