Ever wondered how the pros are able to bring a panel back to life without using tonnes of filler?
Well here it is;
‘AckoShrink’, a product of Xtreme Restorations by Chad Ackland, has developed a 9” metal shrinking disc to help revive those tired and damaged panels with minimal or no use of filler.
Made from stainless steel, the disc is designed to fit any standard 9” sander/grinder/polisher and works particularly well on large panels such as bonnets, doors, guards and roof for example.
It can be used on a number of surfaces including steel, stainless and aluminium, however to avoid cross contamination we don’t recommend using the same disc on different surfaces.
The disc enables you to shrink back the overworked and damaged areas on a panel and repair them like new. You will find there is better heat placement whilst using a shrinking disc and therefore the heat can be dispersed more accurately between the highs and lows on a damaged panel, unlike using other methods of shrinking which can often result in the panel warping.
The key to shrinking the metal is based on the heating/cooling method. This process involves the heating up of metal through friction between disc and panel, causing the metal to expand. The surrounding cooler metal will help restrict a lot of the heat however by applying a wet cloth or spraying water immediately over the worked area, the heat is further contained and cooled allowing the heated metal to then contract and shrink.
With nearly 20 years experience working in the car industry as a panel beater and metal fabricator, Chad has worked with both the ribbed and flat surface discs. He finds the ribbed discs are more beneficial. Not only does the ribbing add strength and works as a stiffener to stop the stainless moving around it also creates air pockets to keep the disc cool whilst allowing it to heat the panel being worked on. It too creates a fine hammering action that he feels helps with the shrinking process.
The art of using a shrinking disc can be difficult but certainly a skill worth having, especially for the keen metal fabricator.