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  1. #1
    Director of Training Mike Phillips's Avatar
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    Fixing Zebra Stripes in Black Plastic Trim with Solution Finish

    Fixing Zebra Stripes in Black Plastic Trim with Solution Finish


    Zebra stripes in the wild - looks cool!





    Zebra stripes in your car's plastic - not cool...









    See them?





    Now do you see them?





    Here's a close-up...





    See the Zebra-like stripe effect?







    What causes Zebra Stripes in Plastic Trim?

    Great question and to get the answer I called the man, the myth, the legend... Chris West!

    As you read this, remember I'm not a chemist. Chris has been down the Rabbit Hole and did a great job of doing a Brain Dump on the topic, how well I've done at converting his words to text will be close, so apologies ahead of time.



    From the manufacturers of plastic automotive components via Chris West

    When plastic comes out of a mold, brand new, the color is uniform. Over time as a plastic component expands and contracts, the weakest portions of the plastic, which are the stress bands, (the bands are how the molecules band or join together to form a uniform matrix of plastic material, some areas are more stout than others due to physical change via temperature and outside forces), begin to fail first.

    So the white stripes in black or grey plastic are the stress band areas and these areas turn white first. Part of the reason why is the stress the other reason why is via expansion and contraction, the physical molecules that make up plastic are pushing the PBk6 Carbon out of the plastic matrix. In other words, the lines you see are and/or have become the weakest points in the component.

    The first visual indicator that the plastic on your car is degrading and turning into sh*t are the white lines or Zebra Stripes.



    Misc comments from Chris, which are also in the video

    Plastic doesn't oxidize, it is the impurities in the plastic that degrade and oxidize. Once oxidation starts it cannot be stopped. It can be slowed down, masked, camouflaged, etc. but not stopped. The best practice is to protect and preserve brand new plastic while it's brand new to stave off oxidation in the first place. This means preventative maintenance.

    To make PBk6 Carbon gray you must add white. The white pigment used to make black gray in plastic is similar to the metallic white zinc substance used in Sun Blocks, like you would see on the nose of a Life Guard on the beach. It's called PW4 Zink White

    PBk6 Carbon weighs on average 40 pounds for a 5 gallon container.

    PW4 Zink White weights on average around 75 pounds for a 5 gallon container.


    Interesting stuff for sure.




    Now lets see what Solution Finish can do for the Zebra Stripes?

    AFTER first washing the car really well and then drying the car, next I used a Carrand Microfiber Applicator Pad to apply the Solution Finish to the zebra striped faded plastic trim.















    Look how nice the treated side looks!






    Now lets finish the job...














    And of course, work around your car and treat all the faded plastic trim surfaces...






    Solution Finish instantly restores a deep, dark black rich color to the faded plastic.






    AND... if you get any Solution Finish residue on nearby paint, simply take a clean microfiber towel and wipe the paint - the residue will wipe right off.


















    Much better, protected and the factory new look is restored.







    My comments...

    Once time in my life, I was asked to teach a class on how to restore plastic trim at Mobile Tech Expo, which I did. I'll never do it again. In the context of all the other areas for car detailing, like paint correction, it's a tick on the boring side and while the class was well-attended, it's simply not what you would call an exciting topic.

    BUT - when I taught the class, instead of simply showing how to restore black plastic trim I focused on the root cause, not the final solution. What I shared was this;

    When you buy a new car, if it has any exterior black plastic trim it looks great. Of course... it's brand new. Because it looks great - car owners don't do anything. Now the plastic trim doesn't turn ugly in a few months or even a few years, but after that? If you don't do anything, one day you're going to look at your car and what used to look good now stands out like a sore thumb. Now the once dark black plastic trim looks dull and faded. And in some cases, you see the Zebra Stripes. As you see from the above pictures, "yes" you can fix it. But a better approach is RIGHT NOW - when your car is brand new,


    Find a product you like and use it often


    And by this I mean, find a trim product that you like and start applying it on a regular basis. This is called PM's or Preventative Maintenance. And by doing this you'll keep the plastic trim looking new and this will keep your car looking good. It will also maintain it's trade-in or re-sell value.

    And the good news? Solution Finish is really easy to use. You don't have to be a seasoned detailer expert.. anyone can wash and dry their car, apply the Solution Finish and then wipe-off any excess.


    To get your Solution Finish, get your wallet out and get on up to Autogeek.com!



    On Autogeek.com


    Solution Finish Black Plastic & Vinyl Restorer - 12 ounce bottle


    Because a little bit goes a long way, there's a tiny bottle available and as long as you don't waste it filling up a huge foam sponge applicator Solution Finish says you can treat up to 3 cars.

    Solution Finish Black Plastic & Vinyl Restorer 1 ounce bottle



    ANY foam applicator will work. Here's some THIN and inexpensive foam applicators that I normally use and then toss after use. And if you're going to get some - might as well get a bunch. You can use these for so many things and it's such a hassle to be out of them and then what? Drive to an auto parts store just for these?

    Pinnacle Foam Wax Applicators - 6-Pack - $9.99

    Pinnacle Foam Wax Applicator - 12 Pack - $17.99


    Or for 2 bucks - here's the link to buy one applicator.

    1 - Pinnacle Foam Wax Applicator



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  3. #2
    Director of Training Mike Phillips's Avatar
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    Re: Fixing Zebra Stripes in Black Plastic Trim with Solution Finish

    More....


