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New vehicle construction driving use of adhesive in structural repairs

Sunday, April 26, 2015 - 07:00
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CHICAGO — As vehicle body construction becomes more advanced and inclusive of materials like aluminum and carbon fiber, repairers must know how to correctly address damage to these different substrates for the most effective, safe and quality repair.

New construction methods are leading to new developments and repair techniques for rivet bonding, hybrid substrates and when attaching dis-similar substrates like carbon fiber to aluminum or aluminum to steel.

Shawn Collins and Jason Scharton with 3M focused on the process for using adhesives in partnership with mechanical fasteners and why vehicle makers have chosen this route in their presentation, “How the Automotive Industry is Changing Structural Repair,” on April 25 at Automechanika Chicago.

The use of adhesive during structural repairs “makes the vehicle more rigid so it increases torsional rigidity, which basically means it stiffens the structure so it is more responsive to handling on the road, helps prevent corrosion and it makes the vehicle much quieter,” Collins said.

“Now with the new types of adhesives coming to market, impact resistance structural adhesives also absorb energy during a collision event. This makes the vehicle safer all around.”

Collins and Scharton presented attendees with examples of rivet-bonded joints, weld-sealed joints, weld-bonded joints and other construction methods. A Cadillac ATS frame rail was also on display during the presentation. “This is a good example of one of these newer technologies where they attach a cast aluminum strut tower and rivet bond that to a high-strength steel frame rail,” Collins said.

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