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Old 06-10-2015, 07:18 PM   #1
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Removing Decals

What is the easiest and best way to remove decals?
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Old 06-11-2015, 05:38 AM   #2
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Hair dryer, putty knife, and mineral spirits to remove residue.
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Old 06-11-2015, 05:49 AM   #3
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I use a heat gun, not set too hot, and keep it moving, PLASTIC putty knives and Goof Off which removes the glue.
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Old 06-11-2015, 11:23 AM   #4
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Electric drill and a silicon wheel designed for removing decals. Google it
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Old 06-15-2015, 12:43 PM   #5
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Just removed all the decals from my 2000 SeaView. Took me about 10-15 hours over a few days. I found two techniques were needed for me.....

The decals that were really sun-beaten and checked, came off best with the 3M eraser wheel on a drill. I switched from a standard drill to an angle drill to make holding it easier. It was slow work, and worked best in narrow stripes.

The decals that were intact, and not checked, came off best with a heat gun and plastic scraper. It takes a while to get the hang of it. You need to warm up the adhesive, but not too warm, or the decal stretches when you pull on it rather than pulling off. The scraper had replaceable plastic "razor blades" that had to be changed regularly to get under the decal. I went through about 20 plastic blades on my rig.

I used a citrus-based adhesive remover to clean things up after either method. Once removed and cleaned up, you get a really good look at the "ghosts" of all the decals. I hit all the surfaces with a rubbing compound applied with a dual-action random orbital polisher (Harbor Freight). The rig really shines ..... but you can easily see the ghost still. I had four new SeaView decals that will be put on where the old ones were. I'm going to skip all the swoopy decals and waves and just live with the ghosts. Those should go on this week, then a good sealant on top of everthing to protect.

But if you REALLY want to know the easiest way to remove decals .... hire someone else to do it!
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Old 06-15-2015, 01:01 PM   #6
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I started the other day with a hair dryer and a plastic putty knife. Removed two of the really dried and cracked decals on the rear side. After cleaning it up with Goo Gone I found little hair line cracks under the decals. I'm wondering if this may be a costly problem if I have the decals painted on, anyone run into this??
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Old 06-23-2015, 09:22 AM   #7
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When I removed some of the really checked decals, sometimes there was a light spider-web pattern underneath that mimicked the checking that was in the decal. I hit the area with a rubbing compound on the orbital polisher and could get rid of it quickly.

If this is the situation you have, I wouldn't expect a problem painting on new graphics. You may want to do the rubbing compound first.
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Old 06-23-2015, 09:33 AM   #8
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Am about finished with removal of defective vinyl and re-paint on one side of my RV.
Vinyl so cracked it only cam off in dime size pieces and left all the adhesive on RV
Goo-gone only softened the adhesive but finally got it off.
Close exam showed the gel coat fiberglas side was covered with microscopic cracks. The Vinyl actually protected the gel coat.

After some research learned the I couldn't simply paint over the cracks as they were filled with dirt that would not wash or solvent off so had to use DA and do a strong "skuff" of entire side.
Then painted with 2k primer. Then DA with 400 grit in prep for
Single stage 2k White paint.
Since I was doing job outdoors it was very difficult to get good flow out of the white as it was impossible to see where I had painted or not. So a lot of orange peal to tend to.
DA w/ 600 then wet 800, wet 1000 wet 1500
Now polishing out.
BUT again weather getting in the way as it is hot, humid & raining almost every day.

Doing job myself will only cost lot of time and about $300 in materials which is much better than the $2500 quote I got which was high due to the vinyl removal issue.
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Old 06-24-2015, 06:12 AM   #9
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Thanks for all the suggestions/comments. Looks like I'm going to have the old ones removed and replaced. 2400 to 3500 sure sounds better then 8,000. And that's for the whole MH.
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