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How to remove yellowing from an old Atari case

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I've just taken the afternoon off work to do another ST (an STE this time), and the resuts have been breathtaking. Sadly I forgot to do "before" shots but basically the whole case had a slight green hue to it, and the disk drive end of the case in particular was badly yellowed, having evidently been nearest to a light source. The keyboard had the usual moderate staining. Also, the case had the typical severe yellowing along the lower front edge.

 

After lunch, I got home at 2:30 and immediately washed the case down in hot water. I decided not to "pop" the keys off the keyboard this time, but instead detach the PCB from the back, rinse the whole thing in water, then paint the keyboard's top casing - keys and all - in peroxide gel. I tried a different approach with the mixture this time (bearing in mind it was quite a breezy day), thinking that perhaps the blooming on the last ST I did was exacerbated by high concentrations of Oxy. So I didn't add any Oxy at all this time: I just painted on the 40vol peroxide gel straight out of the bottle.

 

It's now just past five o'clock and the result after a mere two hours of exposure is incredible. No blooming, and the case is already of an acceptable quality. The keyboard is pristine in appearance. I can only assume that the late afternoon sun was intense. Even the isolated areas of severe yellowing have just about vanished. Pictures to follow when I get the ST put back together...

Edited by flashjazzcat

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Glycerin can be found in most health food stores. That's where I found mine, along with the Xanthan gum.

 

 

In the states, Glycerin liquid has been banned from all pharmacies due to its role in creating homemade explosives.

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The transformation is more impressive than I'd originally though. Even in the absence of "before" photos, the SFTM serves as a useful comparison point (STFM top, STE below):

 

post-21964-1242235944_thumb.jpg

 

post-21964-1242235978_thumb.jpg

 

The STFM underwent about eight hours of treatment back in March. The yellow tint it has now is a good few shades lighter than the green hue of the STE when it arrived yesterday. The front edge of the STE was as bad as the front edge of the STFM.

 

This is the STFM now (after eight hours treatment, acetate, and Magic Eraser):

 

post-21964-1242236172_thumb.jpg

 

And the STE (after two hours):

 

post-21964-1242236276_thumb.jpg

 

The drive compartment was a nice shade of green. This is it now:

 

post-21964-1242236329_thumb.jpg

 

As for the badge, I tested it with a knife edge to ascertain it was metal, heated the case with a hairdryer to soften the glue, and peeled the badge off before commencing the treatment.

 

Needless to say I'm delighted with the result. :) After the traumas of the STFM (which now looks aged in comparison), this suggests to me that no two machines are ever going to react in the same way.

 

post-21964-1242236091_thumb.jpg

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As for the badge, I tested it with a knife edge to ascertain it was metal, heated the case with a hairdryer to soften the glue, and peeled the badge off before commencing the treatment.

 

I considered removing the metal "Atari 800XL" badge in a similar fashion. However, I found that using extra clingy plastic wrap did a fine job of protecting the 800XL badge during my treatment.

 

Removing the badge is certainly a good way to guarantee it won't be affected by the treatment, but I was worried about bending it during removal or reapplication. Nevertheless, It looks like you performed that same surgery perfectly.

 

Needless to say I'm delighted with the result. :) After the traumas of the STFM (which now looks aged in comparison), this suggests to me that no two machines are ever going to react in the same way.

 

To me, your STe looks precisely how I remember them looking when new.

 

Nice work!

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All those before and after pictures look Great!! I'm very glad this is working good for most of you. I've had my success, and failure with this process.

 

It was said earlier on, that each case seems to need a little different treatment, depending on the plastic, texture, amount of daylight, outside temp/humidity-type of UV lamp, ingredient combination, etc. There are so many combinations that, IMO, we're still in the hit, and miss aspect of this great experiment! Although, I do see a lot more successes than not!!

 

I have a few more questions:

"trip through the dishwasher" is referenced several times. Is this with heated water, full cycle, with detergent? Or just a quick rinse? Obviously without the heated drying cycle (do not want to melt those cases!!)

