Field Repair



October 16, 2012

Developed in a Texas machine shop in the mid-‘60s, J-B WELD is the magic cold-weld epoxy known to every driveway mechanic and desperate do-it-yourselfer in the world. Car guys have been known to fix everything from cracked cylinder heads to leaky gas tanks with the stuff. So read on and do tell: What’s the craziest (or most creative) J-B WELD car repair you’ve ever made? 

“I broke the cooler line boss on my transmission on my racecar. I was getting ready for a race and did not have time to repair it nor the money to replace it. I used J-B Weld and fixed my tranny. We made it to the second round where we ran our fastest speed. More importantly, we did not leak one drop on the racetrack. — John, Nevada

You heard of J-B WELD? Who hasn’t? Like Band-Aids, Post-It notes, and Duck Tape, J-B Weld is brand of product turned household word. Thousands of discussion board testimonials (like the one above), YouTube videos and online product reviews relate stories about how a dab of the stuff has been used to fix everything from a cherished coffee mug to — believe it or not — a broken tooth.

But did you know that Sam Bonham’s “tougher than steel” epoxy started out as an auto-repair product?

In 1968 while running a machine shop in Sulphur Springs, Texas, Bonham discovered a way to create what he called a "tougher than steel" epoxy. Bonham’s wife persuaded him to sell his invention and, together, the two began hitting the highways selling J-B WELD at various automotive shops around their Texas home.

J-B Weld is an adhesive, laminate, plug, filler, sealant, and electrical insulator that bonds to anything and is impervious to water and heat (up to 500-degrees). While there are now many other makers of “cold weld bonding compound” on the market, Bonham’s original product is the only one that can claim a real fan base.

The fuel door on my Camry fell off when the hinge housing cracked off. Within 10 minutes, I patched things together with your product…

My vintage Harley Davidson’s oil engine case was cracked and I was losing oil from the bottom of the old engine block. There was only one thread left in the block. I used J-B Weld to make the repair. That was in 1985 and that plug has been there through two overhauls and still hasn’t leaked a drop…

People relating stories about how J-B Weld saved the day started back in the late ‘90s during commercial slots on Paul Harvey’s then popular radio show. Using the human propensity for story telling one-upmanship has since proved a brilliant and self-perpetuating marketing campaign.

Bonham died in 1989, shortly before the name-recognition of his product really took off. Today, while you can go online and read about people using J-B WELD to fix just about anything, it’s interesting to note that J-B Weld’s key consumer base are car guys who use it for just about any automotive body or emergency engine repair.

If you own a car then you probably also have a couple $5 tubes of J-B Weld stashed in the glove box or somewhere in your garage. You probably also have a great story to tell.

To share your tale of on-the-fly J-B WELD repair, check out the comments section below. Or head on over to the HVA’s Facebook page to share and see what other members are saying.

 

Comments

  1. bob miami

    My son was home from college and his chevy monza started over heating and losing coolant. it turned out to be the thermostat housing on top of the engine, it looks liken a half ball. well it was nearly rusted apart and i couldn't find the part. I bought several tubes of JB Weld and using what was left of the housing I fashioned a new one. He drove that car for 2 more years and when he sold it the housing was still working. Great stuff!!

  2. Randy Abercrombie South Carolina

    My fiberglas hood scoops are contiually vibrating the mounting screws loose. The threads had deteriorated to nothing. A small dab of J-B weld six months ago and the screws have remained tight ever since.... And just last weekend I reattached the handles on my wifes make-up brushes with the remaining mix (Jeez those things are expensive!).

  3. Brian Amato Michigan

    My son knocked over my bench top drill press onto the shop floor. One of the three turret handles broke off taking a big chunk of the turret casting with it. I figured I was down to a TWO handled drill press. But, I got out the JB-Weld and glued back what was left of the casting. Then, little by little, I started building up the casting until I had it about back to the original shape. I then rubbed petroleum jelly all over the threads of the turret handle and put it in place in the built up casting with more JB-Weld. The petroleum jelly acted as a "release agent" so the handles threads wouldn't stick to the JB-Weld for ever. Once everything cured over night, I unscrewed the handle, used a tap to chase the threads a little cleaner and screwed it back together. That was 20 years ago. I'm still using that drill press nearly every day !!!

