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Strut bladder repair/purchase

Created by rolwidit A week ago, 9 Nov 2019
SA, 3 posts
9 Nov 2019 9:35AM
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Managed to pop my bladder on my fifth edition f-one bandit. Problem i have is I'm not sure how to get out? All youtube videos show them popping it back into strut? my valve seems to be fixed from the top without any movement in or out. I have attached a couple of photos of rip in bladder and valve. Any info would be of so much help.

WA, 474 posts
9 Nov 2019 7:54AM
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It will pop back in press the bit at the bottom theres a ridge which keeps it there...
Then there is probably a zip in the middle u feed out the popped bit via the 'zip'...ok.. then if its a pinprick use tear aid...then if its a two inch etc pop cut some old bladder such as broken strut...clean down with acetone use tarzan grip which will weld it...make sure its super flat then recheck for leaks pre-putting it back in
If pop is far down end of LE use string to feed through ..thats on you tube
No bladder is 'attached' to LE
If its a 'strut' bladder pop its piss easy.. refeed through middle material bit at end

WA, 525 posts
9 Nov 2019 8:39AM
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Don't forget to attach a piece of string so you can get it back in when you've fixed it

SA, 3 posts
9 Nov 2019 1:26PM
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@timmybuddhadude...Yeh thanks for that.Just seemed like it did not wanna pop through so i thought i would ask the question,instaed odf ****ing it up.Got some tear aid, so lets see how it bonds...

WA, 1215 posts
9 Nov 2019 11:53AM
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Hi rolwidit

yep, sometimes you need to use quite a bit of force and perseverance to push those valves back into the leading edge.

If your bladder tear was only at the extremity of the wing tip as pictured there was no need to remove the bladder from the leading edge. You just pull it out like you did, far enough to have room to work on it, patch it and put it back in.

Note that it's difficult to fix a tear like that properly, especially if the tear is close to a seam on the bladder. You need to lay this bladder completely flat and have no creasing whatsoever for the air not to escape. Tear-aid sticks really well, too well actually, so if you mess it up it's hard to take it off unless you use a solvent like meth spirits. It helps to have 2 pairs of hands for jobs like this, or at least tape the bladder on a flat surface using masking tape.

good luck


SA, 3 posts
9 Nov 2019 7:49PM
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@cbulota Yeh thanks for info, i managed to fix it pretty much they way you just said. I managed to come across a video explaining, but it was pretty tricky. The tear was right at the end of bladder right along the seam on the middle strut as seen in photo. What made it even more tricky, was the fact the bladder originally popped out of end of strut like a big bubble, and not long after popped, which in-tale stretched the bladder at bottom. Managed to get done with no air leaks, but was a tricky little affair....

1 posts
9 Nov 2019 8:17PM
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FYI, I've experimented with use of a heat sealer machine (for vacuum sealing plastic bags) to weld kite bladders... works a treat if the damage is at the end of a bladder as there's usually a bit of spare length so that you can just make a new weld next to the tear. Never had much joy with Tear-Aid nor glue, as the air eventually tracked under patches, but welding seems 100% successful in the right situation. I stretch the bladder material out straight and use tape to hold it to the welding thingy, & double up with 2 welds right next to each other to be sure.

WA, 480 posts
10 Nov 2019 10:39PM
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Select to expand quote

Fly on da wall
VIC, 696 posts
Monday , 11 Nov 2019 2:39AM
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Tear aid will fail if it's a blow out. It only work's for a pin prick size leak. Needs glue like stormsure and a patch.

QLD, 821 posts
Monday , 11 Nov 2019 2:10PM
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Hey mate. I am glad you've managed to fix it. As Cb said, no need to pull out the entire bladder. But next time, if this happens at the very end or close to the end of the bladder, you can "roll and glue" a bit inwards without having to repair the hole itself. I've done this many times and works great. Just use a good glue though. I've tried Tarzan Grip and found it doesn't stretch as well as some other glues and seems to work on small holes. Anything larger, you'll need something more bonding and stretchy like StormSure from the UK - not cheap.


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"Strut bladder repair/purchase" started by rolwidit