Friday, April 30, 2010

Make it stick

I've played around with JB Weld a few times but never before done a large project with epoxy. My most recent endeavor was fixing a “modern” auto key: they have tiny computer chips embedded within the plastic, so if the plastic ring part breaks (has happened to us 3 times now), you can’t just drill a new hole into the steel key and have it start your car. Maybe it’s due to the dry air…I just call it bad design. At $100 a pop, I wasn’t about to buy extra car keys. So after sanding the broken area, I drilled a tiny hole on each side of the key, and inserted a short length of twisted wire bicycle cable, anchored with a drop of JB Weld in each hole. Bingo: the key stays on the ring, and it looks kinda cool, too. Take that, you modern key selling pirates.

After purchasing a box of Marine Tex, I realized I was in a different ballpark. You don’t want to mess around with this stuff…without being thoughtful. All the lessons my Dad taught me 20+ years ago came flooding back: (1) don’t use the same tools for scooping out resin and catalyst, (2) read the instructions, (3) have all your tools and clean-up stuff ready to go, (4) make plenty of extra…and be ready with extra projects to fix with the left-over. And so forth. You don’t want to be a doofus by blowing the job, which could get much more expensive than the cost of the epoxy.

Once the job was complete, I pondered the art of epoxy. Like welding, it’s a true art and one which is coming to a close in this post-modern world. Like hunting and farming. I encourage you to learn another skill and teach it to your kids. Like sharing the Gospel, it won’t be a fruitless endeavor for both you and the recipient.

No comments: