RETRO-BRITE...Best Process So Far

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KLund1
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RETRO-BRITE...Best Process So Far

Postby KLund1 » Fri Sep 08, 2017 4:39 am

I think figured it all out. I've been doing a lot of Retro-Brite on ST's, and many other cases this way. The all come out perfect!

Here is what seems to work best and why. Please read all the way through.

Get something called 'Developer' from a beauty supply store. The clerk/cashier/associate/sales-person will know what and where it is. They come in many sizes, and strengths. I suggest 30 strength. You pick a size, then get the next large one. The stuff is pretty cheap. I got a gallon for $14 recently. Next, get a clear plastic storage container from any store like Walmart. Make sure it will cover whatever you are Briting. Then get a 3" cheap paint roller like this
https://www.lowes.com/pd/SHUR-LINE-Poly ... n/50019300
The tight, low nap works best. While getting the roller, get some latex gloves, like dish washing gloves, not the one use type, as you will putting on and off several times.

Take your system apart. Wash the case parts you need to Brite. Dry them off. Get a coffee mug of hot water.

Go outside with all your stuff above. Find a good patch of cement, in the sun, to work on. Get a garden hose, and water down that cement. Put on some gloves, and slather on the Developer. This is the good part that makes it all work. Use the roller to put a nice even coating of the developer over the case. Move the roller slowly, and evenly!!! Put the case on the wet cement, facing the sun. Fill the coffee cup with water, warm water is best. Put it behind the case. Cover both with the plastic storage box.

Wait about 25 minutes. Then check your work. If it needs more time, give it another 25 minutes. Then check again. Oh, wear the gloves if you need to move the case to stay with the sun. If on this time it still needs more Briting, slather on another coat of developer, and repeat roller, & wet cement process.

What is happening? Well, the wet cement, and coffee mug keep the interior of the plastic storage case very wet, and humid, as the sun heats it up quickly. This way the Developer dose not dry out. If you look at my first post in this thread, you see what happens when the Developer drys out. You get that white discoloration. After the first 25 minutes, when you look at the case, the Developer white color is gone, and there is a very even clear, sheen all over the plastic. This is what you want.

Now for some tips. On ST's, there is the vents on top, and the crease that follows the top of the F keys across the case. Use a paint brush first to get Developer in the groves, and the rest of the case for that mater. Use the brush to smooth things out in the grooves as best you can. Then use the brush to get the inside edges of the keyboard areas, or any other holes. Use the roller last!
Depending on the heat of the day, you may need to rewet the cement after all this brush and roller time.

I have done this in the morning, mid-day, and late afternoon, and get the same results. Clouds do not seem to slow things down, either. I am in the northern California latitudes. Things might be a bit different where you are. Temperature dose not seem to matter. I have done this on 100' and 60' days. I get the same results. All cases come out perfect.
The amount of time all depends on how yellow, and what kind of plastic you are dealing with. I had one case that took 3 hours, and several re-applications, others done in just 20 minutes.
I do this with keyboards, 3.5" floppy drive face plates, and eject buttons. I don't use the roller, just the paint brush, but I keep them in a very moist environment. Usually in a smaller clear plastic storage container.

I see that a lot of videos, and forum posts say to use clear plastic wrap over the case. They are trying to do the same thing as my storage contain dose. Hold in the moisture. But wrapping is uneven. The wrap squeezes out Developer, and pushes it elsewhere. So there very little, if any, in some places, and too much in others. They often get the same results as that picture above I mentioned.

Now the cleanup. After a quick rinse in a sink. I use a wet dish cleaning brush to do a good scrub, and re-rinse. You want to get all the used Developer off. Use a towel to dry things off, then let them air dry completely.

If you do not want them to get yellow again for a very long time. Spray them with a clear lacquer, or varnish of your choice. 2, 3, or more light coats are much better then 1 heavy coat.

Then Happy Retro Computing !!

PS I have done this on all ST's and accessories, just about all the Atari 8-bit's from 400 to XEGS, Apple II to IIGS, Vic to 128D, Osbourne, Compaq, A few others I can't recall. They all came out great, near new. The only one that did not, was one I rushed, and only used a paint brush, and not the roller. It had light streaks matching the brush stokes. I won't do that again.
UPDATED: Falcon 030(FX-1)(CF int & removable SD), MSTE 4+PS3000 4160STE 2.06+HDFD STacy4-internal-USD 1040STFM+I.B.Driver-5.25"FDD 1040STF 1040ST 520ST-AdSpeed 400-48k 800+810x2+820+822+825+830+835+850, 800XL+IndusGT 600XL 130XE+XF551x2 Portfolio 1200XL APE(Warp+32in1 OS SuperVideo 2.1 256k RAMBO)+1050x2 USD'd+SIO2PC, PC1+PCH204+PCM124+PCF554x2

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EmpireAndrew
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Re: RETRO-BRITE...Best Process So Far

Postby EmpireAndrew » Fri Sep 08, 2017 10:52 am

Although more expensive, I found the safest method is to immerse the whole machine in hydrogen peroxide. I buy 1 gallon of 40% concentrate for $40 and mix it 8:1 with water ending up with 5% solution.
It never dries out this way hence safe, and takes about a day or two of slightly cloudy days (I find that safer than direct sun).