 

The drying of the gel/paste in the sun? From the postings here, I can't quite get a handle on if the gel/paste drys out, is it harmful, or no big deal? Is the gel/paste, if dried out, and you apply more, and mix old dry with the new wet, will the result be diluted? Will the little hard bits from the dried paste, block any UV from getting to the plastic?

 

How to evenly apply the gel/paste? I was doing a case today that has a smooth surface. I used a paint brush to apply the gel/paste. I tried to apply liberally. It was in the sun for 30 minutes. (Hot, dry, direct sun here in Stockton, ca, usa, now in May) The gel/paste dried out. I rinsed the case and saw my brush strokes between the yellowing and the good gray.

 

ST keyboards: Did mine today also. I kept it intact, except for the PCB, and the small rubber caps. It came out great!! Just be sure to paint the gel/paste in between the keys, all 4 side, and rotate as the sun moves.

 

I think the less is more for adding the activating OXY may be right. (this was mentioned way back in this post) I was thinking that adding more OXY would activate more of the H2O2. I'm not sure that was right. Adding more OXY to the 'Developer' I use, just seems to add more 'grit' the gel/paste. Even when I used a blender to mix ( this also foams up the mix a lot) Should I just use a spoon to mix, the now will be, a pinch or 2 of OXY in? Is the grit from the OXY tub laundry detergent supposed to be therein the gel/paste, as it has each time I've used this process, or am I doing something wrong?

 

A small note about the 'blooming' effect. I had this happen on the brown part of an 800xl case, my bad!! But also, had this happen on a gray face of an ST FDD. I did that yesterday, and saw the 'blooming' after about 1 hour. I rinsed it off, and let it dry, & cool over night. I re-applied today for about 1/2 hour and the effect is almost gone. The 'blooming' seems to occur where there is more initial foaming that then drys to a crust. The "blooming' appears along, and under the outline of the crust. So you can see my questions about applying, and the drying of the gel/paste.

 

Thoughts about the wiki:

Perhaps a general pictorial tutorial might be helpful. With pictures and captions, demonstrating the complete process, with a time line, step by small step. Pick cases that have had trouble (800, ST) Show the process with the original formula with UV lamp. The 2nd with hair salon 'developer' cream and sun light. Then perhaps, mix and match with combinations, formulas, and light sources? Maybe I'm out of line with that suggestion. I know I do not have the time for that. But with 100K hits on the site someone might . . . . . . . .

ayway......

 

Thoughts, ideas, suggestions....

KLund1

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I have a few more questions:

"trip through the dishwasher" is referenced several times. Is this with heated water, full cycle, with detergent? Or just a quick rinse? Obviously without the heated drying cycle (do not want to melt those cases!!)

 

I have been using a dishwasher to clean old computers for years now. When I put them through the dishwasher, I do this:

1) Remove all key caps from the keyboard and put them in a washable laundry bag designed for "delicates"

2) Disassemble the computer to its bare plastic parts (badges are left attached, sometimes covered with sticky plastic wrap)

3) Run a normal dishwasher cycle with detergent but without heated dry.

4) Once complete, let the parts dry for at least 6-8 hours (preferably 24 hours)

 

That's about it.

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Here are some pics I just took of a 1200XL that I'm de-yellowing. Yorgle may recognize this one!!! :rolling:

You can easily see the difference between the visible top and the plastic that was covered by the brown top.

 

The bottom of the case looks good so I'm only doing the top for now. I'm using the method that Flashjazzcat used on the 1040STe. Picked up the 40vol (12%) 'creme' developer so I didn't have to add the thickening ingredients. The light is a 10.0 UVB reptile bulb from PetSmart in a $7.50 wall light holder from Walmart. I will post the after pictures later.

