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Old 08-02-2005, 05:23 PM
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Cutting curved windshield

Hello,
The past few days I have been searching and reading everything I can on cutting a curved laminated windshield on this and other forums. I think I kind of have an idea but just want to make sure I have everything correct. I have a lamborghini diablo replica that requires a cut down van windshield. I have located some van glass for $125. I am planning on cutting the glass myself. I have called to some glass shops and all of them sound like they have never heard of cutting a windshield. I am planning on getting some windshield from some glass shops that are the broken ones they have replaced to practice on. I figure if most good glass shops say they may need 2 or 3 windshields then I probably can do it with a little practice. I would rather pay for another windshield because of my mistake rather than someone elses.
My plan is to:
1. Use towels to support the glass evenly to releive as much pressure as possible
2. have some cool running water to cool the glass as I cut it.
3. Duck tape along the edge of my cut line on the useable side
4. Deeply score one side of the glass using an angle grinder with a cutting disc doing small portions at a time to avoid heat.
5. Flip and do the other side to completely cut the glass
6. Sand the edges with 36 grit sand paper using a spray bottle of water to cool the edge surface.

If anyone has any additional ideas to ensure success please let me know.
Thanks,
Scott

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Old 08-02-2005, 07:44 PM
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http://cgi.ebay.com/5-DIAMOND-CUT-OF...QQcmdZViewItem
Would these discs on my dremel work better than the angle grinder?
Scott
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Old 08-02-2005, 08:35 PM
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Food for thought

Try this???

This is a cordless diamond saw by makita..has the water bottle attached..should work fine..I have used one to cut tile and see no reason it should not cut glass just fine..

OMT
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I have tried most all of it and now do what is known to work..
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Old 08-03-2005, 07:16 AM
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I didn't know you could cut glass successfully with a grinder, I've heard it can be done with a duct tape and a sandblaster. Good luck
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Old 08-03-2005, 09:24 AM
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Scott, I have no real advice for cutting the glass, but one thing I do know, you are miles off and you WILL break the glass with the technique you have layed out. You have a LOT of study (and a few broken "Learning experiances") ahead before you could cut a windshield.

I have seen them done, there are many different techniques. I have seen where the guy cut small strips of a half inch or so off the glass until the amount needed was removed. I have even seen where the windshield was cut in half so there were two pieces (much easier to cut) and then the truck got a seam down the middle like an earlier car. He did this because he had already broke three windshields leaving them in one piece!

I don't believe you could "grind" the glass in any way shape or form without breaking it. Other than removing a LITTLE off the edge with a "wet belt" there is NO WAY you could "cut" glass without it cracking.

All the glass I have seen cut was done with a good old hand glass cutter and a LOT of experiance!

Brian
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Old 08-03-2005, 09:44 AM
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I have a buddy that owns a glass shop and have seen him cut down windshields with a glass cutter and then burn the plastic laminate with alcohol and finishing the seperation.

This requires an exact cut and lots of talent. Doug has been doing tricky cuts for 25 years and even the guys that work for him and cut full time would call him back to make such a cut.

I used do work on street rods for a local custom builder and have seen MANY windshields that he has cut down with a sandblaster. Basically he taped off both sides with duct tape in multiple layers and blasted the glass away. Replacing the tape as needed during the process. Once it was through (and rough) they would take a belt sander and sand the edge smooth.

Couple things to remember is concenrated heat will break glass. Both the belt sander and sand blaster are capable of doing this. So move around and go slow.

Dont know about your process but I can see a lot of "stress" involved in your methods that I think would end up starting a run. I do know for sure the above methods I have mentioed will work because I have seen both done. If you dont have a glass god around, I suggest you sandblast the extra away.

Rich
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Old 08-03-2005, 04:48 PM
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I really dont have a choice but to do it myself. I've called every glass and sandblasting place in the phone book with absolutely no luck.
Scott
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Old 08-03-2005, 05:02 PM
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Well there is no reason you cant sandblast it yourself. I dont know if you have compressed air or not but you can buy a pressurized tank sandblaster with hood for about $150. Might not last if you make your living with it but believe me they will do the job.

That sounds cheaper than the tools method you had planned.

Rich
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Old 08-03-2005, 05:25 PM
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would this with a rented compressor work?
http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/cta...emnumber=30979
I have all the other tools listed.
Thanks,
Scott
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Old 08-03-2005, 05:44 PM
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With lots of patience and time maybe.

The pressurized pots are much and I mean MUCH more powerful. The gravity type you listed does not do much.

http://www.northerntool.com/webapp/w...ctId=583&R=583

The above link is what works.

Rich
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Old 08-04-2005, 08:45 AM
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Scott-
Borrow a compressor with 10cfm, and get one of the cheapo sand blast guns at Home Depot. Stick the intake in the bag, and have at it. Use a tarp under it to catch the abrasive, and strain/sift it to recycle it.

After taping , keep the gun back as far as you can while still making headway, moving across the glass so it won't heat up. To clean it up, use the abrasive belt, WET, if possible. Works better than dry.

I did one on a bet years ago, and it came out good.

THIS ONLY WORKS for laminated glass. Try it on Tempered, and you will have a face full of 1/4" glass chunks!! Each glass is stamped if its tempered, or laminated. A quick check of the edge will show the vinyl separator.
With tempered glass, the only way to cut it, is with a hammer. You WON'T!
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Old 08-04-2005, 09:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beenaway2long
Scott-
cheapo sand blast guns at Home Depot.

I will be the first to admit I am wrong but I think with one of those cheapo siphon guns you will be blasting for days. The link I had above for $139 will do the job and you can either use if for other stuff or sell it when you are done.

I have had and tossed a couple siphon guns over the years. They work good for fixing spots of surface rust but thats about it.

I agree with beenaway2long's other comments 100%.

Dont worry about your windshield being tempered. Its laminated for sure.



Rich
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Old 08-04-2005, 09:42 PM
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I'm confused, the harbor freight ad I posted states it is 30% more powerful than siphon units. Wouldn't that mean it is not a siphon unit?
Thanks,
Scott
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Old 08-04-2005, 09:57 PM
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Looks like a siphon to me.

I have no idea what they are talking about.
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Old 08-05-2005, 07:51 AM
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Rich-
believe it or not, I would rather have my el-cheapo siphon than my 80# H-F pot. That thing SUCKS! If the sand isn't COMPLETELY moisture free, it simply will not work! I keep my sand in the shop, it sifts nicely, without shaking, but the darn pot always sticks. I use a line drier as well! I personally think it has to do with condensation in the pot itself. Stick the siphon in the pot of sand, and I'm blasting again. Go figure? He could probably get away with one of those spot blasters. Doing one of these windshields, you HAVE to go slow anyways.
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