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Old 6th Mar 2017, 4:59 pm   #1
Squipper
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Default Rexine cleaning?

I am new as a member to the forum, but have exclusively been collecting Roberts Radios for quite some time, and have gotten myself quite a collection.
I'm in no way a radio techie, nor am I master of anything radio, but I do dabble, and am quite adept at swapping out components, cleaning pots, soldering etc, lots with thanks to the posts on this forum.
One issue I would like some help with, is cleaning rexine. Whatever I try (always in an inconspicuous area first) it seems to remove the colour.
I have just taken in a spares/repair P5A, in blue, and this is much the same, small wipe of the rexine with anything mildly moist removes the colour. I would like to clean the years of grubbiness from this set, and bring out the shine, as despite being described as 'spares' by the vendor, it was revived / repaired electrically by me simply by reflowing several solder points, and it works very well.
I'd like this, and some of my other rexine covered sets to scrub up well, but what with?
Any and all help appreciated!
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Old 6th Mar 2017, 5:53 pm   #2
vinrads
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Default Re: Rexine cleaning?

I have found leather dye excellent for restoring faded rexine found on E bay. PS have we gone American hope not ! Gotten ? .Mick.
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Old 6th Mar 2017, 6:28 pm   #3
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Default Re: Rexine cleaning?

Thanks Mick. It's not so much restoring the colour, as removing the years of grime without 'also' removing the colour.
One option, as I have done with a few other sets where the finish was beyond repair, is to re-cover it. I am hesitant to do so with this, as generally the P5A is a good, working, & otherwise untouched set, and I would like to restore it, bring it back cosmetically to as-was.

Not 'gotten' American, (Gotten is a middle English word that we simply don't use anymore) I've just a 'multi-national' life history - well travelled
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Old 6th Mar 2017, 6:44 pm   #4
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Default Re: Rexine cleaning?

Or shoe polish, that renders it a bit more waterproof too.

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PS have we gone American
American english is more like old english than our morphed/developed/improved version. To do with isolation.
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Old 6th Mar 2017, 7:05 pm   #5
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Default Re: Rexine cleaning?

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Originally Posted by merlinmaxwell View Post
Or shoe polish, that renders it a bit more waterproof too.
It shan't be going anywhere near cold/damp/wet!

It's already the original blue colour, and has the potential to be lovely again, and cleaned without removing the colour whilst doing so is what I'm after. I need to remove grease spots & 80 years worth of skincells from the finish. It has probably never had a clean in its' life!

I had a few similarly grotty R737s which the finish faded with every wipe, and that was just with a damp cloth. they looked so shocking after I'd gone over them, that I recovered and resprayed both to improve the appearance / hide my mistake
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Old 6th Mar 2017, 7:40 pm   #6
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Default Re: Rexine cleaning?

Sorry! I don't know why but when I hear it ,it makes me cringe I don't recall hearing it before in the UK Mick.
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Old 6th Mar 2017, 7:46 pm   #7
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Default Re: Rexine cleaning?

I've used the word gotten many times, no problem.

Lawrence.
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Old 6th Mar 2017, 8:04 pm   #8
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Default Re: Rexine cleaning?

Agree with Lawrence

Gotten often used in our family ( we are all Cornish )

Doesn't sound American from my perspective

Cheers

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Old 6th Mar 2017, 8:16 pm   #9
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Default Re: Rexine cleaning?

"Stardrops" with ammonia ( the milky looking version ) never known it to damage a finish. Start with it diluted if you wish (around an egg-cup full in half a small bucket of warm water), but I've used it 'neat' on really dirty stuff. Great for cable cleaning too; pour neat on to a damp cloth and drag the cable through - comes up like new.
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Old 6th Mar 2017, 8:40 pm   #10
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Default Re: Rexine cleaning?

I'll give the Stardrops a go - I'm sure my better half will have some in the lady cupboard...

I only ask what works for others as I have tried all manner of liquidy things over the years, and the result is always the same, a dye-stained cloth, and a faded radio covering
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Old 6th Mar 2017, 10:12 pm   #11
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Default Re: Rexine cleaning?