 

post-6701-1243569357_thumb.jpg post-6701-1243569331_thumb.jpg post-6701-1243569377_thumb.jpg

 

post-6701-1243569493_thumb.jpg post-6701-1243569518_thumb.jpg

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Well, I'm going to give this a try tonight or tomorrow.

 

WHAT KIND OF BULB IS UV?? I picked up a couple of G.E. brand "black light" bulbs - 60watt at Walmart. They were $6.50 for the 2 of them!!!! They also had a "Reptile Rays" brand "night time heat lamp" for iguana cages, etc. It was $6.50 for the ONE and when I took them out of the box, it looked EXACTLY the same; neither had writing on it, other than "made in China" (of course) stamped tiny. ARE THESE UV OR DO I NEED TO GO TO SOME SPECIALTY STORE???

 

I called around town today, looking for xanthan gum, arrowroot, etc. Stupid rednecks around here at health food stores didn't have any more idea than a goose what I was asking for; I may as well have been discussing nuclear physics in Mandarin Chinese. (I'm not from here, as you may gather)

 

So I went to "Sally Beauty" franchise store. Can you imagine? The Retr0brite instructions mention the "Sally Beauty" store in the UK, and there is one here in the middle of redneckville. I couldn't believe it. So I found the creme peroxide stuff. They don't refer to it as "hydrogen peroxide" in the beauty business, but they call it "developer." I picked up a 1quart bottle of "Salon Care" brand 50 volume creme developer for $6. So I guess I won't need the xanthan gum that was so confusing to ask for.

 

A 24-oz bottle of "Oxi Clean" powder was $3.86, also at Walmart. After combing the town, looking for glycerin NOT finding it at about 6 pharmacies, I found it on the shelf of Walmart (!!!) for $2.98 for a 6-oz bottle; it is thick stuff - I have never used it before.

 

Ready to give this a go. The 800XL in question isn't bad, but has a really nasty yellowing on the very front edge, on the bottom half - under the brown. The rest looks pretty good, but I think I am going to just "do the whole thing" (the white) and it'll probably brighten up to a more brilliant white.

 

Do you guys worry about the metal 800XL badge - does the paint come off? Should I apply some type of masking tape?

 

As far as the original (paper) name/rank/serial number tag on the bottom, I guess I will cut some plastic wrap to fit and then seal it down around the edges with tape? Is that how you guys do it? I guess I will scan it at 600dpi in case it is destroyed, and then print it on photo stock, put some clear tape over the printout, then cut and glue to the bottom of the case, if I destroy it? How do you guys handle this?

 

THANKS FOR ANY HELP!!!!

 

I am going to do a Vic-20 next - those white things really like to tarnish!!

Edited by wood_jl

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WHAT KIND OF BULB IS UV?? I picked up a couple of G.E. brand "black light" bulbs - 60watt at Walmart. They were $6.50 for the 2 of them!!!! They also had a "Reptile Rays" brand "night time heat lamp" for iguana cages, etc. It was $6.50 for the ONE and when I took them out of the box, it looked EXACTLY the same; neither had writing on it, other than "made in China" (of course) stamped tiny. ARE THESE UV OR DO I NEED TO GO TO SOME SPECIALTY STORE???

 

Well, to answer my own question..... After I posted that message, I saw the previous post of the fellow working on his 1200XL. He has the correct idea of how to do it with UV light. After seeing his, I "wikipedia'd" black light and see that the incandescent black bulb is so extremely inefficient at radiating UV that it's not even worth it. I shall take it back to WALLY WORLD and obtain a fixture simiar to his, then look for a petsmart!!

 

I didn't catch his name (prior to beginning this reply) but I have a message for him: "Way to go!! Thanks for showing me the way!!"

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Hey wood, if you have sunlight where you live use that, works great on the XL line, no need to worry about the metal badges, they are pretty tough.

