Sealing spare equipment for overland travel.

If you have done any sort of off roading then you have broken things. yes even Toyota’s break,

So you happily go into the back of your vehicle to get out the small item you stowed a couple of years back,  knowing one day you will smile with the knowledge that you always carried that widget you may need.

but horror … that trip a few years back in heavy rain when everything got soaked but dried out the next day in the sun  must have got all the spares get just a little damp and that brand new widget now looks like an ancient relic. 🤦‍♂️

Think spare keys , where do you hide them? will you be able to identify them a keys when you finally need them five years from now?

We have this problem on the Dakar  cars, we fit a huge amount of expensive parts to the car and after the race has beaten the car to submission it  then sits on a ship across the ocean for 3 weeks, all the parts look like scrap.

So what do we do?

how do we seal spare electronics , ball joints  etc?

well old school aerospace/military that’s how.

we coat the parts in hot dip gloop

How to seal stuff for expedition , military style
Looks like a bar of soap , but has a slightly oily feel to it, and a certain smell

but there are a few tricks to it,

First: what is it and where can I get it?

you can buy it from here, Kennedy hot dip coating

hot dip rust restistant peal off coating

Second : Not breaking the bank

So how do you apply it, well industrial hot melting tanks will set you back a few hundred quid ( dollars , euros etc)

we use a slow melting cooker available for tens of pounds.

you can get one here from amazon

How to seal stuff for expedition , military
Dont use the wifes slow cooker 😉

any large domestic type with two temperature settings is good.

Use the low setting which is touch too hot, the workshops will leave it on all day, at this temperature it would probably damage the gloop  but for short runs it works fine, usually takes all night to melt the entire pot to a useable temperature. If you are going to do a lot use the lower temp overnight to melt it and put it on the higher temp when using it

How to seal stuff for expedition , military amber
Looks like this when it cools
How to seal stuff for expedition , military easy peel covering
It Peels off very easily and leaves a slightly oily surface behind

Third: can I reuse it?

Yes. you can reuse it, so if you do it wrong just peel it off and throw it back into the pan . When you peel it off on a trip keep it in a bag and reuse it.

How to seal stuff for expedition , military
resistance is futile, we will assimilate you 🙂

Fourth: fiddly small bits

If you have things with connectors and fiddly items we cover them in cling film then use the dip to make a seal around it all . Anything loose like keys needs a zip tie to gather them together or it will turn out  a messy big lump, you can practise again and again , just peel it off and throw it back in.

How to seal stuff for expedition , military style
This is a Sealed engine ECU, wrapped in cling film first.

Five: it has zero strength

One problem is the gloop is not strong and will not take abuse when stowed away , so we always protect and seal in a plastic back with maybe bubble wrap around it, this ECU is our backup in the camper and if the whole car is flooded this may just save us one day.

How to seal stuff for expedition , military

enjoy 🙂 

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