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Author Topic: Restoration Advice  (Read 798 times)

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Offline cowboyopossum

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Restoration Advice
« on: February 20, 2024, 07:43:53 PM »
I recently got this Candy Cane in a thrift shop. Aside from surface dirt and a tangled mane, she cleaned up well... Until you notice all the highlighter marks.

I am not sure if g3 fade the same as g1 or if I should take a different approach? She also has a scuff on her lip.

Any advice is appreciated!

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« Last Edit: February 21, 2024, 05:23:04 AM by cowboyopossum »
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Offline tailrustedtealeaf

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Re: Restoration Advice
« Reply #1 on: February 21, 2024, 05:12:04 AM »
I have faded pen marks off a Port-o-bella, but her plastic was visually more yellow where she was exposed to the sun. It works, but it's up to you if that slight difference is worth it or not. You could also just expose everything except the symbol so it's a more even color.
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Re: Restoration Advice
« Reply #2 on: February 21, 2024, 07:53:34 AM »
this type of G3 white plastic also tends to get more brown and there's not much you can do to brighten it.
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Re: Restoration Advice
« Reply #3 on: February 21, 2024, 08:50:35 AM »
I have found they fade quicker than g1s (i collect g1 and g3).   I have had some fade out nasty spots very well.  Highlighter takes FOREVER either way.

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Re: Restoration Advice
« Reply #4 on: February 21, 2024, 10:32:54 AM »
I've looked into sunfading a lot and I'm not a fan. I've bought too many ponies from knowledgable collectors only to have them go yellow or brown. Once the plastic goes brown there's nothing you can do. But a few highlighter marks I can ignore on a nice pony. You could tie a ribbon around that DS leg to hide the mark or try some other pony wear like legwarmers. You might be able to improve the scuff mark with a nail file or fine sand paper.
« Last Edit: February 21, 2024, 10:34:30 AM by Artemesia's Garden »
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Re: Restoration Advice
« Reply #5 on: February 21, 2024, 10:58:49 AM »
From what I have seen its only specific colors that brown/sunburn. IIRC there is a thread on the MLP TP about it.

I might try making some legwarmers. Thank you!
« Last Edit: February 21, 2024, 11:00:35 AM by cowboyopossum »
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Re: Restoration Advice
« Reply #6 on: February 21, 2024, 11:28:16 PM »
From what I have seen its only specific colors that brown/sunburn. IIRC there is a thread on the MLP TP about it.

I might try making some legwarmers. Thank you!

That's true, I'm glad you found that thread. My memory was getting a bit misty. Some Starshines go brown and some can be sunfaded I've found. People say it must depend on different batches of plastic. But I've found over the years that the ones that don't go brown immediately will still show signs of plastic breakdown like yellowing, stickiness, brown spots over time and it seems likely that sun exposure does speed up the process. On a happier note I found that often ponies look worse when I first get them out of storage but after a few days in the open air they look better.
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Offline cowboyopossum

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Re: Restoration Advice
« Reply #7 on: February 22, 2024, 05:33:53 AM »
From what I have seen its only specific colors that brown/sunburn. IIRC there is a thread on the MLP TP about it.

I might try making some legwarmers. Thank you!

That's true, I'm glad you found that thread. My memory was getting a bit misty. Some Starshines go brown and some can be sunfaded I've found. People say it must depend on different batches of plastic. But I've found over the years that the ones that don't go brown immediately will still show signs of plastic breakdown like yellowing, stickiness, brown spots over time and it seems likely that sun exposure does speed up the process. On a happier note I found that often ponies look worse when I first get them out of storage but after a few days in the open air they look better.

Right now I have a Majesty out fading. I haven't noticed any burning yet. Same for Bowtie...

Candy Cane is currently at the spa drying her curlers, I will take photos when I get home.
I chose green plaid for her legwarmers to match her eyes.
Thank you for the insight!

Post Merge: February 22, 2024, 02:15:55 PM

And here she is, fresh out the salon!
I love the way her curls turned out. They really look like candy canes!
She is so vibrant as well, she was quite dingy when I got her.
The legwarmers are ribbon, so they are quite stiff. I might see if I can do anything about that...
Anyway, she looks a million times happier!

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« Last Edit: February 22, 2024, 02:15:56 PM by cowboyopossum »
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Re: Restoration Advice
« Reply #8 on: February 23, 2024, 11:24:54 AM »
From what I have seen its only specific colors that brown/sunburn. IIRC there is a thread on the MLP TP about it.

I might try making some legwarmers. Thank you!

That's true, I'm glad you found that thread. My memory was getting a bit misty. Some Starshines go brown and some can be sunfaded I've found. People say it must depend on different batches of plastic. But I've found over the years that the ones that don't go brown immediately will still show signs of plastic breakdown like yellowing, stickiness, brown spots over time and it seems likely that sun exposure does speed up the process. On a happier note I found that often ponies look worse when I first get them out of storage but after a few days in the open air they look better.

Right now I have a Majesty out fading. I haven't noticed any burning yet. Same for Bowtie...

