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Old Varnish


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#1 SAMPLER

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Posted 07 August 2011 - 07:14 AM

What steps do you take to clean or remove old varnish during a restoration "rebuild"? I have seen many amazing before and after and I really how the after seems very light and fresh in color. Any tips or secrets to share?

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#2 John T.

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Posted 07 August 2011 - 05:56 PM

I have refinished a couple of bamboo rods. After I take all the guides, thread, etc. off then I start scraping. I use a single edge razor blade. I scrape on one direction with the top leading the sharp edge so I don't gouge the bamboo. It is better to take several light strokes than a lot of pressure. I have a lighted magnifier for wrapping and flytying. I hold the 'boo under the light- varnish shows up in contrast to the clean 'boo. Make sure you don't round off the edges of the hex. Good luck and work slooooowly.

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#3 canerodscom

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Posted 08 August 2011 - 07:39 AM

If you're going to do any restoration work at all, you would be well served to pick up a copy of Michael Sinclair's "Bamboo Rod Restoration Handbook." Unless you have a steady hand and some experience, scraping away varnish is tricky. Chemical strippers such as Citristrip and 3M Safest Stripper are less likely to damage the bamboo. All that is in Sinclair's book. Without reading the book, there is a very real chance of doing more harm than good.

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#4 John T.

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Posted 08 August 2011 - 08:10 AM

Harry, didn't have experience on the first one but worked very slooooowly. Fortunately, both rods had old varnish which came off easily. The trick is to let the top of the razor blade lead the edge. If the varnish is newer, I would opt for the chemical stuff. Sanding takes too long since bamboo rods will have multiple coats.

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Marriage is like a deck of cards- in the beginning, all you need is two hearts and a diamond.  In the end, you wish you had a club and a spade.


#5 roycestearns

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Posted 21 September 2011 - 11:13 AM

Citri-strip is very easy, quick and not obnoxious or unhealthy. I've found brushing it on with an old toothbrush works very well, and sometimes silk wraps can be saved in place.


#6 rmargiotta

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Posted 28 November 2011 - 06:08 AM

I like Citri-Strip as well.

--Rich


#7 Dave

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Posted 08 December 2011 - 11:08 AM

Is citri-strip better or safer than Zipstrip? Someone on this board last year said he used Zipstrip a lot. Name may be Zipguard instead of zipstrip. Can't quite remember.

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#8 AgMD

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Posted 08 December 2011 - 05:55 PM

Just for the record, Citri-strip is classified by OSHA as a hazardous material. One of it's components "--- may adversely effect the developing fetus --". The MSDS can be downloaded here:
http://www.citristrip.com/
Like any other hazardous chemical it can be used safely but it it is hardly harmless.

I have always used one of the strippers made by Savogran. They make 5, each with varying strengths. I have used two of the milder products "Strypeeze" and Kutzit on bamboo and they work quickly and, in my experience, do not harm the bamboo. I work fast and the stripper is never on the bamboo for long. I slop it on the first section, and set it aside. Slop it on the second section and the first section is ready to be stripped. I use a green Scotch scrubber, cut into small squares, and scrub off the gunk. By that time the second section is ready to be scrubbed. If needed a second application is made. When all is stripped, the sections are wiped down with a warm water rag ( to neutralize and remove the stripper) and left to dry. There are occasions when a few small patches of varnish will remain and these come right off with a bit of acetone. ( also hazardous)
I started using these products before the citrus based products became available and never found reason to change. Since I am still on my first cans and since I am a cheap old Yankee I still use them. For the record -- the Savogran products are also hazardous and need to be used with proper care.
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#9 Steve65

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Posted 27 March 2012 - 01:18 AM

QUOTE (AgMD @ Dec 8 2011, 06:55 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Just for the record, Citri-strip is classified by OSHA as a hazardous material. One of it's components "--- may adversely effect the developing fetus --". The MSDS can be downloaded here:
http://www.citristrip.com/
Like any other hazardous chemical it can be used safely but it it is hardly harmless.

