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Re: Rubber coating breaking down
Try it with rubbing alcohol first - just keep it away from the optics, and you may get lucky.
The only thing that ever seems to work with these is an abrasive cream cleaner (jif/cif or similar) - you just have to use lots of cream and be careful not to polish the optics - unfortunately the stickiness will come back quicker than before though.
I haven't tried myself, but i have heard that once you have carried out the cream cleaner routine, you can paint the unit - ask your hardware shop what sort of rubbery paints they have - ideally oil based and not acrylic. It wont last as long as the original finish or like quite as good, but it should stop the stickiness for a while at least.
Try and keep your binoculars out of the sun - most of the stickiness is either caused by that, or contact with a damaging chemical such as most insect repellents, or petroleum products.
Hope this helps :)
Tried everything but only this worked on mine ... I used degreaser (Purple Power specifically). Put the binoculars vertical on a table with paper towels under. Sprayed purple power on the rubber parts and let it sit for 10 to 15 minutes. Then, wiped off the black sticky stuff. Repeated once or twice more they were fixed. Finally, I wiped them down with alcohol (just for the heck of it really).
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Sounds like oils from your hands (or someones) over time has reacted to a coating on the radio. Try Isopropyl or denatured alcohol and paper towels and/or cotton balls. Do not be surprised if you loose the coating. The sticky is the body oils de-bonding abd breaking down the rubberized coating.
Many cameras and binoculars are covered with a sprayed on thin layer of rubber which breaks down after about 5 to ten years. It becomes very sticky and can be scratched off with a fingernail. This leaves a messy surface which can be cleaned off with methylated spirits. Other solvents will work like isopropyl alcahol but avoid using solvents like cellulose thinners or white spirit as this can attack the underlying plastic on some cameras.
Just cleaned mine this morning because it was so ridiculously sticky and dirty with great success with nail polish remover and cotton pads. Read this solution posted elsewhere but was worried about ruining the finish, and there are warnings on the bottle about not using it on plastics......but tried a bit on the back. Went very well and with a load of pads and alot of scrubbing, it came completely clean! No sticky residue left, no discolouration. Looks brand new!
1) Dead windows seals rubber that are no longer flexible and can break down to the point of being sticky rubber: replace the seals or as a temporary solution rub a bar of wet soap on the seals where the windows slide against.
2) Lack of lubrication in the windows winder mechanism: you will need to remove the doors handles & internal covering panel to get to the gears located in the doors cavity where the windows slide in.
I have the same problem with my Nikon N65 film SLR and I bought a vintage Super 8 movie camera where the rubber had turned to the consistency of gum on a side-walk on a hot summer day. On the a camera I carefully rubbed on a coat of talcum (which probably isn't the best thing to use on a camera but I was careful and it isn't something I do every day). I then took a small square I cut from an old terry towel and used friction and elbow grease to rub off the top layer of the rubber. I then took another square of the towel and dipped it in hot soapy water, squeezed out the excess and washed all that remained. I then took a small water-colour brushed (after I dried the surface of course), and dusted the surface of the rubber with talcum and let it sit overnight. This seemed to stop the derioration and clear off what had built up. The next day I took a very dry damp towell (if that makes sense) and wiped off the surface. It pretty much took care of that problem. That was the Nikon, it was only in the beginning stages, the Super 8 camera which had apparently hadn't been out of the case in 20 years. The Super 8 was so bad that I don't even know what had deteriorated, probably a rubber eye piece, that one was time consuming but basically I put the powder on carefully and just wiped big clumps off the metal eye piece. The powder just served to make it easy to clean up and kept it from turning into a 3 stooges farce with one thing sticking to the other and so on. Well, I hope this helps, I don't know why it works, maybe there's a chemist out there that can explain it to me. Good luck!!