Author Topic: Successfully resurrecting old rubber  (Read 31645 times)

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Offline swan

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Successfully resurrecting old rubber
« on: January 11, 2008, 11:16:17 AM »
This subject has been broached before but I am happy to report success in revitalizing old rubber.

I have been using a mixture of 30% wintergreen oil (methyl salicylate) and 70% xylene to restore old rubber parts and it works beautifully.  This is the same ingredients and proportions for the commercial product Rubber Renue according to the MSDS sheets.

Wintergreen oil is analgesic and liniment for aching muscles and found in most drugstores, pharmacies, health food stores and co-ops.

I gently heated rock hard honda CB carb boots with a heat gun for 30 seconds and dropped them into mason jars with my solution for 12 hours at room temperature.  They come soft, pliable and looking good.  They have been out of solution for 48 hours now and are still soft and pliable. I soaked smaller rubber parts such as side panel grommets and there extremely soft and may need to soak for less time

Critics are going to argue 'why not buy new ones?' Well, I am restoring four CB's at the moment and if I can reuse perfectly good parts, why throw them and my money away?

Give it a try and post your results.
« Last Edit: January 11, 2008, 11:46:45 AM by swan »
1975 CB400 F cafes, 1974 CB750 K4 Cafe, 1966/1976 Triumph/ Norton Triton Cafe and 1962 DBD34 BSA Gold Star Clubman.

CB750 build http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=52551.0

Offline Steve F

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Re: Successfully resurrecting old rubber
« Reply #1 on: January 11, 2008, 06:34:54 PM »
This really sounds promissing, and I just may give it a go.  Just wondering about the Xylene though.  Isn't that stuff a little on the "harsh" side?  What happens if the rubber soaked in xylene were to come in contact with painted parts?  Do you think that it might damage the paint?  I'd like to try it on some really stiff carb boots.

Offline swan

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Re: Successfully resurrecting old rubber
« Reply #2 on: January 12, 2008, 07:47:00 AM »
Xylene is an organic solvent much like paint thinner, acetone, mineral spirits et al and is hazardous to your health if basic precautions are ignored. I do not see it being more nasty than gasoline.

Once the treated and rubber pieces are out of the mixture, the xylene evaporates quickly and the rubber is soft, pliable and dry. It will not damage painted surfaces.

MSDS xylene: http://sciencelab.com/msds.php?msdsId=9927646

I am having success with wintergreen oil and xylene and have treated several more old rock hard carb boots. They come out softer with no measurable distortion and fit back on their carbs perfectly and easily.

Has anyone tried this or "Rubber Renue" ?
1975 CB400 F cafes, 1974 CB750 K4 Cafe, 1966/1976 Triumph/ Norton Triton Cafe and 1962 DBD34 BSA Gold Star Clubman.

CB750 build http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=52551.0

Offline City Boy

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Re: Successfully resurrecting old rubber
« Reply #3 on: January 14, 2008, 06:16:32 AM »
Where might I source xylene?
'52 Kiekhaefer Mercury Rocket Hurricane KG4H
'70 750/Cobra 1000 Original Owner
'83 1100F

Offline swan

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Re: Successfully resurrecting old rubber
« Reply #4 on: January 14, 2008, 09:35:14 AM »
Xylene is available at most home supply, hardware, paint and marine stores.
« Last Edit: January 14, 2008, 10:37:08 AM by swan »
1975 CB400 F cafes, 1974 CB750 K4 Cafe, 1966/1976 Triumph/ Norton Triton Cafe and 1962 DBD34 BSA Gold Star Clubman.

CB750 build http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=52551.0

Offline andy750

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Re: Successfully resurrecting old rubber
« Reply #5 on: January 14, 2008, 12:32:53 PM »
Xylene is now a banned substance in most science labs  ;)....we are no longer allowed to use it...nasty carcinogen....but like most things banned in the lab you can still buy it at Home Depot or similar  ::)

Use gloves and face mask at the least....and dont get it on your skin.....

cheers
Andy
Current bikes
1. CB750K4: Long distance bike, 17 countries and counting...2001 - Trans-USA-Mexico (CB750K4), 2003 - European Tour (CB750K4), 2004 - SOHC Easy Rider Trip (CB750K4), 2008 - Adirondack Tour 2-up (CB750K4) , 2013 - Tail of the Dragon Tour
2. CB750/810cc K2  - road racer with JMR worked head 71 hp
3. VStrom DL1000 2003

Where did you go on your bike today? - http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=45183.2350

The SOHC 2015 Calendar - accepting photos!  - http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=139893.msg1584175#msg1584175

Offline Swoop

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Re: Successfully resurrecting old rubber
« Reply #6 on: January 16, 2008, 09:32:48 AM »
I'm not a chemist..but I do have access to toulene...I don't suppose that would work in place of xylene?
Any opinions?