Candy Cane is currently at the spa drying her curlers, I will take photos when I get home.
I chose green plaid for her legwarmers to match her eyes.
Thank you for the insight!


Update on those two-
Majesty's mark is fading wonderfully and I have not seen any burning.
Bowtie's body might be a little lighter than it was before being on the window, but her marks are starting to go away.

If I find a baity white g3 then I might do some experiments with fading. For now, Candy Cane is happy to be feeling better!
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Re: Restoration Advice
« Reply #9 on: February 26, 2024, 11:44:50 PM »
From what I have seen its only specific colors that brown/sunburn. IIRC there is a thread on the MLP TP about it.

I might try making some legwarmers. Thank you!

That's true, I'm glad you found that thread. My memory was getting a bit misty. Some Starshines go brown and some can be sunfaded I've found. People say it must depend on different batches of plastic. But I've found over the years that the ones that don't go brown immediately will still show signs of plastic breakdown like yellowing, stickiness, brown spots over time and it seems likely that sun exposure does speed up the process. On a happier note I found that often ponies look worse when I first get them out of storage but after a few days in the open air they look better.

Right now I have a Majesty out fading. I haven't noticed any burning yet. Same for Bowtie...

Candy Cane is currently at the spa drying her curlers, I will take photos when I get home.
I chose green plaid for her legwarmers to match her eyes.
Thank you for the insight!

Post Merge: February 22, 2024, 02:15:55 PM

And here she is, fresh out the salon!
I love the way her curls turned out. They really look like candy canes!
She is so vibrant as well, she was quite dingy when I got her.
The legwarmers are ribbon, so they are quite stiff. I might see if I can do anything about that...
Anyway, she looks a million times happier!

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She does look fantastic, well done! Her hair is gorgeous, I try to do mine like that.

More notes on sunfading...

Once plastic breakdown starts it can be stabilised by cleaning and storing in better conditions but not reversed and it's likely that sunfading makes it worse in the long run. UV light breaks down stains and marks but also breaks down the plastic polymers and the effects of this take longer to show.

Managing any collection is a strange mindset because you can't fight entropy. There is a lot of stuff on museum conservation of plastics now that you might find interesting.

Most Majesty that I've ever handled showed yellowing of the head and/or plastic breakdown that starts before the body. So she often has a typical head/body mismatch. Certain plastic issues seem to be typical for certain characters unfortunately, and there's not always much you can do long term. Some I've given up collecting because it's always the same. The saddest one for me to give up so far is Masquerade. Otherwise, for me it's a case of finding the best ones in the first place and then keeping them in the best possible conditions (stable temperature and humidity, good air circulation out of the sun permanently). I have at least 3 good Majestys that I monitor, but you can often see a slight batch difference from the start which spells trouble. I tried painting heads to restore the colour but the result is never that good to my eye. I've tried asking others whether they have good results with painting over plastic that is already breaking down, I think the answer is no. A full body repaint is also tricky if you have glitter to find a match for as well, I've not tried it.

I've had Bowtie in shy pose respond well to sunfading. Blues often look great again for a year or so after sunfading because it fades out the yellow, but it always comes back in my experience.

Best of luck with it!
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Offline cowboyopossum

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Re: Restoration Advice
« Reply #10 on: February 28, 2024, 05:34:28 AM »

She does look fantastic, well done! Her hair is gorgeous, I try to do mine like that.

More notes on sunfading...

Once plastic breakdown starts it can be stabilised by cleaning and storing in better conditions but not reversed and it's likely that sunfading makes it worse in the long run. UV light breaks down stains and marks but also breaks down the plastic polymers and the effects of this take longer to show.

Managing any collection is a strange mindset because you can't fight entropy. There is a lot of stuff on museum conservation of plastics now that you might find interesting.

Most Majesty that I've ever handled showed yellowing of the head and/or plastic breakdown that starts before the body. So she often has a typical head/body mismatch. Certain plastic issues seem to be typical for certain characters unfortunately, and there's not always much you can do long term. Some I've given up collecting because it's always the same. The saddest one for me to give up so far is Masquerade. Otherwise, for me it's a case of finding the best ones in the first place and then keeping them in the best possible conditions (stable temperature and humidity, good air circulation out of the sun permanently). I have at least 3 good Majestys that I monitor, but you can often see a slight batch difference from the start which spells trouble. I tried painting heads to restore the colour but the result is never that good to my eye. I've tried asking others whether they have good results with painting over plastic that is already breaking down, I think the answer is no. A full body repaint is also tricky if you have glitter to find a match for as well, I've not tried it.

I've had Bowtie in shy pose respond well to sunfading. Blues often look great again for a year or so after sunfading because it fades out the yellow, but it always comes back in my experience.

Best of luck with it!
Thank you so much! From my experience with sunfading and overall quality of g1, they seem to be sturdy (ie. no plasticizer leakage, or degrading plastic) even after being in the sun.
These ponies are 40 years old, yes, but they are also made a lot better than ponies nowadays.
They were meant to last a long time, and they have. I don't think it is entirely accurate to warn people away from trying to restore your beloved ponies. At least in my experience, after all.
Wishing you luck with Masquerade!
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