RE: [DML] Re: 3M VHB Tape on Rear-View Mirror?
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RE: [DML] Re: 3M VHB Tape on Rear-View Mirror?

Been there.  Its quite a task.  You can't use the adhesive or you will
bust your windshield, and the standard mounting tapes from the vendors
are too weak for the job.  Its hard to find something that won't damage
the car, doesn't allow the Mirror to vibrate, won't drop of when you
take a turn or park the sun for the day in the summer sun, and looks
good.  The good news is, I've done it.  I did this about 18 months ago
and have had zero problems since.
So to mount the mirror you first need to create a new intermediate
baseplate out of plastic.  I used smoke plex. Black Sintra will likely
work even better.  I cut a strip approx. 1.5" wide (same width as the
base of the mirror) by 9.5" long - the distance from the top of the
windshield to the bottom of the mirror base, when it is its final
I then rounded out one end of this strip so it has one square end like a
ruler (top) and one radiused end like a popsicle stick (bottom).  The
rounded out bottom matched the radius of the rounded bottom of the
mirror base.
As I used smoke plex and wanted a satin finish I simply sanded my plex
to a black satin finish.
Because the windshield curves a bit over that upper 9", the base plate
needs to be able to bend in order to sit flat against the inside of the
windshield.  I cut several horizontal grooves across, about half the
depth of the plastic,  it to make it easier to bend.  If it is too rigid
it will spring away from the windshield and put too much stress on the
mounting tape.
I then used a metal mirror mounting button from pep boys and affixed it
to the plastic base plate.  I found that the one I got had plenty of
stick right out of the box, but after it cured I still applied a bead of
superglue gel around the base and let that wick in a bit too.  I
considered drilling through the center of the button and using a small
countersunk screw to help hold it to the base plate, but this has proven
totally unnecessary.  The button is then permanently affixed to the the
plastic baseplate at the exact position to have the mirror base align
with the plastic baseplate at the bottom.
I then used 3M VHB double stick tape (red backing) to mount the base
plate to the windshield.  That gives me 12 square inches of contact area
between the base and the windshield, rather than .75" square with a
standard mounting button.  Because I used tape rather than adhesive, and
have a plastic base plate  which is not as thermally susceptible as
metal, I'm confident that I won't be stressing the glass and cracking it
(this mount has made it through one  and a half LA summers already.
The only downside I have right now is that the double stick I used has a
dark grey foam, not black. (Purchased as 3M automotive weather-strip
mounting tape from Auto Zone.) This can be seen from outside the car,
although it is not a major stand out.  I'm still considering taking that
base off again and reapplying it with a clear or black adhesive.  3M
sells the VHB as a transfer adhesive which is clear, I may go that way,
but the grey is not overly obtrusive.
Also, I think the 12" of surface area may be overkill for lighter mirror
I think mine is the heaviest, biggest one I've seen).  You may choose to
cut your mounting strip to about half that length and have it float on
the windshield rather than run al the way up to the headliner.  It makes
little difference from inside the car as you can't see most of the base
- it is blocked by the mirror.  It would just change the appearance from
the outside.
I drive the car at night fairly often (less since daylight savings time,
but still), and I can tell you the auto dimming mirror is a godsend.
When Camry's are tall enough to put their lights in your eyes, you know
you need help.  The temp and compass are nice too.
This works.
Feel free to email me with questions, etc.  Happy to help.


From: dmcnews@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:dmcnews@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf
Of Harold McElraft
Sent: Wednesday, July 25, 2007 5:25 PM
To: dmcnews@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [DML] Re: 3M VHB Tape on Rear-View Mirror?

You should get the mounting "pad" from DMCH for the OEM mirror. I 
assume the black vinyl piece stayed on the windshield - it doesn't 
matter it is a good guide if it stayed on - no need to remove it just 
clean it off (and the mirror mount too), put the new pad on it, then 
put on the mirror.

I have been playing around for a while trying to mount a new 
chromatic mirror. Installing the electric was the easy part - finding 
a way to mount the mirror securely has been a challenge. I know what 
doesn't work.

Harold McElraft - 3354

--- In dmcnews@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx <> ,
"Patrick C." <PRC1216@...> wrote:
> Today I managed to knock my rear view mirror off my windshield. I 
> know not to use the super-glue type of mirror adhesive, but I was 
> wondering if using Randal Brown's freebie 3M VHB tape from one of 
> DCS shows would be acceptable? I would think this would still 
> provide enough cushion without cracking the windshield as the 
> aluminum mirror base expands in the sun. Any thoughts?
> -Patrick C.
> 1880


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