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-   -   Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows? (https://www.cruisersforum.com/forums/f17/cleaners-for-plastic-spray-hood-windows-202925.html)

Prairie Chicken 20-06-2018 07:01

Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows?
 
After four summers the plastic in our spray hoodís windows went opaque and sticky and had to be replaced. Now, with new plastic, we are wondering what you wise folk use to clean your plastic dodger windows?

The supplier/maker of the spray hood believed the household window cleaners with alcohol in them which we had been using was too strong, and suggested an industrial alcohol (but with no suggestion of strength). Clear water only and a soft cloth, or clear water with a little vinegar has also been suggested.

Or was the damage normal as a result of four summers in the Mediterranean sun?

Stu Jackson 20-06-2018 07:21

Re: Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows?
 
Plexus is what we use.


Have you considered covers? Having been here in BC for just about only two years, I am fascinated by the number of dodgers and complete cockpit enclosures I see without any covering over the glazing compared to what I've seen elsewhere (lived in California, traveled a lot). Mybe it's just a "local custom" with a short sailing season (May-Oct) but the sun is strong and with unused boats sitting in the sun, all the glazing uncovered seems odd to me. I know how much it costs. :)

ranger58sb 20-06-2018 09:53

Re: Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows?
 
Depends on what the "plastic" material is. "Clears" are not generic.

For example, Stratoglass recommends only Imar #301 and #302... but other makers may specify different cleaners.

Start with learning from your supplier/maker what your exact material is (Regalite? Makrolon? EZ2CY? whatever), then ask them (or perhaps their website will have that info already posted).

-Chris

steamgoat 20-06-2018 10:41

Re: Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows?
 
I believe a lot of the clear,flexible, materials are badly affected by aerosol sun tan lotion and also insect repellant,be warned!
I use IMAR, protective cleaner and also protective polish.Says itís safe for all clear vinyl.

mikeo16 20-06-2018 11:11

Re: Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows?
 
My last windows were StratoGlass and it was very specifically noted that only IMAR products could be used.
I just had the StratoGlass windows replaced after 11 years to Makrolon but they do not mention IMAR products in any of their cleaning instructions - anyone know if IMAR products are safe for Makrolon? Or what would people suggest to use on Makronlon?

ZULU40 21-06-2018 09:21

Re: Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows?
 
try toothpaste on a small are


people have been using it for plastic headlamp lenses on cars with great success

Lucky 21-06-2018 09:55

Re: Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows?
 
Vingar diluted in fresh water, hoseoff and dry with asoft bath towel. Works a treat in Scandinavia.
Happy lead free sailing from Lucky

dkroar 21-06-2018 09:56

Re: Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows?
 
As previously stated, and Practical Sailor recommends Imar products, it's all I ever use. It costs too much time, and money to replace our windows, (I've done it), to use make-do, or cheap products. IMHO

cptandy 21-06-2018 09:57

Re: Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows?
 
Having refurbished and repaired canvas on sailboats for the past 40years, I can tell you that there is only one product that can do both.
It is called Plexus, www,plexusplasticcleaner.com, and is used by all major aircraft manufacturer to keep the glass in the cockpits in perfect condition.

Blaine 21-06-2018 10:10

Re: Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows?
 
This was recommended to me 15 years ago and I still use it. I buy it at a local plastic fabricator that also sells Plexus, but this is the stuff they use on their own work https://www.amazon.com/Brillianize-P...lastic+cleaner

a64pilot 21-06-2018 10:41

Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows?
 
I believe itís actually ammonia that really does the damage.
However I learned long ago with aircraft you use only your clean hand with soap, and flush with plenty of clean water, any rag can hold grit and scratch plastic, your hand I guess is less likely to do so, and gentle soap wonít hurt anything much.
After itís clean is when you use your polishes.

thinwater 21-06-2018 11:11

Re: Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Prairie Chicken (Post 2655937)
After four summers the plastic in our spray hood’s windows went opaque and sticky and had to be replaced. Now, with new plastic, we are wondering what you wise folk use to clean your plastic dodger windows?

