Author Topic: Repair / replace the textured vinyl/paint on HP and other TE  (Read 1224 times)

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Offline HalFoster

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All

Any recommendations on replacing the textured covering (vinyl??) on older HP and other test equipment?

Hal
 

Offline SilverSolder

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Re: Repair / replace the textured vinyl/paint on HP and other TE
« Reply #1 on: June 04, 2019, 07:17:29 pm »

Sounds ambitious!  -  Wouldn't that have been some kind of vinyl sheet material that was bulk laminated onto aluminum plates, originally?
 

Offline No.Mad

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Re: Repair / replace the textured vinyl/paint on HP and other TE
« Reply #2 on: June 04, 2019, 07:44:35 pm »
Oh yeah, I'm interested as well!

For now for my understanding it's somewhat faux leather texture of a grey thin vinyl that was glued/laminated/heat treated over frame or chassis.
I am convinced to plausible assumption of SilverSolder - perforations and cutouts are really clean and fairly smooth.

Found something like that: https://www.walmart.com/ip/Faux-Leather-Vinyl-Promotional-Grey-5-Yard-Pre-Cut-Roll/989568704

I was planning to do some tests with something similar both with and without adhesive on bottom side using some scrap aluminium.
 

Offline rf-messkopf

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Re: Repair / replace the textured vinyl/paint on HP and other TE
« Reply #3 on: June 04, 2019, 10:15:37 pm »
Such vinyl foil is sold for the refurbishment of furniture (might be a useful search term), exhibition stand construction, or similar applications, and is available in all sorts of colours and also with leatherette finish. In accordance with this intended use it should be quite durable. There are even variants with small vent holes in the foil to avoid air bubbles when applying it. That stuff is not cheap though. A quick google search turned up quite a few mail order shops in Germany, for example

https://www.folienmarkt.de/X2-Folie-fuer-Moebel-und-Wand-Leder-Perlmutt-Krokodilleder.html
https://www.klinger-moebelfolien.de/
https://www.ifoha.de/shop/

I have not any personal experience with replacing the vinyl foil of HP instrument covers though, but I guess that it will be hard to strip the old foil. That stuff is really sturdy.
 

Offline HalFoster

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Re: Repair / replace the textured vinyl/paint on HP and other TE
« Reply #4 on: June 05, 2019, 06:25:39 pm »
I'm thinking of trying an auto upholstering shop - maybe for the material if nothing else.  I had a couple of R&S SMIQ shells powder coated recently and they *really* came out nice.  But, not an option for that deep texture.  I'm sure that there's a professional version of the "crackle" paint sold in the big boxes, but I'm not sure where to look - not the auto shops for sure.  Oh well, I'll keep looking...

Hal
 

Offline bitseeker

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Re: Repair / replace the textured vinyl/paint on HP and other TE
« Reply #5 on: June 05, 2019, 10:33:13 pm »
Interesting. Are you doing a full replacement or just patching up the existing finish?
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Offline HalFoster

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Re: Repair / replace the textured vinyl/paint on HP and other TE
« Reply #6 on: June 06, 2019, 06:34:38 pm »
If patching is possible, that would certainly be preferable - but trying to match the existing seems like it would be extremely hard to do.  A few marks and scuffs are to be expected with anything this old, but I have a few that have larger scrapes and such that would be nice to make go away.  And, there are a few that I am hoping to do a "like new" refurb on.

Hal
 

Offline No.Mad

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Re: Repair / replace the textured vinyl/paint on HP and other TE
« Reply #7 on: June 06, 2019, 10:13:10 pm »
Done some poking and testing today. Here's some observation:
  • Hot air station set on ~200C with applied 65L/min does smooth some minor scratches but not to "like new" state. Be careful with it
  • Same flow, ~270C might wrinkle and damage your coating - upsie!
  • Brushed with acetone, IPA and cyclohexane. All of them cleaned a nasty brownish heat mark / stain a bit, acetone is most aggressive. If you can live with brighter spots, go for it
  • I got no bloody idea how they stuck it (the textured sheet) but it's real pain in the ass to try even take it off. Corner prying with scalpel was already a lot of effort. Maybe some king of chemical?

Regards
 

Offline bitseeker

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Re: Repair / replace the textured vinyl/paint on HP and other TE
« Reply #8 on: June 07, 2019, 03:16:19 am »
If patching is possible, that would certainly be preferable - but trying to match the existing seems like it would be extremely hard to do.

It's an art, but leather/vinyl repair kits might work with some practice. Basically, you mix different colors of the filler to get a match, then apply it to the repair area along with the vinyl patch to create the texture.

I haven't used this one, but it's an example of what they look like: https://www.walmart.com/ip/3M-Leather-and-Vinyl-Repair-Kit/19864141
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Offline HalFoster

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Re: Repair / replace the textured vinyl/paint on HP and other TE
« Reply #9 on: June 07, 2019, 11:40:00 am »
Thanks, all!

