to clean or not to clean?

Discussion in 'Vintage Vinyl' started by pickleloaf, Jun 21, 2007.

  1. Mr. Humphreys

    Mr. Humphreys S7 Royalty

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    to clean or not to clean?
    @Alebrije that is good news! It's so frustrating agonizing over blurry photos, or toys photographed from certain angles, so you can't see the defect, or determine the degree of damage/blemish a figure has. I've had the same feelings, when a vintage toy arrives, and it's condition is a lot worse that what you saw in the auction photos. My Toy Angel gave me some great advice, and even though it's a fundamental truth, it's good to hear it and have a mental reminder, before hitting the "BID" button --->

    *wait for a toy in good condition, and be ready to spend more for it, rather than buy a toy cheaply, in less than acceptable condition

    It's so easy to go after a vintage toy, and then suffer buyer's remorse later, when it arrives in poor condition, after you've shelled out all that moolah. I'm much pickier these days about buying vintage toys. Experience (and my Toy Angel! :D) has taught me that patience really pays, and do your homework! (or in my case, have a really good Toy Angel! ;))
     
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  2. Roger

    Roger Prototype

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    to clean or not to clean?
    Got a vintage Bullmark Baragon and it was a little grimy, not awful, but I wanted to make it look a little nicer. I cautiously tried to take it apart with a hair dryer but noticed the beginning of a tear in the neck joint, so I kept it in one piece. Hot water, Ivory hand soap, and an extra soft toothbrush. Before and after:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  3. poysntixels

    poysntixels Side Dealer

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    And he looks much happier; good you were so careful, very nice job!
     
  4. Alebrije

    Alebrije Line of Credit

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    At @Mr. Humphreys Grace's request, I encouraged myself to put the pictures of the before and after the Tiger Seven, to be honest I didn't want to saturate you with so much picture of the Tiger Seven. In general the figure came clean without dust or something sticky as sometimes they usually come, but if it had several marks by color transfer on the body. First I gave him a good bath with dish soap, then dried it and gave it a cleaning with chlorine wipes and finally use baking soda to carve the marks, I recommend you do this only on the parts of the body that are without paint, because at Being an old paint can be very abrasive and could damage or eliminate the paint in the figure.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  5. Mr. Humphreys

    Mr. Humphreys S7 Royalty

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    to clean or not to clean?
    Thank you so much for posting this Roger! Definitely enjoyed seeing the results of the "before" and "after", and thank you for sharing your cleaning techniques. You did a truly wonderful job, that Tiger looks super clean! Love that first photo :D:D:D
     
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  6. ultrakaiju

    ultrakaiju Die-Cast Staff Member

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    to clean or not to clean?
    Very lovely restoration, and great pics to show it Roger. Thanks for sharing this here. I am always amazed at how much success you have had with removing scuffs and such, as I have tried a few of the solutions (magic sponges, etc), but never with much success, and if anything have tended away from it as I have seen more 'damage' (such as loss of vinyl sheen) than anything. I have not tried baking soda however though. What are the chlorine wipes you use?
     
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  7. Alebrije

    Alebrije Line of Credit

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    @ultrakaiju I have used these chlorine wipes with other figures and I have had good results, especially with those figures that have some type of mold, even sometimes with crayon or paint marks especially if the mark or spot it’s more superficial.
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2019
  8. ultrakaiju

    ultrakaiju Die-Cast Staff Member

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    to clean or not to clean?
    Thanks Roger, I probably asked this before, but I will add those to my cleaning repertoire the next time I go through for a heavy bath regime. I am happy to try this out and see if it can remove some of the marks at least on the unpainted areas.
     
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  9. The Moog

    The Moog Die-Cast

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    to clean or not to clean?
    ^ Imagine reading that post outside of the context of this thread. I'm curious what your unpainted areas would be? ;):lol:
     
  10. fosa comun

    fosa comun Toy Prince

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    @Alebrije wow gonna try your cleaning regiment!!!!
     
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  11. Robert D

    Robert D Toy Prince

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    to clean or not to clean?
    King Joe before and after. Thank you again Roger for the tips!

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  12. deafmetal

    deafmetal Comment King

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    to clean or not to clean?
    @Alebrije @Robert D - nice work!

    I always enjoy re-reading this thread. I wish all the photos still worked. Here are my latest findings:

    [​IMG]

    - a full soak in warmer water makes joint removal so much easier than with a hair dryer. It's just more work to dry out the water when you are putting it back together again.