The supplier/maker of the spray hood believed the household window cleaners with alcohol in them which we had been using was too strong, and suggested an industrial alcohol (but with no suggestion of strength). Clear water only and a soft cloth, or clear water with a little vinegar has also been suggested.

Or was the damage normal as a result of four summers in the Mediterranean sun?


First, the supplier doesn't know. Don't ask him anymore questions. No, they should last a lot longer than that, even in the Med. Double, anyway.


I just finished five years of testing, including working with window restorers and vinyl vendors. Waxing and monitoring 45 test panels every month.


https://4.bp.blogspot.com/-qwkAXrcZn...nels%2BIII.jpg


https://sail-delmarva.blogspot.com/20...chapter-8.html

https://www.practical-sailor.com/iss...s_11395-1.html


There is no short answer, as the topic is complex. Subscribe; way cheaper than a set of windows.


  • Covers are best, but make sure they cannot chafe.
  • Protection by waxes and protectants is very limited and full of caveats. They are mostly useful after the damage is done.
  • Plexus is a good choice for removing plastisizer goop. Armanda 210 is arguably better. Imar products are very good, particularly the cream. All are safe in the long run. However, they will not remove yellowing inside the plastic or restore flexibility, and after vigorous cleaning--and you will need to use some elbow grease--the windows will tend to fog inside the plastic in rainy weather.
  • Ammonia is bad. Solvents vary--stay away unless you are ready to do a lot of testing. Vinegar removes calcium spots but not much else. Pledge and other furniture waxes can cause a terrible build-up over time.
Yes, you can do some restoration, but you need to be very careful. Keep the vinyl wet. Use a low speed buffer (drill) and do not overheat the plastic. Be very careful to keep the bonnet free of grit. Try a really good cleaning before you move on to compounds, since they do some permanent damage to the vinyl in the process of removing scratches. I've buffed windows, and they came out fine, but I'm still not a fan.

iliasgeorgiadis 21-06-2018 13:36

Re: Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows?
 
I sent you a long message suggesting that you use water only but it will not reach you because the following pop up did not let it reach you.

"Your submission could not be processed because a security token was invalid.

If this occurred unexpectedly, please inform the administrator and describe the action you performed before you received this error."

iliasgeorgiadis 21-06-2018 14:20

Re: Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows?
 
My dear friend,
My boat is in Athens Flisvos Marina (in a berth of the NOPF Yacht Club). When it rains the deck of my Moody is red colored from the African sand it brings along lately. The transparency (acrylic) of my spray-hood is like brand new after 10 years of use, however. How? I use water only. Never detergents.
What else can there be on a spray-hood? Salt, dust, sand usually. Birds are a menace. To exaggerate, a crew member may spit or vomit, drinks or food remnants may fall, etc. etc.
Plain water is good enough to clean it perfectly. Water only. When I wash my deck using detergent I pay attention not to contaminate the spray hood. When I have a helper I do not trust, I remove the spray hood and then we wash the deck.
I am not one of the wise folks. If I am, my wisdom is common sense and subsequent experience.
Avoid detergents on the new acrylic of your spray hood. From now on use plain water only and if you feel you have to rub it use the soft side of a dish cleaner or a soft foam or sponge. Listen to my advice. You will not regret it and you will not spend your money on spray hood acrylics.
Fair winds and seas,
Ilias

sailorbobdeb 21-06-2018 16:25

Re: Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows?
 
We use Dr Klears clear to sea foam for routine cleaning and use other products for deep scratches. Ours is 11 years old and people can't believe how perfect it looks. Main thing we have learned is constant cleaning and rinsing. Salt and dirt particles scratch and make it blurry..

thinwater 21-06-2018 17:14

Re: Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows?
 
