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Oops... Discovered A Design Flaw By Accident :(


Full Member
Jun 4, 2002
Fort Myers, FL
Okay, let me first get out of the way how stupid I feel <- insert whack on the head here !!... Anyway, a real nice gentleman in a 10 ton utility trailer parked right in front of my house this evening. I tried to squeeze by and in the process (backing in) caught the right front plastic fascia just past the apex on the passenger's side -- on the ramp support of the trailer (no damage to him). I heard plastic ripping and stopped after only about three inches. Okay, I have a hole in the plastic, I'm disappointed (I really wanted to do that out in the woods in 4wd), but even worse, the trailer caught the metal underneath the plastic.
The end of the metal bumper is flat against the plastic fascia and is not rounded. Therefore, anything that is able to run along the plastic from back to front stands a good chance of grabbing the metal and pulling the bumper out. I would think that Chevy would have tapered that away from the plastic so that this type of thing wouldn't happen.
So here's the repair procedure... remove front fascia, drive Av into the corner of a steel shipping container (to bend the bumper back --- okay, slowly and carefully I need to add). Epoxy the wheel-well screw-ins back to the cover, heat the small tears from the inside with a propane blowtorch and press inside to out (to fill the holes). Replace plastic and cry !!!
So Blueruck, if you're out there... let me know how your new bumper is coming !!!!

It only took two hours to fix. I'll say one positive thing, the plastic sure is lighter and easier to work with than metal :)

Ashamed of hurting my Av,

There you go thinking :eek:. One less bend in the sheet metal may have saved Chevy $100K on the production line over the course of 2 years...just like the Monza? engineeing feat that required lifting the motor to replace a spark plug. Go figure. :8:

' Hope your repair works out fine. I just had to repair my garage door. It seems my better half neglected to hit the open button before backing out her Tahoe. :7: Lucky for me it is a builder grade door (cheap). Oh, the Tahoe is fine. :) That is what is important! >:D

Truckman :B:
Thanks Truckman for the wishes... I actually have everything back together. I'm thinking of finding some damaged avalanche cladding somewhere and melting it to fill in the holes. Then, while still hot, I can texture it with another piece of scrap cladding. This is just a thought for simple repairs. I've used similar techniques on other plastic materials, does anyone have any experience with this ?
I know that it won't look like new, but I was pleasently surprised at how well I was able to soften and fill in the cladding the first time. From five feet away you couldn't tell unless you were looking for the holes. They're about 3 in long (completely thru for about an in.) and 3-4mm wide. After heating and pressing from inside, the part that was completely thru is filled, but I need a little more fill from the outside, need to smooth the surface and put in the texture. Any advice ??


David - the bumper should be done this week and ready to ship - I am leaving tomorrow night for 11 days on an Inslad - I am having the bumper shipped while I am away, so I can pick it up when I return :)

I will keep the Metal Bumper thread up to date :)
Hey David,
Sorry to hear about your mishap. Very impressive handiwork you did to repair the bumper. Are you able to take a pic? I would love to see it.
Nice on the spot repair
Well... so far the repair has held for about 24h :) Here's some pix so you can share in my misery !!! ;D


The metal beneath the fascia

the culprit

Any advice on how to make a more complete fix is welcome !! Please :cry:


I had a similar "run-in" but it cut the area of the rear bumper where the "step" is (see picture). I have never repaired it as I am too lazy, and the dealer where I got the truck said he would sell me the bumper cover for $250. I will probably just replace the entire bumper cover as opposed to experimenting....

Hey David,

Have you tried a heat gun? :0: I've used them on all kinds of plastic and molded items to reshape with a lot of sucess. ;)

Truckman :B:
I was told that if you take a heat gun or blow torch to the cladding, you'll be able to re-shape it and remove all scuff marks.

I don't feel so bad now. >:D I had a smilar happening with my AV 2 days after I bought it. I was on a work trip in FL and drove it down from SC, parked in a lot. Well it was DARK, pitch dark and the car that parked behind me was black of all things. No lot lights.
Well with the slope of the AV and being new to it and all I backed right into the other vehicle. Mind you I did not even notice it was there was the truck just kep going. I was not going fast but I did mar the other cars bumper and I have a little scuf mark on my truck. Oh well. I was nice and waited for the owner and paid for the repair to the car.

They were very nice about it as it was a lease car. Got lucky.

Needless to day I have since put an aftermkt sensor system in the truck that alerts me to objects behind the truck I am just glad it was not a person or a child etc.

Major blind spot but I got use to it.

:B: :cool: