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Old 19th January 2016, 09:40   #1
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Default DIY: Fixing a Bumper Dent [No Painting]

I have a bumper fetish. Period.

Elaborating, everytime I spot a ride; I judge the skill of the driver by analysing how clean and scratchless the front and rear bumpers are. If I happen to spot something like this,

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or this

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the first thing to pass my mind would be 'Jeez dude, do you even care for your ride?' or 'You really shouldn't have tried your luck while taking that dingy corner turn'.

I'm not bragging that my ride's bumpers have always been spick and span. I did manage to give a lap dance (with the rear bumper of course) to one of them concrete lamp posts and the damage was Rs.1300.

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But that was nothing compared to what Karma had in her menu for me. It was time to pay the price for being all judgemental on those poor scraped-bumper-people.

December 22 2015 - Hey it's Christmas time! Was out gifting cakes to near and dear with my mom, on my priced possession (The Ford Classic of course!). It was nearly 6.15 PM and the visibilty was getting compromised, but still I didn't care to turn on the headlights. It was then that my mom noticed that we were moving in the wrong direction and asked me to take a U-turn on a two lane road, which hardly had the width of a single lane. Within no time I managed to create a decent roadblock and the deafening honking of the highly cooperative bikers and rickshaws started to make me loose my cool. The lack of visibility and the sudden nervousness helped great deal and I ended up banging the kerb really nice and the sound of the crash gave me a clear idea how bad this was going to be. Mom asked if we should stop the car and check the damage. But I confidently objected "Nevermind Amma, it'll just be a minor scratch", when I surely knew it was not.By the time we got back home, mom had forgot about the incident. But me keeping my fingers crossed, checked the condition of my baby and what I saw, just left my heart shattered.

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Saw that mighty reflection North-east of the fog lamp? That's how much I love and take care of my ride. And this nasty thing south of it was bad, really very bad. If a scraping like the one I mentioned before costed 1.3k, this was going to be be more than 3k for sure and I was sure as hell that I'm not gonna spend that kinda money for such an unanticipated thing. But then again, I could never think of moving around with such mess. It'll be like "Shame, Shame, Shame" (bell tolling), all the way I'm riding.

But as the Legend has it, 'When life gives you lemons, make lemonade!'. It's Christmas time! It's vacation time! It's DIY time.

December 23 2015 - The research begins. The first step would be fixing the dent. To YouTube.

I planned to try this at first :



But the lack of equipment (hair dryer) and manpower was a major setback.

'Seek and you shall find', and I did. This video was viral on FB and WhatsApp some time back, but I ignored it then. But now, this one was going to make my day. Minimal equipment, minimal manpower, slightly risky, but trust me guys; This works :



The major hindrance I experienced was that even if I managed to heat up the plastic, there was no access to push it from behind; neither through the engine bay (like in the above video) nor through the gap between wheel and bumper (as in the previous Prius video) as it was blocked like this :

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But I was in no mood to give up. I managed to unscrew the little guy shown in the above picture and it barely made way for my hand to slide through the gap and access the front bumper. Turning the wheel all the way towards the right made things even better. Now that there was room for pushing the bumper out, I planned to prep the same by heating, using hot water of course.

As a precautionary measure I placed a large basin below the bumper so that the hot water applied to the bumper may drain into it rather than to the ground. During the first attempt I used a long handled milk boiler like thing (almost same as the one used in the video) and applied the boiling water to the damaged are in one go. Soon I slid my hand through the gap made earlier and pushed on the core of the dent with all my might. It barely moved and I almost cried. So after the first attempt, the results :

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Disheartening right? But with Bill Conti - Gonna Fly Now playing in my head, I prepared for attempt #2. But this time with altered tactics and my Dad was called upon for help (which he whole heatedly accepted by the way). This time :

1. Instead of applying the hot water in a single single stretch, I grabbed a steel mug and slowly poured it over each and every point of the damaged area. I took my time and completed the heating in about 1.5 - 2 minutes.

2. Instead of applying pressure at the core, I tried pushing from the outer rim this time. Explaining with a picture will be better :

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And with within a matter of seconds, BAM!

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Money spent = 0
Time spent = 45 mintues
Feeling = Priceless

As you can see that although the dent has been fixed, the paint has been scraped off pretty badly. But I managed to rectify and repaint it by myself using the conventional procedure of :

Sanding > Plastic filling > Sanding > Primer putty > Sanding > 3 coats of paint

But fellow BHP-ian audioholic has made a wonderful write-up on touching up bumper scratches using com-paint value packs, which in my opinion is more than enough for DIY aspirants to use as a guide.

PS : In case anyone wants to know the exact procedure and materials required for fixing a bumper starch the conventional way, kindly let me know. I can make a write-up of the same

Last edited by RiGOD : 19th January 2016 at 18:13.
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Old 20th January 2016, 07:47   #2
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Default re: DIY: Fixing a Bumper Dent [No Painting]

Thread moved out from the Assembly Line (The "Assembly Line" Forum section). Thanks for sharing!
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Old 20th January 2016, 16:56   #3
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Default Re: DIY: Fixing a Bumper Dent [No Painting]

Judging drivers from their car's bumper.. LOL!

Pretty good work, man! But I guess we could rework the title to fixing a bumper bump? Bump would better cover these cases, I think.

Also, this works on side fenders as well. Popped the Alto's side fenders multiple times by pushing them out, when I was learning how to drive.

You're kinda lucky that the bump was on the contour of the curve: stress relieved I guess.
Doubt this would work on a linear area.
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Old 21st January 2016, 08:17   #4
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Default Re: DIY: Fixing a Bumper Dent [No Painting]

Quote:
Originally Posted by negativeH View Post
Pretty good work, man!
Thanks buddy

Quote:
Originally Posted by negativeH View Post
Doubt this would work on a linear area.
I think it will. Tried the same trick on the rear bumper of out Alto, and it was on the exact centre i.e the linear area.
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Old 27th January 2016, 10:03   #5
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Default Re: DIY: Fixing a Bumper Dent [No Painting]

Thank RiGOD. This is a very important DIY thread considering the fact that in India, our cars' bumpers are bound to suffer dents from time to time, however careful the driver is. The hair dryer method seems a little more demanding since it needs more equipment and manpower. The boiling water method is certainly more feasible.

This thread together with audiohoic's bumper touch up thread will help us save a good amount of money. Service centres charge a bomb for fixing damaged bumpers.
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Old 27th January 2016, 11:04   #6
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Default Re: DIY: Fixing a Bumper Dent [No Painting]

Quote:
Originally Posted by RiGOD View Post
But fellow BHP-ian audioholic has made a wonderful write-up on touching up bumper scratches using com-paint value packs, which in my opinion is more than enough for DIY aspirants to use as a guide.

PS : In case anyone wants to know the exact procedure and materials required for fixing a bumper starch the conventional way, kindly let me know. I can make a write-up of the same
Thanks for the mention. Do share the painting procedure as well. And most importantly how you painted it whether a sprayer or a can.

By the way, I have been there and done that Cross posting the pictures from another thread
Before:

DIY: Fixing a Bumper Dent [No Painting]-.jpg

DIY: Fixing a Bumper Dent [No Painting]-b.jpg

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Tool used: Hot air gun and spanner/screwdrivers to unmount the bumper halfway down. Rotary polisher to get rid of scratches along with 3M perfect-it.

Paint used: Bosny metallic silver + bosny black (mixed it myself to match the vehicle paint) and hand painted

Last edited by audioholic : 27th January 2016 at 11:14.
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