Cleaning Tolex

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Cleaning Tolex

Postby Damek Svec on Fri Oct 24, 2003 11:58 pm

Hey all,

I'm looking for some tips on cleaning tolex. I have a couple heads that could use some polishing up. Also once they're clean, is armor-all a good way to go? I'm thinking of using simple green and a brush...
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Re: Cleaning Tolex

Postby Chuffy on Sat Oct 25, 2003 6:54 am

Well this should get the purists reaching for their valium and oxygen masks!!

But..... I have made a couple of heads look good as new by first cleaning the Tolex with mild soap and water and a stiff brush (like a nail brush) and then............ and then...........
Boot Polish (black of course) :eek:

Yes it works a treat.
Work it into the grain with a brush then buff it up and it restores the Tolex to almost as-new condition. It all depends on how scuffed it is in the first place of course but it definitely makes it look better.
Try a small area underneath first to see if you like the result, you will also find that a few applications is better than trying to get it to look right in one go.
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Re: Cleaning Tolex

Postby Henry on Sat Oct 25, 2003 8:29 am

Don't use boot polish. Basketweave tolex is charcoal grey, not black. I can spot an amp a mile off that's been boot polished. It's what people do to their amps before putting them on Ebay as mint.
Your amp will also smell of the stuff for years.
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Re: Cleaning Tolex

Postby tWreCK on Sat Oct 25, 2003 10:31 am

I agree with Henry - don't use boot polish & most of all do not use any products that are silicone based such as Armour All. The mild soap water/nail brush method is good for cleaning tolex as long as you do not rub too hard. You can use a vinyl dye if you want to touch up the tolex - it looks the most natural and it doesn't smell either.
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Re: Cleaning Tolex

Postby zen.state on Sat Oct 25, 2003 12:37 pm

I HATE it when people use that black slippery stuff (is it BACK TO BLACK car wheel restorer? or what?)on tolex:
that makes the amp feel slippery. It NEVER goes away either.

UUUUAAARRRRGGGHH!
:mad:

So many second hand amps I've bought (including my recent MArshall) have this slippery stuff on them.

Will white spirit get it off and not damage the tolex??? :confused:
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Re: Cleaning Tolex

Postby 1953Vintage on Sat Oct 25, 2003 12:49 pm

I used Tuff Stuff Multi-Purpose Cleaner on my Tolex. It works great and was suggested to me by Gregg Hopkins at Vintage-Amp Restoration. Tuff Stuff doesn't leave that sheen that Armor All leaves, and with repeated applications, it can remove even the most ground-in grime (hmmm... sounds like a TV ad). A soft, lint-free cloth is best, but you can also use a soft brush for the crud that's down in the basket weave. You can then rinse it with clean water to remove any residue.

You can buy Tuff Stuff at auto parts stores, and probably most other places that sell cleaning supplies.

I definitely wouldn't use boot polish for the reasons stated here; and, it's too much like paint.

Best regards...
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Re: Cleaning Tolex

Postby Damek Svec on Sat Oct 25, 2003 3:02 pm

Well, last knight I really felt like cleaning up my cabinet and didn't want to wait for replys, so I went ahead and tried the simple green. I applied it with a sponge and used a stiff bristled brush to scrub it with, then wiped it off with a dry cloth. It worked great! Simple Green is probably the most volatile cleaner you can get without melting the tolex!

Hey tWreCK (or anyone else who knows), I didn't have time to do the armour all last night, which I guess is a good thing now that I have read your post. I still want to shine it up though. Can anyone suggest some sort of plastic re-vitalizer that is not silicone based?
Any other suggestions?

And what would have happened if I had used Armour All?

thanks everyone!
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Re: Cleaning Tolex

Postby elrak99 on Sat Oct 25, 2003 3:24 pm

Hey tWreCK (or anyone else who knows), I didn't have time to do the armour all last night, which I guess is a good thing now that I have read your post. I still want to shine it up though. Can anyone suggest some sort of plastic re-vitalizer that is not silicone based?
-------------------------------------------------
Just take a soft cloth, (like a cloth diaper, or t-shirt) and just buff the hell out of it dry, it won't shine like silicone , but it will leave a nice sheen :cool:
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Re: Cleaning Tolex

Postby Damek Svec on Sat Oct 25, 2003 6:25 pm

I forgot to ask about repairing tolex rips. What kind of glue is good for re-gluing small rips and along the edges of the tolex where it is peeling?

thanks
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Re: Cleaning Tolex

Postby Damek Svec on Sat Oct 25, 2003 6:27 pm

Oh, and there are a few areas where the wood is exposed. I'm thinking about using a black marker to color the wood so it is not as noticeable...

Any other ideas?

thanks again
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Re: Cleaning Tolex

Postby Damek Svec on Sat Oct 25, 2003 10:43 pm

I forgot to ask about repairing tolex rips. What kind of glue is good for re-gluing small rips and along the edges of the tolex where it is peeling?

thanks
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Re: Cleaning Tolex

Postby Damek Svec on Sat Oct 25, 2003 10:45 pm

Uh... I don't know how I did that, but i certainly didn't mean to. :D
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Re: Cleaning Tolex

Postby JR on Sat Oct 25, 2003 11:08 pm

I really don't have any objections at all about using the dreaded Armour All or something to liven up the tolex. You just need to wipe it down well and not leave excess product on there. It's important to make sure the tolex is really clean first. Any mild cleaner will work. My personal preference is plain old Spic N' Span. For glue, use any Cyanoacrylate (krazy) glue and some modeling pins to hold the torn tolex in it's place until the glue dries. For exposed wood, Testors Flat Black works quite well.
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Re: Cleaning Tolex

Postby worshipfire on Sun Oct 26, 2003 1:06 am

denatured alchohol works pretty good for gooey stuff, contact cement works for gluing tolex, heat up the end of your bic lighter and press the tolex down after gluing it. old wallpaperhanger speaking here.
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Re: Cleaning Tolex

Postby JTM100 on Wed Oct 29, 2003 9:27 pm

How would one go about removing boot polish from the tolex? I have an amp that just came over from the UK and it looks like it has the black polish on it.
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