No.Mad: What you say has been my experience.  Typically, the best thing by far for general deep cleaning and light stain removal is Mean Green.  None of the other "green" cleaners, but the original Mean Green which you can still, thank God, buy by the gallon at Dollar General. (Simple Green, on the other hand, is great for circuit boards and such.  Just rinse *very* well with DI water.)  Orange oil for label residue, with Goo Gone for tougher adhesives.  Never any problems with the orange oil (which is what the *spray* bottles of Goo Gone are) but the original Goo Gone can sometimes mess up lettering on panels.  Magic Erasers for tough spots.  I agree with you that acetone should be used *very* carefully - would probably work to soften the covering up to try a complete removal.  Also, some variety of paint stripper.

bitseeker:  Great idea!  I had completely forgotten about that.  As you say, getting the color right would be the challenge though... I'm off work today, so if i get a chance I might run a case by a local upholstery place and see what they think...

Hal




 

Online duak

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Re: Repair / replace the textured vinyl/paint on HP and other TE
« Reply #10 on: June 07, 2019, 06:14:16 pm »
Vinyl coverings could use contact cement or a pressure sensitive adhesive.  Either way, they stick like schmitt to a blanket.  There used to be a contact cement remover available but I don't know about the pressure sensitive stuff.

The "Ultimate Remover" (or so the manufacturer says) is Goof Off.  This stuff works on many things and can damage paint, labeling and some plastic surfaces.  It contains xylene and a couple of other hydrocarbons beyond my understanding.

I worked with a fellow that had a art background.  We had some rack mounted equipment that had formed front covers that got scratched and scuffed.  He touched up the damage with a matching spray paint applied by dabbing with foam rubber.  This gave a textured finish that was at least as good, and maybe better than the original.  Amazing.
 

Offline No.Mad

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Re: Repair / replace the textured vinyl/paint on HP and other TE
« Reply #11 on: June 07, 2019, 08:03:18 pm »
@HalFoster: what I usually do is warm water and white CIF cream - acts as cleaning agent and a polishing agent. Takes most of stuff, even oils and some sticky residue, surface is intact.
Unfortunately, after quick search, I see that Mean Green is not available in Europe. Or I'm blind and didn't look well enough.

On the other hand: does anybody knows what material is front sticker with all the info like model, rating and HP logo? I was wondering if it's possible to get it made in some kind of printing company as I have one which is ripped in half.

Regards
 

Offline HalFoster

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Re: Repair / replace the textured vinyl/paint on HP and other TE
« Reply #12 on: June 07, 2019, 09:07:02 pm »
No.Mad, I've never tried CIF cream - never used it.  Do you mean as a general cleaner?

Mean Green is a Rustoleum product:

https://www.rustoleum.com/pages/mean-green

Don't know if that makes it easier for you or not - it may have more of a regional distribution.  It's great for just about any cleaning around the house - coffee or juice stains on counters come right off.  I've been using it for years and have yet to have any surface damage from it but, of course, YMMV.

Reprinting the label is an excellent idea.  Print with color laser for fade resistance, stick on, mask off and spray with good acrylic.  Should look very nice and last.  I have the cases from my parts units - if I can get one off in good condition, I'll scan and post if you could use.

Hal


 

Offline bitseeker

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Re: Repair / replace the textured vinyl/paint on HP and other TE
« Reply #13 on: June 07, 2019, 10:17:56 pm »
On the other hand: does anybody knows what material is front sticker with all the info like model, rating and HP logo? I was wondering if it's possible to get it made in some kind of printing company as I have one which is ripped in half.

Depends what device you're referring to.
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Offline No.Mad

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Re: Repair / replace the textured vinyl/paint on HP and other TE
« Reply #14 on: June 07, 2019, 11:38:53 pm »
@HalFoster: Yup, exactly as that - general cleaner. Saves a lot time when compared to soap and warm water. But it's no-no for transparent plastics, it's gonna cloud them.

Rust-oleum products that are avaible on this side of Atlantic are mostly paints - maybe because of some chemical-related law regulations? Don't know. Got myself quite a collection of cleaning agents (my OCD for clean PCB after rework/repair, ehhh) so I'm good :)

What I was thinking about label is more of adhesive-type thick sticker that you could order from here: https://www.mavericklabel.com/products/graphic-overlay.html
or here: https://www.frontpanelexpress.com/graphics/digital_printing/
I know somebody who could do all vector graphic preparation. If you could scan front panels, without damaging them, from donors we could come up with some digital library for everybody to use :D

@bitseeker: 66xx System DC Power Supply System series. Got one like in the picture.
 

Offline bitseeker

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Re: Repair / replace the textured vinyl/paint on HP and other TE
« Reply #15 on: June 08, 2019, 01:59:00 am »
Ah, yes. That makes more sense. Totally different era. I'm not sure what kind of plastic they use for that. I have a 6032A and the front panel has a nice texture to it, more so than an E3631A (which seems to have at least two layers).
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Offline No.Mad

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Re: Repair / replace the textured vinyl/paint on HP and other TE
« Reply #16 on: June 08, 2019, 03:33:48 pm »
Maybe we should ping somebody from Keysight about materials used? It's not IP, I think, and should pose no problem.
Is anybody active on forum from Keysight directly?
 