    Below this post I'll include a recent video Yancy and I shot for a LIVE Detailing Class on restoring and protecting black plastic trim and our special guest is the inventor of Solution Finish is CHRIS WEST!


    Before the video however, some more information and this is important.

    Solution Finish is not a DRESSING - it's a Trim Restorer, or more specifically it's a trim appearance restorer. After applying Solution Finish you should apply an actual dressing over the top of the Solution Finish. You can use any quality rubber and vinyl dressing but coming to Autogeek.com soon is a brand new product from Chris West and Solution Finish,


    Over the Top Plastic Sealer




    At the time I'm sharing this article, it is not yet on the Solution Finish store page on Autogeek.com


    All Solution Finish Products



    So check back often as it should be in stock any day.



  4. #3
    Director of Training Mike Phillips's Avatar
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    Re: Fixing Zebra Stripes in Black Plastic Trim with Solution Finish

    More....


    In this video, the inventor and owner of the Solution Finish brand of product, Chris West joins Yancy and I and does an absolute BRAIN DUMP on everything related to plastic trim, how it's made, why it fades plus how Solution Finish is the best choice for restoring and maintaining any black plastic trim.







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    Re: Fixing Zebra Stripes in Black Plastic Trim with Solution Finish

    Those orange nitrile gloves are great. They are durable and have good grip.

  6. #5
    Director of Training Mike Phillips's Avatar
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    Re: Fixing Zebra Stripes in Black Plastic Trim with Solution Finish

    Quote Originally Posted by DUBL0WS6 View Post

    Those orange nitrile gloves are great. They are durable and have good grip.

    I really like them too...

    I was told last week we'll no longer carry them due to their high cost.



  7. #6
    Super Member 2black1s's Avatar
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    Re: Fixing Zebra Stripes in Black Plastic Trim with Solution Finish

    That Solution Finish looks incredible.

    I've never had the need to restore severely aged plastic trim before as I practice the preventative maintenance methodology, but if I ever do run across the need I can't wait to try the Solution Finish.

    That stuff looks absolutely amazing!

  8. #7
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    Re: Fixing Zebra Stripes in Black Plastic Trim with Solution Finish

    Thanks, Mike.

    Have you ever tried the gray-colored Solution Finish?

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    Super Member PaulMys's Avatar
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    Re: Fixing Zebra Stripes in Black Plastic Trim with Solution Finish

    Solution Finish is the real deal.

    One of the best detailing products made, IMO.
    It is no coincidence that man's best friend cannot talk.

  11. #9
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    Re: Fixing Zebra Stripes in Black Plastic Trim with Solution Finish

    Great save and thanks for sharing. Amazing difference. Any idea what caused the stripes?

  12. #10
    Director of Training Mike Phillips's Avatar
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    Re: Fixing Zebra Stripes in Black Plastic Trim with Solution Finish

    Quote Originally Posted by 2black1s View Post

    That Solution Finish looks incredible.

    I've never had the need to restore severely aged plastic trim before as I practice the preventative maintenance methodology, but if I ever do run across the need I can't wait to try the Solution Finish.
    The preventative maintenance approach is really the best approach, especially if you buy a car that has a lot of exposed exterior plastic trim as a part of the body design. (Jeep brand)

    Chris West explains in the video that if you don't ward off oxidation, when the process does start... there's no way to stop it, just Band-Aid it.


    Quote Originally Posted by 2black1s View Post

    That stuff looks absolutely amazing!
    It works as advertised.

    Note: In my pictures you only see the results of the Solution Finish. I had a per-production bottle of Solution Finish Over The Top Plastic Sealant but I have it to the owner of the Jeep after the video. Chris is sending me a new bottle as I'm not sure when Autogeek will have this product in stock.

    I could use a product like 303 Aerospace Protectant as you can apply any conventional plastic/vinyl dressing over Solution Finish to lock it in and seal the world out, but after making the video with Chris and learning how his new product works I prefer to keep it in the family and top the Solution Finish with it's Kissing Cousin. Plus I wrote this and adhere to it,

    Synergistic Chemical Compatibility by Mike Phillips


    When the replacement bottle arrives I'll simply re-wash the car and the apply the Over the Top or OTT as it's already being reffered to in the car online car detailing world.




    Quote Originally Posted by Prange View Post

    Thanks, Mike.

    Have you ever tried the gray-colored Solution Finish?
    Yes. At the second Roadshow Class we held at Lake Country Pad Manufacturing, in Oconomowoc, Wisconsin, one of the attendees brought his Honda Element with severely oxidized gray plastic cladding. My class machine scrubbed the heck out of it and then applied the Solution Finish Fusion and it worked great.

    Here's the link to that stellar second class,

    Pictures & Comments - Autogeek's Roadshow Detailing Class in Oconomowoc, Wisconsin

    Sad thing is like so many of my classes, due to time constraints, I never was able to share the pictures.





    Quote Originally Posted by PaulMys View Post

    Solution Finish is the real deal.

    One of the best detailing products made, IMO.
    And Chris West and his team are stellar people. The kind of people you would want for neighbors.



    Quote Originally Posted by dgage View Post

    Great save and thanks for sharing. Amazing difference.

    idea what caused the stripes?
    I'm 99.9% confident this topic came up in the video and Chris West explained in detail the cause of the Zebra Stripe Phenomena.



    The Zebra Stripes defect in plastic trim is aptly named in my opinion...







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