Problems seem to arise with using sunlight if you are doing an 800 line or XE/ST line, you have to be careful to not over do it or you may see some "blooming"

 

Post your before s and afters :D

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This is what you should be looking for at PetSmart or Petco. It will be in the reptile supply area. The one I got is a 10.0 UV rating (like shown in the pic). It is a 24" slim florescent tube. DO NOT buy a light holder at the pet store!!! They want something like $25-$35.00 for a holder. Go to WalMart. They have standard 24" florescent lights complete for under $10. Just remove the tube that comes with it and replace with the UV bulb.

 

post-6701-1243812373_thumb.jpg

 

 

 

As far as the 1200XL goes, looks like I'm doing the bottom of the case!!! After doing the top, They aren't even close to matching now!! Guess it was more yellowed than I thought. I'll put some top/bottom comparisons up later.

Edited by Guitarman

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1200XL top/bottom comparison shot

 

post-6701-1243815455_thumb.jpg

 

As you can see, big difference. Starting bottom de-yellowing now.

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1200XL top/bottom comparison shot

 

post-6701-1243815455_thumb.jpg

 

As you can see, big difference. Starting bottom de-yellowing now.

That is one of the problems, you have something that you think looks pretty much as new, de yellow a POS, put it next to the piece you thought looked good and presto, another piece to treat :twisted:

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Slightly different subject for all those in the know here.. Out of interest, does anyone know if any of those plastic protect products which claim to prevent future discolouration a waste of time?

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Success!!!

 

I de-yellowed the bottom (actually the whole thing) of my affected 800XL. It looked like someone smeared mustard JUST ON THE FRONT EDGE of the bottom half. Turns out, the rest - which looked reasonably good - was overall yellowed, just not too bad.

 

Now it looks like snow-white. This was my "worst" XL and when I compared it to my "best" XL, it's brighter! So now I'm going to have to do all 3 of my XLs. It's amazing to see a snow-white XL again; you don't remember how good they used to look, until you do it.

 

I will put pics up later; no time right now. I will also put pics of the products I used. The lightbulb Guitarman used wasn't available at my local Petsmart. It is online, and it's (hold on to your hats - $50 U.S. !!!!!!) just for the bulb!!!

 

I used an 18" aquarium "actinex" blue flourescent bulb that was $17 (and the closest I could come) and IT WORKED!! I will put pics of it all tonight if I can.

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1200XL top/bottom comparison shot

 

post-6701-1243815455_thumb.jpg

 

As you can see, big difference. Starting bottom de-yellowing now.

That is one of the problems, you have something that you think looks pretty much as new, de yellow a POS, put it next to the piece you thought looked good and presto, another piece to treat :twisted:

 

Ooooo... very nice. :cool:

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Glycerin can be found in most health food stores. That's where I found mine, along with the Xanthan gum.

 

 

In the states, Glycerin liquid has been banned from all pharmacies due to its role in creating homemade explosives.

 

 

I got my glycerin at Walmart, just outside the pharmacy, in the first-aid section, near to neosporin (etc.)

That was the last place I looked; I went to several pharmacies and they did not have it, but they offered to order it for about $6.00 for 4oz bottle. At Walmart, it was $2.98 for 6oz bottle. I didn't even think Walmart would have it, since several other pharmacies did not. Surprise! I do not believe there are any restrictions on glycerin in the U.S. It may be difficult to find because it does not sell well, but there are no restrictions.

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I will post some results here soon. I have done 3 800XLs and they all came out beautifully. However, I took picture after picture - and my camera seems to lack the contrast, white balance, or WHATEVER to demonstrate the difference. Granted, these were - for the most part - in reasonably good shape, just a little dull. Save for ONE 800XL that had a mustard streak across the very front edge of the bottom half. But my camera failed to pick up even this difference very well. I put it on "burst" and took many, many frames. I played with the light source, I played with the white balance, the contrast, and the exposure on the camera. There are tons of pics, and I will have to load them into my PC and play around to isolate the best ones, although even they don't seem to show the level of detail necessary to illustrate the drastic improvement in these machines.

