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Floppy mirror fix, an alternative approach
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61Scout
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 20, 2016 8:51 pm    Post subject: Floppy mirror fix, an alternative approach Reply with quote

So I live in a very windy area of WA state. I've tried the rubber washer fix for the floppy mirrors, but honestly never had much luck, especially when there were crosswinds. Over time the rubber washer wears out from adjustment and dries out (I live in a desert) and it becomes less effective over time. I also often travel through the Columbia Gorge, which has some of the strongest gusts in the country. So I thought about this issue for a while and came up with an alternative mod.

Here we go:

Step 1. Remove the plastic cup piece. This adds a bit of friction to the over all set up. If you look carefully the match between this piece and the base isn't perfect and actually doesn't make a whole lot of contact. Removing the plastic piece gets rid of the slippery part.
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Step 2. Use your dremel with the cut-off wheel to create lines in the rounded piece like shown. I went approximately 1-2mm. No need to get crazy here, but you want enough depth to easily catch your fingernail. This will now "dig in" to the backside of the base, where the real contact point is, imo.
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Step 3. Add a couple washers between the spring and the nut. 1/4" washers work fine, I found two of them were about 3mm thick. This will add just a tad of spring tension, but still allow the mirror to adjust. Then reassemble the mirror.
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


That's all there is to it! I've tested these for about a week now and they are holding up great at 75-80mph in decent crosswinds. So if the other techniques didn't work, give this a shot before giving up on the manual mirrors.

-Kevin
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Floppy Mirrors no more: http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=653018&highlight=
Remove the front spindle nut with ease: https://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=679567&highlight=
Remove the rear wheel bearing housing without messing with the big 46mm nut: https://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=679507&highlight=

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Last edited by 61Scout on Thu Apr 21, 2016 6:30 am; edited 1 time in total
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djkeev
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 21, 2016 4:00 am    Post subject: Re: Floppy mirror fix, an alternative approach Reply with quote

Too late for me, but excellent idea!

Dave
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dhaavers
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 21, 2016 4:05 am    Post subject: Re: Floppy mirror fix, an alternative approach Reply with quote

That should do it...nice work! Cool
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vanis13
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 21, 2016 8:31 am    Post subject: Re: Floppy mirror fix, an alternative approach Reply with quote

how much force to adjust them?
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 21, 2016 8:53 am    Post subject: Re: Floppy mirror fix, an alternative approach Reply with quote

I just find an injured pine tree and smear some resin on the ball & socket.

Now THAT’S alternative!
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61Scout
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 21, 2016 9:01 am    Post subject: Re: Floppy mirror fix, an alternative approach Reply with quote

vanis13 wrote:
how much force to adjust them?


It's stiff, but not overly stiff to where the sheet metal on the door is flexing. The cuts on the rounded/domed piece just add traction. I took it apart after modifying and the paint on the inside of the base piece gets cut away now, so it's definitely grabbing.

On the rubber washer mod the thickness of the rubber is what is essentially creating greater spring tension. On this mod, greater spring tension is created on the other side by adding the two washers under the nut.

If you have a mirror apart, just run the base up to the mirror, take a flashlight and look from the backside of the base up into the cavity. the contact there is very small, maybe 20% between the base and the mirror. Whereas the base and the rounded/domed piece the contact area is probably 90-95%.

My experience with the rubber washer is that it worked okay, but it didn't stand up to crosswinds and it eventually wore out. What I like about this mod is that there is no rubber piece to wear out, nor any question about if the rubber is the correct thickness or if it's too soft or too hard of a rubber. I suppose if one really wanted a belt and suspenders type mod, a piece of inner tube could be inserted between the base and the mirror.

Gnarlodious wrote:
I just find an injured pine tree and smear some resin on the ball & socket.


Good to know, and probably smells good too! Christopher at T3 recommended in another thread that there was some kind of "carbon paste" product that bike builders use that will help also.

-Kevin
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1986 Westfalia Weekender Wolfsburg, RJE 2.3
1985 Tin Top, Subie 2.2 + 5MT
Floppy Mirrors no more: http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=653018&highlight=
Remove the front spindle nut with ease: https://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=679567&highlight=
Remove the rear wheel bearing housing without messing with the big 46mm nut: https://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=679507&highlight=

-Nec Spe, Nec Metu
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maco70
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 26, 2016 5:11 pm    Post subject: Re: Floppy mirror fix, an alternative approach Reply with quote

Is another altertative approach can be to replace floppy mirrors by power mirror... without power?

