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Rubberized coating turns gray and powdery (NOT sticky)

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#1 Michael Covington

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Posted 19 April 2019 - 08:44 PM

Actually this is happening to a camera, not binoculars, but it seems to be the same kind of rubberized coating...  What do you do when the coating seems to dry out and turn light-colored and maybe slightly powdery?

This is NOT the notorious problem of a coating becoming sticky and soft.  Quite the opposite.

Should I use Armor All?  Something less potent than Armor All?

 



#2 Michael Covington

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Posted 19 April 2019 - 09:11 PM

Answering my own question, a light application of "STP Son Of A Gun Protectant" seems to be working.  It is not slippery.  If it dries out I'll do it again.


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#3 MartinPond

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Posted 19 April 2019 - 10:31 PM

A batch likely made without stabilizer.

Protectants are pretty simple but they have some volatile

   stuf in them at first to 'loosen' things up a bit.  They can

  sometimes heal tires a little.



#4 SandyHouTex

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Posted 20 April 2019 - 09:08 AM

I have that issue with my Zeisses.  Every 6 months I have to get out the Q-tips and glycerine.

 

So much for “alpha binos”.



#5 Michael Covington

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Posted 20 April 2019 - 09:37 AM

Answering my own question, a light application of "STP Son Of A Gun Protectant" seems to be working.  It is not slippery.  If it dries out I'll do it again.

This morning, it has partly dried out again, which suggests I didn't apply enough.  (I was deliberately cautious.)  I'll give it a few more days and reapply.



#6 Michael Covington

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Posted 20 April 2019 - 08:11 PM

OK, a progress report and further appeal for help.

The Canon 40D has hard black plastic which had turned grayish but remained hard.  A couple of light coats of STP Son-Of-A-Gun Protectant made it as good as new, without leaving an oily coating.

 

My old Canon 300D, which I got out tonight, has softer black plastic on its grip -- a kind that is common on binoculars -- which had become sticky.  All attempts at cleaning (with a lens wipe, with Son-Of-A-Gun, with Armor All, with glycerin) were basically no help; the stuff wiped right off, leaving the surface as sticky as ever.  Armor All was the best, but not at all satisfactory.

 

Fortunately the 300D is not in active use, but I've seen the same thing happen to binoculars and wonder what to do for it.  Someone in another thread mentioned talcum powder?  Not pleasant stuff to get into a camera...



#7 Michael Covington

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Posted 20 April 2019 - 09:06 PM

...And I have more answers.

 

In the case of a black grip that becomes very sticky, typically the stickiness is a very thin matte non-skid layer that sits on top of black plastic.  When the non-skid layer deteriorates, the right thing to do is take it off, revealing the black plastic underneath (shinier than the original, but good and durable).  With the 300D I did it as follows:  Get a microfiber cloth that you can sacrifice (I used an old eyeglass cleaning cloth).  It needs to be microfiber because ordinary cloth or paper towels will leave lint.  Wet it with isopropyl alcohol and scrub hard.  The matte non-skid layer will come right off and you'll have shiny plastic underneath.  Some people use brushes or a plastic spudger to scrape with; I did a little scraping with a fingernail.

 

It worked.  The Canon 300D looks as good as new, except that the grip is shiny black rather than matte and slightly rubbery.


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#8 Michael Covington

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Posted 21 April 2019 - 12:36 PM

The sticky Canon grip problem;

Here is someone who did it much more awkwardly than I did.  He used a scraper and nail polish remover.  Wrong!  Nail polish remover attacks plastic.  What you want is alcohol, which dissolves the sticky stuff very well and leaves the plastic alone.
https://www.bing.com...CE3FC&FORM=VIRE

Here is someone who did it the way I did, but was successful with paper towels (they did not stick the way mine did):
https://www.bing.com...EE9B4&FORM=VIRE

Both of these (like mine) were Canon 300D's, alias DS6041, alias Digital Rebel.