 

The 4th (and final, for now) computer I am working on is my Vic-20. It looked pretty dingy. The yellowing was fairly evenly-distributed, however. I took a "before" shot that makes it look pretty bad. I have done the top half, and it is incredible! This is the most drastic improvement I have seen yet, as it was uglier than the 800XLs. I will likely have to post pics of it here. I am now "doing" the bottom half.

 

I just can't help but be impressed with this process. I am not very precise with the mixing of the ingredients, either. I don't mix (nor do I see the need to) large quantities of the stuff, as the recipe calls for. I take a short drinking glass, and fill it about 1/3 to 1/2 full. With my small light, I can only do 1/2 at a time, and 1/2 to 3/4 cup of "stuff" is all I need.

 

While I refrain from calling this process "foolproof," I'd say - at least when doing white plastic - that is is "not a critical process." I have yet to do a "colored" computer, though. My Atari 400 is not yellowed in the slightest, as I think it has spent most of its life in the dark (in the box). One of my 130XEs is "new" in the box, and the other must have been babied and covered, because it's not even remotely yellowed. When I do try a colored computer, I will be very careful and to stop/wash off/check/reapply if necessary.

 

I really feel like I need an old beige 800 in my stable, so maybe I'll have opportunity to try it. I have a couple Commodore 64s (beige, of course) but they are both not even remotely yellowed (or darkened, as I think the beige computers get). But boy, it really brightened the 800XLs, and it made the top half of the Vic-20 go from garbage to greatness. Whoever figured this process out deserves a real accolade.

 

This would have made an excellent LAB back in Organic Chemistry. I can see the teacher now: "OK, EVERYBODY BRING IN YOUR SUPER NINTENDO FOR TOMORROW'S LAB!"

 

Man, thanks to you guys for your examples and encouragement on this. I'd have never tried this if you guys hadn't been posting. When I get my ducks in a row, I will post more about my experience.

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....I just reminded myself of what I was wanting to ask.....

 

 

 

Speaking of Super Nintendos:

 

These have some of the worst/ugliest yellowing ever. They usually only yellow in part - the top half, or the bottom, or the cartridge door, etc. I don't think I've ever seen one that yellowed uniformly. One supposes the case halves and other parts come from different batches of plastic.

 

I wish I had saved the bottom half of mine. The top half and cartridge door on mine never yellowed at all, but the bottom half went to hell. I Ebay'd a replacement "non-yellowed" bottom half, then I tossed the old one.

 

Obviously, this has to do with age and not just exposure to UV light, or there is a combination of those factors. My Super Nintendo bottom half was just as nasty-looking on the (dark) inside as it was out. Likewise, the inside of my Vic-20 is kind of yellowed, but not as much as the outside.

 

HAS ANYBODY TRIED THIS PROCESS ON A SUPER NINTENDO? I'd like to see how it turned out, as these are some-kind-of-ugly when they are yellowed.

 

Edit: While on-topic, if anybody tries to replace the bottom half of their Super Nintendo (full-size original, of course) beware there are 2 different versions of the bottom! There is a way to tell which you need, but I can't remember although it may be in an old email somewhere. The difference is in the later models (still original size here, not the mini) they shrunk the sound chip (or whatever you want to call the audio hardware) and they revised the inside of the case accordingly. Find out before you buy!

Edited by wood_jl

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Addictive isn't it :twisted:

I think a super ninty was posted a few pages back, or maybe on the wiki, I know I have seen it somewhere

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Yes, there's definitely some pictures of a cleaned up Super Nintendo in The Gallery on the Wiki.

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Well, finally thought I'd share some of my anti-yellowing experience and results with the folks! I am - as previously stated - quite impressed!

