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Thread: That SUPER STICKY vintage residue--how to make it go away?

  1. #76
    Heroic Warrior IceyCat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MLHumble View Post
    Here's a question: Is breaking down plastic toxic? Should toddlers be walking around with sticky Buzz-Offs in their mouths?
    Yes, I always caution people NOT to allow children to play with vintage toys, especially ones that have started to break down. The plasticizers contain lead and other toxins that are harmful to children. You really should take precautions too and wear gloves when cleaning them and wash your hands thoroughly afterward.

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    I am not sure about He-Man figures, but I have used Remove-Zit on vintage SSC dolls and other things. http://www.twinpines.com/remove-zit
    "Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither!"

  2. #77
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    Quote Originally Posted by IceyCat View Post
    Yes, I always caution people NOT to allow children to play with vintage toys, especially ones that have started to break down. The plasticizers contain lead and other toxins that are harmful to children. You really should take precautions too and wear gloves when cleaning them and wash your hands thoroughly afterward.

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    I am not sure about He-Man figures, but I have used Remove-Zit on vintage SSC dolls and other things. http://www.twinpines.com/remove-zit
    Did you use it on painted figures ? I read the description and they say it remove the paint ...

    "Some vinyl and other plastic dolls and action figures were air brushed (painted) during manufacture to apply cosmetic features. Remove-Zit will remove paint."

  3. #78
    Heroic Warrior Mark M's Avatar
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    Never had a problem with my vintage MOTU but almost all of my vintage Thundercats and Real Ghostbusters had the plastic start to break down and go really sticky.

  4. #79
    The Scare is in the Glow! Scare Glow's Avatar
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    I just recently took my commemorative reissues out of storage and was very surprised to find this problem developing with a few of them. So far, the issue is manifesting as the usual sticky/oily residue, and seems to be isolated to Buzz Off's wings and Clawfull's limbs.

    The figures were individually stored in zip lock bags, in a climate controlled environment out of direct light. The bags were partially opened to allow outgassing. Considering these toys were only made in 00/01, and a sizable portion of my vintage collection (so far) has not developed this type of breakdown, I'm not sure what to think.

    As of now the figures are on display and seem alright otherwise.

    Has anyone else experienced this with the reissues?

  5. #80
    Heroic Warrior IceyCat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Euronymous View Post
    Did you use it on painted figures ? I read the description and they say it remove the paint ...

    "Some vinyl and other plastic dolls and action figures were air brushed (painted) during manufacture to apply cosmetic features. Remove-Zit will remove paint."
    I have used it on pin dot mold on SSC and MLP. I know it can cause the dis-colorization of the plastic ponies. If it says not to use it I would trust them then. They are a pretty good company. I typically take a tooth pick and put some on the end and apply it to the mold spots very sparingly. I have also used it to clean the stickiness off of boxed SSC dolls faces and arms. It did not effect their face paint, but I was VERY careful.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Scare Glow View Post
    I just recently took my commemorative reissues out of storage and was very surprised to find this problem developing with a few of them. So far, the issue is manifesting as the usual sticky/oily residue, and seems to be isolated to Buzz Off's wings and Clawfull's limbs.

    The figures were individually stored in zip lock bags, in a climate controlled environment out of direct light. The bags were partially opened to allow outgassing. Considering these toys were only made in 00/01, and a sizable portion of my vintage collection (so far) has not developed this type of breakdown, I'm not sure what to think.

    As of now the figures are on display and seem alright otherwise.

    Has anyone else experienced this with the reissues?
    The problem is your storage method (maybe). Plastic bags and totes and things off gas chemicals which can break down the toys they are holding. What I do is buy acid free tissue paper and wrap all of my toys in that (it is brown) with silica packets. If I have to keep them in totes I make sure to periodically take the lids off and let them breathe.
    "Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither!"

  6. #81
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    My Hordak is sticky!?!

    Hey all.

    Found an old Buzz-Saw Hordak in a box, was gonna set him up for display. Turns out he's sticky! He wasn't covered in any substance and wasn't dirty -- it's almost like the plastic itself is, I dunno... "sweating" maybe?

    Is this a thing that happens to vintage MOTU figs? If so, am I exposing myself to lethal toxins?? hahah... and if not, any good way to un-sticky this guy?? Soap and water didn't work and I'm not sure what else to use that won't damage it.

    Any info welcome!!

  7. #82
    Heroic Warrior depp76's Avatar
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    Here's some info from the forums:

    Quote Originally Posted by iron_pride View Post
    I have used a few different methods.

