Step 1: CLEANING
The prep cleaning of vinyl is a vital & essential part of the whole repair process. This not only improves the look of the finished repair but also ensures maximum adhesion.
First, clean thoroughly with #TC triclean prep cleaner to remove all dirt, wax and silicone contamination. Use a nylon brush or a soft scotch rite pad to reach the stitching, creases and base of the texture. Wipe excess with a paper towel. Repeat for optimum results.
Step 2: SUB-PATCH
If the hole penetrates the material all the way through to the foam, use (HAP) Sub-patch Material. (For very thin vinyl, use a piece of (FM) fine mesh, applying masking tape to one side so the sub-adhesive does not adhere to the foam). Cut the sub-patch slightly greater than the diameter or length of the hole, in order to adhere it to the edges of the repair area. Insert it between the foam and the vinyl with tweezers and/or a palette knife. You may need to use a little foam below the sub-patch to level out the repair area. Adhere the sub-patch with (HH-66) Sub-patch Adhesive. Allow adhesive to air dry or use low heat to speed drying. Check the adhesion of the sub-patch before continuing the repair.
Step 3: VINYL REPAIR
a) Heat cure repair using heat gun
b) Heat cure repair using a mini iron
c) Air dry using grey crack fill
d) Air dry using cyanoacrylates (super glue)
Always take into account the type of vinyl to be repaired. Some vinyls are very thin, requiring constant temperature control of the surface. Therefore, in the case of small holes or tears, an air-dry repair process may be the best choice.
IMPORTANT: Be sure to adjust the heat gun temperature of the repair process depending how much heat the vinyl can take. Begin with a low temperature and in increase as is necessary to avoid unintentional damage.
a) Heat cure repair using Heat Gun (adjustable heat settings) Repairing Scratches (Heat Cure Repair)
Use a heat gun to heat the scratches, then press with grain pad. If scratches are deeper, fill the damaged area with (VRC-1) Vinyl Repair Compound, exceeding the damaged area by about a 1/2" and making the edges as smooth as possible. Use medium to high heat to cure compound, then press with grain pad.
Repairing Holes and Cuts (Heat Cure Repair)
For any vinyl damage that shows the foam, use sub-patch material (HAP), sub-patch adhesive (HH66) and Vinyl Repair Compound (VRC-1), in that order, to achieve a durable repair.
1) Adhere sub-patch material with HH-66 sub-patch adhesive.
2) Heat Gun Process:
NOTE: Vinyl repair compounds start curing at 350 degrees with a maximum temperature of 750 degrees. How much heat the vinyl can with-stand will determine the heat gun setting.
Apply Vinyl Repair Compound (VRC-1) to the damaged area, extending over the area by at least 1/2". Spread as smooth and evenly as possible. Heat with a heat gun till compound slightly clears. Press with a chill bar (CB) immediately to level and cool the repair. Check repair, repeat process as needed.
b) Heat cure repair using a Mini Iron
Repairing Scratches (Heat Cure Repair using a mini iron)
Fill the damaged area with (VRC-1) Vinyl Repair Compound, exceeding the damaged area by about a 1/2". and making the edges as smooth as possible. Lay the Teflon Mat over the area and cure the compound by ironing it with medium pressure back and forth (Mini Iron) until the compound is cured. (Curing time depends on the thickness of the compound and the heat of the Mini Iron.) IMPORTANT: Before removing the Teflon Mat, apply the aluminum Chill Bar to the Teflon Mat to cool the repair and keep the Teflon Mat from sticking. Repairing Holes and Cuts (Heat Cure Repair using mini iron)
b2) Heat Iron Process:
Apply Vinyl Repair Compound (VRC-1) to the damaged area, extending over the area by at least 1/2". Spread as smooth and evenly as possible. Cut a piece of Fine Mesh (FM) to approximately 1/4” larger than the damaged area. Lay over the vinyl repair compound. Apply a coat of Vinyl Repair Compound over the Fine Mesh (FM) , making it as smooth and even as possible. Lay the Teflon Mat (TM) over the area and cure the compound by ironing it with medium pressure back and forth (with the Mini Iron) until the compound is cured. (Curing time depends on the thickness of the compound and the heat from the Mini Iron.)
IMPORTANT: Before removing the Teflon Mat, apply the aluminum Chill Bar to the Teflon Mat to cool the repair and keep the Teflon Mat from sticking. To texture the repair, place a Graining Paper over the repaired area. Lay the Teflon Mat over the Graining Paper and iron. A light browning of the paper indicates the repair may well be cured. Again, use the chill bar before removing the paper for inspection. Next, clean the repair with (TC) Triclean Prep Cleaner to remove any possible residue.
c) Air dry using #CF - Grey Crack Fill
Repairing Scratches (Air Dry - Grey Crack Fill)
Fill the damaged area with (CF) Grey Crack Fill, exceeding the damaged area by about a 1/2" and making the edges as smooth as possible. Allow to air dry. Sand smooth with 400# to 600# sandpaper. Check repair, repeat process as needed. Use spray grains for grain texture.