Thanks
Steve

Offline swan

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Re: Successfully resurrecting old rubber
« Reply #7 on: January 16, 2008, 10:43:21 AM »
I am not a chemist either and have not used toluene and do not know its effects on rubber. Perhaps you could try it (or other organic solvents) with wintergreen oil to treat a sacrificial piece of junk old, hard rubber (?). Post your results for the rest of the class.

UPDATE: I have now treated all the rubber parts off of four Honda CB's and everything turned out soft and has remained soft for over a week since treatment.
1975 CB400 F cafes, 1974 CB750 K4 Cafe, 1966/1976 Triumph/ Norton Triton Cafe and 1962 DBD34 BSA Gold Star Clubman.

CB750 build http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=52551.0

Offline rbmgf7

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Re: Successfully resurrecting old rubber
« Reply #8 on: January 16, 2008, 01:18:33 PM »
how well does he rubber hold up to the engine heat?

Offline swan

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Re: Successfully resurrecting old rubber
« Reply #9 on: January 16, 2008, 07:57:23 PM »
Have not run any of the bikes yet with restored rubber, (20 degrees and snowing). I assume they will be no different than new rubber.
1975 CB400 F cafes, 1974 CB750 K4 Cafe, 1966/1976 Triumph/ Norton Triton Cafe and 1962 DBD34 BSA Gold Star Clubman.

CB750 build http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=52551.0

ev0lution7

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Re: Successfully resurrecting old rubber
« Reply #10 on: April 01, 2008, 04:57:31 PM »
xylol is a PAINT drying agent used in many body shops to aid in paint curing it is totally safe stuff also touline and xylol makes GREAT additives for your gas tank if ya want some extra Octane (xylol -117 oct touline-111 oct ) i have put that stuff in MANY of my cars and bikes really makes a difference...

On a side note... the reason his mixture works in the xylol soaks into the rubber taking the oil with it.... when you pull it out of the solution... it evaporates and leaves the oil behind that is what that stuff is designed to doo works the same for paint makes the paint thinner and easyer to apply and then it evaporates REALLY quick causing the paint to dry super fast...

Offline heffay

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Re: Successfully resurrecting old rubber
« Reply #11 on: April 01, 2008, 05:04:16 PM »
i'm a critic and i say...

why are we buying new parts?!   ;D

thanks for the report and the knowledge of others as well!
Mine: '73 cb350f, '75/77 cb400f project, '93  Banshee 350 quad,  '83 250r 3-wheeler,
Wife's: '88 ex500, '99 Polaris Sport 400 quad
Past Rides: '72 tc125, '94 cbr600f2, '76 rd400, '89 ex500, '93 KTM-125exc, '92 zx7r, '98 VFR800,  '86 srx6

Offline Swoop

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Re: Successfully resurrecting old rubber
« Reply #12 on: April 01, 2008, 05:12:35 PM »
Toulene and wintergreen does work......on my intake rubbers....just don't put yer gaters in fer too long..............biguns!

Offline schneider419

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Re: Successfully resurrecting old rubber
« Reply #13 on: April 08, 2008, 05:47:45 AM »
this is a great procedure, i did the intake boots on my 350f. put them in left them sit for about 24 hrs. came out great! that was about 1 month ago. then i figured, hey the overflow tubes are stiff too, lets try it on them. put in one tube. then i FOREGOT about it for three days!! i pulled it out and it had expanded three times it's normal size and felt like foam rubber. well i guess i will not be using that one again!!

Offline swan

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Re: Successfully resurrecting old rubber
« Reply #14 on: April 19, 2008, 05:28:53 PM »
Very happy to report my treated rubber intake boots work perfectly!

I just took my CB400f out for its first shake down run after a complete rebuild including treating my intake boots as posted above. They were treated a couple months ago and the boots have hardened slightly but are still flexible. The bike idles perfectly with no associated vacuum or air leaks and runs well throughout the range. Fun bike to ride!
1975 CB400 F cafes, 1974 CB750 K4 Cafe, 1966/1976 Triumph/ Norton Triton Cafe and 1962 DBD34 BSA Gold Star Clubman.

CB750 build http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=52551.0

Offline JLeather

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Re: Successfully resurrecting old rubber
« Reply #15 on: April 21, 2008, 06:45:31 AM »
Over on the HondaChopper board we use wintergreen oil too, but no Xylene.  This works the same with water.  Put ~2oz of wintergreen oil into a pan with enough water to cover a set or two of carb boots (maybe 1/2-3/4 gallon depending on pot size).  Put a screen in the bottom so they don't touch the pan, and heat them to near boiling (when those little bubbles start forming on the boots) for about 30 minutes.  When they dry they're like new again.  No carcinogens :)

Make sure ya do it outside unless you want your house smelling like a Wint-O-Green lifesaver for a month.  I use a turkey frier and a pot from goodwill. 

