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Old 02-24-2011, 12:15 AM #1
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bunkers 101: patching bunkers

sup'airball bunkers come with a 12 month warranty against manufacturers' defects. however, some field owners maintain their bunkers well past the warranty period, and these bunkers may need patching to repair holes from being dragged across the ground or seams splitting from being shot thousands of times at point blank range. i cannot stress the importance of PPPPPP (proper preparation prevents piss poor performance)! the actual slathering of glue on a patch and slapping it on a bunker is easy enough, but without prepping the surface, the patch will not hold very well or not at all. here is a short tutorial on how to patch bunkers.

*please read all steps before proceeding*

1. locate the source of the leak. large holes are easy, sometimes the tiny holes are hard to find. run a source of water over the surface of the bunker to find the hole.

the damage you see here was caused by a player stepping on the bunker with metal cleats.




2. thoroughly clean the hole, and the surrounding area as well. you need to completely remove any paint residue, paint shell, dirt, etc from the area. a good quality degreaser works well for this application. Do NOT use products such as acetone (or solutions that contain acetone), that could damage the fabric.




3. wait for area to dry, then use a fine grit sandpaper to roughen up the area to be patched. usually taking off the 'shine' from the surface is enough.



4. cut a patch large enough to cover the hole, plus an additional 1-1.5 inches beyond the hole all the way around. this gives the patch enough area to properly hold.



5. round off the corners of the patch. never use square patches! the corners on square patches peel back very easily, and this will eventually lead to the entire patch peeling off.

6. these next couple of steps must be done in about a 5 minute window of time, or else the glue will dry too much and you will have to start over. start with applying glue to the bunker. spread it over and around the hole until a thin film is covering the same area as the patch would cover. there doesnt need to be a paper thin layer of glue, but you also are not spreading jelly on toast- a happy medium between the extremes is good. if you run out of the glue that came with your field, find this:



7. same applies to the patch. wait until the glue becomes 'tacky' to the touch-if glue transfers to your finger when you touch it, its not dry enough. if the glue doesnt 'grab' your finger, it is too dry and you will have to reapply the glue.

8. you must be very exact on placing the patch. once the two surfaces come in contact with each other, that is where they are staying. you can place the patch while the glue is a little runny, just be aware that this will also increase how long you have to tend to the patch while it is drying.



9. wait 10-15 minutes for the patch to set, then apply a 'border' of glue around the perimeter of the patch. i find this increases the longevity of the patch, by sealing the edges and adding extra resistance to peeling.





10. wait 24-48 hours for the glue to fully cure. lay the bunker flat on a clean surface during this time.

11. busted seams have a slightly more detailed repair procedure. start with cleaning as usual, but make sure you remove any foreign debris from between the seam as well. the mesh layer should be white. if not, you still have liquid paint contaminating the surface, and the glue will not hold properly.

12. wait until the mesh dries, and sand the area around the seam and extend 1-1.5 inches beyond the damage.



13. apply glue between the seam. apply on both surfaces, and keep them separated until tacky. press together to make a good seal.





14. we are going to add a patch on the outside of the seam, as extra insurance against the seam busting again. cut the patch to extend 1-1.5 inches beyond the affected area on all sides.

15. repeat steps 5-10 (above) to complete the patch.



16. i have seen many patches fail over the years, and the main reason is because the surface was not thoroughly cleaned of all paint residue. MAKE SURE YOU CLEAN THE SURFACE OF ALL FOREIGN DEBRIS/RESIDUE/ETC!

17. remember, rodent traps are your friend! do not use poisons, they are not as effective as traps or electronic repellents. dont let this happen to you!



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Old 03-03-2011, 05:56 PM #2
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Beautiful thread.. Thank you!

Looking at that last picture on rodent damage, sent chills down my spine... It was something I had not anticipated.. Now I know to set sonic repellents on the insides of the shipping containers where I will be storing the deflated bunkers..

frankdatank, you are da man !
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Old 03-06-2011, 11:25 PM #3
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I have learned that a heat gun kind of helps the whole process a little bit. Especially if you're in a hurry. Dunno how you feel about that, but it works for me.

Also, when I got my portable building I use to store my bunkers in, I bought some thin metal flashing in a roll. I bent a small 1" flange on the bottom and nailed the flashing around the base of the wall and floor to keep mice/rats from eating up and through the walls.
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Old 03-07-2011, 03:32 PM #4
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Also, when I got my portable building I use to store my bunkers in, I bought some thin metal flashing in a roll. I bent a small 1" flange on the bottom and nailed the flashing around the base of the wall and floor to keep mice/rats from eating up and through the walls.
Careful relying on that metal, we stored ours in metal P.O.D.S and they ate a hole through the metal. Make sure you are still checking them on a regualr basis while in storage.
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Old 03-07-2011, 05:51 PM #5
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On the larger holes I also glue a patch on the INSIDE of bunker sometime is tough to do but the patch now has the air pressure pushing on the patch to help hold not just air pressure pushing the patch out. I have cut holes bigger to be able to put a patch inside. Now you have 2 patch not just one.
This has worked great so far and I have patch holes bigger than a softball.
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Old 03-07-2011, 06:53 PM #6
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Thank you, and how the hell do you get 10+ holes in a bunker? without over inflation and abusiveness?
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Old 03-07-2011, 09:48 PM #7
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Careful relying on that metal, we stored ours in metal P.O.D.S and they ate a hole through the metal. Make sure you are still checking them on a regualr basis while in storage.
Damn!! That sounds like some meannnn rats! I think the most I would have to be weary of are small field mice. Got a few glue traps waiting on them!