  4. Brian Amato Michigan

    My son knocked over my bench top drill press onto the shop floor. One of the three turret handles broke off taking a big chunk of the turret casting with it. I figured I was down to a TWO handled drill press. But, I got out the JB-Weld and glued back what was left of the casting. Then, little by little, I started building up the casting until I had it about back to the original shape. I then rubbed petroleum jelly all over the threads of the turret handle and put it in place in the built up casting with more JB-Weld. The petroleum jelly acted as a "release agent" so the handles threads wouldn't stick to the JB-Weld for ever. Once everything cured over night, I unscrewed the handle, used a tap to chase the threads a little cleaner and screwed it back together. That was 20 years ago. I'm still using that drill press nearly every day !!!

  5. Larry Bost Marieta, Georgia

    One hot day while driving with my date the radiator started leakiing. It was an old car. Luckly I carried some spare parts. J-B Weld fixed the leal so well that when I finally made it fo a radiator shop (several weeks later) they were not able to remove my patch and I had to then buy a new core. Bummer

  6. Dan Cosgrove Michigan

    I have a 1952 Buick Super that had a hole in the intake manifold right below the carbeurator. I JB Welded a piece of aluminum over the hole and it's held for two years, even with all that heat.

  7. bill bartasek huntington ny

    In 1985 I was working at a shop and the owner had a 66 Rambler with the flathead six . It had a burn through between two cylinders at the head gasket surface. I filled it with J-B weld , honed the cylinders and filed the block deck all without removing pistons. It worked for at least 5 years , after which the owner moved out to Vail Colorado and took the car with him . great stuff.

  8. RG Detroit

    My 1993 BMW motorcycle developed a leak in the transmission when I over-tightened the drain plug. I found that the raised boss of the drain plug was cracked. I decided to try JB Weld and it held strong for another 8 years until I sold the bike. Great product, worth it's weight in gold.

  9. Jerry Gebauer Kalamazoo MI

    I have a 1947 CJ-2a Willys with a crack in the flat head. 15 years ago I put JB Weld on it and its still holding. Great Stuff!

  10. TG Virginia

    JB Weld is the best. Had a leaky gas tank in my 76 Plymouth. Patched it and never leaked another drop of gas. It has been a staple of my tool box for years. Great stuff !!

  11. TG Virginia

    JB Weld is the best. Had a leaky gas tank in my 76 Plymouth. Patched it and never leaked another drop of gas. It has been a staple of my tool box for years. Great stuff !!

  12. Doug Carr Ashland City, TN

    A friend of mine suffered from a momentary lapse of reasoning (brain fart) and nailed the accelerator of his pick-up with my wheelchair in the back. This threw the chair into the road where a motorcycle then ran over it (fortunately the motorcyclyist was fine) he caught us at the next red light to advise us we had lost a wheelchair. After recovering it we determined the old Everest Jennings chrome folding wheel chair was bent everywhere it was not broken. Paralyzed and without a functional chair, out came the BFH and we straightened the bent parts and were able to fix the broken joints with good old JB Weld. It's been in my family's tool box as long as I can remember and never has failed us. This just happens to be one of the weirder applications.

  13. Jim Greeno Everett Washington

    I have a 1968 Dodge Charger, back in 2000 I had just completed a year long project to build a modified 500 hp 440, using a 1968 vintage engine block provided by my machinist. I discovered upon firing the engine up for the first time, coolant leaking out of the lower driver side of the block. Upon close inspection I found a hairline crack that ran between the bottom of the freeze plugs, so I called my machinist he said not to worry , he recommended grinding slight a channel and filling it with J-B WELD , I did this as well as drilling a relief hole at each end of the crack to prevent continued cracking , I applied two layers of J-B WELD by using wax paper over the J-B WELD to allow a non stick method of shaping it by hand as it set up, with final sanding and engine paint no one can easily notice the repair which has held without leaks for more then 12 years now. Even with the high heat from the headers nearby, The J-B WELD with metal I used rated to 600 deg f has handled the heat very well. I have used J-B WELD many times over the years for a variety of high temp and general repairs. Great stuff ! I always keep some on hand .