I';ll give your method a go on larger stuff like monjtors!
1977 VCS Heavy Sixxer (Boxed)
1990 Atari 1040STE, 4MB, UltraSatan, TOS 2.06, TT Touch -> Atari SC1435 Colour CRT Monitor
1991 Atari TT030, 2/64MB, Int 8GB Gigafile SCSI2CF, TOS 3.06, CaTTamaran Accelerator -> Atari TTM195 19" Mono CRT Monitor
1993 Atari Falcon030, 14MB, Int 4GB IDE2SD, TOS 4.04 -> Atari PTC1426 Color CRT Monitor
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junosix
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Re: RETRO-BRITE...Best Process So Far

Postby junosix » Fri Sep 08, 2017 12:54 pm

Nice find, glad that method works. Though when I get around to retrobrighting my ST I'll be taking the method EmpireAndrew suggests and reckon it'd be worth the extra expense as if things do go wrong with other methods then there's no way to reverse it. Badly retrobrighted STs look as bad as yellowed ones and I wouldn't want to risk it.

Got any pictures of your STs?

KLund1
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Re: RETRO-BRITE...Best Process So Far

Postby KLund1 » Fri Sep 08, 2017 6:17 pm

Here in California, USA, it is very difficult to get large qty of hydrogen peroxide in liquid form in that high a percentage. I think you need a license, and work at business that needs it. All we have at retail is 3% in 12oz bottles in the first aid section of a store. I think things are different elsewhere. That is why after a lot of trial and blotchy errors, I came up with this method.
UPDATED: Falcon 030(FX-1)(CF int & removable SD), MSTE 4+PS3000 4160STE 2.06+HDFD STacy4-internal-USD 1040STFM+I.B.Driver-5.25"FDD 1040STF 1040ST 520ST-AdSpeed 400-48k 800+810x2+820+822+825+830+835+850, 800XL+IndusGT 600XL 130XE+XF551x2 Portfolio 1200XL APE(Warp+32in1 OS SuperVideo 2.1 256k RAMBO)+1050x2 USD'd+SIO2PC, PC1+PCH204+PCM124+PCF554x2

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Re: RETRO-BRITE...Best Process So Far

Postby tuf » Fri Sep 08, 2017 6:23 pm

I'll give your process a try KLund1. I've retro-brite'd in the past using the gel + cling wrap method and while it does work rather well you do need to keep a close eye on it for drying. I've done a Mac Plus with fairly good results but did experience a bit of blotching here and there - nothing major but I imagine it could have been a lot worse. This was with the peroxide + oxy combo.

KLund1
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Re: RETRO-BRITE...Best Process So Far

Postby KLund1 » Sat Sep 09, 2017 7:20 am

tuf,
Great, it will work.
NOTE: I do NOT use cling wrap. I highly suggest that you never use it! That is the major problem people are doing. It is one of the main reasons for the 'blotching'
Give my method a try. I can almost guarantee that it will work if followed properly. Just put on an even coat with a roller, and keep the inside of the container very moist.
Good Luck!
ps I am so confidant about this, I'm doping on a Falcon case that has just a bit of annoying yellowing.
UPDATED: Falcon 030(FX-1)(CF int & removable SD), MSTE 4+PS3000 4160STE 2.06+HDFD STacy4-internal-USD 1040STFM+I.B.Driver-5.25"FDD 1040STF 1040ST 520ST-AdSpeed 400-48k 800+810x2+820+822+825+830+835+850, 800XL+IndusGT 600XL 130XE+XF551x2 Portfolio 1200XL APE(Warp+32in1 OS SuperVideo 2.1 256k RAMBO)+1050x2 USD'd+SIO2PC, PC1+PCH204+PCM124+PCF554x2

Kubik
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Re: RETRO-BRITE...Best Process So Far

Postby Kubik » Tue Sep 12, 2017 10:04 am

EmpireAndrew wrote:Although more expensive, I found the safest method is to immerse the whole machine in hydrogen peroxide. I buy 1 gallon of 40% concentrate for $40 and mix it 8:1 with water ending up with 5% solution.
It never dries out this way hence safe, and takes about a day or two of slightly cloudy days (I find that safer than direct sun).

I';ll give your method a go on larger stuff like monjtors!

You can't buy 40% hydrogen peroxide in most parts of the world, the highest concentration available (at least without some kind of permit) is 12%. H2O2 in higher concentration can be used to make explosives, that's why.

czietz
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Re: RETRO-BRITE...Best Process So Far

Postby czietz » Tue Sep 12, 2017 5:31 pm

Kubik wrote: You can't buy 40% hydrogen peroxide in most parts of the world, the highest concentration available (at least without some kind of permit) is 12%.


Note that those big bottles with the number "40" on it usually are "40 volume" not "40%" hydrogen peroxide. 40 volume = 12%.

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EmpireAndrew
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Re: RETRO-BRITE...Best Process So Far

Postby EmpireAndrew » Wed Sep 13, 2017 1:45 am

I use this which says 35% on it (my bad I thought it was 40%) and I dilute it 10:1 and it seems to work as well as the 3.5% stuff I had bought previously so it's probably 35%:

http://amzn.to/2xv6G2g
1977 VCS Heavy Sixxer (Boxed)
1990 Atari 1040STE, 4MB, UltraSatan, TOS 2.06, TT Touch -> Atari SC1435 Colour CRT Monitor
1991 Atari TT030, 2/64MB, Int 8GB Gigafile SCSI2CF, TOS 3.06, CaTTamaran Accelerator -> Atari TTM195 19" Mono CRT Monitor
1993 Atari Falcon030, 14MB, Int 4GB IDE2SD, TOS 4.04 -> Atari PTC1426 Color CRT Monitor
Amiga, Mac, DOS, Newton, SGI, Sun, NeXTStation and more!

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Re: RETRO-BRITE...Best Process So Far

Postby mikro » Wed Sep 13, 2017 8:45 am

Surprisingly, one can really buy a 35% bottle in Aussie too: http://www.anpros.com.au/food-grade-pro ... food-grade ... but you see the warning, it's labelled as super dangerous to order online. ;)


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