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Marine Formula™ Best Practices & Uses

Q: How does Marine Formula™ remove cured 3M™ 5200?

A: Polyurethane adhesive/sealants form long interlocking chains of molecules when they come into contact with the surfaces to be bonded together. These molecule chains are what forms the bond with the surface (fibreglass, metal, wood, etc.) Marine Formula™ penetrates into the polyurethane adhesive sealant (such as 3M™ Marine 5200) and, through a chemical process, begins the process of breaking the interlocking molecule chains. When the chains are broken, the adhesive loses its sticking power.

Q: I've seen other products that claim they can remove 3M™ 5200. How does Marine Formula™ compare to these other products?

A: Several available products claim to be able to remove 3M™ 5200. Some of these products are effective in removing fresh 3M™ 5200. In our opinion, however, Marine Formula™ is the only product on the market that will effectively remove cured 3M™ 5200.

Q: How long does it take for Marine Formula™ to work?

A: Just remember that there are many variables including temperature, evaporation rates, and product being removed. A one inch piece of 3M™5200 can be removed in as little as two minutes and I removed an air conditioner that was adhered with a one foot+ thick piece of 3M™5200 in 29 nine minutes. DIY magazine removed an engine bracket in less than 30 minutes. We have done large deck jobs by
reapplying several times over a weekend. A big help in speeding up a larger job is the use of a wedge to increase lifting pressure that will help Marine Formula™ contact the adhesive or silicone rubber. Marine Formula™ works best above 65°F and kept in the shade if outdoors to slow down evaporation.

Q: What is the shelf life of Marine Formula™?
A: We haven't done any formal testing on the shelf life of Marine Formula™. Anecdotally, however, we

have seen that product produced in 1999 and 2000 was still effective in 2004.

Q: What happens if Marine Formula™ gets on a part of the boat that I didn't want it?

A: Keep a damp rag on hand and don't let DeBond 2000 Marine Formula™ run to where you might not want it. It will not hurt your gel-coat but will remove decals and decal adhesives as well as soft paints, varnish etc. Just test on an inconspicuous spot with one drop if you are not sure. Soap and water and/or Isopropyl Alcohol will stop the action.

Q: I need to remove a porthole which has been bonded with 3M™ 5200. It is metal bonded to gel coat. Was wondering if the Marine Formula™ will damage the Gel Coat finish on my boat?

A: We have found that Marine Formula™ generally will not harm: Gel coat, Clear Coat, Plexiglas, AwlGrip®, Imron®. We do not recommend using this product on Lexan. We strongly recommend that you apply a small amount of Marine Formula™ to an inconspicuous area of your boat's finish as a test.

Q: I have removed 6 approx 8"x24" 1/4" plexi windows from my sailboat which were attached with 3M™ 5200. They peeled off fairly easily taking the paint with them. Now I need to remove the 3M™ 5200 from the windows so they can be reused. Will your product harm the Plexiglas, (cause hazing, etc.)? Will I be able to wipe it off?

A: Marine Formula™ will not cause hazing or other undesirable effects on Plexiglas. If you are not absolutely sure that your windows are Plexiglas, we suggest that you test the product on a small corner of one window. Marine Formula™ does not work well on Lexan. After using Marine Formula™ to remove the

3M™ 5200 from your Plexiglas windows, you should clean the windows with soap and water to remove excess Marine Formula™.

Q: I have just painted my deck with a two-part polyurethane paint over an epoxy primer. Have the effects of Marine Formula™ been investigated on these materials? What were the results?

A: We have had previous experience with two-part polyurethane paint and found that Marine Formula™ has not had any damaging effect. However, there are so many variables that it is impossible to be 100% sure. There are so many different manufacturers, activators, primers, age of application, environment, etc. that you should make sure with a test before application. It is very simple. Apply a very small amount of Marine Formula™ to an inconspicuous area and leave it for five minutes. If it is incompatible, you will notice a softening almost immediately. Some isopropyl alcohol and/or soap and water will stop the action of Marine Formula™. If there is no softening, Marine Formula™ can be used for your project. Remember that a normal application of Marine Formula™ shouldn't take over ten minutes even on a relative large removal project. The engine bracket that DIY marine magazine removed took less than 30 minutes.

Q: I have some aluminum windows on my boat that are installed with 3M™ 5200. I am doing some work on the boat and I need to remove them but I don't want to buy new ones. Can Marine Formula™ help me get them out without damage to the frames?

A: We just had a call last week from a marine specialist who had installed new cabin windows onto the side of a freshly painted yacht with 3M™ 5200 only 5 days previous to the call. The owners notified them that the painters had not completed a satisfactory application and the windows had to be removed! They knew that the job was all but impossible without irreparable damage to the new windows and wondered if Marine Formula™ would help. They scored the 3M™ 5200 with a razor knife and applied Marine Formula™ before they started removing the screws to allow time to work. Much to their surprise, the windows were removed with no damage to the windows, paint, or boat saving them a considerable amount of time and money. The 3M™ 5200 was even "pealed" from the window frames. Their testimonial will be on our website in the future. Remember to wash the site with a rag with soap and water upon completion of your project and once it is thoroughly dry, you can reapply the adhesive if required.

Q: I need to remove some leaking hatches. They were sealed down with 3M™ 5200. The first one took a propane torch (I have a steel boat) and crow-bar, Exacto knife and all of one day. Any how I hope with your product getting the other ones up won't take me most of a week. Does Marine Formula™ leave any sort of residue that may interfere with sealing the new hatches down?

