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ADV ProductsADV ToolsNew Thermoplastic Cards May Prove Useful for Trailside Fixes

New Thermoplastic Cards May Prove Useful for Trailside Fixes

 Sometimes you need more than just duct tape out in the middle of nowhere.

Published on 04.29.2016

When you have a breakage or failure in the middle of nowhere, all you have to rely on are your resources and ingenuity to get you out of a jam. Duct tape, Zip-Ties and JB Weld may not be able to fix every problem you encounter. Sometimes you need to fabricate a solution on the spot.

A new product called FORMcard just might be able to help you out of your next predicament. FORMcard is a credit-card-sized piece of thermoplastic that melts into a sticky, pliable material you can shape after immersing it in hot water. Once heated, it can be used to repair parts or create tools you need in an emergency.


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Adventure riders that carry camping gear can easily heat up water with their camp stove, then just drop a FORMcard into hot water and the hard plastic card transforms into a malleable piece of putty after 30 seconds. Let it cool to the touch and it can be cut, shaped and molded into new forms, and even binds to other plastics. Once FORMcard fully cools, it hardens into strong plastic again.

FORMcard emergency wrench
FORMcard is strong enough to be used as a wrench for smaller nuts and bolts.

How strong is it? FORMcard is strong like nylon, so it can be used for durable solutions. A FORMcard shaped into a hook can hold up to 55 pounds (25kg) and once you are done using it, you can reheat it, reshape it and reuse it again and again. Because it’s a convenient card size, you can easily find a place for it in your toolkit or just keep it in your wallet so you have it wherever and whenever you need it.

Ideas for Using FORMcard on the Trail
• Create a wrench when a wrench breaks or goes missing.
• Recreate a lost nut to hold plastics together.
• Reinforce a cracked subframe.
• Repair a GPS or phone holder that has cracked
• Create/repair a plastic D-Ring on your soft luggage.
• Repairing a broken clutch lever.

FORMcard is a UK-based company that was 815% funded on Kickstarter last December and has raised more than $110,000 on Indiegogo. The product is now available for sale to the public. We just bought a pack of three cards to give it a try. The cost was $10.50, including shipping from the UK to California. We’ll be sure to report back on how well it works.

Got an idea for how FORMcard could be used to solve a problem Adventure Riders face? Please share your thoughts in the comments!

Author: Rob Dabney

Rob Dabney started a lifelong obsession with motorcycles at the age of 15 when he purchased his first bike – a 1982 Honda MB5. Through his 20’s and 30’s he competed in off-road desert races, including the Baja 250, 500 and 1000. Eventually, his proclivity for exploration led him to dual sport and adventure riding. Rob’s never-ending quest to discover what’s around the next bend has taken him on Adventures in Mexico, North Africa, Europe, and throughout the American West. As a moto journalist, he enjoys inspiring others to seek adventure across horizons both near and far.

Author: Rob Dabney
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