Bondo (putty)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
3M's Bondo logo
Product typeAutomotive body filler
Produced by3M

Bondo is a polyester putty product originally marketed as an automotive body filler. Nowadays the brand name is used by 3M for a line of American-made products for automotive, marine and household repairs.[1][2] The term Bondo is trademarked by 3M, but is commonly used to refer to any brand of automotive repair putty due to its popularity.[3][4] It is also used by sculptors.[5]


Before the 1950s, body solder was often used to repair large imperfections prior to painting[6] in both new cars and vehicle repair shops.[6] Solder repairs were conducted using a flame and wooden paddles covered in tallow or motor oil, which prevented the half-molten lead from sticking.

After World War II, automotive panels became thinner and larger, with a greater susceptibility to warping, making hot solder unsuitable.[7] The earliest 'plastic solder' can be traced to around 1940, a do-it-yourself solution to panel beating. This gave the consumer the ability to attempt reasonably priced and long lasting repairs. These early fillers were epoxy-based and one-part, drying by outgassing. Originally, the plastic fillers performed badly compared to solder, but later improvements addressed this.[7]

Bondo, a two-part mix (resin with hardener added) of talc and plastic, was introduced in 1955.[7] It was developed by WWII veteran and automotive repair shop owner Robert Merton Spink of Miami, Florida.[8] Bondo was acquired by 3M in 2007.[9]


  1. ^ DePass, Dee (28 June 2015). "Innovation Manufacturing; 3M Offers Easier Way to Bring the Shine Back to Headlights; the Kit Is Made for Do-It-Yourselfers to Use on Any Car. No Tools Needed". Star Tribune (Minneapolis, MN). Archived from the original on 14 September 2018. Retrieved 13 September 2018. 3M is well known for ... Its abrasives and metal-smoothing Bondo putties are standard in wreck repair shops nationwide.
  2. ^ "Bondo finds second life in NASCAR garages". Autoweek. Retrieved 13 September 2018.
  3. ^ Breitenstein, Jeff. Ultimate Hot Rod Dictionary: A-Bombs to Zoomies. MotorBooks International. p. 30. ISBN 9781610592352. Retrieved 14 September 2018. Bondo (BON-doe) n. Any polyester-based auto body filler. The extreme popularity of the Bondo brand has led to its name being used in a generic manner.
  4. ^ "Bondo". Retrieved 13 September 2018.
  5. ^ "Bronze Studio Thrives."[dead link] The Register Guard (Eugene, OR). McClatchy-Tribune Information Services. 2009. 14 September 2018. ("In 1992, when he was working at an auto body repair shop, he began sculpting with Bondo, the putty used to fill in dents, He entered an early sculpture into the Lane County Fair, where it took first place.")
  6. ^ a b Tilton, John E. (2015). Material Substitution: Lessons from Tin-Using Industries. Routledge. ISBN 9781317312031. Retrieved 14 September 2018.
  7. ^ a b c Duffy, James E. (2014). Auto Body Repair Technology. Cengage Learning. p. 367. ISBN 9781305176447. Retrieved 14 September 2018.
  8. ^ "Robert Merton Spink > Obituary". 2010-10-04. Retrieved 2014-03-26.
  9. ^ Staff, aftermarketNews. (2007, November 7). 3M to Acquire Bondo Corp. AftermarketNews.

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