How to get masking tape residue off wood? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-10-2005, 07:14 PM Thread Starter
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How to get masking tape residue off wood?

I am building a DIY plywood/epoxy/arylic tank. I taped off all the exposed cherry wood and plywood before any of the epoxy or paint went on to protect the wood, but now that I want to remove the tape, it is difficult to remove and there is lots of sticky residue. What to do?

I should have used painters tape, but hindsight is 20/20

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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-10-2005, 07:24 PM
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Is there a finish on the plywood? If not you can just sand it off with a finishing sander. If there is a finish on the wood then you can use some Goo-Gone, or other citrus-based adhesive remover.

óBill

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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-10-2005, 07:24 PM
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Goo gone for sure!

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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-10-2005, 07:50 PM
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Goo gone for sure!
Not if its unfinished wood. The wood would soak it up and the oil in the goo gone probably would not come out. If it's unfinished wood, try sanding it
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-10-2005, 07:52 PM
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Ah good point, I didn't think about that.

Sanding it should do the job nicely if it is unfinished.

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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-10-2005, 08:24 PM Thread Starter
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It is unfinished. I tried sanding a small portion of it with a medium grit sponge sanding block and it just seemed to darker. I might have to strip all the tape off, let the adhesive dry then sand it all off

Do you think that acetone would hurt the finish of the wood? I have plenty of that and I know that it is good for getting old stickers & labels off.

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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-10-2005, 09:11 PM
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I don't know about acetone, but you can try some denatured alcohol. It'll raise the grain so you'll end up having to sand again anyway.

As for straight sanding, you just need to keep at it. The adhesive will initially pick up all the sanding dust but will eventually lose its stickiness and come off. You need to remover as much of the tape itself just to save on the sandpaper wear.

óBill

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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-10-2005, 09:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matak
It is unfinished. I tried sanding a small portion of it with a medium grit sponge sanding block and it just seemed to darker. I might have to strip all the tape off, let the adhesive dry then sand it all off

Do you think that acetone would hurt the finish of the wood? I have plenty of that and I know that it is good for getting old stickers & labels off.
Just keep sanding, it will come off, it takes a little to get it off with a finishing sander, Do not use the acetone, if you stain and finish it, you will see where you rubbed it with the acetone, if you have every made furniture and never got the glue sanded the excess glue out of the joints, that is what it will look like where the acetone was, maybe not quite as bad but noticable


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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-10-2005, 09:40 PM Thread Starter
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Good advice guys, thanks.

Would you recomend hand sanding with a sanding block, or an orbital sander? Or does it not matter?

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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-10-2005, 09:48 PM
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Use the sanding block to get the bulk of it off so you don't waste the sanding disks for the orbital. Just use a light touch so you don't make a divot with the sanding block.

óBill

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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-12-2005, 07:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matak
It is unfinished. I tried sanding a small portion of it with a medium grit sponge sanding block and it just seemed to darker. I might have to strip all the tape off, let the adhesive dry then sand it all off

Do you think that acetone would hurt the finish of the wood? I have plenty of that and I know that it is good for getting old stickers & labels off.
Acetone will work fine for removing the residue on the wood. It is actually the main ingredient in a lot of "commercial" wood fillers since it dries very fast. The only issue you may have with the acetone is that it may deposit some of the residue in the larger pore spaces in species like Red/White Oak, Ash, etc. Cherry is pretty tight grained and should not pose a problem.

I worked in a cabinet shop for many years and one of the ways to check for excess glue squeeze out was to rub down the piece(s) in question with either Lacquer Thinner or Acetone since they both dry very fast. Any woodworking glue on the surface will stick out like a sore thumb! This method is also good for spotting an uneven sanding job before finishing as the poorly sanded part will show up darker than the surrounding areas.

If you try the acetone, give the whole piece a light sanding afterwords as it may raise the grain a bit. As previously mentioned, denatured alcohol will work also, just remember to sand afterwards...

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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-13-2005, 03:47 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks Matt, you probably saved me endless hours of elbow grease. That is also good news as there may be some epoxy bleeding through the tape and acetone is a good epoxy solvent.

Steve

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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-13-2005, 04:38 PM
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If the tape is still on, try heating it with a hair dryer or heat gun before you pull it off, this softens the adheasive allowing for eaiser removal.
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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-13-2005, 05:51 PM Thread Starter
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Good plan. That will make it easier to lift and will soften the epoxy that is stuck to it as well.

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