  14. Jim Greeno Everett Washington

    I have a 1968 Dodge Charger, back in 2000 I had just completed a year long project to build a modified 500 hp 440, using a 1968 vintage engine block provided by my machinist. I discovered upon firing the engine up for the first time, coolant leaking out of the lower driver side of the block. Upon close inspection I found a hairline crack that ran between the bottom of the freeze plugs, so I called my machinist he said not to worry , he recommended grinding slight a channel and filling it with J-B WELD , I did this as well as drilling a relief hole at each end of the crack to prevent continued cracking , I applied two layers of J-B WELD by using wax paper over the J-B WELD to allow a non stick method of shaping it by hand as it set up, with final sanding and engine paint no one can easily notice the repair which has held without leaks for more then 12 years now. Even with the high heat from the headers nearby, The J-B WELD with metal I used rated to 600 deg f has handled the heat very well. I have used J-B WELD many times over the years for a variety of high temp and general repairs. Great stuff ! I always keep some on hand .

  15. Wayne Ivey Opelika Al

    I have 57 Chevy on which I installed front disc brakes. As you may know the orginal wheels will not fit over the disc. I wanted to use the stock wheel covers . I had set of orginal 81 Olds cutless wheels that would fit over the dics brakes. However the Olds wheels did not have the nubs to retain the orginal wheelcovers so I made my on nubs with JB Weild and it worked great.

  16. Mark Sparta, WI

    On a motorcycle tripmseveral years ago, I had a wreck about 300 miles from home and about 100 miles from mybdestination. As I slid down the highway, my footpeg made a hole in my valvecover. A wrecker dropped me and the bike off next to an auoparts store. I went in, borrowed a few tools and bought a packet of JB Kwik. I took it apart, pounded out the dent as close to original as I could, filled the rest with the JB Kwik, put it back together and continued my trip. I could not get another valve cover until the insurance was complete about 2 months later. By the time I replaced it almost 2500 miles had passed with no leaks. Amazing Stuff.

  17. John P. Ohio

    I was buying wrecked Honda Gold Wings and parting them out a few years back. I picked one up that was in a collision and somehow the lower portion of the engine struck the ground and simply shattered like an egg shell. All the pieces were there but it would leak oil like crazy. I looked it, then looked at the JB Weld on the bench...then slowly started to remove and replace the pieces with JB Weld holding them in. I drove that bike for at least two season before selling it....hey, if you have or had it...let me know if the weld is still holding. I think JB Weld is right up there with Duct Tape.........it is truly a "Red Neck Repairmans" best friend.

  18. John M Centereach, NY

    Radiator hose kept coming off the rebuilt water pump, put a bead of JB Weld around opening of water pump, put hose back on tighten up clamp still working no leaks, and hose is on to stay..

  19. Stephen Klein Missouri

    Back in the mid 90's I was on a business trip that took me to the mountains around Eureka Springs, AR. I was driving a rental, a late model Chrysler sedan. Venturing up a rocky mountain back road, I hit a rut and BAM! The car bounced like a Globe Trotter's trick basketball. When I got to a stopping place to look-see, there was a steady stream of tranny fluid lubricating the ground. I crept into town and called the rental agency; the nearest place to get another car was over 100 miles away, they would not send a driver to get me, and I could not drive the car there, in that shape. What to do? A friendly repair shop let me use their hoist, a can of carb/brake cleaner gave me a clean place, and I JBWelded the hole up. I drove that car for the rest of the trip, about another 800 miles or more, and gave it back to the rental company when I got back to Kansas City. I don't know if they ever did find the patch, but I doubt that it ever gave anyone any trouble. There now resides in my tooklit, about 4 tubes of the stuff, regular, and quik-weld for the emergency repairs. Good stuff.

  20. Will Moran New York

    I have a 67 gto years ago I was traveling from Tennessee to New Jersey about 325 miles from home I stopped for gas and noticed coolant leaking . Turned out that where the timing chain cover meets up with the intake manifold was were the leak was. Fourtunately there was an auto store down the street. I told the clerk in the store of my problem he sold me J B Weld. I used it for the first time and if got me home. That was about 20 years ago. since then I have repaired toilet seat covers , fountains in my wifes garden, my air compressor in the garage. Plus many other repairs that I cant think of at the moment . I have recommended this product to many friends and will keep doing so. I love J B Weld

  21. Stan Morency Michigan

    I had a large Honda rototiller and was turning a new area in my yard for a garden, when I hit a rock. It jammed between the tiller blades and hit the aluminum transmission case and broke it into several piecs. It had such force that it even broke the chain. I priced a new one ( OUCH ) ! So I took it apart, cleaned it all good. I hammered the housing out pretty flat and positioned the broken pieces back in position using JBW, but it left one larger hole where the rock had shattered the housing. I cut a 5 X 6 inch rectangular plate of .040" sheet metal and used JB weld to bond it to close the housing. Five years and it still runs every summer with no leaks. Fantastic stuff. I restore old cars and use it all the time whenever I get challenged again.