I mean, since power mirrors are known to be much more stable on wind than the non power ones, can we install power mirrors but not putting power on them, or it will be a mess to adjust them without power ?

Thanks in advance foer your comments.
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bluebus86
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 26, 2016 6:11 pm    Post subject: Re: Floppy mirror fix, an alternative approach Reply with quote

the problem I have found is the hex shaft to which the mounting screw and spring are attached to, pulls out of the mirror arm. adding more frixtion may help temporarily, but bottom line is if the shaft is moving out, it will loosen again.
I have removed the shaft, and reinstalled with locktite, and then peened over the metal on the arm near the shaft to help secure it.

failing that, drill a hole perpendiculr to the shaft and pin it in place (the way VW should have done it)

I did do the increase friction route prior to the shaft repair, used rubber washers, this repair did not last long, as the shaft eventually moved out more.


good luck.

ps if the shaft completely comes out when driving, kiss the mirror good bye!
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maco70
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 26, 2016 6:34 pm    Post subject: Re: Floppy mirror fix, an alternative approach Reply with quote

Thanks !

So, I will buy "no-flop' side view mirrors (non power) from Gowesty, I believe.

Martin
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 26, 2016 6:43 pm    Post subject: Re: Floppy mirror fix, an alternative approach Reply with quote

maco70 wrote:
Thanks !

So, I will buy "no-flop' side view mirrors (non power) from Gowesty, I believe.

Martin


wonder how they modify them to not flop, might be easy to modify your own mirrors and save some money doing so. pin the hex shaft? add a rubber washer?
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maco70
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 26, 2016 7:02 pm    Post subject: Re: Floppy mirror fix, an alternative approach Reply with quote

Yes, I agree, but I broke the passenger mirror (the glass) so anyway I have to replace it.
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jimf909 Premium Member
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 26, 2016 10:24 pm    Post subject: Re: Floppy mirror fix, an alternative approach Reply with quote

maco70 wrote:
Is another altertative approach can be to replace floppy mirrors by power mirror... without power?

I mean, since power mirrors are known to be much more stable on wind than the non power ones, can we install power mirrors but not putting power on them, or it will be a mess to adjust them without power ?

Thanks in advance foer your comments.


Power mirrors adjust well w/out power. Search for other threads on this topic, I believe I've read the GW no-flop mirrors eventually flop too.

As for bluebus's comments, I believe he was referring to the bolt on the floppy mirrors pulling out. That was the death knell on my 85's mirrors. No amount of friction material would help because the bolt just kept pulling out.
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2016 9:14 am    Post subject: Re: Floppy mirror fix, an alternative approach Reply with quote

jimf909 wrote:
maco70 wrote:
Is another altertative approach can be to replace floppy mirrors by power mirror... without power?

I mean, since power mirrors are known to be much more stable on wind than the non power ones, can we install power mirrors but not putting power on them, or it will be a mess to adjust them without power ?

Thanks in advance foer your comments.


Power mirrors adjust well w/out power. Search for other threads on this topic, I believe I've read the GW no-flop mirrors eventually flop too.

As for bluebus's comments, I believe he was referring to the bolt on the floppy mirrors pulling out. That was the death knell on my 85's mirrors. No amount of friction material would help because the bolt just kept pulling out.


that final solution is to pin the threaded shaft (bolt as you call it) into the mirror arm, then it wont pull out. you can then tighten the nut without fear of thedtnreaded shaft pulling out.


good luck
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Stephenmarklay
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 25, 2016 7:38 pm    Post subject: Re: Floppy mirror fix, an alternative approach Reply with quote

Gnarlodious wrote:
I just find an injured pine tree and smear some resin on the ball & socket.

Now THAT’S alternative!


OR

I have used Carbon Fiber paste used on bicycle parts. The paste is mildly gritty and is designed to allow lower torque on carbon fiber bits.

I may try that when my van is running in the spring.
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VWBob88
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 07, 2019 6:45 pm    Post subject: Re: Floppy mirror fix, an alternative approach Reply with quote

I took some of the black sticky material on the back of the FatMat insulation and put a ring of it where the ball makes contact. Seems to work good.
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