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Old 06-21-2013, 11:17 AM   #1
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Removing old sealant from seams.

Would someone please share with me how to remove old sealant from the exterior seams? As soon as I have the polishing completed, I need to remove the remaining old sealant and reseal the seams.

I've been using the "Search" function as well as looking through various other threads hoping to come across this information, but have not come up with anything.

Thank you.

Deb
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Old 06-21-2013, 11:24 AM   #2
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I'm sure everyone has their favorite way to do it.....but....here's one: Soften up the old sealant with de-natured alcohol or spray seams with WD-40. Let it sit over night. Then use a sharpened WOOD popsicle stick or the edge of a wooden shim...or a plastic putty knife and slowly and carefully dig the old stuff out. Do not use anything metal to dig out the seams, or it will leave marks.
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Old 06-21-2013, 06:05 PM   #3
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I used no 'chemical'.. only a Dremel tool with wire brush attachment..

ONLY use this if you are very skilled with the Dremel, because it WILL leave marks even when you have an 'accident'... Plastic scrapers are more forgiving.
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Old 06-21-2013, 06:25 PM   #4
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I use my old standby, Citrastrip , painted on, and I let it sit for a couple hours. Then I use a wood craft stick (like Popsicle stick but wider) that I cut in the center on a 45 degree angle. That gives me 2 "tools" out of one stick. I also use an old toothbrush to scrub the seam and plastic scrapers as necessary. If I want to dig into the seam a little more a bamboo kitchen skewer works well.

A little bit of everything I guess Heck I even use my fingernails, which is why my manicure looks like heck!

So far citristrip has removed everything but I have the silicone remover from VTS on standby if necessary.
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Old 06-21-2013, 07:34 PM   #5
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Thanks so much everyone. I had thought about the plastic scrapers, but quite a bit of the others, not. I was really stuck on how to loosen it up, and completely forgot about the CitriStrip! Wow, talk about a senior moment! I was so impressed with how it stripped the paint off of the interior skin I tried it on, then didn't even think of trying it on the old seam sealant.

Trying to get everything lined up so that when I get to the next stage, I have everything on-hand and don't have to run around getting "things". I want so badly to move on to the interior, I can taste it.

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Old 06-22-2013, 08:24 AM   #6
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If you like the power tool route but the wire brush worries you try googling "3M bristle brush". recommended by Aerowood at the restoration rally a couple of years ago. Haven't tried it yet but it looks like a real time saver.
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Old 06-22-2013, 12:32 PM   #7
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Tim,

Thanks for sharing the info on the 3M bristle brush; I do like "power" whenever possible (makes it a little easier).

I went to the "shop3M.com" site, and read product descriptions, but didn't see anything to explain about the various grades and sizes. Do you happen to recall what Aerowood recommended as far as "grade" and "size" of the wheels? I just don't know what to order.

Thanks again.

Deb
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Old 06-22-2013, 07:36 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Air Cruiser View Post
Tim,

Thanks for sharing the info on the 3M bristle brush; I do like "power" whenever possible (makes it a little easier).

I went to the "shop3M.com" site, and read product descriptions, but didn't see anything to explain about the various grades and sizes. Do you happen to recall what Aerowood recommended as far as "grade" and "size" of the wheels? I just don't know what to order.

Thanks again.

Deb
Buy 3M 048011-18732 Scotch-Brite Roloc Bristle Abrasive Disc - Yellow - 2" x 5/8" - 80Grit at SkyGeek.com

I tried this, i thought maybe it would take off the black adhesive on my interior. I wasn't happy with the scratches. When I saw Aerowood using it he had used it on a window frame, that's different because it's solid aluminum and can be sanded pretty aggressively.

I'm sure he'll be along to comment.....and maybe I was doing something wrong, but I use them to take off gunk on solid aluminum only, not allclad.
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Old 06-22-2013, 08:23 PM   #9
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I haven't polished my AS yet. Wonder how that will work?
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Old 06-22-2013, 08:26 PM   #10
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Hi there,
I used a plastic dish scrapper from my kitchen. It was the perfect tool for the job and did not scratch the aluminum. My old sealant was so degraded that I didn't need to used anything to loosen it up.