Offline City Boy

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Re: Successfully resurrecting old rubber
« Reply #16 on: April 21, 2008, 01:10:59 PM »
Hey JLeather.Do you think a deep fryer would work?.I think I can score them cheap at used store.I could use it outside.I think it would hold 4 intakes at a time.Your thoughts as I have never done it but want to try the rubber renew tricks.Thanks.  Rock On
'52 Kiekhaefer Mercury Rocket Hurricane KG4H
'70 750/Cobra 1000 Original Owner
'83 1100F

Offline lone*X

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Re: Successfully resurrecting old rubber
« Reply #17 on: April 21, 2008, 01:15:34 PM »
I have been looking to try this for some time now but have not been able to source the Wintergreen oil.  We used to use it when I was into sports but have not seen it around for some time.  Where is everyone finding it?
Lone*X  ( Don )

75 CB550K1 - One owner, me.  Close to being back on the road.
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Offline JLeather

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Re: Successfully resurrecting old rubber
« Reply #18 on: April 21, 2008, 02:11:12 PM »
A deep frier might work, but I was told not to boil the boots so you'd need to make sure it's adjustable down to a low-enough heat.  I think a crockpot might work too, not sure though.

I got my wintergreen oil online.  Something like $5 for a 4-oz bottle from an online pharmacy/healthfood site.

Offline City Boy

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Re: Successfully resurrecting old rubber
« Reply #19 on: April 21, 2008, 08:34:49 PM »
OK JLeather.I will look for a hot plate.I already have a pot now that I think of it.An aluminum pressure cooker by Presto.Good heads up on the Wintergreen source too.  Rock On
'52 Kiekhaefer Mercury Rocket Hurricane KG4H
'70 750/Cobra 1000 Original Owner
'83 1100F

Offline Dave-and-his-550

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Re: Successfully resurrecting old rubber
« Reply #20 on: April 24, 2008, 11:28:57 AM »
Glad I read this thread, I think I'm going to take my carbs off tomorrow. But first I want to get my tank back on and see if I can start up my 550F, if so, I'll take out the carbs, clean em, and try this method on the boots.

Offline JLeather

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Re: Successfully resurrecting old rubber
« Reply #21 on: April 24, 2008, 04:21:29 PM »
I'm getting ready to run 3 more sets, maybe this weekend.  Two hard sets of stockers, and one set of Smoothebore adapters.

Offline mystic_1

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Re: Successfully resurrecting old rubber
« Reply #22 on: April 24, 2008, 04:27:43 PM »
Jlo,

Was only able to lay my hands on two oz of wintergreen.  Want to try it out this weekend to at least test the process, so I thought I'd halve the water and use a smaller container, doing two at a time.  Or, do you think that 2oz is enough to do four boots at once?

mystic_1
"When you are wrestling for possession of a sword, the man with the handle always wins. "  - Neal Stephenson, Snow Crash

My build thread:  http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=68952.0


Offline Dave-and-his-550

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Re: Successfully resurrecting old rubber
« Reply #23 on: May 21, 2008, 03:19:13 PM »
Updating this thread, I found out today I have to spend $40 just to get four Float Bowl Gaskets...So, I'm thinking of trying this method on the gaskets instead. Hopefully it'll make em softer, and reshape them a little to get a good seal.

Is it this stuff:

http://www.anandaapothecary.com/aromatherapy-essential-oils/wintergreen-essential-oil.html  ??

I might just try a rubber renue product like this one:

http://www.montek.com/cart/catalog/Rubber-Renue-p-28080.html

Offline mystic_1

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Re: Successfully resurrecting old rubber
« Reply #24 on: May 21, 2008, 03:32:18 PM »
According to the MSDS for Rubber Renue, the primary ingredients are Methyl salicyate and Xylenes.  Methyl salicyate is also the main active ingredient in Wintergreen oil.  :)  We're just using heat rather than xylene to induce penetration, but I hear that a mixture of Xylene and Wintergreen works pretty well.  I didn't try this method as I can only seem to find xylene by the gallon.

I did some experimentation with boiling carb boots in wintergreen and water a short while back and got good results.  Couldn't hurt too much I suppose to try it on carb gaskets but I suspect that the thinner rubber may not tolerate the heat as well.

mystic_1
"When you are wrestling for possession of a sword, the man with the handle always wins. "  - Neal Stephenson, Snow Crash

My build thread:  http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=68952.0


 

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