3M Composite Training Clinic

Tuesday, November 28, and Wednesday, November 29, 2017
Minneapolis, Minnesota

The use of composites is increasing in all industries. Aerospace and marine industries are close to 50 percent composite use. The automotive industry is using composites for bumpers, hoods, grills, fenders, doors, and for much of the interior. The integration of composites into automotive design lightens the weight of the vehicle, resulting in fuel reduction, creates more flexible components, eliminates rust from salt or calcium chloride, and ultimately, makes repairs less expensive.

The “Super Beam” was created by a former truck driver from Virginia. While attending college, he became interested in composites and their possible application in the trucking industry. Through his innovation, he created a process whereby stainless-steel plates were laminated with composites to create a beam that is lighter and stronger than steel of the same mass and this beam will not rust. The uses of this “Super Beam” are many. Trailers, such as double drops or RGNs, can be fabricated resulting in lighter weight, affording more payload and a longer life span. Trailer cross members, bridge sections, and roof beams are other uses of the “Super Beam”.

Freightliner and Hendrickson recently displayed a truck at the TMC convention with composite springs and tie rod assembly. Wabash also recently displayed a refrigerated trailer with a composite floor. This trailer was such a hit that many refrigerated carriers placed orders on the spot.

Composites are now, and will be, ever increasing in the future, becoming a growth opportunity for the aftermarket service business. Our traditional revenue streams are going to change and so must we.

Course description:

This is a 1½ day interactive, hands-on workshop that focuses on composite identification and composite repair. During the training, participants will have an opportunity to enhance their knowledge of composites by implementing and applying 3M’s heavy-duty truck & commercial vehicle standard operating procedures to damaged composite panels. Our course curriculum will give each participant the basic skillset needed to develop a good sense for practical application of products needed to create sound repairs to support vehicle preservation.

The intention of this workshop is to increase technician confidence when repairing composites found on today’s HD truck and commercial vehicles.

A solid repair begins with identifying the substrate and applying the proper product to make the repair. Without a thorough understanding of composites and knowledge of proper repair procedures, an incorrect repair, using inferior products or improper procedures can cost the shop redo work, loss of revenue, loss of customers, and perhaps most importantly, loss of a good reputation.

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