In the classic-car world the general restorer for anything-but-Connolly-leather trim is "Gliptone".

In times-past we used "Meltonian" cream on our patent-leather shoes to good glossy effect too. I've not seen this for ages though.
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Old 6th Mar 2017, 11:02 pm   #12
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Default Re: Rexine cleaning?

I've had success without loss of colour with Swarfega hand cleaner. The green one, not the orange, which has abrasives in it.
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Old 6th Mar 2017, 11:34 pm   #13
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Default Re: Rexine cleaning?

Thanks, will give that a go as I have a tub of Swarfega in the man-lab - something I'd certainly never considered, but sounds almost credible...
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Old 7th Mar 2017, 2:22 am   #14
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Default Re: Rexine cleaning?

Swarfega is a mix of detergent and white spirit I was told, either may remove colour. The old Rexine was never designed to last so long, its an oil based coating on paper backing. I have used toothpaste in the past, slightly abrasive.
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Old 7th Mar 2017, 9:56 am   #15
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Default Re: Rexine cleaning?

I've been working on a fairly filthy P5A too, but in red which shows the grime even more than yours would.

Whatever I tried shifted as much of the red colouring as it did the grime. In the end, I use Cif and a nail brush and warm water, then resorted to shoe dye and wax to restore the rather faded and blotchy mess that was left.
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Old 7th Mar 2017, 10:22 am   #16
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Default Re: Rexine cleaning?

Thanks for all the suggestions so far, I will give each a try later today and post back here with the results.

It might just for the be that Rexine was never designed to last 70 years on the P5A without losing it's colour...

I suppose that another option I have is to learn how to re-cover it completely with new leathercloth, I have studied the threads on here about leathercloth from Ratchfords, and might end up going down that route, if I can convince myself that I can indeed undertake such a mammoth task on the P5A - it would certainly be a lot less daunting task on a Rambler!

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Originally Posted by Nickthedentist View Post
Whatever I tried shifted as much of the red colouring as it did the grime. In the end, I use Cif and a nail brush and warm water, then resorted to shoe dye and wax to restore the rather faded and blotchy mess that was left.
I feel your pain!
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Old 7th Mar 2017, 10:33 am   #17
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Default Re: Rexine cleaning?

If you decide to recover it, take photos and notes of where the existing joins are. It will help you with the task.
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Old 7th Mar 2017, 10:41 am   #18
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Default Re: Rexine cleaning?

The Rexine on mine was fairly tatty to start with, peeling and bubbly in places, slightly torn in others. At least this made me feel that I had nothing to lose by attempting to clean it.

I will try to take some photos of the finished set and post before, during and after photos.

Yours really looks rather good with a nice shine and a clean grille cloth. I would be tempted just to try blue shoe polish and avoid any aggressive cleaning at all.

P.S. See this thread about Evaporust. I found it worked wonders on the catches, hinges and screws on my set: http://www.vintage-radio.net/forum/s...d.php?t=127151

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Old 7th Mar 2017, 10:53 am   #19
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Default Re: Rexine cleaning?

Off-topic for this thread, I know, but it bears saying:

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Originally Posted by Squipper View Post
I'm in no way a radio techie, nor am I master of anything radio, but I do dabble, and am quite adept at swapping out components, cleaning pots, soldering etc, lots with thanks to the posts on this forum...
I'm sure you know already, but in spite of having a mains transformer to supply the valves' heaters, this is a LIVE CHASSIS set, i.e. one side of the mains supply is connected to the chassis with no transformer to isolate it. Furthermore, the mains switch is a single-pole affair, wired between what should be the neutral wire and chassis. So even when the mains is the correct way round, the chassis will essentially be live when the set's switched off! Be sure that the control knobs can't be pulled off, that nobody's going to open the back when it's plugged in, and that you remove the mains plug from the wall when the set's not in use

Back to the Rexine now...
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Old 7th Mar 2017, 11:28 am   #20
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Default Re: Rexine cleaning?

I still say try leather dye it works for me . Mick.
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