Are all Hotmelt frames a sticky mess?!?

bcart1991

Professional
I've bought a couple Dunlop Hotmelt-era frames (200 and 400) recently, and both have been an awful, sticky, gummy mess. The paint is fine, just the outer "coating" they put on them is just terrible.

Has anyone easily removed it? How? Normal solvents aren't working.
 

beltsman

Legend
I've bought a couple Dunlop Hotmelt-era frames (200 and 400) recently, and both have been an awful, sticky, gummy mess. The paint is fine, just the outer "coating" they put on them is just terrible.

Has anyone easily removed it? How? Normal solvents aren't working.
What is the coating and why is it there?
 

Yoneyama

Hall of Fame
I resprayed a hotmelt 200g years ago for a bit of fun. To remove the gummy mess which I also had I initially used bug&tar remover which was made for cleaning cars. Worked really well. I ended up paint stripping the whole thing in the end though.
 

dak95_00

Hall of Fame
Many racquets have this problem. Rubbing alcohol or any alcohol based cleaner will do the trick with the use of a good ol’ rag/towel and elbow grease. I actually have a newer Head Gravity that’s gotten grimy. I think it’s just a combination of humidity, sweat, age, and nastiness that’s collected.
 

mhkeuns

Hall of Fame
Having the same issue with the i.Prestige Mid. What an ugly mess that soft paint thing actually is. Hoping the latest Wilson paint jobs don’t follow the same fate.
 

Ronaldo

Bionic Poster
Having the same issue with the i.Prestige Mid. What an ugly mess that soft paint thing actually is. Hoping the latest Wilson paint jobs don’t follow the same fate.
Plastidip those puppies. Have an iPrestige mid without this problem. iPrestige mp xl with that peeling paint
 
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Ronaldo

Bionic Poster
I carefully used lacquer thinner on paper towels to remove the deteriorating rubber coating on a Prince Triple Threat, took a long time but it came out very well.
Forgotabout that rubbery coating on the TT Graphites. Noticed the same on a Prince More Thunder
 
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graycrait

Hall of Fame
Have you tried Goof-Off?
I quite often delve into the bowels of the big auction site for old graphite rackets. Goof-Off is a must, Goo-Gone is lame. I have never had an issue with Goof-Off. I often use it to clean up old handles where the base grip has deteriorated and often leaves a sticky mess. I also snagged an 8/10 original Bumble Bee OS that l saw on the auction site that looked terrible but on close examination I thought that stick looks like it is covered in crease or something. Got it for a song and Goof-Off cleaned it right up.
 

mclee025

Rookie
This kind of rubberized surface is found on a lot of other things from that era and also end up as a sticky mess. In addition to other things, I had a bunch of racquets with this issue, including a few hotmelts. I cleaned it up by scraping it off with kitchen scrubbers (scrubber like scotch brite) lubed with water and soap. The racquets cleaned up just fine -- they looked good afterwards -- with a bit of effort and the gunk is left on the scrubbers (so they are effectively ruined). If I was to do it again, I'd do the same and also try alcohol as a solvent to see if that helps as suggested in previous posts.
 

BumElbow

Rookie
I have a pair of Prince More Performance frames with the same problem. They are sticky to the touch. I don't use them - the frames are just too light, stiff and unnecessarily sticky!
 

Dakota60

Rookie
The Hotmelt was indeed a Hot Mess! Loved the way they played but hated holding it with my non-dominant hand. I ended up scraping off the top rubber coat and sending it for a gloss clear coat. Here are my 100G's and 200G's post gloss with prostock vibes all over. haha... Plays similarly as before but SO MUCH NICER to look at and hold.

You can try using an alcohol swab to rub it down but that will take a while but the finish won't be even. It will show a semi-gloss finish underneath the rubber top coat. I simply scraped mine off with a metal ruler and the clear coat will fill the scratched up parts nicely.



Before & After

 
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Haasquet

Rookie
The Hotmelt was indeed a Hot Mess! Loved the way they played but hated holding it with my non-dominant hand. I ended up scraping off the top rubber coat and sending it for a gloss clear coat. Here are my 100G's and 200G's post gloss with prostock vibes all over. haha... Plays similarly as before but SO MUCH NICER to look at and hold.

You can try using an alcohol swab to rub it down but that will take a while but the finish won't be even. It will show a semi-gloss finish underneath the rubber top coat. I simply scraped mine off with a metal ruler and the clear coat will fill the scratched up parts nicely.



Before & After

Those looks so good in gloss. Nice work! Do you have any photos post-alcohol, but pre-gloss? The reason I asked earlier in the thread if they were already gloss is that I bought a (well-) used Hotmelt Custom Pro squash racquet (which also uses the black/yellow cosmetic of the 200G), that looked to have had most of the rubber removed, and it was gloss wherever the rubber was gone. There were still plenty of spots where there were bits of the rubber left, so I assumed that whoever owned it just peeled off the rubber as it deteriorated, but had clearly not re-glossed it himself. It didn't look like a project; it just looked like there was a nice gloss finish under the rubber paint.

I don't own any more Hotmelt tennis racquets (used to use the 300G), but I've got a bunch of old Hotmelt Jonathon Power squash racquets (which also use the black/yellow), and I'm definitely going to try this process on the ones that have deteriorating paint. Oddly, two of them have basically not peeled at all.
 

Dakota60

Rookie
Those looks so good in gloss. Nice work! Do you have any photos post-alcohol, but pre-gloss? The reason I asked earlier in the thread if they were already gloss is that I bought a (well-) used Hotmelt Custom Pro squash racquet (which also uses the black/yellow cosmetic of the 200G), that looked to have had most of the rubber removed, and it was gloss wherever the rubber was gone. There were still plenty of spots where there were bits of the rubber left, so I assumed that whoever owned it just peeled off the rubber as it deteriorated, but had clearly not re-glossed it himself. It didn't look like a project; it just looked like there was a nice gloss finish under the rubber paint.

I don't own any more Hotmelt tennis racquets (used to use the 300G), but I've got a bunch of old Hotmelt Jonathon Power squash racquets (which also use the black/yellow), and I'm definitely going to try this process on the ones that have deteriorating paint. Oddly, two of them have basically not peeled at all.


I only have this one. For me, there were always spots around the frame that didn't come off no matter how hard or often I rubbed it off with alcohol. This was before I used the scrapping method, which was much faster and effective - still used alcohol to soften the rubber coating though, seemed to help a little. There will also be some fine scratch marks on the gloss after the rubber coat is removed so don't expect it to look smooth.
 

coachrick

Hall of Fame
Hot melt is a hot mess. Tried Goo Gone, alcohol, and other stuff. Mostly still there.

Marginally worse was the decades-old grip that disintegrated in my hand...
I've started a thread about the dissolving vintage grips. I'm thinking a "sheet" of tape(cloth?) wrapped around the entire handle, then sliced off with a razor knife will be a reasonable approach.

It's worse than the Greenie Grips of 40 years ago that left pine tar all over your hands after installation(and those were VERY popular in the shop where I worked in the '80s).
 
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