One thing I learned for certain in my panel testing is that benign neglect (nothing or an occasional hose) is better than careless washing or polishing with the wrong product or with grit on the cloth. Be careful.


The flexible windows are plasticized clear PVC. Common coated brands include Strataglass and O'Sea, and non-coated brands include Regalite and Crystal Clear.

406Columbia 21-06-2018 18:25

Re: Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows?
 
Haven been using 303 for years on our aircraft Windows. Works wonders and protects from uv

thinwater 21-06-2018 19:13

Re: Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows?
 
My personal favorite for routine use is Starbrite View Guard. It is the fastest to polish and helps the water sheet off better than the others, improving rainy weather visibility.


Covers are the best overall method. The skylights on my boat are 20 years old and still pristine. They've probably been waxed 4-6 times. The front window is only 10, but again, it is covered with an awning.



https://2.bp.blogspot.com/--EYs9LlpN...%2Bupwards.jpg

er9 21-06-2018 20:43

Re: Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows?
 
Novus makes a great product called Novus #2 (dont buy the #1 or #3 they are useless). Its a great mild polish for bringing back the transparency of really dirty plexi, polycarb and soft vinyl windows. Also a great regular use cleaner to maintain the clarity.

I usually clean them first with Windex 'Crystal Rain" (no ammonia) or dish soap and water first with some blue Shop Towels paper towels (they dont scratch plastic). Wipe dry, apply the novus liberally but not heavily (you should be wiping it all off dry as you buff it in) and buff it into the plastic by hand with the blue paper towels or even better with a random orbital sander with soft felt or polyester cloth from the fabric store stuck on the velcro pad.

This combo is all you need to clean and buff any plastic... If it wont buff out the windows then the staining/decomposition is probably too deep to be removed easily and at this point its usually time to replace.

This combo is what we use daily in our plexi fabrication shops.

The only plastic we would never use it on though is plastic that has a thin coating applied like UV coatings, anti scratch, anti glare coatings etc...you find these coatings on sun glasses, motorcycle windshields, visors etc.... If your windows have any coating like these they are easily damaged by even mild abrasive cleaners so proceed with caution if your unsure.

you should have gotten a lot more than four seasons even with complete and absolute neglect. seems something attacked the plastic prematurely or it was a very low quality plastic.

SV THIRD DAY 21-06-2018 21:21

Re: Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows?
 
EisenShine -

There is your solution my friend

thinwater 21-06-2018 21:23

Re: Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by er9 (Post 2657152)
Novus makes a great product called Novus #2 (dont buy the #1 or #3 they are useless)....

The only plastic we would never use it on though is plastic that has a thin coating applied like UV coatings, anti scratch, anti glare coatings etc....


The serious flaw in this recommendation is that all of the better dodger window materials (Strataglass, O'Sea) have coatings. These are ruined by using Novus #2, which is a fine rubbing compound.



Use of a product like Novus #2 voids all warranties. You can easily confirm this with the manufacturers.

thinwater 21-06-2018 21:25

Re: Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by SV THIRD DAY (Post 2657156)
EisenShine -

There is your solution my friend


ONLY the sealer is used for preservation. The other products are used ONLY for restoration, after the windows are far, far gone. Yes, I have used it. Good stuff for windows that are in very bad shape.

er9 21-06-2018 21:44

Re: Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by thinwater (Post 2657158)
The serious flaw in this recommendation is that all of the better dodger window materials (Strataglass, O'Sea) have coatings. These are ruined by using Novus #2, which is a fine rubbing compound.



Use of a product like Novus #2 voids all warranties. You can easily confirm this with the manufacturers.

bummer...thats too bad. yes unfortunately it will not work and can ruin the coating. i have plain jane soft vinyl on my dodger and buff it a couple times a year.

