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Recyled rubber dolls paint, dye ?or varnish Answered

I'm at the point of ripping my hair out with this one. Once apon a time I bought used doll and dyed them with RIT dye and got some great colors to use in various projects...(yes, my house is a bit on the creepy side). Lately, the dolls I have been finding, wont take the dye....maybe a new kind of rubber? Anyway, I want dolls that are blue. I painted a few with water based paint and then varnished them...several coats and they look pretty good but some of them flacked off...frustrating. I stripped those and bought some alcohol dyes and added that to varnish and painted them 5 days ago, putting a fan on them...cool color, but the varnish wont dry on the rubber and is now a tacky mess. Any chemistry geeks out there that can figure out a better way to get this "new rubber" to take color ? I am going to use some plastics spray paint as a last resort but I really want them to be durable and not flack or easily scratch...can I varnish over plastics spray paint...will there be another noxious chemical disaster if I spray plastics paint over rubber....help ?


I would kind of like to know what happens when you put a sample of this rubber in carb cleaner. It is possible that if the surface dissolves partially and becomes tacky that you could get it to take dye in this state. When the carb cleaner evaporates, the color might be fast. Depending on the rubber, it might melt entirely, not do anything, or never dry again. I can't treally say, but toxic fumes (beyond the toxicity of the carb cleaner fumes) are unlikely. If the rubber becomes tacky and never dries again, odds are you aren't allowed to put it in the trash, but it won't hurt you if you keep it on a shelf in the garage and don't use it as a chew toy.


Recyled rubber dolls paint, dye ?or varnish
how about:
Recyled rubber dolls pain, die ?or vanish
I'm so mean. I usually don't think like that.


9 years ago

Thanks for the response. part of the problem is that I don't know what each of the dolls are made of. I could probably do a google of the company to find out, but as I am still not familiar with chemistry..it probably wouldn't do me much good. I am going to go scruff up the skin with some large grit paper and use a spray paint (Valspar and Fusion for plastic and rubber), and see how that works. I think I will see what some Krylon Crystal Clear does...(beside creating toxic fumes). At least it will dry faster then varnish...that was a very bad idea,lol. Do you think I am going to create a toxic mess mixing all these chemicals?

no, but it may dissolve the "parts you paint over" and create quite a distortion effect :-) The Paint can fumes are bad enough however....

Hmm, synthetic rubber and vinyl don't soak up much in the way of liquids, and so dying them is particularly difficult. And of course, it also depends on what was used as the material: Neoprene, polyterpenes, ethylene-propylenes, etc. a resistant to weak acids and alkalines, but petroleum solvents are troublesome.