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July/August 2002

Expert Advice
SHORES pros who know

Tackling Multiple Rock Chips
by Dave Shores

REPAIR Have you ever been faced with two or three rock chips that were connected? How did you handle them? I have had some experience with them and here are some suggestions that you may find helpful the next time that you come across this type of break.

The other day a customer stopped by our shop with three pits in his windshield that were just less than an inch apart in a triangle formation. Each one had created a star break, which had become entangled with the other two breaks. The legs of each star were about Ĺ to ĺ inches in length with one of the stars having tight, twisted legs.

Our technician took his probe, flexed all three breaks and found out that none of the breaks were sensitive or wanting to run. He flexed all the legs with his probe as close to the pit as he could to open the passageways. This flexing technique is used to reduce the need for drilling and also reduces the repair time on tight star breaks by as much as 50 percent.

He then mounted his injector over one of the pits and put a drop of resin and a film tab over the other two pits. The resin and film tabs are used to keep air from entering the break from the other pits while the injector is on vacuum, evacuating the air from the break.

After creating a vacuum and evacuating the air from the break he began injecting resin into the breaks. After a few minutes, two of the three breaks were filled completely with resin. The third break had one leg that had started to fill. At this point he slid his injector out of the way and put a film tab over the pit that he had been using to fill the break. He then drilled into the tight break that wasnít filled and created a bullseye in the bottom of the drill hole to open a better passageway. At this point he slid his injector over the drill hole and created another vacuum to remove any remaining air from the break. After a couple of minutes he put his injector on pressure and began to fill the remaining legs with resin. Once all of the legs were filled he used his ultraviolet lamp to cure the resin in the break. 

When the customer saw his windshield, he was extremely excited. The repair looked better than he had envisioned. Part of this is due to the fact that our technician had undersold the job in the beginning. He didnít want the customer to think that the windshield was going to look like it had before the rock hit it.

This is not the only way to approach a break of this nature, but it worked well for us and hopefully it will give you some ideas that will make your next repair easier. 

Dave Shores is the vice president of Glas-Weld Systems of Bend, Ore., and a member of the National Windshield Repair Association board of directors. 



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