Jump to content


Welcome to Ultimate Subaru Message Board, my lurker friend!

Welcome to Ultimate Subaru Message Board, an unparalleled Subaru community full of the greatest Subaru gurus and modders on the planet! We offer technical information and discussion about all things Subaru, the best and most popular all wheel drive vehicles ever created.

We offer all this information for free to everyone, even lurkers like you! All we ask in return is that you sign up and give back some of what you get out - without our awesome registered users none of this would be possible! Plus, you get way more great stuff as a member! Lurk to lose, participate to WIN*!
  • Say hello and join the conversation
  • Subscribe to topics and forums to get automatic updates
  • Get your own profile and make new friends
  • Classifieds with all sorts of Subaru goodies
  • Photo hosting in our gallery
  • Meet other cool people with cool cars
Seriously, what are you waiting for? Make your life more fulfilling and join today! You and your Subaru won't regret it, we guarantee** it.

* The joy of participation and being generally awesome constitutes winning
** Not an actual guarantee, but seriously, you probably won't regret it!

Serving the Subaru Community since May 18th, 1998!

Guest Message by DevFuse
 

Photo
- - - - -

Opinions on restoring faded bumpers?


  • Please log in to reply
22 replies to this topic

#1 jonas

jonas

    Subaru Nut

  • Members
  • 1,057 posts
  • Oakridge

Posted 08 April 2014 - 11:15 PM

Bumpers on my wagon are faded to grey. I can scratch with my thumb nail and see pretty black underneath. Been looking on line at various restoration products but none seem to be what im looking for. Something to remove that grey layer. I've been doing spot tests trying to take that grey layer off, but so far my methods (various scratch pads/super fine sandpaper, etc) leave fine scratches. Any suggestions on this?



#2 LucasP

LucasP

    New User

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 30 posts
  • Eugene

Posted 09 April 2014 - 01:01 AM

My grandpa was a body and fender guy for 30 years and now does custom body work on high end cars and older cars.  The tip he gave me that worked awesome on the black plastic that was on the wranger I used to have was black shoe polish.  It soaks into the plastic really well and leaves it nice and shiny.  I never thought it would work but it worked awesome.



#3 Crazyeights

Crazyeights

    SubaRube Goldberg

  • Gold Subscribers
  • 1,002 posts
  • PNW

Posted 09 April 2014 - 01:04 AM

Heat gun, carefully.



#4 suprjohn

suprjohn

    Eat, Live, Breath Subaru

  • Members
  • 260 posts
  • North Platte, NE

Posted 09 April 2014 - 06:51 AM

I picked up some Maguire's bumper black. I haven't tried it yet, but how much do you want to bet it's shoe polish in a bottle that costs twice as much? lol 

 

John



#5 rrgrr

rrgrr

    Subaru Fanatic!

  • Members
  • 362 posts
  • Bloomington

Posted 09 April 2014 - 07:35 AM

Bumper Black works well on the side trim, but it is wasted on the bumpers, doesn't last at all. It is certainly not shoe polish -I would have guessed something far more disgusting[digress]!.

I spoke with local body guys and was recommended Bondo Bumper Black Paint. No Bulldog or primer/adhesion promo needed. I haven't done this yet, but they clash with the other blacks now, so it is on my list.

I have some Wipe New I've been waiting for weather to try on my dash, and will try some on the bumpers as well.



#6 SmashedGlass

SmashedGlass

    Eat, Live, Breath Subaru

  • Members
  • 669 posts
  • From CO, stuck in FL

Posted 09 April 2014 - 08:06 AM

There are plenty of bumper coatings from different companies. Pretty much the only way you're going to bring a black bumper back to life, IMHO.

Never had any real luck with any of the compounds that are meant to "restore" black plastics and moldings working very well or for very long.



#7 l75eya

l75eya

    Almost has it all figured out

  • Members
  • 1,729 posts
  • Hoboken, NJ

Posted 09 April 2014 - 09:25 AM

To be honest, i just scuffed up my bumpers with sandpaper and rattle canned them and they actually came out well. 2 years later! I'll try and dig up some pictures.