#9 MartinPond

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Posted 21 April 2019 - 07:02 PM

I did a fantastic job on the 'sticky rubber' with 

   oven cleaner (be careful, wear gloves, caustic!)

It leaves either strurdy rubber or grippy plastic behind.

 

 

I am now realizing the original post is just about

"rubber bloom".    Protecant will work, by leaving

a little mineral oil behind, or WD40, which leaves oil but

also strips more of the molding wax that causes the 'bloom'.


Edited by MartinPond, 21 April 2019 - 07:02 PM.

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#10 rogan

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Posted 22 April 2019 - 09:23 AM

I have used WD40 numerous times and have found it to be very effective. Any oily residue can be wiped off and air drying seems to take care of the rest.

#11 Michael Covington

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Posted 22 April 2019 - 12:00 PM

I have used WD40 numerous times and have found it to be very effective. Any oily residue can be wiped off and air drying seems to take care of the rest.

On which of the problems?  Graying hard rubber or rubber turning sticky?



#12 rogan

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Posted 22 April 2019 - 12:32 PM

On which of the problems?  Graying hard rubber or rubber turning sticky?

 

Sorry, should have been more specific. With graying/oxidation and general cleanup. I’ve only had rubber armor get sticky once and it was a very thin clear rubber coat over black anodized aluminum. In that case I used isopropyl alcohol to remove the coating. 


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#13 SECTOR 001

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Posted 23 April 2019 - 02:19 PM

Yep, as others have said, WD40 removes the sticky but what really cuts it is Acetone.

I have used both but the Acetone works much faster to remove the sticky rubber coating.

Ken



#14 Michael Covington

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Posted 23 April 2019 - 03:36 PM

Based on experience with an umbrella handle, I think there is also another way to deal with a sticky coating: Just leave it in a warm, dry place for several months.  I had one that re-hardened. 



#15 CAAD9

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Posted 24 April 2019 - 05:00 AM

Useful thread Michael. Thanks for posting. 


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#16 vkhastro1

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Posted 24 April 2019 - 10:14 AM

Any other options ? Amourall ?

STP son of a gun protectorant is not available in Canada.

A small 10oz to 16oz bottle shipped via Amazon.com to Canada is nearly $30 USA (retails in USA for well less than $10 USA within the USA. 

 


Edited by vkhastro1, 24 April 2019 - 10:36 AM.


#17 Michael Covington

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Posted 24 April 2019 - 10:43 AM

I don't think STP Son-of-a-Gun is the one and only magic potion -- there must be many other products that are similar.  Many are recommending a European product called, I think, Sonax Gummi-Pfleger.



#18 vkhastro1

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Posted 24 April 2019 - 11:24 AM

Thanks Michael.

Just ordered the Sonax Gummi- Pfleger (3.38 oz bottle) from Amazon.ca (in stock!).

Looking forward to trying it out on 2 binos with the gray-powdery appearance).


Edited by vkhastro1, 24 April 2019 - 11:24 AM.

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#19 vkhastro1

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Posted 03 May 2019 - 10:23 AM

Just an update:

 

The Sonax Gummi-Pfleger bottle arrived a couple of days ago.

I tried it on several 20+ year old binoculars (Bushnell Legend 8x42 roof prism from 1993 and 2 Pentax DCFs).

The rubber surfaces were not sticky.

All the rubber surfaces looked chalky almost like they were left uncovered and a layer of dust had settled on them). Wiping them with a slightly damp cloth didn't remove anything.

 

The Sonax has a tiny dispenser tube leading from the bottle. This tube was surrounded by a sponge. Slight pressure dispensed a very light layer of the Sonax matching the sponge position. Dab a couple of times in the area of attention. I use a fine cloth to spread out the product and wipe it around. Carefully completely the entire binocular paying attention to make sure none was applied to the optical surfaces.

I let the product dry out thoroughly (overnight).

The binos look brand new! The rubber has been rejuvenated without any sticky appearance/feeling.

 

Highly recommended !


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