I have always used one of the strippers made by Savogran. They make 5, each with varying strengths. I have used two of the milder products "Strypeeze" and Kutzit on bamboo and they work quickly and, in my experience, do not harm the bamboo. I work fast and the stripper is never on the bamboo for long. I slop it on the first section, and set it aside. Slop it on the second section and the first section is ready to be stripped. I use a green Scotch scrubber, cut into small squares, and scrub off the gunk. By that time the second section is ready to be scrubbed. If needed a second application is made. When all is stripped, the sections are wiped down with a warm water rag ( to neutralize and remove the stripper) and left to dry. There are occasions when a few small patches of varnish will remain and these come right off with a bit of acetone. ( also hazardous)
I started using these products before the citrus based products became available and never found reason to change. Since I am still on my first cans and since I am a cheap old Yankee I still use them. For the record -- the Savogran products are also hazardous and need to be used with proper care.
AgMD

All the strippers are in some way hazardous. But, the question is not so much are the ingredients hazardous, but are they likely to actually affect you. The methylene Chloride strippers are the most effective, but the MC is volatile--so you can easily breathe too much without lots of ventilation--and you can't use the typical organic vapor masks for MC. MC also passes through skin so you really have to work harder to avoid it. CitriStrip isn't nearly so volatile. Even if the material is equally hazardous if ingested you will be less likely to ingest it. Makes a big difference.

#10 kbproctor

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Posted 27 March 2012 - 10:16 AM

I do as John does and scrape. The old varnish pops off without much effort and it is pretty easy to tell if you are taking just varnish or cane as well. The varnish does not have a death grip bond to the cane. I find that the two separate quite easily. You are left with a super smooth blank that requires nothing more than a wipe down with a tack rag to have it ready for new finish. The mess sweeps up, doesn't seep into your skin, and you are finished far faster than with chemical strippers.

That's why we have post war Japanese rods, isn't it? To have something to practice on? hysterical.gif


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#11 dkyfishvintage

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Posted 21 April 2013 - 01:23 AM

basically I am also remove guides and threads as well.
But if you should have a rare rod some like Leonard etc,
I will recommend another method of restoration which I called
[original look restoration].

The Material I use paint remover,alcohol, swab、masking tape,needle.

I put some pics of my restoration work,so you will understand how it is not difficult.
If you interested it,see my website and blog.
But these are written in Japanese.
but I use many of pics on it,
so you will be able to understand detail method of vanish removal easily.


websiteVisit My Website

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#12 mdraft1

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Posted 21 April 2013 - 07:14 AM

I use a cabinet scraper. Works great! Personally, I wouldn't bother with a chemical stripper. You might delaminate the strips.

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#13 fishbum

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Posted 21 April 2013 - 08:43 AM

Forget the scrapers. They all chatter at some point in the varnish removal process. This leaves tiny chatter marks on the cane. Chemical strippers are a much better way to get the varnish off of the blank. If you are scraping and see you are removing cane then you have already damaged the rod.

I am getting ready to do a complete restoration on a Leonard fly rod. There is no way I want to damage the cane in any way on this rod. I will start the stripping process with denatured alcohol. If I need anything any stronger I will use some Citra Strip. The tough spots will get worked on with alcohol or stripper and Q-Tips.

Scrapers, sand paper, Scotch Brite pads, steel wool, etc. are all too aggressive to use for restoration work.

One would do well to take Harry's advice and get Sinclair's book for reference and to stay away from mechanical means of stripping varnish. Once the damage is done there is no going back to fix it.

#14 John T.

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Posted 21 April 2013 - 02:58 PM

QUOTE
They all chatter at some point in the varnish removal process

I understand what you are saying. That is why I let the top lead the sharp edge and work verrrrry slooooowly. I've only done two restorations but had success with my method on both rods. Like good wine, cheese and steaks, some things can't be rushed.
The thing about the forum- there are several ways to get the same result.

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Marriage is like a deck of cards- in the beginning, all you need is two hearts and a diamond.  In the end, you wish you had a club and a spade.




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