Author Topic: Old, hard sticker glue removal product that worked well on metal  (Read 556 times)

Offline TelePlay

  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 7221
  • Available by PM
    • . . . the times they been a'changing
Old, hard sticker glue removal product that worked well on metal
« on: November 27, 2017, 12:40:52 PM »
Necessity is the mother of invention and at times a need leads to the phenomenon of serendipity.

Was upstairs working on an eBay listing a very nice metal switch box (computer based) when I discovered about a square inch of very old tape residue on the paint on the top of the box, probably powder coated. Being too lazy to drag it down to the dungeon, I looked around at the "chemicals" I had within reach.

Tried Novus 1(5% isopropyl alcohol in water), no help. (BTW, great for cleaning CDs and DVDs)
Tried 70% isopropyl, no help.
Tried electrical contact cleaner (chlorinated hydrocarbon solvent), no help.

Looked to my firearm cleaning shelf and grabbed my pump spray Hoppe's Elite Gun Cleaner. Put a bit on a paper towel and the residue came off in about 10 seconds with minimal rubbing leaving the paint unchanged.

Used Novus 1 to clean off the gun cleaner residue.

My 8 ounce bottle has a $14.99 Walmart price sticker on it by checking the google machine, seems it's available from Cabella's for $12. There are many Hoppe's products out there, this one is Item Number GC8. It comes in several different labeled bottles.

Thought I'd pass this on because it worked 100 times faster than Goo Gone. I have a few other "stickered" phones in the dungeon and will have to see how it works on those, bakelite should be no problem but will watch plastics carefully.

It's non-toxic, biodegradable and non-flammable. The active ingredient is <15% Diethylene  Glycol  Monobutyl Ether in water.
            John . . .

              

Offline cihensley@aol.com

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 653
Re: Old, hard sticker glue removal product that worked well on metal
« Reply #1 on: November 27, 2017, 01:03:19 PM »
Thanks John. Good tip.

Chuck

Offline tallguy58

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 876
Re: Old, hard sticker glue removal product that worked well on metal
« Reply #2 on: November 28, 2017, 03:48:46 PM »
I found Ronsonol lighter fluid to do the trick 90% of the time.
Cheers........Bill

Offline TelePlay

  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 7221
  • Available by PM
    • . . . the times they been a'changing
Re: Old, hard sticker glue removal product that worked well on metal
« Reply #3 on: November 28, 2017, 04:43:42 PM »
I found Ronsonol lighter fluid to do the trick 90% of the time.

Yes, that can work. Lot of chemistry behind the stuff we do.

The issues are complex depending on the glue used, how long it has been on the plastic, how it has mixed chemically with the plastic and how hard it has turned.

I recently had a 500 ABS with the sticker glue so hard I had to use 320 grit sandpaper and it came off like sanding wood before I got to the plastic.

Then there are the range of solvents, pure and mixed, which are chemicals with different properties or actions on different items. The trick is to get the glue off without doing damage to the plastic. It's a question of which chemical or mixture of chemicals will take the glue off in a reasonable amount of time without doing any damage to the plastic.

Some stickers on plastic can be removed with warm water and rubbing with a thumb. The other end is 320 grit and repair the plastic.

Lighter fluid is usually naphtha (rubber cement thinner), a light hydrocarbon that will dissolve soft glue without damaging plastic, Goo-Gone is a water based citrus oil mixture that does the same but slower and it does not evaporate as fast as naphtha, which is similar to mineral spirits in its actions. It does not affect plastic the same as denature alcohol or acetone (an alcohol and a ketone)

That gun cleaner is a high vapor pressure ether in water so it stays on the surface until wiped off. When people hear "ether," they are thinking of diethyl ether which is a colorless, extremely volatile liquid with a characteristic smell which was used as a medical anesthetic and is safer than chloroform which was also used as an anesthetic. Chloroform is yet another group of organic chemical known as chlorinated hydrocarbons, many of which are now outlawed as carcinogens (of those, carbon tetrachloride was used for dry cleaning, household spot removers and fire extinguishers and it worked quite well).

Given the base material under the sticker is ABS plastic, the order of chemicals to be tried from least likely to damage the plastic to best at removing the glue would be something like this (liquids in approximate order that will attack plastic from a little to a lot). Also, the type of adhesive/glue (some are water soluble and others are quite permanent) used, the condition of the glue itself on the plastic from fresh sticky to hard-as-a-rock dried on and at times chemically absorbed into the plastic (now part of the plastic itself) makes a big difference on how each of these works.

