Gorilla Hair is a fiberglass resin body filler that is used extensively in professional automotive collision repair. Fiberglass resin body filler is used to build deep dents which cannot be pulled with ordinary means, and is also used to repair damaged fiberglass bodies on vehicles such as Corvettes and boats. Gorilla Hair fiberglass resin is sold in gallon jugs with hardener resin included. The hardener must be mixed into the resin for the fiberglass to cure.
Things You'll Need
- 80-grit sanding disc
- Dual-action sander
- Paint mixing stick
- Plastic scraper/applicator
- Large piece of cardboard
Affix the 80-grit sanding disc to the dual-action sander, then thoroughly clean the inside of the dent that is to be filled. The fiberglass resin will not stick to smooth surfaces, so be sure that the entire concave surface of the dent is roughed with the sanding disc.
Spread an appropriate amount of Gorilla Hair fiberglass resin onto the cardboard which will be the mixing board. Use as much resin as you feel is necessary to fill the dent. Knead the tube of resin hardener thoroughly to mix the contents, then apply a small amount of the hardener onto the top of the fiberglass resin. The rule of thumb is to use only between 1 percent and 5 percent hardener for the amount of resin you use. Too little hardener will cause the resin to remain unhardened, while too much will cause cracks in the finished product.
Mix the hardener and the fiberglass resin thoroughly with the paint stick. There should be no colored swirl marks in the resin. Ideally, it will be all one consistent color. Use the scraper/applicator to fold the mixture over itself several times to be certain that the mixture is complete.
Apply a heavy amount of the mixed resin to the dent being filled, pressing it with the applicator into the grooves cut by the sander. Smooth the resin out toward the edges of the dent from the center, working to smooth the fiberglass fibers down into the resin so that they completely fill the hole.
Allow the fiberglass resin to cure completely. The chemical reaction of the hardener and the resin will make the mixture get very warm. When this warmth has cooled to the touch, the resin can be sanded.
Sand the resin using the 80-grit sandpaper with the dual-action sander to smooth the highest edges of the resin in preparation for a skim coat of normal body filler.
Tips & Warnings
- Do not wait to sand the Gorilla Hair fiberglass resin overnight. The best time to sand the surface is just as the surface temperature of the chemical reaction has cooled to just above room temperature. The amount of time required for this depends on the amount of hardener used, as well as the atmosphere in which you are working.
- Wear protective goggles and respiratory equipment when sanding or working with fiberglass body filler.
- "Collision Repair and Refinishing: A Foundation Course for Technicians"; Alfred Thomas; 2009
- "Auto Body Repair Technology"; James Duffy; 2008
- "The Complete Guide to Auto Body Repair"; Dennis Parks; 2008
- Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images
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