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Vinyl dye #2825915
09/28/20 06:20 AM
09/28/20 06:20 AM
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Metro Detroit
6PAX Offline OP
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For those who have used vinyl dyes, I could use some recommendations on products/methods based on your experience, particularly when doing a color change. I want to try this on a buddy seat. I would like to use a dye that actually penetrates into the vinyl rather than a paint that just sticks to the surface that might wear or flake off. Thanks in advance.

Re: Vinyl dye [Re: 6PAX] #2825937
09/28/20 08:13 AM
09/28/20 08:13 AM
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GMP440 Offline
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I have used the SEM brand of vinyl dyes. I have a 68 Coronet with a vinyl top. The color was fading away. I bought a quart of SEM vinyl dye and sprayed the vinyl top with it using a spray gun. It came out pretty good.
The vinyl dye lasted a long time. I sprayed the top in the late 90's. I just replaced the vinyl top in August of 2017. The dye still held for all those years and did not fade.

Re: Vinyl dye [Re: GMP440] #2825992
09/28/20 10:49 AM
09/28/20 10:49 AM
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375inStroke Offline
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I had good success using SEM also. I found a set of perfect '68 Charger seats in green. I had white interior. I had the paint shop mix up some white, or maybe they just gave me a can of white, can't remember, and they turned out great. Couldn't tell they were sprayed, even in the pleats. Prep is key. Who knows how much Armor All, silicones, or whatever is on there. I used trisodium phosphate and a Scotch Brite to scrub the seats down using plenty of water to actually flush all the contaminates away. Just wiping it with whatever solvent just dilutes what's on there. It didn't peel or wear off as long as I had the car, and it covered great, white over dark green.

Re: Vinyl dye [Re: 375inStroke] #2826026
09/28/20 12:15 PM
09/28/20 12:15 PM
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SEM is acknowledged as the best, but I've used a couple others over the years.
Generally door cards, a dash pad or two, and a couple vinyl tops.
On a few occasions, those were color changes, in others just refreshing the existing color.
Prep is most important: a thorough cleaning, wipe down with grease & wax remover, a LIGHT scuffing (3M grey pad).
30 years later, the interior stuff is still fine, zero issues.
The vinyl tops were outdoor cars in CA, maybe 5 years or so on those before I replaced the tops.

Re: Vinyl dye [Re: topside] #2826275
09/28/20 08:38 PM
09/28/20 08:38 PM
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Sonoran desert, Arizona, USA
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About 15 years ago, I sprayed my green upper door panels white with SEM vinyl dye. 15 years later, it still looks factory white. Prior to painting it, I scrubbed the panels with 409 and rinsed them really good. Probably gave them 2 or 3 coats. Don't remember which.

Re: Vinyl dye [Re: moparjo68] #2826343
09/29/20 06:02 AM
09/29/20 06:02 AM
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Gavin Offline
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I agree, it's about the prep. get everything REALLY clean, and then also use an adhesion promoter - I think SEM sells and recommends this, but I actually just used a mist of thinner in my application (tested it first) just to give the vinyl a bit of tack for the paint to adhere to. If you do the prep then I think there are any number of vinyl paints that will work. AFAIK, there really is no such thing as a vinyl dye to apply (even though some call themselves that) - they are all paints really.

Re: Vinyl dye [Re: moparjo68] #2826344
09/29/20 06:03 AM
09/29/20 06:03 AM
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I took a look at SEM's webpage. Is the dye you guys are referring to the marine vinyl dye or the color coat paint?

Re: Vinyl dye [Re: 6PAX] #2826345
09/29/20 06:17 AM
09/29/20 06:17 AM
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Production Paint Supply in the metro areas sells SEM products. They can even mix custom colors. They did a great job color matching the green interior on a 69 Charger I had. They sell a vinyl prep cleaner to wipe things down before you paint. Lasted as long as I had the car until I sold it, great stuff.

Re: Vinyl dye [Re: maximus] #2826356
09/29/20 07:21 AM
09/29/20 07:21 AM
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I’ve had great luck with SEM, I always use the cleaner and adhesion promoter.
Recently I used Herbs interior Dye and had excellent results, easy to spray and perfect color matches for MoPar colors. Liked it better than SEM in a can. Not sure if it’s available in quarts or not but good stuff. Again, use the adhesion promoter with it.