======================

Water (aqueous which will do nothing to the plastic)
Soapy water  (alkaline aqueous solution)
Mineral Oil  (alkane - saturated aliphatic petroleum hydrocarbons)
Avon Skin-So-Soft  (white mineral oil with dicapryl adipate, isopropyl palmitate, dioctyl sodium sufosuccinate, carrot oil)
Goo-Gone  (or Goo-be-Gone - petroleum distillates mixed with d-limonene)
WD-40  (aliphatic hydrocarbosn with a petroleum base oil)
Isopropanol in water - 70%  (aqueous alcohol)
Isopropanol in water - 91%  (aqueous alcohol)
Ethanol in water - 90%  (aqueous alcohol)
Denatured alcohol - 50%  (aqueous alcohol)
Mineral spirits  (aliphatic hydrocarbons)
Naptha (aliphatic hydrocarbons)
Lacquer thinner  (aliphatic hydrocarbons)
Denatured alcohol - 100%  (alcohol)
Toluol  (toluene - benzene based aromatic hydrocarbon)
Xylol   (xylene- benzene based aromatic hydrocarbon)
Methyl Ethyl Ketone  (ketone)
Acetone in water 50%  (aqueous ketone)
Acetone - 100%  (ketone - which will melt the plastic)
Sandpaper - 320 or 400 grit


======================

This is a best guess list of how the chemical will attack the plastic. I don't know where the gun cleaner ether fits on this list in that I have not tried it on plastic.

The trick is to find the agent that will remove the glue and not do a lot of damage to the plastic. And since plastics differ, what works on one type may not work on another.

I was surprised to find how quickly that gun cleaner ether took off a glue that alcohol would not touch and then surprised to find it was an ether, a new chemical in the realm of phone restoration.
« Last Edit: November 30, 2017, 04:27:06 PM by TelePlay »
            John . . .

              

Offline HarrySmith

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 5257
  • 1937 302
Re: Old, hard sticker glue removal product that worked well on metal
« Reply #4 on: November 28, 2017, 05:28:04 PM »
I remember Carbon Tet! That was great stuff! It would clean anything. I did a quick Google search and only came up with 1 seller. Grainger offers 1 liter for almost $500.00!! i think it was a whole lot cheaper back when.
Harry Smith
ATCA 4434
TCI

"There is no try,
there is only
do or do not"

Offline Babybearjs

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2061
Re: Old, hard sticker glue removal product that worked well on metal
« Reply #5 on: November 30, 2017, 02:39:33 AM »
I've had good results WD-40. that seems to work too. then I clean the surface with alcohol to remove any wd-40... at times I have to use my finger nail to scratch off the glue...
John

Offline TelePlay

  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 7221
  • Available by PM
    • . . . the times they been a'changing
Re: Old, hard sticker glue removal product that worked well on metal
« Reply #6 on: November 30, 2017, 08:54:34 AM »
Other members are encouraged to post what works or worked for them to remove sticker glue and it will be added to the above list.


When I have time, I will test each of the items on the list for their affect on plastic and re-order the list from weak to harsh affect on plastic. Right now, the order is a guess based on my memory of using the chemicals in the past.
            John . . .

              

Offline Doug Rose

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 6929
  • Blondie & the Kid of Phone
Re: Old, hard sticker glue removal product that worked well on metal
« Reply #7 on: November 30, 2017, 09:15:57 AM »
Goo be gone works like a champ....Doug
Kidphone

Offline Nick in Manitou

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 608
Re: Old, hard sticker glue removal product that worked well on metal
« Reply #8 on: November 30, 2017, 10:09:33 AM »
I don't know what Avon's "Skin So Soft" is made of, but we have used it for years to take stickers off of just about everything (and keep mosquitoes away)!

John, thanks for the orderly list. I am going to copy it and keep it as a reference for general household use!

Nick

Offline 19and41

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1951
Re: Old, hard sticker glue removal product that worked well on metal
« Reply #9 on: November 30, 2017, 04:09:02 PM »
It's tough to find products that will attack only what one needs removed.  I have been trying different chemicals to soften the hard adhesive of stickers and even old masking tape.  Everything I try has no effect on the really old hard adhesives.  It's good to see additional products added to the arsenal of removal agents.
"Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic."
Arthur C. Clarke

Offline Duffy

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1469
Re: Old, hard sticker glue removal product that worked well on metal
« Reply #10 on: November 30, 2017, 04:53:26 PM »
Here is what I use. It works for me.
CDN Doug

Offline TelePlay

  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 7221
  • Available by PM
    • . . . the times they been a'changing
Re: Old, hard sticker glue removal product that worked well on metal
« Reply #11 on: December 04, 2017, 07:25:18 PM »
It's tough to find products that will attack only what one needs removed.  I have been trying different chemicals to soften the hard adhesive of stickers and even old masking tape.  Everything I try has no effect on the really old hard adhesives.  It's good to see additional products added to the arsenal of removal agents.

This is very true. I am working on a beige 554 that had 4 stickers on it, removed by someone else leaving glue.

Not all glues are the same and all glues are anywhere from fresh, soft and tacky to hard as a rock.

Had a hard as rock area that came clean in 10 minutes using mineral oil mixed with a small amount of Rottenstone. Nothing short of sanding would have removed the sticker glue without damaging the plastic.  Kind of reminded me of scoring plastic coated wallpaper to allow the stripper to get into the glue. The abrasive cut away at the glue will the oil dissolved it.

Just another use for Rottenstone.
            John . . .