 

Starting materials:

 

Everything was purchased in Jackson, TN.

post-16281-1244337344_thumb.jpg

The peroxide is in the form of "creme developer," bought at "Sally Beauty" franchise. It is "50 vol" which means it is the "strongest" they had. For the 32-oz bottle, it was $5.49. It is somewhat thick, and it eliminated the need to locate Xanthan gum, which is fortunate because every idiot phone jockey I called at every health food store around here didn't know what I was asking for (or Arrowroot) and furthermore, they figured I didn't know what I was talking about when I asked. I guess pork rinds trump health food stores around here.

 

The glycerin was purchased at Walmart, $2.98 for 6-oz bottle. Located in the first aid shelf near the pharmacy, close to band-aids, etc.

 

The Oxi Clean was purchased at Walmart, $3.86 for 1.5 pounds. Seeing as how you use it in teaspoon quantities, this will likely de-yellow 100 computers.

 

The 18-inch fluorescent lamp was purchased at Walmart, $6.97, and included a "normal" fluorescent tube which was replaced with UV one. I saved the packaging for the replacement UV tube, and will store the UV tube back in it and replace "normal" one and go ahead and use the light until next de-yellowing. It may say "Lights of America" on it, but can you guess which country it is really made in? If you're thinking it's a Tiananmen Square special, you are correct, sir!

 

The UV tube was purchased at Petsmart for $17.99. I thought this was expensive at the time. I was looking for the one that Guitarman posted the picture of, the UVB reptile tube. They did not have it at this Petsmart. The reptile bulbs were all reflective incandescent (cheap). I checked the Petsmart website and it was $50 (!!!!!) for the 18-inch (and 24-inch, same price) of the Reptile UVB tube. And I thought the one I got was expensive. They had about 5 varieties of fluroescent aquarium tubes on hand, all with different advertised spectrums. The one I picked was (obviously) the "most" UV I could get, and it had the following graphic representative of its spectrum, which convinced me to try it (and it did work).

post-16281-1244339343_thumb.jpg

 

I was kind of thinking a UV tube should look kind of like a black light, but what do I know? Walmart did have black lights - cheap fluorescent fixtures with the black light tube already installed, and this would have been much cheaper than the $7 + $18 route I took, but I am not convinced (don't really know) that black lights provide the "proper" UV. On the other hand, the Petsmart bulb obviously claims to put out UV with the above graphic, so I chose it. Interestingly, while the black light tubes indeed appear purple (when turned off, I mean), the tube I chose appeared "normal" fluorescent color (whitish) when turned off, but appears blue when turned on.

post-16281-1244339760_thumb.jpg

 

I moved either the light or rotated the computer every 2-3 hours. I bent the aluminum foil up all around the computer to try to make a reflector to increase exposure. As I only de-yellowed white computers, I did not worry about overdoing it, and I was not consistant with my treatment times. Suffice it to say that I left that stuff for hours, probably averaged around 8 hours each time. Sometimes I got busy with other things and forgot to turn the computer, other times I remembered. It all seemed to work out. Sometimes I left it for 12 hours because I wasn't home. Obviously, no 15-watt tube is going to compete with the sun, but it was effective, just took a while. When I try a beige or gray computer, I will excercise extreme vigilance. Maybe the "weak" light will work in my favor as a safety measure (from overdoing it).

 

My camera has a hard time with picking up the subtle contrasts, or the white balance leaves something to be desired, or both, or ??? But here's the bottom half put back with the untreated top. Note this this was one of my "best" 800XLs and I didn't really notice it as "yellowed" because it was not bad, and it was just kind of evenly dulled. Evidently, I forgot how clean a new 800XL was 26 years ago. However, this picture hardly captures the difference, which was more noticable to your eyes. One 800XL had a bad mustard streak on the front edge, bottom half. I did this surface twice, as I could barely perceive a tiny bit of residual yellowing. After 2nd try, it's snow white again. I may not have had the light giving good exposure the first time; I did the second time. Not including before/after pics of this part, because my camera sucks and you can hardly see anything wrong in the "before" shot.

post-16281-1244340800_thumb.jpg

 

