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A paint or shoe polish on old vinyl?

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  • A paint or shoe polish on old vinyl?

    The seats and some of the interior trim on my '86 dixie need a good cleaning. They are in good shape as far as cracks and tears, but they have some grey spots that are not mildew. It is more like the white coloring is wearing off in specks and grey material is showing through.

    So, I basically have two questions.

    1) What is a good, effective, safe product I can use to clean these seats while not damaging them further.

    2) Is there a paint I can brush on over the vinyl to help color in the grey spots, or even white shoe polish perhaps?

    I have a tear in the rear bench seat, so it is getting recovered sometime before summer once I get some money together, but I won't have the cash to have everyhing recovered all the way around. Looking for a way to get the rest of the stuff looking better than it does to get me by until I can recover more seats next winter, especially since there will be a new looking bench seat in the rear to make the older ones even more noticeable.
    1987 Dixie hustler 188 restore underway! Merc 4.3, alpha one (Gen 1), wake tower

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  • #2
    Re: A paint or shoe polish on old vinyl?



    You can see the spots I'm talking about here ^. I'd also be willing to maybe get a set of nice looking close fitting seat covers to get me through another season.

    You can also see it in the trim piece around the gauges below.

    1987 Dixie hustler 188 restore underway! Merc 4.3, alpha one (Gen 1), wake tower

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    • #3
      Re: A paint or shoe polish on old vinyl?

      Saw a tread where someone used a Rustoleum Vinyl color restorer. Went on in 3 coats and he seemed to have liked it.
      Restoring the Sun Pad to get through the summer - YouTube

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      • #4
        Re: A paint or shoe polish on old vinyl?

        Have a look here;
        Dupli-Color :: Vinyl & Fabric Coating

        I bet a good upholstery guy that deals specifically with auto/boat upholstery probably has tricks up there sleeve, and most of them charge a reasonable price to re-hab stuff.
        1976 Rogers Custom Boats 18' "Bonneville" W/ Chevy 454/ Berkeley 12JC

        Care Taker of 1976 Glastron V-184 Crestflight W/ Volvo 170B/280 I.O.
        & 1969 Starcraft W/ 1956 Evinrude 7.5hp Fleetwin.

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        • #5
          Re: A paint or shoe polish on old vinyl?

          Originally posted by tboltmike View Post
          Saw a tread where someone used a Rustoleum Vinyl color restorer. Went on in 3 coats and he seemed to have liked it.
          Restoring the Sun Pad to get through the summer - YouTube
          I'm gonna try this in the spring, I had my seats redone about 7 years ago and it appears that two different types of vinyl were used in the upholstery, some are fine, some have discolored. I'm hoping the white matches what Ive got, but it's got to be better than the blotchy stains I have typically at the seat tops. I dropped about $900 the last time to "freshen things up", the splotches showed up about three years ago and nothing seems to clean them up. Hope it doesn't look too off from the rest of my interior. Thanks for the Info!
          90 Carver Montego 21.5 (23') "Lady Minna" (yes a name change in honor of our fallen Labrador. Poseidon understands.)

          In the immortal words of Hunter S. Thompson:
          "Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of
          arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid
          in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out,
          and loudly proclaiming "Wow! What a Ride!"

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          • #6
            Re: A paint or shoe polish on old vinyl?

            That YouTube video looks promising! I'd just hate to spend hundreds on recovering otherwise perfect seats if there was another option. I wonder how it held up over time.

            I wonder how many colors they have. I wanna do a white and lime green theme on the whole boat.
            1987 Dixie hustler 188 restore underway! Merc 4.3, alpha one (Gen 1), wake tower

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            • #7
              Re: A paint or shoe polish on old vinyl?

              For those interested, I plan on doing quite a bit of my interior with this stuff before spring. I'll be sure to post pictures and opinions.it'll have to do at least to get me by till next winter.
              1987 Dixie hustler 188 restore underway! Merc 4.3, alpha one (Gen 1), wake tower

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              • #8
                Re: A paint or shoe polish on old vinyl?

                Is the parasol product better than the rustoleum product or the duplicolor?
                1987 Dixie hustler 188 restore underway! Merc 4.3, alpha one (Gen 1), wake tower

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                • #9
                  Re: A paint or shoe polish on old vinyl?

                  Gotcha! I see a gallon is over 300$. How much would it take for one average sized captains chair? I'd like to purchase it in spray cans.
                  1987 Dixie hustler 188 restore underway! Merc 4.3, alpha one (Gen 1), wake tower

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                  • #10
                    Re: A paint or shoe polish on old vinyl?

                    If I have two-tone interior, will this stuff peel off when I tape over a recently painted section to paint the other color?
                    2005 Sea Ray Weekender 215, w/ 5.0, Bravo III, Galvanized Tandem Trailer

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                    • #11
                      Re: A paint or shoe polish on old vinyl?

                      I plan on taking my time and letting one color dry well before going to another.

                      Also, I guess what I'm getting at, if I takes 300$ worth of dye to renew my captains chairs, I could about just recover them for not much more. The bow seats and little bit of trim I also want to do don't see much abuse so I could use the cheaper dupli color stuff on all that.nobody sits in the bow much. That's a rough ride!
                      1987 Dixie hustler 188 restore underway! Merc 4.3, alpha one (Gen 1), wake tower

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                      • #12
                        Re: A paint or shoe polish on old vinyl?

                        hey, the best spray can stuff i have ever used is colorbond. you clean it good, wipe with acetone and i sticks great. use thin coats always. summit racing sells it. three to four cans should do alot and its around 12 ish a can

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                        • #13
                          Re: A paint or shoe polish on old vinyl?

                          I've used the Rustoleum on side panels with great results. Can't comment on its staying power on a seat though.
                          Coolbreeze -- '86 Four winns/170

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                          • #14
                            Re: A paint or shoe polish on old vinyl?

                            Having been a boater for more years than I care to admit to I have a product that I have been using for many years to clean vinyl and leather on boats and cars interiors and that is D&L Hand cleaner. It is harder to find now a days but still out there, it has lanolin in it and leaves the vinyl soft and flexible. It has a white grease look to it, peculiar smell but not offensive, smear it on and scrub with a soft brush.
                            It gets the crud out of the pores, wipe off dirt and excess cleaner, then wipe down with a mild soap and water. This product will also help keep the material from cracking. Stay away from the type of products such as armorall, while it looks great for a while, it can reduce overall life by cuasing early cracking/stiff covering. First discovered this miracle product when I was much younger and had a car with a vinyl roof. A car show guy put me onto the D&L and I have been using it ever since.

                            Airshot

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                            • #15
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                              Re: A paint or shoe polish on old vinyl?

                              Is the general concensus just clean with something mild, and wipe with acetone before spraying?
                              1987 Dixie hustler 188 restore underway! Merc 4.3, alpha one (Gen 1), wake tower

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