A: First, score around the hatches to allow the Marine Formula™ to get a good start in attacking the bond of the 3M™ 5200. This is not essential but if you are working in the hot sunshine, I would attempt to shade the hatch and surrounding area if possible to lessen the evaporation. Apply a small amount of Marine Formula™ around the area. Do another job for ten or fifteen minutes. You should start to see the edge of the 3M™ 5200 releasing. This might be enough to loosen the hatch but it depends on the thickness of the 3M™ 5200 and how well it has bonded. If it is still firm and you are not able to start to work the hatch up; slide some small wedges around the hatch to give some lifting pressure and reapply. We have small plastic wedges available if you can't find any. Give Marine Formula™ a chance to work. I think that you will find that removal of your hatches will be much easier than the last. After clean up of any 3M™ 5200 residue; just wash with soap and water and dry. It is ready for the new hatch and will not affect any new adhesives. If there is a problem with washing with soap and water, you can also use isopropyl alcohol and a damp cloth.

Q: Is Marine Formula™ safe to use on wood? If it soaks into the wood will this cause any damage or keep the new sealant from bonding. I have a wooden dory skiff that that has douglas fur planking for the hull.

The planks are sealed with calking; some which I know to be Sikaflex polyurethane and it has to be removed.

A: I have reviewed your request for information on the use of Marine Formula™ by DeBond 2000 Inc. on a Douglas Fir planked dory skiff that has been sealed with Sikaflex. We remove Sikaflex polyurethane on a daily basses but I can find no reference in our research on Douglas Fir wood. However, we have people using Marine Formula™ on many soft woods such as Teak with no harm to either the wood or the ability to bond it with new sealant. Here is the suggested procedure:

  • I would advise that you try a test on an inconspicuous area or a piece of scrap just to make sure that there are no complications that we haven't thought of. Please note that if you are not going to paint the skiff, make sure that there is no undesirable changes in coloration that would show through.
  • Using a razor knife, score the sealant along the edge to allow Marine Formula™ to start its wicking action. Just apply a bead down the score. You might have to reapply because of the porosity of the wood. Because those open pours of the wood give the sealant more grip, it will generally be harder to remove than on other surfaces so give it some time to work.
  • Once you remove the sealant, wipe down the wood with rubbing or denatured alcohol (which ever one is best for the wood) which will kill the action of the Marine Formula™. The final preparation that I would suggest would be to clean it with a soapy rag and rinse. Once it dried thoroughly it will be ready to reseal. I am sure that Marine Formula™ by DeBond 2000 Inc. can save you many hours of work.

Q: By mistake, I attached my Lowrance™ Depth Finder transducer to my fiberglass hull using 3M™ 5200. I now must remove the transducer and instead use the recommended hard epoxy as the adhesive. Will Marine Formula™ damage the hull or transducer?

A: Marine Formula™ will not harm the hull or your transducer, and will remove the 3M™ 5200. That being said, however, sealing your transducer with 3M™ 5200 is not a bad idea at all. 3M™ 5200 forms the best possible seal with the hull. It is a much better seal then you will get with hard epoxy. The reason that the hard epoxy is recommended is that it can be removed by conventional means. Without Marine Formula™, the 3M™ 5200 is permanent. Accordingly, I would recommend that you leave the transducer sealed with 3M™ 5200 until you are ready to remove it from the hull. At that time, use Marine Formula™ to remove it. The exception to this advice is that if you are attempting to install an interior mounted transducer and the 3M™ 5200 is not dense enough to allow the transducer to operate properly, then you will need to use the Marine Formula™ to remove the 3M™ 5200 and reseal the transducer with the hard epoxy.

Q: I need to remove traces from a painted marine windshield. Will your product remove butyl rubber caulk?

A: Even though my research hasn't turned up any direct testing with butyl rubber caulk, I am more than confident that Marine Formula™ can solve your problem. My suggestion is the following:

  • Because of the softening of black butyl rubber caulk to the heat of the sun, try to do the job in a cooler part of the day or at least provide some shade. A real concern which is easily controlled is the migration of Marine Formula™ into places that you don't want it. You are trying to clean the windshield not remove it. Try spraying Marine Formula™ on a rag and wiping the rubber off. If you have to spray directly onto thicker pieces of rubber, control any runs with a rag. A simple wipe with denatured or isopropyl alcohol and/or soap and water will stop the action. If Marine Formula™ is going to stay in contact with the painted surface for any length of time, put a drop of Marine Formula™ on an inconspicuous area for a few minutes to check for any softening. A wipe with a

soapy rag will clean it up. We have no problem with 99% of two-part marine paint but it is always better to be safe.

Q: What safety precautions should I use when I apply Marine Formula™?

A: First, this product should not be used around heat or flame. Remember that this aerosol can is under pressure. Do not puncture or incinerate the can even if you believe that it is empty. Do not store the product at temperatures above 120°F. Be sure to protect all surrounding areas and objects prior to spraying. Always use this product in a well ventilated area. If it is not possible to use the product in a well ventilated area, we recommend that you use NIOSH/MSHA approved Chemical/Mechanical type filter system to remove a combination or particles, gas and vapor. Use air line if necessary. Small amounts of the product on skin are generally not harmful. If the product comes into contact with skin you should wash the affected area with soap and water. Use rubber gloves to avoid skin contact. We recommend the use of safety glasses or goggles to protect eyes from contact with this product. In case of eye contact, immediately flush with water for at least 15 minutes. If irritation persists, get medical attention.