Good luck. It is not a fun job.
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Old 06-22-2013, 08:39 PM   #11
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Oh, I forgot! I like these too!
4 Piece Nonmarring Scraper Set
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Old 06-23-2013, 07:54 AM   #12
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Reinergirl is right about the cupped disc being best used on window frames and such, cleans beautifully. The type of disc I was referring to is a 3M radial disc 120 grit, white in color. This is a flat disc about 3/8 in thick that is used like a mini flapper wheel or wire wheel ie. you use the edge of the disc rather than the flat face. for areas with larger amounts of gunk to remove they can be ganged together 3 wide on a mandrel for about an inch of width. Fairly pricey at about $8 each but Kip recommends keeping the rpm's lower to prolong the life of the disc. Also, eye protection is a must since small pieces fly everywhere at high speed!
hope this helps
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Old 06-23-2013, 08:51 AM   #13
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Well folks, you do know I'm lurking even though I am unable at the time, to work on my GT. The information you seek is on page 31, post 427 of my thread below. Be aware that these little discs are kinda on the expensive side but do work wonderfully. They also like a RPM of around 15,000, to slow and nothing happens, to fast and they start coming apart. Those bristles really hurt when they hit you so a full face shield should be used.
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Old 06-23-2013, 09:55 AM   #14
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OMG, thanks so much to everyone! Especially to Kip for offering up his info and the link to the thread on his Globetrotter. I went there to follow his suggestion, page 31, post 427, but I couldn't stop there, I just kept reading and reading and............well, you get the picture! That thread is a wealth of information and I can't believe I somehow missed it before; I saved it to my faves and plan to go back here shortly to read more, starting at the beginning. (I'm was supposed to be out weedeating, then starting in on polishing again -- before the heat and humidity get up there again, but I've been reading here and I see it's already 93 degrees out there! I'm baddddd! DH was called in to work again and I'm fluffing off in the AC and not working. Oh well, a girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do, right!? Just trying to get things lined up for future work -- for me, that is.)

I'm hoping we can make it to the Restoration Rally next year; I really wanted to this year, but it just didn't work out time-wise. Looking forward to meeting so many of our Forums members that I've been reading about and/or "talking" with here.

Many thanks again to all, and I'll come back to post how it worked out, but that will be a while, I have to finish polishing first before I get around to cleaning out the seams to make ready for the new sealant. Did I mention that I ordered five (5) of those 3M wheels Kip mentioned? Can't wait to get onto that part.

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Old 06-23-2013, 09:57 AM   #15
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Oh, I meant to mention that I hope I ordered the correct ones -- they were only $4.00+ each, not the $8 previously mentioned from Skygeek.com.

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Old 06-23-2013, 10:13 AM   #16
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The reason I'm not working on the GT is because I completely trashed out my left shoulder doing..........STARTING THE WEEDEATER. so now I'm recovering from the surgery. I really wish the reason for trashing it would have been protecting children from an Al-Quaida suicide bomber, it would be a much better excuse.
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Old 06-23-2013, 11:36 AM   #17
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Sad to hear what you are going through, I personally know a little about that -- a few years ago I was merely reaching between the bucket seats in my car to get something that was not overly heavy from the rear, and messed up my rotor cuff (or is it cup?) and was that ever painful!! I feel your pain! Luckily I didn't tear mine, but it still took what seemed like forever to heal, and I had to be so careful during that time.

Well, the weedeater (or weedwacker as some people call them) I prefer to use on trimming around retaining walls and sidewalks (lightweight work) is my heavier electric (battery operated) weedeater. For the areas with taller, tougher weeds like around the wooded areas, we have the gas, but personally, I don't enjoy having to pull, and pull, and pull to get it started (not always as hard as that to start, but when it is, it's a real pain!).

A short story on pulling and pulling here -- many years ago we had an old push mower, old before we received it, and I just hated using that thing as it was always difficult to start. Finally, one day after pulling, pulling, and pulling, trying desperately to start it, I had just had it with it and visualized walking over to our ravine and just tossing it over! Up to that point DH didn't want me to go buy a new one. The next day, I drove to Anderson's in Columbus and purchased a new, Lawn Boy push mower without talking to DH about it! I thought since I was the one doing all of the mowing, I was going to make it easier on myself, plus I'm the one who paid for it.

Deb
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Old 07-14-2013, 08:05 PM   #18
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A little update, the 3M wheels came, and I just had to give them a try. I may not have had the wheel turning at a fast enough speed, because it didn't take any of it off. However, I have to say that whatever this is in the seams, it feels almost like a really hard plastic, and it's black.

Anyway, we're still removing corrosion, and after that I'll be able to give the wheel a try again, this time I'll pay more attention to the wheel speed. I've decided if that doesn't work, I'll apply some CitriStrip first, then use the wheel. What ever it takes, I'm getting that old seam sealant out of there and the new in so I can then begin on the inside!

Deb
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