De.windhoos 21-06-2018 23:48

Re: Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Prairie Chicken (Post 2655937)
After four summers the plastic in our spray hoodís windows went opaque and sticky and had to be replaced. Now, with new plastic, we are wondering what you wise folk use to clean your plastic dodger windows?

The supplier/maker of the spray hood believed the household window cleaners with alcohol in them which we had been using was too strong, and suggested an industrial alcohol (but with no suggestion of strength). Clear water only and a soft cloth, or clear water with a little vinegar has also been suggested.

Or was the damage normal as a result of four summers in the Mediterranean sun?

Itís the salt that scratches the windows. And the med is fairly salty. That said, 4 years is very short. Sticky could also be UV damage if a cheap plastic was used.
But yeah, never use household cleaning products, they can be very aggressive.

You can try Vuplex and see if that helps restore it a bit. Itís fairly cheap.

Prairie Chicken 22-06-2018 08:00

Re: Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows?
 
Thank you all. Lots of different approaches. Iíll read thru all your links, but Iím thinking if we can clean with only a soft clean cloth and water, as suggested, we canít go too far wrong.

zeehag 22-06-2018 08:03

Re: Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows?
 
i used vinegar and water as recommended by the creator of a dodger on my ericson. worked great and plastic lasted many years..when i sold boat the plastic was still clear. more than 10 years. pay what you want to pay, but vinegar and water work best.

SV THIRD DAY 22-06-2018 08:14

Re: Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows?
 
There really is more to this issue of "cleaning" the dodger windows than is getting talked about.

ALL of the different brands have a factory UV Coating which over time slowly wears away and once it does, you start getting the haze and whitish fog on the window. Once that starts to happen the only longer term fix is to re-apply new UV Protectant. That's why I like the Eisenshine. It's a three step process with the 3rd step being the application of a new UV Protectant that you apply once per year. Practical Sailor rated it well above some of the other products mentioned that say to re-apply every 3-5 WEEKS (who's really going to do that?).

In the Harsh La Paz Mexico Sun...without keeping up the UV Protectant Layer you can clean it all you want with all the proper this and that and it will still look like S#!$.

Just a little Correction to:
Quote:

Originally Posted by thinwater (Post 2657159)
ONLY the sealer is used for preservation. The other products are used ONLY for restoration, after the windows are far, far gone. Yes, I have used it. Good stuff for windows that are in very bad shape.

Step 1 is a Cleaner...good for every day use.
Step 2 is for the restoration that removes the oxidation (which is that whitish haze) along with small scratches from using the wrong stuff on the windows.
And then Step 3 is the UV Protectant

zboss 22-06-2018 13:22

Re: Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows?
 
My strata glass says to only use Imar products and thatís what we do. I wash the dodger windows with fresh water after every vigorous sail and before I use the imar protectant. I use the Imar protectant at least weekly, inside and out, to clean.

We are finding that scratches are far more of an issue than opaqueness or yellowing.

SV THIRD DAY 22-06-2018 13:53

Re: Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by zboss (Post 2657655)
We are finding that scratches are far more of an issue than opaqueness or yellowing.

That sounds normal....until the factory applied UV Protectant wears off...then the oxidation begins to happen without re-application of a new UV protectant.

abuzman 23-06-2018 10:22

Re: Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows?
 
Plexus is undoubtably the best cleaner, polish and conditioner I have ever used. It is also the most expensive. If there are cloudy spots the Plexus cannot clear up I have used Maguires PlastX, also used on car headlights, to clear them up, then reapply the Plexus. I used this method on dodger windows that I thought were almost ruined and it brought them back to very good and useable condition. One caution, like waxing a car, do not do use this treatment in direct sunlight or heat.

SV THIRD DAY 23-06-2018 10:25

Re: Cleaners for plastic spray hood windows?
 
The good thing about the Eisenshine product is that it comes with the compound to remove what Plexus can't, as the posted above mentioned. So it's an all in one kit and was also found to be better than Plexus in the Practical Sailor tests.


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