    - a pink pencil eraser will remove marks from a graphite pencil, even on top of paint, but rub very softly or it will remove the underlying paint as well. Soap/water/brushing was not helping at all.

    - use a very sticky tape like duct tape to remove pollen from fabric or wood. I have not tried this on vinyl. Soap/water/brushing was not helping at all.

    - leaving a toy outdoors out of sunlight in a safe spot for a few days and nights can help defumigate strong smoke smell for a while, but it will start coming back again after some time on the shelf or in storage. I wish there was a permanent fix for this.

    - beware of trying to clean faint dusty silver spray (that might even be coated with dust). I have rubbed too hard with just a soft toothbrush and lost some of this very fragile paint.

    - dirt stuck in tiny air bubbles can possibly be worked out with a lot of warm water, soap, different size brushes, and flexing the vinyl around the bubble. The process can be rough on the vinyl surface sheen and also remove fragile paint. In the end, it might not even be worth it depending on the location and severity. Did somebody really try Efferdent for this or was that a joke?

    @ultrakaiju - Steve, how is your oiled Ultraman holding up? Did he retain his sheen?

    @Mr. Humphreys - Grace, how are those detergent cleanings looking after a few years? Did it permanently get rid of any tobacco smell? I still have not tried anything stronger that mild soap and toothpaste, or magic erasers very lightly for areas without paint.
     
  13. ultrakaiju

    ultrakaiju Die-Cast Staff Member

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    to clean or not to clean?
    It did rejuvenate the vinyl a little, and I will probably try this on another 'junker' at some point to see; ultimately though I don't think it was much of a success/worth the risk and trouble. I think when the plastic is pretty aged on some of these toys, there isn't much one can do. I am always hunting around for other mitigating solutions for this, but I think most of the 'vinyl' remedies I have found don't apply as much to the soft vinyl Japanese makers have used.

    I love this list of recommendations, Mark. One thing I agree with for sure is that cleaning procedures should be evaluated on a toy by toy basis, and many can end up doing some additional damage (e.g. surface abrasion, paint loss) if you overwork it. I try and weigh out the benefit for most of my toys, especially against subtle paint highlights, etc. A good bubble bath is everyone's friend though. :razz:
     
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  14. toothaction

    toothaction Team Tsubu Staff Member

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    I wish that I could remember where I came across this method, probably here, but I've found the following to be extremely effective: Fill the bottom of a thick paper shopping bag with clumping cat litter - fresh is preferred, heh - and mix in a generous amount of baking soda. Give your stinky friend a nice soap and water wash, let him dry, and then set him on the bed of litter. Fold that bag closed and pretend its not there for a week. Wait, remove, rinse, enjoy.
     
  15. ultrakaiju

    ultrakaiju Die-Cast Staff Member

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    to clean or not to clean?
    I was going to suggest sealing up with some baking soda as well, but I have heard the kitty litter trick references here I believe. Both are good odour absorbents.
     
  16. Mr. Humphreys

    Mr. Humphreys S7 Royalty

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    to clean or not to clean?
    @deafmetal Nice bath pic Mark :D Seeing our toys soaking in suds is very amusing! :razz:. I rechecked the batch of vintage I cleaned with OXY Soft Scrub (not the bleach version), and the surface is still fine, no stickiness. One toy did smell of tobacco, but except for the very faintest whiff, when literally held against your nose, they are all clean smelling. One word of caution, I have NOT tested the oxy soft scrub on metallic paint. Vintage metallic is delicate and tricky with oxidation (mentioned to me by my dearest Toy Angel :)). I would not risk using this method on your beautific silver gojis! :shock: Definitely too much of a risk! As for the plain paints, a small dab on those super soft absorbent cleaning cloths then squish in some warm water to evenly distrubute, gentle scrub, followed by copious and repeated wash and rub with original formula blue Dawn dish soap on another soft absorbent cloth, to make sure all of the oxidation chemicl residue is removed is important! I have not tried Roger's baking soda and toothpaste method, but plan to when a new batch of "vintage" buta arrives in the mail (lots of griails!)
     
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  17. deafmetal

    deafmetal Comment King

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    to clean or not to clean?
    @toothaction @ultrakaiju - Pro tip! I'm going to try this out here soon. I have a couple vintage toys that I adore, but they reek of cigs and I'm worried they are going to "infect" some others, haha. I also read that the Twin Pines Formula 9-1-1 can remove tar/smoke discoloration. Anybody have first-hand experience with that? Cig smoke tar is some nasty stuff on vintage toys. It's almost like glue.

