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I had some / most of my christmas tree metal clips break the plastic clips right off the door panel! What to do? Well I noticed that there was one location that didn't have a metal clip, but a plastic bracket and slot for the tree to thread into (similar to the metal clips).

So I took some spare door panel plastic (a good stiff plastic container could work too), and proceeded to fabricate my own.

I cut a piece of plastic a reasonable size to cover the old clip location, then drilled a 3/8" slotted hole in the piece. With the large flat head of my soldering gun, I formed a pair of slots to allow the remaining door clip plastic to protrude through.


I then laid it over the door clips, and using the soldering gun, fused the grey plastic of the door clip into the black plastic of the new clip. Be sure to get them to melt together by smearing it around.


Once it is sufficiently cool, thread a tree into it and test it to make sure it's solid.




I've had these in for close to a year and it's very solid!

Stretch
 

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I did that too, im glad im not the only one who uses a soildering iron on plastic!

I also used a solidering iron to melt the stops on the back of the tabs that hold the lower dash on a lil, so it would go flush against the upper dashpad (mine had a horrible gap right above the HVAC controls).

(People say im crazy when they see me using a solidering iron on plastic!)cwm3
 

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I've been using that technique on the underside of arm rests. I add a little scrap plastic, and "solder" completely through the piece, melting the plastic to a semi liquid. I do a portion at the ends first to maintain alignment while I do the center of the part. If I ever have to do another one, I will take pictures. They are as strong as the originals.

On a slightly different note, I use GOOP to glue the vinyl back onto the arm rests. First I clean the plastic and vinyl with alcohol. Then, I squeeze enough GOOP into the gap between the vinyl and plastic that a little will ooze out. To hold the parts together, I wrap the whole unit tightly with packaging tape until it dries. I usually have to get some tape residue off of the part, so I use GOOF-OFF, and the the residue comes right off. If a little too much GOOP oozes out, you can trim it off with a razor blade.


I saw an article on repairing the scratched fronts of panels in the magazine from Powerblock TV. They use a heat gun to lightly flow the front of the plastic, then use a 3m scrubber to take the gloss off of them. They also used the heat gun to reshape the panels when bent.
 

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I had the same problem when I installed my speakers last week. Also while I had the door panel off I took the window trim off as well because some of the clips that held it on had broken free. This is what I did. I set the metal clips back over the plastic tabs and used epoxy (the 2-part kind that you can get at the auto store) and filled the holes over the plastic tabs as well as a little extra underneath the metal clip. Both the door panel and the window trim snapped back into the car with no problems.
 
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