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Old 04-23-2007, 11:59 AM   #1
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How can I clean up Vulkem?

I want to use Vulkem to reseal the freshwater fill-assembly to my trailer's aluminum skin, but I'm concerned about the mess it'll make.

How can I clean up when I'm done?

What's a good solvent for Vulkem?

Thanks!
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Old 04-23-2007, 12:21 PM   #2
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you should probably use something called "par-bond" for that, rather than vulkem. Vulkem is ok for larger gaps. The really small ones can be more neatly filled w/ par-bond, or "acryl-r". (the factory used to use parbond; now they use acryl-r). They're both thin and runny, and tend to wick into these really small gaps. (Vulkem or sixaflex, which are both more heavy "caulking" are best for the larger gaps, like roof hatches and windows).

you can get them from the airstream store, or vintage trailer supply.

with either, if you mask the area carefully, you won't need to worry about cleanup. I've gotten so I can use par-bond without masking...its possible to lay down a clean, narrow bead without making a mess. use masking tape the first few times, leaving about a 1/8th inch gap along the joint, just to get the hang of it...you'll see what I mean.
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Old 04-23-2007, 12:21 PM   #3
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Maybe this will help you.

http://www.piedmontplastics.com/stat...%20Sealant.pdf
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Old 04-23-2007, 12:58 PM   #4
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Thanks for this info, folks! Very helpful!

Titus
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Old 04-23-2007, 02:06 PM   #5
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Best clean up for Vulkem is Mineral Spirits or Paint Thinner.

Aaron
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Old 04-27-2007, 02:40 PM   #6
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Per Ganglin's post, Vulkem's manufacturer recommends cleanup with Toluene or Xylene, neither of which is readily available in the typical home improvement store. But as other poster's noted, these products are often included in paint thinners and related items. I found a "paintbrush cleaner", for example, that contained both, and it did a great job of removing fresh Vulkem without damaging my trailer's aluminum skin.

Thanks again to everyone who pointed me in the right direction on this issue!

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Old 04-27-2007, 03:13 PM   #7
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I've bought xylene (lots of it) at Home Depot.
its on the shelf w/ all the other paint/solvents.
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Old 04-27-2007, 03:55 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wahoonc
Best clean up for Vulkem is Mineral Spirits or Paint Thinner.

Aaron
I agree, just used some last night. Cleaned up great.
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Old 04-27-2007, 04:02 PM   #9
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The less exotic the solvent, the better-for you. Paint thinner works fine when the vulkem's fresh. When it's dry, use dynamite.
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Old 04-27-2007, 04:16 PM   #10
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Quote:
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... When it's dry, use dynamite.
ya. been there.

actually, I found (after trying every solvent I could find...xylene working the best...but still an arduous task) that a heat gun worked really well. softened it right up, and let me srape it off with a plastic putty knife. The heat gun I used was meant for de-soldering printed circuit boards, so it has a very small nozzle...just about perfect for a bead of vulkem.
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Old 04-27-2007, 05:02 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chuck
ya. been there.

actually, I found (after trying every solvent I could find...xylene working the best...but still an arduous task) that a heat gun worked really well. softened it right up, and let me srape it off with a plastic putty knife. The heat gun I used was meant for de-soldering printed circuit boards, so it has a very small nozzle...just about perfect for a bead of vulkem.
Same here, I soften the old stuff with a heat gun as well. Good technique!
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