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Cleaning Cement off a Porcelain Sign ?? #127164
Mon Dec 25 2006 10:46 PM
Mon Dec 25 2006 10:46 PM
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Oklahoma
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Philip Offline OP
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Does anyone have any ideas on cleaning large amounts of dried concrete off a porcelain sign? What are the odds of success without damaging the porcelain underneath?

I personally don't think it can be done, but I've been wrong before. Maybe someone out there has ran onto this and has some insight.

Thanks!!

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Re: Cleaning Cement off a Porcelain Sign ?? #127165
Tue Dec 26 2006 06:01 AM
Tue Dec 26 2006 06:01 AM
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PECONIC BAY, L.I., NY, USA
THE AMERICAN GARAGE Offline
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DEPENDS ON THE CONDITIONS OF THE SIGN. IS IT IN A FRAME OR NOT? IF NOT, I WOULD TRY TO FLEX THE SIGN AS MUCH AS I CAN TO SEE HOW MUCH WOULD FALL OFF ON IT'S OWN. ON OCASSION, I HAVE USED A WELL SHARPENED PUTTY KNIFE AND GETTING BEHIND AND UNDER THE CEMENT LAYING ON THE SIGN AND EITHER SCRAPING OR FLICKING PIECES OF THE CEMENT OFF. THERE MIGHT EVEN BE A LIQUID PRODUCT THAT WOULD BREAK DOWN AND LOOSEN CONCRETE....QUESTION IS, WHAT WOULD IT DO TO THE SURFACE OF THE SIGN? DO YOU HAVE A PICTURE OF THE SIGN IN QUESTION?
IF YOU NEED HELP POSTING IT, SEND IT TO ME IN AN EMAIL.

GOOD LUCK!!

~DOC


DOC @ THE AMERICAN GARAGE
Re: Cleaning Cement off a Porcelain Sign ?? #127166
Tue Dec 26 2006 07:39 AM
Tue Dec 26 2006 07:39 AM
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Moline, IL, USA
Mac Offline
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Not sure about its affect on porcelain, but I know that many car detailers struggle to get concrete off of vehicles' exterior paint surfaces. Many use Muratic Acid, but I know that you have to be very careful not to get it on your skin, in your eyes, or breath the stuff. I'm not sure if it would damage porcelain, but I imagine it would work as you can use it (carefully) on a car's painted surface.

Good luck.

Mac

Re: Cleaning Cement off a Porcelain Sign ?? #127167
Tue Dec 26 2006 07:53 AM
Tue Dec 26 2006 07:53 AM
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Cleveland,Ohio U.S.A.
JimT Offline
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Phil-
My father was a bricklayer and I've been a cement mason for over thirty years. Occasionally we have to clean splashes or smudges off various surfaces. The thing you have going in your favor is that porcelain is'nt very porous.But it is brittle so dont flex it to much or cracko!You'll probablly want to try to break down the cements bond to the sand particals and surface with some muriatic acid. You maybe can get a gallon of it at home cheapo or lowes. For sure at a builders supply(masonary). They will tell you to start off with like 10to1 mixture. I'm much to impatient for that.Mix it so when you wipe or brush it on the porcelain it doesnt bubble--Try on the back first probablly about 4or5 to 1.Make sure your not etching(taking the gloss off) if not wipe it on the cement. It should bubble a bit-dont breathe the fumes-try not to get on your skin definatly not in your eyes LOL. dont let it sit in puddles on the porcelain-maybe stand it up.repeat untill it corrodes or disolves and comes off rinse it good and then wipe lemon juice on it to neutralize the reaction on the exposed metal or it will rust like crazy. Good luck-I'd like to see before and after pictures. Jim

Re: Cleaning Cement off a Porcelain Sign ?? #127168
Tue Dec 26 2006 08:49 AM
Tue Dec 26 2006 08:49 AM
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Oklahoma
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Philip Offline OP
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Thanks guys! I don't actually own the sign yet. I've been debating whether or not to buy it. It's a large very rare sign.

IS EVERBODY SITTING DOWN??
It's a 6FT Frontier Keyhole sign (orange background version)

It makes me sick even to look at it with the concrete all over it!

If I do buy the sign it will be a while before I'll actually have it home. I'll post pics when and if I get it home.

Thanks again for the ideas!

[This message has been edited by Philip (edited 12-26-2006).]