The most drastic improvement I saw was on my Vic 20. When I Ebay'd this, it came with the original box. Many times that means it spent much of its life in the box. Not this time; it was pretty yellowed and looked really old. Somehow, the small Ebay pic made it look better than it did. However, it was complete, worked well, and was $15; it just looked like an old-timer. Not anymore! [Edit: I did "hit it hard" with the Vic-20, and I did it twice - in its entirety. It looked almost as good the first time (I almost considered it done), but once again, may not have rotated it enough, etc, as some edges didn't get completely clean. The second time it was MINT.]

post-16281-1244342100_thumb.jpg

post-16281-1244341550_thumb.jpg

Talk about fresh!!! All the botox injections and laser surgery in the world couldn't turn back the years on a person like this stuff did for the Vic! The previous owner would surely not recognize it now! Just what I wanted - SNOW WHITE!!!

 

All together, I did 3 800XLs and 1 Vic-20. I had to do them 1/2 (top/bottom) at the time, so this was over a period of several days. I did some parts twice, just because there was no danger of overdoing it with white, and I wasn't sure if I should have moved the light more, etc.

 

I also used the product liberally, so I have used up most of the 32-oz bottle. For $6, it was a bargain, though. The UV light was obviously the most expensive thing here.

 

I was not scientific in my mixing, either. I'd pour about 4-6 oz of "developer" in a short drinking glass, put "a pinch or two"of Oxy in, then "a little squirt" of glycerin, and mix it up really well with a spoon handle. When I try a colored computer, I will likely try and maintain the ratio of the recipe, and of course watch things more closely!

Edited by wood_jl

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That Vic-20 looks astonishing. :) I think it's a case of finding a system that works for you and sticking with it. You seem to have found a perfect set-up, and you've absolutely convinced me to buy a UV lamp if I ever try this again. No point in relying on the weather here in the UK, and in any case keeping the parts indoors should avoid the drying out and blooming problems we've sometimes seen. I know what you mean about the original owners not recognizing these machines if they saw them again: I've often thought that about my STs. Retr0Brite is such a brilliant discovery and bringing an old computer back to factory-fresh condition is such a rewarding achievement. Thanks for the pics!

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Note that I "cheaped out" when I bought the light and got 18-inch. For a few dollars more, I could have bought 24-inch. I'm not sure the Petsmart had the 24-inch UV bulb, though. You'd have to check for the biggest UV bulb you could find FIRST, then go pick up a cheap fixture, then go back and get the bulb.

 

The 18" bulb is *barely* big enough for these small computers. For something wider like ST or Amiga, this is too small, for sure. Plus, longer bulb just means more UV even for a small computer! But at least the one I have still works!!

 

The one I used was termed an "actinic blue" marine bulb

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@ wood_jl

 

I am glad that you were able to get ingredients in Redneckville, TX that worked for you. I am still knocked out by people's reactions when they try this. It usually starts Bill-&-Ted style with a "No way!" then ends up in a "Whoh!"

 

That's exactly the reaction I had when I tried the proof of concept experiments that are shown in the Wiki. We've had a lot of trolling posts on forums all over the place saying that the photos were faked, but the people that worked on this couldn't fake this on such a scale as we have now.

 

Old Lego bricks, vintage telephones and radios, Transformer toys, plastic bathrooms and trim inside Airstream trailers, the uses that people have found for Retr0bright grows daily and the Wiki has had over 134,000 hits to date. I'm sure that hits figure is low as the counter has broken loads of times with the overload!

 

I am shocked and humbled at how a bit of kitchen sink chemistry has captured people's imaginations and enabled them to restore treasured items. This was originally a concept experiment to prove that the mechanism of yellowing was linked to brominated flame retardents and that a bit of customised chemistry could fix it; we never expected it to go as ballistic as it has.

 

Thanks to all on here who are still working on this. If you would like your photos added to the Wiki, please send them to me at [email protected]

 

:D

Edited by Merlin

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