  22. jim passi hawaii

    i have done lot's of repairs engine block is one of them, filled in busted things about 100 times,i all ways keep some on hand

  23. Jeff Pumiglia Ma

    The door on my beat up old shed was falling off . The wood was dry rotted and stripped ware the the hinges screw into the door frame. I filled the holes with jb weld stuck the screws in and propped the door up till it dried. It has been 8 years or longer an d that door is holding up perfectly. Just as good as the day i fixed it.

  24. BJ Wyland Pasco, Wa

    I was driving my 440 Kawasaki street bike on a gravel road in the hills around El Toro California. I slid out on some deep gravel I came down on the case saver on the left hand side of the bike. The case saver bent in and pushed the foot peg bolt through the left side aluminum case. I used J B Weld and a dime to fill the hole. After sanding and bending out the case saver, it held beyond the 2 more years that I rode, then sold it.

  25. Kevin Jermyn, Pa

    Used JB Weld to fix the water pump in my 1946 CJ2A. There was a threaded nipple for the heater hose which I was not going to use. Unfortunately, it would not come out and I ended up breaking it off. I took the JB Weld, filled in the hole, sanded it down and painted it. You can't even tell where it was. That was over 10 years ago and it is still working fine!

  26. Kevin Jermyn, Pa

    Used JB Weld to fix the water pump in my 1946 CJ2A. There was a threaded nipple for the heater hose which I was not going to use. Unfortunately, it would not come out and I ended up breaking it off. I took the JB Weld, filled in the hole, sanded it down and painted it. You can't even tell where it was. That was over 10 years ago and it is still working fine!

  27. Ben A. Sulphur Springs, TX

    In 1965 I bought a new Fiat 600D. Sometime in 1968 It overheated & cracked the block allowing water to get into one of the pistons. After pulling the head & having is resurfaced, an old mechanic explained to me how to lace the block. I forced JB Weld in the crack & around the lacing screw. After it dried, I carefully filed off the top of the block where the repair was made, installed a new head gasket & torqued in the head bolts. Motor ran perfectly for years until I sold the car several years ago. JB Weld is a great product & I happened to know & do business with the original owner of the company. P.S. I also used JB Weld on farm equipment for several repairs for many years with good results.

  28. ted spangler United States

    I use it to repair freon lines in marine ice makers., galvanic response takes place where the copper and aluminum lines meet. leaving pin holes in the lines. Pull a small vaccum, apply JB Quick evacuate and recharge.

  29. Tom East Syracuse, New York

    Used JB Weld on the exhaust manifold on my 97 jeep. The repair lasted for years and was still holding when I sold the truck

  30. Joey T. Pueblo, CO

    I was replacing my parents throttle body on their 96 F-150. When I opened up the box for the aftermarket part, the return coolant tube that was supposed to be pressed in fell out. I was panicked because I had the old one stripped off and it was a PITA to get off and had promised to return it to them fixed that afternoon. The brass tube was loose and wouldn't press back into the aluminum body. I thought, "I need some sort of metal glue" and laughed, then I remembered my tube of J-B Quick Weld. I mixed it up, smeared it on the tube, pressed it together and reinstalled it. It's still going strong!

  31. Joey T. Pueblo, CO

    I was replacing my parents throttle body on their 96 F-150. When I opened up the box for the aftermarket part, the return coolant tube that was supposed to be pressed in fell out. I was panicked because I had the old one stripped off and it was a PITA to get off and had promised to return it to them fixed that afternoon. The brass tube was loose and wouldn't press back into the aluminum body. I thought, "I need some sort of metal glue" and laughed, then I remembered my tube of J-B Quick Weld. I mixed it up, smeared it on the tube, pressed it together and reinstalled it. It's still going strong!

  32. gary p orient ,iowa

    I bought s 58 Edsel with the pot metal hood ornament snapped off. Welder would not touch it and I tried solder. The surface was less than an eighth inch wide. JBW fixed it . saving having to buy an expensive reproduction.

  33. dennis watson topeka kansas

    The water pump went out on my 70 outboard engine and it got hot and melted a groove in the head and cylinder. Boat shop said it was done. I put JB Weld on both parts and filed and sanded them till they were smooth. I was back on the lake with no problems!