Repairing Holes and Cuts (Air Dry - Grey Crack Fill)
1) Adhere sub-patch material with HH-66 sub-patch adhesive.
2) Fill the damaged area with (CF) Grey Crack Fill, exceeding the damaged area by about a 1/2" and making the edges as smooth as possible. Allow to air dry. Sand smooth with 400# to 600# sandpaper. Check repair, repeat process as needed. Use spray grains for grain texture.
d) Air dry using Cyanoacrylates (super glue)
Repairing minor damages on a small area:
To fill small holes, use the range of medium to thick cyanoacrylates such as (SPG) Power Gel, (FGC) Flex Gel Clear or (FGC) Flex Gel Black. This process should only be applied to smaller damages; although Flex Gel is considered to be the most flexible adhesive on the market, there are no cyanoacrylates as flexible as vinyl or vinyl repair compounds. Apply the adhesive directly on with a palette knife as delicately possible. Be sure not to leave any air holes inside the damaged area or on the surrounding borders/edges. Next, apply Zip Kicker (PT10 or PT15) to the adhesive to accelerate drying. Continue by sanding mildly with 220-600 grit paper until smooth. For deeper damages, apply a coat of Zip Kicker to the damage before applying the adhesive.
TIP: If excess adhesive must be removed from the repair, use (PT16) Debonder, and wet sand with sandpaper.
Step 4: GRAIN TEXTURING
A good grain texture will help a repair to disappear.
a) Grain Pad Process:
Vinyl Repair Compound repairs for vinyl can be directly textured with a Graining Pad, using a heat gun. After curing compound, apply additional heat to the repair compound. The Vinyl Repair Compound will brighten and begin to smoke. At this moment, apply the graining pad to the smoking compound by pressing evenly with the Chill Bar to restore the texture to the repair. For areas larger than the Graining Pad, or to texturize the borders of the repair, apply the heat gun to specific areas of the repair and avoid heating the areas previously textured, then press the graining pad on the s smoking area to achieve the desired result.
If the surface level of the repair is inferior to the surface of the part, apply additional coats of Vinyl Repair Compound and repeat the curing process until the desired result is achieved.
In some cases, after observing and verifying that your repair has not achieved the desired result, you may need to repeat the process until the desired result is achieved. Keep in mind that excessive heat can damage thin vinyl.
b) Grain Paper Process.
Place a Graining Paper over the repaired area. Lay a Teflon Mat over the Graining Paper and iron. Move the iron a slow circular motion. A light browning of the paper indicates the repair may well be cured. Use the chill bar to cool the grain paper before removing the paper for inspection. Next, clean the repair with (TC) Triclean Prep Cleaner to remove any possible residue due.
The following options can complete or improve the texture of the repair. Do not forget that the texture is as important as the color.
Option 1: If it’s a soft/medium texture, give the repaired piece a smooth texture with (S-3) Water Base Spray Grain for medium medium-grain, or (W-2) Spray Grain for a soft gentle grain texture. Use a Preval Sprayer for both, note that the closer the spray is a applied to the surface, the more intense the resulting texture. To apply, simply spray the new texture over a wide area in and around the repair for even texturizing as so desired.
Option 2: If you need an exact grain, apply a coat of (LG) leather gel over the surface, allow to dry. Remember that the thicker the applied coat, the deeper the resulting texture. Heat the area with a heat gun and press the graining pad onto the repair area. Repeat the whole process as desired.
Impression Grain Mold (making a grain pad)
Materials: (VM-18) grain mold compound and (R) catalyst; 10 oz. plastic cup; stir stick; Triclean.
1) Clean vinyl, leather, dash or door panels with Triclean.
2) Fill plastic cup 1/4 full with grain mold compound and apply 6-8 drops of catalyst. (Additional drops will allow a faster curing time). Stir in completely.
3) Spread on flat area that you wish to make a mold of. (For added durability, place a piece of vinyl (cloth side down) on mold while it is still wet.
4) Allow ample time for curing (approx. 15 minutes minimum) of the grain mold.
5) Trim off excess. (Write model of car on the piece of vinyl for future use).
Step 5: SEALING
This is an essential step to ensure maximum resistance for the repair, as well as hiding any flaws, marks or rings resulting from more difficult repairs. To seal, spray a light coat of (95FA) Flex Primer or (AFP) Aerosol Flex Primer over the repair. Allow to dry.
Step 6: COLOR
To color the piece, consult the corresponding training manual.