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Old 19-04-2012, 05:41 PM   #1
mike s
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Default removing airfix paint from old kits

Hi everyone

I know the theory on how to do this but in reality can you get paint off that may have been on there for 40 odd years..?

does it not eventually bond with the plastic..?

the kit I'm looking at is the 1960s Airfix Stingray kit which has been painted with very thick enamel

cheers
Mike
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Old 19-04-2012, 05:52 PM   #2
TV21Dalek
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You could try Modelstrip... I've also tried Easy Off oven cleaner without damaging plastic.
Whatever you try I hope it works... I've never seen the Airfix Stingray except in a few fuzzy photos.
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Old 19-04-2012, 05:53 PM   #3
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I always use Tesco Basic All purpose cleaner, just soak in a jar, normally brings it off within 10 min, and brush with an old toothbrush
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Old 20-04-2012, 11:41 AM   #4
mike s
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thanks guys - and it def won't melt the model itself..? - it is nearly 50 years old !


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I always use Tesco Basic All purpose cleaner, just soak in a jar, normally brings it off within 10 min, and brush with an old toothbrush
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Old 20-04-2012, 11:59 AM   #5
TV21Dalek
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Try it on a part you can replace if you are worried... better than risking the entire model if you're unsure... I mean this is a super-rare piece of history.
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Old 20-04-2012, 12:05 PM   #6
mike s
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cheers - I guess I could try it on the inside first..? leave it on for a few hours to see if it reacts..?


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Try it on a part you can replace if you are worried... better than risking the entire model if you're unsure... I mean this is a super-rare piece of history.
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Old 20-04-2012, 01:47 PM   #7
phantomdriver
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Quote:
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thanks guys - and it def won't melt the model itself..? - it is nearly 50 years old !
nope, never had a prob, and some of mine were pretty old, just rinse in warm water..
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Old 20-04-2012, 01:56 PM   #8
mike s
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I see - any idea what it is in the paint, but not in the kit, which dissolves..?

I think the kit is petrol based plastic whereas the paint is oil based..? so the oven cleaner and related products would attack the oil which makes sense


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nope, never had a prob, and some of mine were pretty old, just rinse in warm water..
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Old 20-04-2012, 01:59 PM   #9
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nope, this stuff is just stuff you can use as either sink top/ floor cleaner.. not corrosive in any way
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Old 20-04-2012, 01:59 PM   #10
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I've removed paint from vinyl models as well as plastic kits using oven cleaner, including the Airfix Eagle, and there was no damage at all.
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Old 20-04-2012, 02:01 PM   #11
mike s
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thanks chaps - I was just musing on why the paint is affected but not the model - I think its a petrol/oil chemistry thing

I think enamel piant is oil based..?
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Old 20-04-2012, 02:05 PM   #12
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Yes, oil-based.
Acrylics are much more useful as they dry much quicker and are more stable.
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Old 20-04-2012, 09:03 PM   #13
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Be aware: the Plastic, being over 40 years old, is likely to be very brittle so treatitlike eggshells
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Old 22-04-2012, 09:16 AM   #14
Hectors House
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Yeah Mike,

Mr Muscle removes just about anything very cleanly, It also strips chrome parts amazingly.

Coat the model put into a sealed box for 20-30mins. Wash off in warm water with a toothbrush. You might have to do several coatings. But I've even used this on an old Frog penguin kits with no problems.
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Old 11-05-2012, 03:13 AM   #15
Mike Delamar
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best thing is brake fluid
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Old 11-05-2012, 03:44 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MkIXHawk View Post
Be aware: the Plastic, being over 40 years old, is likely to be very brittle so treatitlike eggshells
I just had to bin an original 1960s TB2 from Imai... it was covered in cracks and just fell apart when I pulled it out of a box.
I've never seen a kit do that before... and yet people are using old kits in replicas and they seem perfectly usable.
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Old 11-05-2012, 03:53 PM   #17
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I have been investigating this since I heard about it. Styrene is made up from a number of plastics plus believe it or not rubber, this was added to soften the material and make it easier to work.

This is just a theory but I think some formulas which were rubber rich suffer from the problem you describe as the rubber breaks down, thankfully most vintage kits seem ok but I think it is advisable to keep any display from sunlight.

Ultraviolet rays and heat generated from direct sunlight is always a bad thing, it bleaches paints and decals and wrecks havoc with softening plastics.

As I said just a theory at the moment but it seems to fit the evidence.
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Old 11-05-2012, 05:19 PM   #18
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its a bit of a mystery to me as I think both the enamel paint and the stryrene are oil-based aren't they..? I don't understand why the oven cleaner only affects the paint..?
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Old 14-05-2012, 07:10 AM   #19
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The last paragraph explains the cracking and disintegration phenomena I think:

http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/...14/polystyrene
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Old 14-05-2012, 07:12 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mike s View Post
its a bit of a mystery to me as I think both the enamel paint and the stryrene are oil-based aren't they..? I don't understand why the oven cleaner only affects the paint..?
I think that it softens the vinyl component of the paint.
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