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Old 21 May 2013, 16:41   #1
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Brittle Zodiac Needs Moisturiser

I have a problem with my Dads tender. He lives out in Spain and tows his tender around behind his rag and string boat and its been in and out of the water for about 6 years of near constant use. Its a Zodiac 3.1m with an air deck. Hes never deflated it in about 5 or 6 years until Saturday and that's when the problems began.

When he tried to roll it up, it was stiff as a board and as he started to roll it the seams started to come apart. I assume that its got some PVC degredation (Its not sun damage, its always has a cover) and the material has gone brittle.

I'm sending him some 3m Conditioner, but is there anything better to purely moisturise it ? Not worried about appearance at this point.

Since the forum Fairy Power Spray tip was fantastic I was wandering if anyone had fantastic success with Oil Of Ulay or Loreal Hair Conditioner etc
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Old 21 May 2013, 16:51   #2
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No chance, Hypalon not PVC. Surprised it lasted that long in the salt and Spanish sun. It's a killer.
It must be white by now.
Send your dad another Zody, funnily enough though, sun cream will help. Factor 50 will stop the tubes degrading.......but you have to keep applying it.
It works on everything else the same way it does on skin.........it's a filter.
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Old 21 May 2013, 17:10   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Landlockedpirate View Post
I assume that its got some PVC degredation (Its not sun damage, its always has a cover) and the material has gone brittle.
PVC is naturally quite stiff / brittle (like uPVC windows) - but plasticisers are added to make it flexible [plasticisers are small molecules which get between the much larger PVC molecules and effectively soften them]. Over time plasticisers can migrate out of the material and it reverts to being 'hard'.

I've never heard anyone here suggesting you could reverse the process by adding more plasticiser - in theory it might be possible.
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Old 21 May 2013, 17:30   #4
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No chance, Hypalon not PVC. Surprised it lasted that long in the salt and Spanish sun. It's a killer.
It must be white by now.
Send your dad another Zody, funnily enough though, sun cream will help. Factor 50 will stop the tubes degrading.......but you have to keep applying it.
It works on everything else the same way it does on skin.........it's a filter.
Cheers, its had a good run, got over 10 years out of it, time for a new one. Good tip about the Suncream, never thought of that.
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Old 21 May 2013, 17:34   #5
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PVC is naturally quite stiff / brittle (like uPVC windows) - but plasticisers are added to make it flexible [plasticisers are small molecules which get between the much larger PVC molecules and effectively soften them]. Over time plasticisers can migrate out of the material and it reverts to being 'hard'.

I've never heard anyone here suggesting you could reverse the process by adding more plasticiser - in theory it might be possible.
Thanks, I had no idea thats what happened. Time for a new one I think.
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Old 21 May 2013, 18:47   #6
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Nothing is eternal, including inflatables. That's why you should sell and change your PVC inflatable each 5 years. Don't wait untill parts become unglue or tube seams fall apart. 303 Aerospace Protectant, UV-SPS 40 inhibitor protects fantastic PVC fabrics.

Happy Boating
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Old 22 May 2013, 11:24   #7
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Originally Posted by Poly View Post
PVC is naturally quite stiff / brittle (like uPVC windows) - but plasticisers are added to make it flexible [plasticisers are small molecules which get between the much larger PVC molecules and effectively soften them]. Over time plasticisers can migrate out of the material and it reverts to being 'hard'.

I've never heard anyone here suggesting you could reverse the process by adding more plasticiser - in theory it might be possible.
That haze or film you find on the inside of your car windows (especially if you live in hot climates) is the plasticizer from the soft plastic bits used on the car interior. As the material ages, the haze on the windows stops happening. There used to be some products that were supposed to revitalize the plastics by reapplying a plasticizer. However, this generally only worked for the surface of the material and didn't really penetrate. Plus you ended up getting the window film all over again.

The UV in sunlight will molecularly break down the PVC. The plasticizer also dissipates over time. Heat will accelerate this. So even if you protect the PVC from UV, it will eventually get stiff and brittle just from sitting there. However, if unprotected, the UV will break down the PVC much faster than the plasticizer dissipates.
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Old 22 May 2013, 12:40   #8
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That haze or film you find on the inside of your car windows (especially if you live in hot climates) is the plasticizer from the soft plastic bits used on the car interior. As the material ages, the haze on the windows stops happening. There used to be some products that were supposed to revitalize the plastics by reapplying a plasticizer. However, this generally only worked for the surface of the material and didn't really penetrate. Plus you ended up getting the window film all over again.

The UV in sunlight will molecularly break down the PVC. The plasticizer also dissipates over time. Heat will accelerate this. So even if you protect the PVC from UV, it will eventually get stiff and brittle just from sitting there. However, if unprotected, the UV will break down the PVC much faster than the plasticizer dissipates.
I never found chemistry this interesting in school . Cheers, have told Dad to bin it and I will find him a new one, it was always a bit big anyway.
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