My small shed is a portable building, elevated off the ground a foot. I'm usually out there once a week or every 2.
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Old 07-13-2012, 03:34 PM #8
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Posting so I don't lose this. Also are there other glues I could use? The goop rv stuff appears to bond well and seal well. How much does hh 66 run for you guys?
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Old 07-13-2012, 04:17 PM #9
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HH 66 is the best. It runs about $15 a quart or $40 a gallon.
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Old 07-13-2012, 04:24 PM #10
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Goop seems decent. It patched a hole in a can for me. Its 8 bucks a tube. Ill see about trying some hh66
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Why do people like pump guns is cuz more accurate
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Old 07-13-2012, 04:58 PM #11
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Great Instructions and pictures!!

Sup Air told us to use this and so far it has been just outstanding.
Tear-Aid Type B It is a clear Vinyl Repair patch. Basically Peel and Stick after cleaning the area. Tried to post a picture of the box but it is not happening http://tear-aid.com/ this is a link to their site. We got ours at a sporting goods store locally.

We repaired a track cleat puncture that was three holes in a circle with it and while I had my doubts I must say I have been pleasantly surprised.
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Old 07-14-2012, 03:50 PM #12
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Here is a picture of the box...finally
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Old 03-08-2013, 07:37 PM #13
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How do you fix a bunker if the d ring pulls out of it
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Old 03-08-2013, 09:47 PM #14
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How do you fix a bunker if the d ring pulls out of it
I haven't checked the other manufacturers, but AirUps has these
http://www.airups.com/?q=accessories/d-ring
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Old 03-28-2013, 12:12 PM #15
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So are Tear-Aid and the HH66 cement+patch equally effective methods of repairing bunkers?

Has anyone tried using Tear-Aid+ a patch to cover large holes?

How about using HH66+patch, and sealing the edges of the patch with Tear-Aid? Overkill?

Mice got to my bunkers this winter, I'm looking at lots of repairs. Hole from the size of a dime to a softball.
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Old 04-02-2013, 03:37 PM #16
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i just got a few sample pieces of Tear-Aid B

im going to try it this weekend if the weather is nice (might rain... haha)

I have HH66, its worked well, but for whatever reason it normally takes 2 tries for me to seal a single hole with it, im hoping i can use the Tear-Aid as a binder/cover and then HH66 for strength/seal

i also got another PVC Glue from an outdoor shop.... cant remember the name of it, but i'll letcha know how that goes
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Old 04-16-2013, 11:35 AM #17
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Just curious, do you guys also rough up the surface of the patch before applying? I'm fixing a massive tear in a bunker this weekend. Thoroughly cleaned both inside and out, and sanded the inside and out of the tear- plus I sanded the patches. (I plan on placing a patch on the inside, AND the outside since it's such a large tear in a very important bunker). Probably went overkill but.. Yeah.

Also going to be fixing a different bunker soon. One of the old diablo xball field large center x's.. the seams are blown out on one side, do you sand both sides of the seam or are you only sanding the outside for the patch to grab hold?

Thanks.
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Old 04-24-2013, 08:42 AM #18
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I tried the Tear-Aid this weekend, that stuff is super simple to use and held air all day.

I do have one concern tho, the patches don't feel very thick. I'm worried if they get shot they will stretch out and eventualy tear. I was planning on patching over them with bunker material but ran out of time.

Does anyone use Tear-aid without patching over it?
Is it stong enough to get shot?
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Old 04-24-2013, 09:25 AM #19
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Quote:
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do you sand both sides of the seam or are you only sanding the outside for the patch to grab hold?

Thanks.
You should lightly sand every surface that comes in contact with the glue.
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Old 04-24-2013, 09:37 AM #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by woda View Post
I tried the Tear-Aid this weekend, that stuff is super simple to use and held air all day.

I do have one concern tho, the patches don't feel very thick. I'm worried if they get shot they will stretch out and eventualy tear. I was planning on patching over them with bunker material but ran out of time.

Does anyone use Tear-aid without patching over it?
Is it stong enough to get shot?

There were occasions where I patched a busted seam with tear-aid, and after receiving a countless number of direct hits, the patch failed and I had to re-patch the seam. But the original seam busted because of the same type of direct hits, so go figure.
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Old 04-24-2013, 10:15 AM #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by woda View Post
I tried the Tear-Aid this weekend, that stuff is super simple to use and held air all day.

I do have one concern tho, the patches don't feel very thick. I'm worried if they get shot they will stretch out and eventualy tear. I was planning on patching over them with bunker material but ran out of time.

Does anyone use Tear-aid without patching over it?
Is it stong enough to get shot?
Quote:
Originally Posted by frankdatank View Post
There were occasions where I patched a busted seam with tear-aid, and after receiving a countless number of direct hits, the patch failed and I had to re-patch the seam. But the original seam busted because of the same type of direct hits, so go figure.
i patched over my tearaid spots...

i left 1 uncovered, i wanted to go shoot it (patched at home, field is a couple miles away) and before i could take the bunkers back to test... i had to close my field sooo i havnt gotten to shoot at em yet to test...
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