    Goo-Be-Gone: I have tried this, BUT if you have the slightest scratch on the figure in any place, the goo-be-gone will start to remove the paint from around the scratch. It does however work well for the paint rub marks left by other figures.

    Peroxide: This too, peroxide is a "whitener" by nature, thus the use in some whitening teeth cleaners as well as a cheap-o hair blonding agent. It cleaned off the stickiness, but on some (mainly the dark colors) it left them with the look of a tad bit duller finish. To note, while a good cleaning agent, it didn't do as well as goo-be-gone for the minor paint rubs from other figures.

    Alcohol: Rubbing alcohol has been my most used method. It not only cleans the stickiness, but also sterilizes it....so if you are iffy about who you got them from, it's a good anti-bacterial for that. I have had good luck with it, but use quick strokes and wash it with water after so the alcohol doesn't soak in.

    Silicone Spray: I use this AFTER cleaning....also with small quick strokes more to "beautify" the figure's finish after cleaning. In most cases it "kind-of" brings back the original luster and makes the colors "pop" more.

    The best thing that I have found though (for lightly sticky or lightly soiled---meaning dusty or mildly dirty(mud etc.)), is to use DAWN dish washing liquid and hot water (unless your figures have lights or metal components). DAWN is a grease cutter, so a good soak and washing in soapy DAWN dishwater does the trick for the most part on lightly sticky or lightly soiled figures. The reason I capitalize DAWN is just becasue I have tried other dish detergents and none of them work as well in my experience.

    I hope this helps. I haven't tried the previously mentioned 409 or any other household cleaners, mainly because the chemicals used in them could damage the toy. Maybe not right away, but over time it certainly could with the chemicals breaking down the plastic or the coatings. Just be careful using goo-be-gone or peroxide or alcohol because too much will damage the finish or soak in and damage it slowly long term. If you try the bleach route, be sure to use color safe bleach unless the product you are cleaning is all white. I used bleach once on a hockey stick (where tape covers it on the blade) and it made it white, but also made it look discolored compared to the rest. So....

    If its all white, you could use bleach. If it is free 100% of scratches you could use goo-be-gone. Peroxide will get rid of the sticky but depending on the quality of plastic it could leave it dull looking and dull to the touch. Alcohol is a good sanitizer, but as with anything not dish soap or water, it could also break down the plastic if you expose the toy to it for too long.

  8. #83
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    Dang, this is making me paranoid about damaging the fig while trying to clean it... I guess I can just leave him sticky and never touch it!!

  9. #84
    Heroic Warrior Rikki Roxx's Avatar
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    I've had some good results cleaning sticky MOTU figures by dipping a Q-tip in alcohol or nail polish remover and rubbing off all the residue, then rinsing with warm water and rubbing dry with a lint-free rag. No issues so far, as long as you avoid the painted parts. Almost all of mine have only gotten sticky on the legs, above the boots, so since I'm only cleaning the molded parts there's no issues with rubbing off any paint.

    Unfortunately it does seem like after a while it just becomes a recurring thing with these, due to the plastic itself breaking down over time. So while it's good to clean that sticky grime off, there's a chance it will come back eventually. Still, I clean them whenever I come across one that needs it.
    My matches, toy reviews, promos and more are on YouTube here: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCxr...awnHgDz1ceDcfA

  10. #85
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    alright, good to know. I guess this is one of the unforeseen issues with cheap '80s plastic!

    fingers crossed while Hordak takes his bath!!

  11. #86
    Heroic Warrior dualban's Avatar
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    I noticed this 20 years ago. My vintage trap jaw has until today a sticky coating around its legs.

  12. #87
    Heroic Warrior Rikki Roxx's Avatar
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    I went through my entire vintage collection today to re-pack it. My King Randor previously had the worst stickiness of all before I cleaned it off with the nail polish remover. A year later and it's barely sticky at all! Very little bit on the legs but nowhere near as bad as it was. Nobody else I cleaned is sticky at all.

    Just figured I'd give an update since we were just talking about it and this is the first time I've handled most of them in a while.
    My matches, toy reviews, promos and more are on YouTube here: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCxr...awnHgDz1ceDcfA

  13. #88
    Heroic Warrior Krueger's Avatar
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    Ah, ok. Yeah, I've noticed that a lot of old toys, particularly some MOTU stuff I've had over the years, tends to be really sticky. Thought I was going mad.

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