Re: Vinyl dye [Re: 65pacecar] #2826637
09/29/20 07:14 PM
09/29/20 07:14 PM
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Agreeing with what all have said. But I'm not sure I would use it in a high wear area. Why not just buy a new cover for the buddy seat ? beer

Re: Vinyl dye [Re: TJP] #2826663
09/29/20 08:24 PM
09/29/20 08:24 PM
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Originally Posted by TJP
Agreeing with what all have said. But I'm not sure I would use it in a high wear area. Why not just buy a new cover for the buddy seat ? beer


That would be my preference but I haven't been able to find anyone who sells them.

Re: Vinyl dye [Re: 6PAX] #2827087
09/30/20 07:53 PM
09/30/20 07:53 PM
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Originally Posted by 6PAX
Originally Posted by TJP
Agreeing with what all have said. But I'm not sure I would use it in a high wear area. Why not just buy a new cover for the buddy seat ? beer


That would be my preference but I haven't been able to find anyone who sells them.


What kind of car ??

Re: Vinyl dye [Re: TJP] #2827130
09/30/20 08:47 PM
09/30/20 08:47 PM
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Originally Posted by TJP
What kind of car ??


I need it for a 1975 Valiant buddy seat. I have been looking for a nice black A-body buddy seat that doesn't need recovering but I haven't been able to find one. I have found several in other colors though which is why I was considering trying to dye one.

Re: Vinyl dye [Re: TJP] #2827135
09/30/20 09:06 PM
09/30/20 09:06 PM
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Originally Posted by TJP
... I'm not sure I would use it in a high wear area. Why not just buy a new cover for the buddy seat ? beer


I used the SEM vinyl prep and rattle can color on my 65's door arm rest pads. I changed color from Teal to Gold...

That was 7 years and 4,000 miles ago, and there is no sign of any fading, wear-through or any hint of the Teal coming through.. pretty amazing for rattle can product.
- Art


Last edited by 67SATisfaction; 09/30/20 09:07 PM.

1965 Satellite hardtop 361/2bbl, console 727, open 2.76
1967 Satellite convert 383/4bbl, column 727, open 3.23
1975 Maserati Bora, US spec 4.9L DOHC hemi V8, 5-spd ZF man
1977 Maserati Khamsin, Euro spec 4.9L DOHC hemi V8, 5-spd ZF man
1982 Alfa Romeo GTV6, 2.5L SOHC hemi V6, 5-spd man transaxle
2007 Aston Martin DB9, 6.0L DOHC V12, 6spd man transaxle
Re: Vinyl dye [Re: 6PAX] #2827576
10/01/20 07:31 PM
10/01/20 07:31 PM
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I'm assuming you tried legendary ??? maybe a local shop could make one shruggy beer

Re: Vinyl dye [Re: TJP] #2827733
10/02/20 07:32 AM
10/02/20 07:32 AM
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I looked on their website and didn't see any. I talked to the guy I've used on upholstery, vinyl tops, etc. in the past and he told me he would charge $250 to make one but I would rather try doing a dye job than spend that much. The other option I have is that I have a nice black b-body buddy seat that I could try and see if it fits once I get the bucket seats in the car. I know the b-body buddy seat is a little wider but at this point I don't know if it would be too wide to fit between the seats in my Dart since I don't have the seats in the car yet. I would also have to make custom floor brackets but that wouldn't be a problem. I would however rather just go with an a-body seat so I think I will try dyeing one and see how it turns out.

Re: Vinyl dye [Re: 6PAX] #2827959
10/02/20 03:21 PM
10/02/20 03:21 PM
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SEM is a great product. If you are going from any color to black, you will be fine, and the good deal is you can rattle can if you like, but I recommend buying it in a half quart and squirting it with a detail gun. It goes on fantastic. The only thing I can say regarding how well it will last is that those buddy seats take a heck of a lot of wear, rubbing against the seats every time it's lowered and raised. If it's on a weekend cruiser, you will be good. Daily driver, hmmmmm. Here's my recipe.

Do this on a warm day. let the vinyl get warm.
Clean it with POR Marine Clean, scrubbing with a green 3m pad. The stuff will clean the spots off a leopard.
Let it dry completely.
Shoot with SEM Surface Prep so the surface becomes noticeably "Wet".
IMMEDIATELY follow up with a fog coat of Color Coat.
Follow up with 2 more coats at 5-10 minute intervals.

You'll be amazed how well you can still see the grain in the vinyl. The stuff is great.


I’m listening.






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