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Old March 23, 2010, 07:09 AM   #1
UpandAtIt
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Franzite grip warp - How to fix ??

Ok, for us older guys, I have a set of Franzite (plastic) grip panels from a Hi-Standard pistol that are horribly warpped. I would like to repair them and just not sure how. They are hard to find in this model as they are the real genuine immitation Stag, I am betting many a Franzite-Elk paid dearly to make these grips panels

Any ideas on how to bring these back to flat without distortion of the screw hole or position of the guide pin holes?

Here is the picture of the warpped grips:
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Old March 23, 2010, 07:37 AM   #2
mapsjanhere
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I haven't found if Franzite used a thermoset or thermoplastic, but the procedure is the same but for the temperature anyway. You need to press them between two pieces of wood with a c-clamp, and slowly heat. Best done in an oven at no more than 5 degrees every 10 min. Put a couple of cookie sheets on the lower racks so you only see convection heat, not radiant direct heat of the elements (you'll destroy the surface if you go too fast). At some point (called the glass transition point) your grips are going to soften just enough to press them flat with little pressure, as soon as they are flat take them out of the oven and let them cool down. The real trick is slow heat-up and very little pressure so you don't smash the surface details.
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Old March 23, 2010, 08:27 AM   #3
UpandAtIt
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What temp should I start out at for the oven method?

Would it be better to boil them rather than oven heat?
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Old March 23, 2010, 12:37 PM   #4
mapsjanhere
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I would not boil it, unless you're sure the coloration is permanent, not painted on. I'd start at 200 F and work my way up. You might just lay them on a flat piece of wood for starters, and see if they soften at some point, that way you're least likely to damage the surface.
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Old March 23, 2010, 01:03 PM   #5
Lavid2002
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Why not c-clamp em with a towel in between the grips and the c clamp. Stick it in the oven at the lowest setting for a hour or so. Let it cool off see if that does the trick
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Old March 23, 2010, 01:30 PM   #6
Bill DeShivs
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No matter what you do, you will probably find they have shrunk.
I would heat them very gently from behind with a heat gun. When they become pliable, flip them over and lay a board across them until they cool.
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Old March 24, 2010, 01:19 PM   #7
Inspector3711
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Bill hit the nail on the head. Shrinkage is a big risk. I worked with thermoforming for many years and watched people try to remove warpage from parts many times. Most often shrinkage of the part ended up ruining it anyway.

Once in awhile it would work but you have to be careful.
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