A view of a grey door frame.

A Comprehensive Guide to Welding Fiberglass Frames: Expert Tips and Techniques

In the commercial door industry, Special-Lite® Fiberglass Frames stand out for their quality and durability. If you’re considering ordering Knock-Down frames for chemical welding with construction adhesive before installation, you’re in the right place. This guide walks you through the field welding process for a commercial door frame. For more details on painting these frames post-welding, refer to the comprehensive instructions for Painting and Repair of Smooth Fiberglass Doors and Frames.

Before Continuing, Please Read Completely

These guidelines are thoughtfully compiled to prevent common welding errors during commercial door frame repair and installation. They are recommendations, not an exhaustive step-by-step checklist for every situation or commercial door installation. Special-Lite acknowledges that experienced installers possess a wealth of knowledge extending beyond these guidelines.

  • Selecting a seasoned professional to complete installation and repairs doesn’t endorse using other manufacturers’ products.
  • Variability in supplies, application conditions, and techniques falls outside Special-Lite’s control, relieving us of responsibility for adhesive, filler, paint, or application performance.
  • Deviating from proper installation practices will void Special-Lite product warranties. Altering the original finish through sanding or painting will nullify applicable finish warranties.
  • For questions, contact us at 1-800-821-6531 and request a Special-Lite Customer Service Representative. Access these and other instructions on our website.

Safety First

Always prioritize safety during the welding process. Use proper protective gear, maintain good ventilation, and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for chemicals and adhesives. Any risks associated with welding are the responsibility of the installer and project owner during any commercial door repair.

  • Protect your eyes and hands with proper protective gear like goggles and gloves.
  • Ensure good ventilation in your workspace.
  • Depending on your chosen chemicals, consider wearing a face mask.
  • Steer clear of heat and flames, as chemical products could be flammable.
  • Dispose of mixing and application materials responsibly.

Getting Set Up

Before you embark on the welding process, gather the following supplies: Mild detergent, isopropyl alcohol, or MEK solvent, Clean Water, Clean cloths or rags for wiping and cleaning, Scotch-Brite™ 7447 General Purpose Hand Pads, Fine-grit sandpaper (220-grit & 400-grit), Polyester/plastic body filler suitable for fiberglass (e.g., Bondo) and hardener, Construction adhesives like F-26 or Liquid Nails, and Clamps

Step-by-Step Fiberglass Door Installation and Repair Instructions

Step 1: Surface Preparation

A. Lightly sand any surfaces to be welded, filled, or painted using Scotch-BriteTM 7447 General Purpose Hand Pads or 220-grit sandpaper. This encourages adhesion.

Step 2: Cleaning the Frame and Reinforcements

A. Use a mild detergent, water, isopropyl alcohol, or MEK solvent to clean the frame and corner reinforcements. Steer clear of hydrocarbon solvents to prevent residue.

B. Thoroughly rinse with water and let it air dry.

Step 3: Applying Adhesive and Clamping

A. Follow the adhesive manufacturer’s guidelines to apply construction adhesive on the joining faces of the frame and corner reinforcements.

B. While adhering to the recommended curing time, clamp the corner reinforcements and jamb legs in place for a secure bond.

Step 4: Filling Crevices and Holes (Optional)

A. Once the adhesive cures, you can fill miter crevices and screw holes. Beforehand, ensure the surface is sanded and cleaned.

B. Prepare an automotive body filler and hardener (e.g., Bondo) suitable for fiberglass. Adhere to the manufacturer’s instructions for application.

C. Achieve a smooth surface by sanding, using 400-grit sandpaper for the final touch.

Step 5: Priming and Painting (If Desired)

A. For fiberglass frame priming and painting guidelines, consult our Painting & Repair Instructions for Fiberglass Doors & Frames.

Ensuring a successful project

When it comes to welding Special-Lite Fiberglass Frames for your commercial building, following these steps and adhering to safety measures will ensure a successful installation process. Remember, the key lies in meticulous preparation and attention to detail during commercial door repair and installation. Download a PDF of these welding instructions for use in the field.

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