#8 l75eya

l75eya

    Almost has it all figured out

  • Members
  • 1,729 posts
  • Hoboken, NJ

Posted 09 April 2014 - 09:40 AM

Well after looking, it's funny;

 

I have a great picture of the bumper BEFORE I painted it...but not one real good one after!
Well, here's what I got

 

Before:
Photo-0090-3.jpg

 

After: (and these are all quite some time after)
_MG_1195.jpg

 

IMG_20120904_135711.jpg

 

 

536173_10153048267120307_1890229753_n.jp



#9 skishop69

skishop69

    If it ain't broke, you're not trying.

  • Members
  • 952 posts
  • Puyallup

Posted 09 April 2014 - 09:41 AM

Every 'wipe on' bumper/plastic restorer I've used or research only lasts a year at best. I used the heat gun and shoe polish method on my black Brat and that lasted 18 months. Any kind of plastic 'paint' is going to chip, scratch or flake. I've been researching actual plastic and polymer dyes as they are not something that is readily available to the public due to their caustic nature. I have come up with something I think will work but have not yet had time to implement it. Acetone causes plastic to 'open up' and soften temporarily. Mixing it 2: with the appropriate color enamel or laquer should create the consistency of a dye. To make this as effective as possible, the piece in question would need to be heated uniformly to around 120 degrees to pre-soften the plastic opening up the surface. Wipe the mixture on and wipe off the residual. It should soak into the plastic. Let it cool off and repeat 2 more times. My plan was to build wooden boxes big enough to contain my bumpers and vent them to allow a small space heater to blow in one end with a restriction on the other end to hold the heat in to a degree heating them uniformly. I got the idea from talking to an upholstery guy I know who says they use acetone mixed with a dye to re-dye auto carpet which is polymer based. The reason the plastic fades is that the oils that hold or contain the dye are leached out by the sun and environment over time. If you try this, let me know how it works. I'm prolly 2 months out from having time to do it.



#10 Crazyeights

Crazyeights

    SubaRube Goldberg

  • Gold Subscribers
  • 1,002 posts
  • PNW

Posted 09 April 2014 - 09:54 AM

Every 'wipe on' bumper/plastic restorer I've used or research only lasts a year at best. I used the heat gun and shoe polish method on my black Brat and that lasted 18 months. Any kind of plastic 'paint' is going to chip, scratch or flake. I've been researching actual plastic and polymer dyes as they are not something that is readily available to the public due to their caustic nature. I have come up with something I think will work but have not yet had time to implement it. Acetone causes plastic to 'open up' and soften temporarily. Mixing it 2: with the appropriate color enamel or laquer should create the consistency of a dye. To make this as effective as possible, the piece in question would need to be heated uniformly to around 120 degrees to pre-soften the plastic opening up the surface. Wipe the mixture on and wipe off the residual. It should soak into the plastic. Let it cool off and repeat 2 more times. My plan was to build wooden boxes big enough to contain my bumpers and vent them to allow a small space heater to blow in one end with a restriction on the other end to hold the heat in to a degree heating them uniformly. I got the idea from talking to an upholstery guy I know who says they use acetone mixed with a dye to re-dye auto carpet which is polymer based. The reason the plastic fades is that the oils that hold or contain the dye are leached out by the sun and environment over time. If you try this, let me know how it works. I'm prolly 2 months out from having time to do it.

Thanks! I'll probably never actually get around to this, but it sounds great!



#11 SmashedGlass

SmashedGlass

    Eat, Live, Breath Subaru

  • Members
  • 669 posts
  • From CO, stuck in FL

Posted 09 April 2014 - 10:45 AM

I'm probably just going to Plastidip mine. It can be peeled off and re-applied as necessary.



#12 jonas

jonas

    Subaru Nut

  • Members
  • 1,057 posts
  • Oakridge

Posted 09 April 2014 - 11:20 AM

Thanks. like you guys, I've used various Restore products with little satisfaction. I'm thinking some carefully applied paint stripper to remove the grey. Most likely i'll be going the Plastidip route. I used it on the front bumper (Not stock) of my Brat and it seems to be holding up pretty well.



