Author Topic: Any tips on getting old material out of rubber hinge?  (Read 2059 times)

HighTechRedneck

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Any tips on getting old material out of rubber hinge?
« on: January 15, 2008, 04:01:02 PM »
This is on a 1982 RTS II.  The first rubber hinge I had to replace went pretty smooth.  But this one is giving me fits. It is on the bay door that was formerly the radio equipment bay.  Probably didn't ever get opened very often and given the rotten condition of the rubber in the hinge, it may be the original hinge material.

I took the retaining screws out and tried to slide out the hinge material.  No dice.  It very rotten and thoroughly bonded to the aluminum channel it is in.  Things I've tried:

  • Pushed/pulled very hard by getting hold of pieces of it that protrude from the channel with pliers, this only resulted in the protruding rubber breaking off.
  • Lubed it with dish soap, no improvement
  • Tried to break it loose with a hammer and punch from the end.  Nothing.
  • Tried routing it out with a Dremel tool.  Made a lot of smoke and a couple of slips gouged the aluminum.  But no real progress on the rubber.
  • Tried carving it out with a knife.  Not having any luck with that either.

I am just about at my wits end and considering replacing it with a s/s piano hinge.  But I would rather keep the rubber hinge to keep it consistent with the others.  Anybody had a similar experience?

Offline buddydawg

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Re: Any tips on getting old material out of rubber hinge?
« Reply #1 on: January 15, 2008, 05:54:21 PM »
Could it be burned out with a propane torch?  If the panel is steel/aluminum if you don't get it too hot it might work.  No clue, really just an idea.
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Offline gomer

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Re: Any tips on getting old material out of rubber hinge?
« Reply #2 on: January 15, 2008, 06:03:26 PM »
hey redneck!! I had to take the hinges out on my gm and they were stuck alos.  I cut all I could with a razor blade knife and also  used a saw blade where I could to get more out.  After that I took a piece of keystock from an old motor and welded a piece of steel on it and drove it thru the tracks and finally got it all cleaned out and it was fun!! I also used a straight screwdriver and beat it to the center ond once you get it to move It will slid better.  make sure you go to the center as it won't go out the ends.
Gomer
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Offline gus

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Re: Any tips on getting old material out of rubber hinge?
« Reply #3 on: January 15, 2008, 07:57:44 PM »
I've changed all mine at least once but never had one this bad.

Just plain straight weight motor will may soften the rubber.

If that doesn't work auto brake fluid will soften the rubber for sure but it will also remove paint so be careful.
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Offline Stan

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Re: Any tips on getting old material out of rubber hinge?
« Reply #4 on: January 15, 2008, 09:17:05 PM »
After most of the rubber is out, you can use a rifle cleaning rod with brass brush.

Songman

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Re: Any tips on getting old material out of rubber hinge?
« Reply #5 on: January 16, 2008, 07:53:36 AM »
Luckily, I only had to do one on my old RTS but it was just about like you describe. I had all the same experiences you had. Finally my best plan was a big flat head screwdriver and a hammer. It took forever and came out in little pieces, but it did finally all come out. Good luck with it.

Offline DrivingMissLazy

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Re: Any tips on getting old material out of rubber hinge?
« Reply #6 on: January 16, 2008, 08:27:17 AM »
I have heard a rifle cleaning brush that is cut off and chucked into an electric drill does a great job.

Richard
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makemineatwostroke

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Re: Any tips on getting old material out of rubber hinge?
« Reply #7 on: January 16, 2008, 08:40:09 AM »
watched B&B coach remove one from a Eagle door the guy used a stick of 1/4 round rod with a blade ground down on the end with slot cut in it with a 3/8 drill drilled the rubber out put a piece of sand paper in the slot cleaned the door slot  made it look easy

Offline Ednj

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HighTechRedneck

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Re: Any tips on getting old material out of rubber hinge?
« Reply #9 on: January 16, 2008, 01:46:30 PM »
Thanks for all the tips.  I also got some on the RTS yahoo list.  It will be a few days before I get a chance to try again.  After I do, I will post what worked.

I tried slicing with a sharp knife, but the rubber is VERY hardened.  It is easier to cut into the aluminum than the rubber.  I really suspect that the rubber is the original, 25 years old.  The door broke off when I opened it to begin planning construction of the bay floor.

Offline FloridaCliff

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Re: Any tips on getting old material out of rubber hinge?
« Reply #10 on: January 16, 2008, 02:25:04 PM »
I did the razor knife trick also.

Kept going back and forth until I was througnt on both sides of the insert lip.

Pulled out the center of the hinge with some skinny needle nose pliers in several pieces,

and then the rest came out since I was able to get the needle nose in at an angle now.

Bets of luck

Cliff

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Offline gus

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Re: Any tips on getting old material out of rubber hinge?
« Reply #11 on: January 16, 2008, 06:49:21 PM »
This thing kind of puzzles me for a couple of reasons;

How did the hinge keep working after the rubber was this hard?

Those must have been some hinges to last that long and keep working!

Is this not a GMC thing. I've replaced all mine and none were anywhere near as bad as this? Good thing too because there is no space to get to the ends of the hinges on most of my doors, the gun cleaning rod and drill could never be used on mine.

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HighTechRedneck

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Re: Any tips on getting old material out of rubber hinge?
« Reply #12 on: January 17, 2008, 05:28:16 AM »
This thing kind of puzzles me for a couple of reasons;

How did the hinge keep working after the rubber was this hard?

Those must have been some hinges to last that long and keep working!

Is this not a GMC thing. I've replaced all mine and none were anywhere near as bad as this? Good thing too because there is no space to get to the ends of the hinges on most of my doors, the gun cleaning rod and drill could never be used on mine.



I don't know why it didn't break off when I looked under there when I bought it, I didn't have need to open it again for a year and half.  Then it broke off when I did.

I haven't even started on the part mounted to the bus.  I will have to take it off if I have to drill it out.  If I can get the rubber out without drilling from the end, then I can probably use a small brush on the Dremel tool to clean the channel.

Offline gus

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Re: Any tips on getting old material out of rubber hinge?
« Reply #13 on: January 17, 2008, 01:57:08 PM »
Do some experimenting with different things like oil and brake fluid to soften the rubber in the door before you remove it mechanically. I'm pretty sure brake fluid will do it but it is death on paint.

Solvents like paint thinner might soften it but they dry so fast. Diesel might work, it sure is death on rubber soled shoes, but it sure stinks.

If you find something that works it will then be much easier to remove from the bus.
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HighTechRedneck

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Re: Any tips on getting old material out of rubber hinge?
« Reply #14 on: January 17, 2008, 02:21:35 PM »
Do some experimenting with different things like oil and brake fluid to soften the rubber in the door before you remove it mechanically. I'm pretty sure brake fluid will do it but it is death on paint.

Solvents like paint thinner might soften it but they dry so fast. Diesel might work, it sure is death on rubber soled shoes, but it sure stinks.

If you find something that works it will then be much easier to remove from the bus.
That is what I am going to do is experiment with several of the great tips I have received here and on the RTS yahoo list.  Then I can report back what worked best.

Actually, I rather enjoy the smell of diesel.  I got addicted to it riding hounds on vacation trips as a kid.  Have always liked the smell of diesels, both the fuel and the smoke.