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slowindown

What is the best way to restore faded/oxided plastics

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I've an orange 02 rancher 4x4 ES, which I've had since it was nearly new.  The shed where I keep it is open on one side so it gets sun on it part of the day over the years, the plastics have faded in many areas.  I have new decals ordered.  I'm doing a mild refresh to the machine.

 

In the past, I had made my blue, almost white yamaha rhino look new again by using fine steel wool, followed by a mixture of linseed oil/mineral spirits.  I did a test spot on the rancher and this method had little effect, different type of plastic I guess.  I also did a test spot with 600 grit sandpaper followed by a couple of passes with a propane torch, which looks good but I dont know if this has any negatives, like making the plastics brittle.  Interestingly, the red plastics on my can-am commander seem fairly impervious to the sun.

 

What have you guys had the best luck with?

 

pics of before and after rhino and test spot on rancher below

 

 

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Heat gun and Wipe New (back in automotive section at walmart) worked pretty good for me.  Nothing I've tried makes them look new again.

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I use Novus plastic polish i bought at the local Harley-Davidson shop

 

they sell #1 cleaner, #2 fine scratch and #3 heavy scratch polish. I pretty much use 1 and 2. 3 is real tough stuff.

 

i apply by hand and would love to see results from a pro

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Posted (edited)

I tried the heat gun trick. Worked ok but, keep moving. I accidentally heated up a spot too much. I as well tried the wipe new. I reverted to searching out an atv that had excellent plastics, swapped them, & flipped the quad to a buddy for his son with my old plastics. That was my choice! 

Edited by Wheeler
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best, fastest way ?, buy new if you can get them ?!..lol.

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I have heard that products like mop and glo work anyone know if that is true or just a tale?

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I know people that use Automatic Transmission fluid , and it makes it look better ----  I like paint 

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I ordered new plastics for the foreman as resurrecting the pink is hopeless. But I’m refreshing the rancher’s plastics. I’ve done the back. 

 

This is what I found works best so far. To remove the white oxidation layer, a razor blade at 90 degrees back and forth is 50 times faster than steel wool or sand paper. A regular razor blade for tight areas and a utility knife razor blade for the big areas. Then go over that with wet 600 grit sandpaper. Then extra fine steel wool. Bring the color back with a heat gun or propane torch. The torch was easier and faster for me. I then buffed with rubbing and polishing compound with a buffing wheel on my drill. Finally spray foaming tire cleaner on it and let it sit for an hour or so and wipe off. 

 

The pictures posted out of order for some reason but they show the progress. I used aftermarket decals for the rear but have new oem decals for the gas tank, front 4x4 decal and warning stickers. 

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Posted (edited)
7 hours ago, slowindown said:

rubbing and polishing compound

 

what brand ??  sure did turn out good! 

 

@Goober used this before, and had great results !! 

image.jpg

Edited by _Wilson_™
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It was just turtle wax brand.  The compound was just to even it out at the end.

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On May 6, 2020 at 5:18 PM, slowindown said:

heat gun or propane torch. The torch was easier and faster for me.

 

live seen people try that before , and just that ..... not like you did ...  (in stages) what ive seen with ... pure (auick) heat jobs ... is the plastic became more brittle .. and had a tendency to crack easy... but now ... we're talking amatures ... my 97 could use a polish job.. 

image.jpg

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Thanks.  I'm real proud of the end result on the rears - it looks as good or really better in real than in the pictures.  I'm working on wire brushing and repainting some of the front end components today and then hopefully get to the front fenders.

 

I think the real trick to it was the razor blades at 90 degrees.  I removed a lot of oxidized plastic that way, so it was pretty orange by the time I finished that step.  I got the idea of the 90 degree razor blades from a guy that had shown me that trick to removing old gaskets years ago and then akatv posted a video of someone cleaning the plastic on their gauge face with it.  So I thought I'd give it a try.  When I went to the torch, it looked almost like I was spray painting shiny orange with it as it went over the surface.

 

It didn't do anything for the pink plastics on my forman though.  Well, I could go from pink to pepto bismol.  I guess they were too far gone.

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Posted (edited)

About to finish up. Still have a couple little things like repaint the wheels and pull the spring off the rear shock and repaint it. 

 

 

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Edited by slowindown
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Wow that came out really nice!

I have a pinkish foreman 400 and have found that there is not much hope to getting it back to full red

I tried the torch and it got red, but turned pinkish again when it cooled off, like you said

I mumbled something about fixing to try a flame thrower, but my buddy gave me the idea to try a vinyl wrap

in camoflauge or similar

I have never tried vinyl wrapping but I looked it up and some are pretty nice so I might try that

just not sure how difficult it would be

Anyone out there had any experience with doing a vinyl wrap?

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https://www.hondaforeman.com/threads/foreman-camo-wraps.85811/#post-690559

 

It looks good, but I'm not convinced it would age well.  Once you get some scratches in that wrap, with pink showing underneath, it's going to look like crap.

 

I have a pink 2012 Rubicon.  I was going to try the 90 degree razor blade followed by heat on the pod light cover, see how it looks.

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Wow that Foreman looks good wrapped! in camo, but I didnt think about scratches and pink showing thru-

Plus, when I read the guy who did it does wraps as a business and said it was a BEAR to

wrap the Foreman plastics-that pretty much ended it for me-

Maybe I will also try razor blade and heat again..... 

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Yeah, he has some good detail on this site, but you have to navigate to it.  Doesn't look like I can link directly to the part where he has the wrap "how-to"

 

http://www.shed-headz.com/

 

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Posted (edited)

The best I could get out of the pink foreman I got from a friend/coworker was a little closer to pepto bismol than fairy princess pink.  The foreman is basically new (<600 miles) other than having sat in a mostly unsided barn getting sun for years.  I didn't pay much for it and runs great after I cleaned the fuel system so I thought it merited new plastics, which I ordered.

 

But, I had thought about having it hydrodipped.  I would have picked a red design so it would have looked right given the underside.   You might look into that.  I didn't do much research.  But it looks like magic. Ha.

 

 

Edited by slowindown

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If the machine is that nice (assumption based on the miles) you could always buy new plastics for it, or find some nice used ones.  If you went green it holds up MUCH better to age. 

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Oh I did order new plastics. Part of them haven’t shipped yet but the side tank covers, pull cord cover and oil cooler cover showed up yesterday. I went with red. It’ll be in the shed under a cover when not in use so it won’t fade. 

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If you're like me though, you still want to do something to make the old ones usable.  LOL

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On 4/22/2020 at 1:42 PM, Goober said:

I use Novus plastic polish i bought at the local Harley-Davidson shop

 

they sell #1 cleaner, #2 fine scratch and #3 heavy scratch polish. I pretty much use 1 and 2. 3 is real tough stuff.

 

i apply by hand and would love to see results from a pro

12D8B844-A6E5-4582-83CF-4FEA9666AB02.jpeg


 

I purchased the Novus Plastic Polish kit like u have used. I’m going to try my luck with it! Sounds promising from what I’ve read! Fingers crossed!

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