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  #1  
Old 08-06-2008
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Glue/Weld Plastic?

The hot water 'nipple' on the back of my swim platform shower fixture by Whale has cracked along the side and under the attached supply line, no doubt due to inadequate winterization on my part. There are no parts available from Whale. I'm hoping that I can glue/weld to repair it. The 'nipple' is about 3/8" and may be ABS plastic (the other-wise very helpful customer service people weren't sure). The grey plastic semi-flexible supply line attached to the 'nipple' was apparently heated and pushed on with a small hose clamp added. I see several types of plastic glue/weld at the box store, but have no idea which may be best for this type of repair.

Any thoughts on how to repair this would be appreciated.

If an external glue or weld job doesn't seem feasible, would filling the opening with epoxy and drilling out a somewhat smaller ID hole make any sense?

Thanks,

Bruce
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Old 08-06-2008
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If this is really a nipple, have you considered a brass nipple from a plumbing supply store? if it is part of a molded faucet, is there enough material in the body to cut off the nipple, drill it out, and epoxy in a barbed fitting to connect the supply line? that would be stronger than gluing the nipple, because of the solid part of the faucet around the glue joint.
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It would help if you knew what kind of plastic it was. ABS is one of the tougher ones to work with, since not many adhesives IIRC stick well to it.
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It's hard to tell without seeing the parts.

You might be able to cut off the broken nipple and tap a pipe thread in the hole. Then you could thread in a new nipple.

Chris
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The 'nipple' is molded into the body of the fixture. Dawg..Don't know how to determine the plastic type if the customer service people don't know. I hadn't thought of tapping in a thread for a real nipple. Will take a closer look at that possiblity. Size may be a problem unless I could build the original up then tap it.

Will epoxy adhere to ABS if that is what is?

Thanks to all.
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bhva,

You can still buy ABS glue and I'm pretty sure an "all purpose" glue is available for both ABS or PVC products. Both types of glue require a primer. Check with a supply house like Fergusons. They may also have an assortment of nipples that might work if you decide to replace the cracked one.
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Dawg...Whale states that the plastic is polypropylene and cannot be glued...any thoughts on repair? Will epoxy adhere?

Bruce
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Polypropylene is what I was afraid of... I've dealt with it a fair bit..and the stuff just doesn't have any good adhesives for it... Don't believe there are any solvent-type cements for it either.

Can you post a photo of the pieces. That might make it easier to suggest an alternative... since it is hard to know what exactly you're dealing with from a verbal description.
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I have been working in and around injection molded plastics for 15+ years. To the best of my knowledge there is no adhesive that will reliably bond with polypropylene. There are ways to weld polypro using scraps of the same material and a low heat soldering iron but the strength never equals the original.

I think your best bet is follow the previous suggestion of cutting off the broken part and fitting in a new nipple. However, this may also lead to problems as the plastic may crack due to the hoop stress associated with NPT fittings...

You are in a tough spot.
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Not to hijack the thread but I have a related question.

I need to drill a 3/4" hole through my mast step (tabernacle) into my boat for the mast wiring. This hole will go through 1/2" of aluminum then 4" of deck to the interior of the boat. I want to use hose to form a drip loop above the hole but I'm worried that epoxy will not stick to the hose. Any suggestion?

Frog - do you have any experience with hose and epoxy?

Thanks for any help
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