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Old 11-21-2014, 09:06 AM   #1
The Sign Lady
 
1969 23' Safari
1974 Argosy 22
1964 24' Tradewind
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TheSignLady's bird poop removal advice

Here's a sticky subject for us Airstreamers. Bird poop, it really sticks on doesn't it? Well this week in my shop I had a big black sign come in for clean up. Here it is after being scrubbed down with soap and water and a whole lotta elbow grease.... repeatedly... Improved some, but that poop is still stuck on there good, and kinda etched in...

Well at this point I figured...
Learning Experience!!!
Let's document this...
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Old 11-21-2014, 09:11 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by thesignlady View Post
Here's a sticky subject for us Airstreamers. Bird poop, it really sticks on doesn't it? Well this week in my shop I had a big black sign come in for clean up. Here it is after being scrubbed down with soap and water and a whole lotta elbow grease.... repeatedly... Improved some, but that poop is still stuck on there good, and kinda etched in...

Well at this point I figured...
Learning Experience!!!
Let's document this...
Try a little Lime-away, or an oven cleaner.

Andy
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Old 11-21-2014, 09:25 AM   #3
The Sign Lady
 
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I tried everything I had in the shop to cut through it with negligible difference each time. Rapid Remover, 90 percent Isoproyl alcohol (rubbing alcohol), Fantastic, Tilex, Methyl Hydrate, multiple kinds of soaps, degreasers and such. (Don't worry I had my safety gear on and kept all the wet rags separate so I didn't gave some crazy chemical reactions)

The only one that sort of cut into it was the rapid remover (it's an industrial adhesive remover), about 30% improvement...Not good enough for my liking...

Next came the magic stuff...Literally....well...a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser, says it's magic, so it must be right.

I wet my Magic Eraser sponge down with water at the the sink because these sponges do not work at all if dry, I then saturated the affected areas with Windex window cleaner and left it to sit 30 seconds. A wee bit of elbow grease and rinse and repeat later, Voilŗ, Success!!!
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Old 11-21-2014, 09:32 AM   #4
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Please share feel free to add anything that you have been successfully able to clear poop off of your AS with here.

I saw someone's comment in a thread said to use Coca Cola, what other ideas are out there?
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Old 11-21-2014, 11:46 AM   #5
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Curious as to how well they work and is it safe to use the Magic Eraser on the Airstreams aluminum skin?
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Old 11-21-2014, 01:37 PM   #6
The Sign Lady
 
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Can you use a Magic Eraser on an Airstream?

Yes, they are awesome I use them everywhere at work and home

I used the Magic erasers on my '69 but soaked in Rapid Remover instead of windex to clean the old black sap spots off my roof. No noticeable difference other than squeaky clean, I actually did my whole roof with the magic eraser. My finish is the satin clear coat.

I would recommend a small out of site test area if you have a high polish finish to check that it is ok for the super shiny ones but I use them at the sign shop on painted vehicles and aluminum trailers all the time when I am removing decals whenever there is a haze left over from the image I removed.

They are a darn good product to have on hand, those sponges, Rapid Remover and Captain Tolleys creeping crack cure are my recommended must haves for any airstream restorer/repairer
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Old 11-21-2014, 02:35 PM   #7
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How about laquer thinner? I used it on the top of my AS to clean bird poop - very carefully - and it appeared to work well.
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Old 11-21-2014, 02:39 PM   #8
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Darn, I've got a 5 gallon bucket of lacquer thinner here and I didn't think to try it. The bird poop covered sign is all clean now but next time I get a chance to give it a go, I will :-)
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Old 11-21-2014, 02:52 PM   #9
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While not always possible, I found the best way to remove bird poop is to get it while still fresh. It will wipe of with a wet rag in most instances. If that is not possible certainly try and get it as soon as possible after it shows up. The longer it stays on the finish, the harder it is to remove and the more damage it will do to the finish. Also, if it's dried on, try placing a wet rag on top of it an letting it sit for awhile. This helps to re-hydrate it and make it easier to remove...kind of like letting a pan with caked on food soak before washing it.
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Old 11-21-2014, 03:15 PM   #10
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Using lacquer will strip clear coat also goof off will strip clear coat
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Old 11-21-2014, 06:33 PM   #11
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Take a live European Starling or two and rub them onto the trailer until they finally die. It doesn't really get rid of the poop, but it sure makes you feel better about it! We have the same issue with sea gulls and our sail covers at the moorage. It's really hard to catch a sea gull!

The best advice, I feel, is to use the wet rag method. Here in Oregon, we wait five-minutes for it to rain. But, in other places you may need to hydrate with a rag to soften the scatological waste materials. It really does work. We mix in some auto wash and hot water which works the best. The same method seems to work well for leaf sap, after we camp under deciduous shade trees in the summer.
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Old 11-22-2014, 07:07 PM   #12
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One day I was cleaning dead bugs & bird poop off a customers car when the sweet old lady that owned the car asked why I as working hard. Then she went into the trunk of the car & grabed the bottle of windshield washer fluid with the bug remover In it and said try this.
Well it worked . Once again it pays to (LISTEN TO YOUR ELDERS)
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Old 11-22-2014, 08:37 PM   #13
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Don't know poop about poop removal, but a dampened fabric softener sheet does wonders on love bugs.
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Old 11-23-2014, 12:27 PM   #14
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Bird poop will stain a polished Airstream. For me, only the Cyclo and F-7 will remove the stain. I'll try one of these magic sponges, thanks for the tip. I use lacquer thinner a lot, but my trailers are old and don't have clear coat anymore, although the lacquer thinner didn't cut the clear coat that was on my trailers. It didn't remove the poop stains either. If I had a good clear coat, I don't think bird poop or leaf stains, or water spots would be a problem.

Lacquer thinner does cut the oils out of your skin, and makes an excellent charcoal starter! Almost as good as gasoline!

David
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