#13 TheWanderer

TheWanderer

    USMB is life!

  • Members
  • 131 posts
  • Nebraska

Posted 09 April 2014 - 11:39 AM

Meds brand has a product called Renu Pro.  I've used this on multiple vehicles (mostly subarus), and had a guy in one of my other car forums use it, and we both agree its the best out there on the market currently.



#14 jonas

jonas

    Subaru Nut

  • Members
  • 1,057 posts
  • Oakridge

Posted 09 April 2014 - 11:48 AM

I'll give it a shot. I think I'm just overthinking this.



#15 somick

somick

    92 Loyale

  • Members
  • 271 posts
  • alaska

Posted 09 April 2014 - 12:01 PM

WD 40 works fine on the sides.  I have not tried it on bumper though.

 

Sam



#16 bratman18

bratman18

    ADIDASubarus

  • Members
  • 3,520 posts
  • Jefferson, Maine

Posted 09 April 2014 - 01:09 PM

As was said, a heat gun works great. Carefully go over the entire surface and I it'll turn shiny black as you move along.

Edited by bratman18, 09 April 2014 - 01:09 PM.


#17 skishop69

skishop69

    If it ain't broke, you're not trying.

  • Members
  • 952 posts
  • Puyallup

Posted 09 April 2014 - 01:24 PM

Thanks. like you guys, I've used various Restore products with little satisfaction. I'm thinking some carefully applied paint stripper to remove the grey. Most likely i'll be going the Plastidip route. I used it on the front bumper (Not stock) of my Brat and it seems to be holding up pretty well.

DO NOT use paint stripper! It'll eat that plastic up! :o The gray is plastic that the dye has leached out of. Some of the gray may be oxidation, but do not use anything like paint stripper to clean it. Actually never thought of plastidip and I've used it on other things. Properly applied, I could see that lasting a while.



#18 the sucker king

the sucker king

    great fisherman

  • Members
  • 1,938 posts
  • Lyons, Colorado

Posted 09 April 2014 - 01:28 PM

http://www.semproduc...oater-aerosols/



#19 pksjeep

pksjeep

    USMB Regular

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 56 posts
  • Spokane

Posted 13 April 2014 - 07:59 PM

Acetone is flammable, I would be careful around the
heat. You don't want any surprises!


#20 nipper

nipper

    Semi Elite Master of the

  • Members
  • 17,633 posts
  • Long Island NY

Posted 13 April 2014 - 10:23 PM

I cleaned them with soap, water, then alchol. I then used a rattle can of Bumper paint (The Justy) . Two years later they still look new.



#21 rain_man_rich

rain_man_rich

    USMB Regular

  • Members
  • 137 posts
  • Grants Pass

Posted 13 April 2014 - 10:53 PM

I've always wondered since I can scratch it to black underneath if some rubbing compound and an orbital polisher would do the trick.



#22 buckkiller

buckkiller

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 61 posts
  • yakima wa

Posted 13 April 2014 - 11:34 PM

Well 2 1/2 cans of plastidipp should be thick enough to last...just make sure you allow it to dry for about 30 min between each coat, then allow it to dry for about 2-3 days. Just did my front bumper
Attached File  IMG_20140413_211359_816.jpg   116.43K   37 downloadsAttached File  IMG_20140413_211331_928.jpg   79.87K   46 downloadsAttached File  IMG_20140413_211318_861.jpg   86.2K   45 downloadsAttached File  IMG_20140413_211307_094.jpg   86.67K   38 downloads

Buck

#23 skishop69

skishop69

    If it ain't broke, you're not trying.

  • Members
  • 952 posts
  • Puyallup

Posted 14 April 2014 - 09:37 AM

That looks awesome! Let us know about durability. Easier than my idea but I have jump seats and I want them to look original. :(

 

Yes, acetone is flammable, but I would hope anyone else trying my method would be smart enough turn the heat off during applications. lol It's going to dry almost as soon as you apply it and I've placed painted parts in a heat box as well as the oven to cure/dry after shooting.






0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users