[This message has been edited by Philip (edited 12-26-2006).]

Re: Cleaning Cement off a Porcelain Sign ?? #127169
Tue Dec 26 2006 09:00 AM
Tue Dec 26 2006 09:00 AM
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The good part is it will be cheaper because of the cement!!

Unless the guy is reading this forum..

90 % sure it will clean up rather quickly..

Re: Cleaning Cement off a Porcelain Sign ?? #127170
Tue Dec 26 2006 09:25 AM
Tue Dec 26 2006 09:25 AM
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Oklahoma
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Philip Offline OP
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I knew that's a chance I'd be taking with posting this here. I wanted other opinions before I purchased it. I knew everyone would want to know what kind of sign, etc. It's only fair to tell the people who are offering their advice and ideas. The way it is now is pretty much worthless to me. I'll just hope for the best.

Philip

Re: Cleaning Cement off a Porcelain Sign ?? #127171
Tue Dec 26 2006 09:50 AM
Tue Dec 26 2006 09:50 AM
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Cleveland,Ohio U.S.A.
JimT Offline
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Phil= is it a big wad,splashes, smudges or what? Smudges and smears will be a bit tougher but if you try to just keep the cement wet it'll dissolve. Like Dodo said I would be pretty optimistic-Jim

Re: Cleaning Cement off a Porcelain Sign ?? #127172
Tue Dec 26 2006 10:57 AM
Tue Dec 26 2006 10:57 AM
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Oneida IL USA
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gasoildude Offline
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Muratic acid & a plastic puddy knife. You dont want anything hard that will chip or scratch the porcelian. Good luck & keep us posted


Wanted Owens Motor Oil & Mobiloil Gargoyle.
Brad Ralston & my website is
www.petrobarn.com
Re: Cleaning Cement off a Porcelain Sign ?? #127173
Tue Dec 26 2006 05:41 PM
Tue Dec 26 2006 05:41 PM
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Santa Paula, Calif
Dick Bennett Offline
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Be very careful with the Muratic acid. I ruined about 20 Early TIDEWATER well head signs. Signs had hairline cracks & it ate the White Porcelain off, left the Black lettering alone.

You can also use Baking Soda & water to neutralize the acid.
db

Re: Cleaning Cement off a Porcelain Sign ?? #127174
Tue Dec 26 2006 05:48 PM
Tue Dec 26 2006 05:48 PM
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Saline, Mi USA
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blacktee Offline
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Somebody will have to correct me if I'm wrong. But the cause of crazing to porcelain (hairline cracks) is flexing, bending the porcelain. Have I been told wrong ???

Thanks Doug

Re: Cleaning Cement off a Porcelain Sign ?? #127175
Wed Dec 27 2006 06:32 AM
Wed Dec 27 2006 06:32 AM
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Raleigh, North Carolina
gulfiend! Offline
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...I have picked/scraped concrete off of a porcelain Shell sign...it was little spatters...I kept the sign wet and took my time, used a razor blade paint scraper...it took a while, and MANY razor blades, but it didn't hurt the sign...my advice, take your time...if the sign looks to be in good shape and is priced right, go ahead and get it...use acid as a last resort...my $.02...


Looking for better Gulf items: signs, globes, cans and paper - especially porcelain Gulf flanges, and Gulf A-38 & A-62 ad glass...
Re: Cleaning Cement off a Porcelain Sign ?? #127176
Wed Dec 27 2006 08:12 AM
Wed Dec 27 2006 08:12 AM
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cormy Offline
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I'm thinking submerge the sign in water for as long as it takes? Will the cement absorb the water and gradually dilute into nothing? Although- they do have cement under water as bridge bases and such Im sure, so maybe not? I have a painted Old Gold sign with cement splatters always wanted to remove it.

Re: Cleaning Cement off a Porcelain Sign ?? #127177
Wed Dec 27 2006 10:28 AM
Wed Dec 27 2006 10:28 AM
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dodogas Offline
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LMAO at the thought of trying to flex a 6 ft sign...maybe Jim Carey could do that!!


I would stay away from the flexing. You could try a harwood homemade scraper or chisel, wet it and start carefully knocking it off..

Re: Cleaning Cement off a Porcelain Sign ?? #127178
Wed Dec 27 2006 11:32 AM
Wed Dec 27 2006 11:32 AM
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Seattle WA
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I like Dodo's idea. I think above all, "Patience" will be key.

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