    @Mr. Humphreys - Grace, thank you for the update. Yeah, I'm not feeling very brave with metallic paints. I have some that have a very nice glossy finish and seem to be well-sealed for cleaning, but others that feel very brittle and dry and flake off with just a simple touch. Anyway, congrats on the Buta batch!
     
  18. zindabad

    zindabad Line of Credit

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    to clean or not to clean?
    I received an RxH Mutant Evil with a red cape recently. It was kept new in bag since release, and I found that the red cape lining had dyed the vinyl red in places. The affected areas are all blank thankfully, but I'm not sure how to remove the red, if that is possible at all. Photos of two of the dyed parts below, but every part is affected in one area or another.

    I already gave it a clean with soft scrub/dove soap to remove grease, but that did not affect the dyed parts. Isopropyl alcohol, white vinegar and a Magic Eraser have also not helped.

    Sorry for bringing a "new toy" concern to the vintage forum. I figured this was the right crowd, especially given that clothes seem a bit more commonplace on vintage dolls.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2019
  19. Mr. Humphreys

    Mr. Humphreys S7 Royalty

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    Wow! Sorry to see this :(. Although, if it was a purposely marbled vinyl, it's actually quite pretty. Do you think the color has seeped into the vinyl matrix? Or is it a discoloration on the surface? Take a gander at Alebrije's Tiger cleaning "before vs. after" photos, at the top. He did an awesome job removing the black marks, using those wipies, but I suspect most are surface scuffs? If the color has actually saturated into the vinyl material, it seems unlikely it can be removed (Boardies, please chime in if I am wrong). Daniel and Mark have convinced me to unbag all of my toys. The risk of vinyl reacting with the baggies chemically, restricted ventilation, and discoloration are good reasons to uncocoon them! Sorry about the toy :(
     
  20. zindabad

    zindabad Line of Credit

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    @Mr. Humphreys I suspect it's in the vinyl. At least in my experience a magic eraser will remove most surface marks (and paint), but this isn't budging. Someone else has recommended me this product to try and get it out, but if it's effectively part of the plastic, I don't know what good it'll do. Besides, my current efforts have already inflicted some minor damage to one blank piece by clouding a small part of the vinyl. I don't know if I will try Remove-Zit on top of everything else.

    The Mutant Evil is part of the RxH Sesame Street set, which are all very clean, blocky and simple paints. So while the 'Count' Evil could rock the red rubs on his own, next to his friends he just looks messy. Plus the fact that it's a set makes me feel as if my entire purchase was pointless if I can't fix this--you don't really see them parted out, and they should be a unit.

    I don't mean to mope too much. I'll probably get over it and either clean the guy or display him as is. Just a hell of a toy to receive (possibly permanently) damaged.
     
  21. gazpacho

    gazpacho Comment King

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    It’s definitely in the vinyl. Some weird reaction between cloth and vinyl. There’s both vintage and newer toys that I’ve seen the happen with.
     
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  22. Mr. Humphreys

    Mr. Humphreys S7 Royalty

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    My heart goes out to you zindabad :cry:. It's not worth risking any further damage, when the dye has seeped through, but it's also the sort of thing that will gnaw at the eyeballs when you see it. Perhaps you can tuck him in the back row :oops:
     
  23. Mr Fox

    Mr Fox Toy Prince

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    to clean or not to clean?
    @zindabad You guys have forgotten more than I know about vinyl toys but I did wonder one thing when getting to you post about the colour transfer from the clothing to the vinyl... would something designed to remove denim transfer (jeans) to light colour leather car seats be worth a try? My assumption would be that it may only have discoloured the surface and therefore the type of product designed to remove colour transfer in the automotive world may work.

    Just a thought and I may be throwing out something that others have tried and hasn't worked.
     
  24. Mr Fox

    Mr Fox Toy Prince

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    to clean or not to clean?
    PS - this is one of two products I've used: https://www.drleather.com/leather-cleaner - specifically the wipes. I do appreciate that vinyl and leather are different but if you're at a dead end, it may be worth a shot.
     
  25. scobot

    scobot Addicted

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    to clean or not to clean?
    @zindabad The colour has been adsorbed unfortunately. It does happen with vintage figures and is the cape that is the culprit. I dont know of anyway to fix it other than dont keep the cape on the figure
     

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