Offline bitseeker

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Re: Repair / replace the textured vinyl/paint on HP and other TE
« Reply #17 on: June 08, 2019, 05:24:30 pm »
Yes, Daniel Bogdanoff is from Keysight.
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Offline No.Mad

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Re: Repair / replace the textured vinyl/paint on HP and other TE
« Reply #18 on: June 08, 2019, 09:52:39 pm »
So I PM Daniel with polite question if he could contribute to our search.

In the meantime i did some evaluation on my side. As duak and SilverSolder said, this vinyl coat had to be somehow fitted with pressure or heat or combo of it on material before bending and then punched with holed and shapes. Some Close-ups below, look how clean holes are. BUT the side panels hiding screws are on double sided tape. Maybe there is hope after all?

The front panel is aluminium with print on it. IPA is taking the paint off easily, I wasn't careful enough but managed to take only a little from surface.

Right now I'm fighting with yellowish, hard, glue-like residue and I'm running out off options.

Regards

PS: some bonus in gold goodies :D

EDIT: Yup, faux leather vinyl from sides is "bare". So there was some chemical adhesive added to it or on surface of aluminium chassis to keep it together. If we could know what make it "tick" the refurb and replacement would be quite easy.
« Last Edit: June 08, 2019, 09:56:44 pm by No.Mad »
 

Online duak

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Re: Repair / replace the textured vinyl/paint on HP and other TE
« Reply #19 on: June 09, 2019, 04:08:04 am »
No.Mad - try some gasoline or petrol - ie., automobile fuel to remove the old adhesive from the metal.  It usually has some Benzine, Toluene or Xylene which I think will work for you.

BTW, an old camera repairman told me to use gasoline on the fine threads of camera lenses as it dissolves many adhesives without damaging paint.  It worked for me.
 

Offline No.Mad

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Re: Repair / replace the textured vinyl/paint on HP and other TE
« Reply #20 on: June 09, 2019, 02:49:35 pm »
No.Mad - try some gasoline or petrol - ie., automobile fuel to remove the old adhesive from the metal.  It usually has some Benzine, Toluene or Xylene which I think will work for you.

BTW, an old camera repairman told me to use gasoline on the fine threads of camera lenses as it dissolves many adhesives without damaging paint.  It worked for me.

Thanks for tip. Any particular brand of gasoline or just the one you can get on gas station?
You can see the stubborn glue residue in photo (it's hard, almost like epoxy)
 

Online duak

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Re: Repair / replace the textured vinyl/paint on HP and other TE
« Reply #21 on: June 09, 2019, 04:17:25 pm »
No.Mad - yes, the stuff from the gas station.

I recomend gasoline only for dried adhesives on metal as a first test.  Be very careful with any unproven solvent on the front panel.  I think the material is a polycarbonate which is sensitive to aromatic hydrocarbons that are present in gasoline. Searching for "polycarbonate labels" gives examples like this: https://www.label-aid.com/polycarbonate.html
« Last Edit: June 09, 2019, 04:25:27 pm by duak »
 
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Offline No.Mad

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Re: Repair / replace the textured vinyl/paint on HP and other TE
« Reply #22 on: June 10, 2019, 09:43:21 pm »
No.Mad - yes, the stuff from the gas station.

I recomend gasoline only for dried adhesives on metal as a first test.  Be very careful with any unproven solvent on the front panel.  I think the material is a polycarbonate which is sensitive to aromatic hydrocarbons that are present in gasoline. Searching for "polycarbonate labels" gives examples like this: https://www.label-aid.com/polycarbonate.html

Soooooo, I took your advice. 4 hrs later with removing, shading, polishing with toothpaste... End of my toil is nigh :D

Attaching photos of a kit if somebody would like to take this route. Watch out with glue remover, I knew how it would eat a surface of a paint but I didn't mind as it was yellowish. Then toothpaste and CIF polishing with green washing abrasive cloth (it's so old it's almost soft). Unfortunately it's not so even (see yellow and red circles), but I had to stop cause there was grey area thinning (see green). First is when I got it, two next after soapy bath for comparison as before, rest is after I think is close to as new colour?

Cheers
« Last Edit: June 10, 2019, 09:45:00 pm by No.Mad »
 

Online Bud

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Re: Repair / replace the textured vinyl/paint on HP and other TE
« Reply #23 on: June 10, 2019, 10:25:43 pm »
WD40 worked well for me on 20 years old stubborn sticker residue.
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Offline No.Mad

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Re: Repair / replace the textured vinyl/paint on HP and other TE
« Reply #24 on: June 10, 2019, 10:33:56 pm »
WD40 worked well for me on 20 years old stubborn sticker residue.

No worries, will try later on another piece of equipment I got and will post before and after pics with some observation. Thanks for the tip :D

I'm a bit concerned that I might hijacked thread. HalFoster ?
 


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