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Old 02-14-2009, 10:19 AM   #1
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Lightbulb Is Versamark a tougher clean-up then we might think.

Let me start by saying, I love Versamark and that is what has brought me to this place. Recently, I sponged versamark through a brass template so I could apply Heat & Stick to the image then glitter. Worked great, except...I couldn't get the versamark off the template. Not with stamp cleaner, not regular dishsoap, not even Comet would remove the Versamark from the brass. I finally used rubbing alcohol on a cotton ball.

Now, I've also been having trouble with my scrub pad. Seemed like no matter how many times I clean it with dishsoap, making sure it's rinsed very well, my stamps are always coming up grey & sticky.

So I cleaned it today with a solvent orange cleaner (you have to be careful with this stuff, I would never use it on directly on my stamps) The grey oily film that came out of it was surprising. My scrubber feels more like it's old soft self and I guess as long as I keep using a lot of Versamark, I'll be giving my scrubber a thorough cleaning once in a while.
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Old 02-14-2009, 11:15 AM   #2
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I agree. I did a bunch of embossed Christmas cards with the Snow Swirled tree. I had the darnest time getting all the VersaMark off it. Simple Green finally fixed it for me.
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Old 02-14-2009, 02:09 PM   #3
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I bought an extra scrub pad for Versamark clean up so my main scrub pad would not get gummed up. I also have a separate scrub pad for stamps when I use metallic stamp pads. One is just a Michael's/Joann's scrub pad because I needed it right away when I was going to do lots of gold stamping.

I, too, like to use Versamark but found that you need more 'elbow grease' to clean up.
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Old 02-14-2009, 02:19 PM   #4
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Here's a tip I got from the owner of a LSS: Use hair shampoo. Any brand will do so go for the cheap stuff.

I've been following that tip for a few years now. I try to get after it right away, but even stamps that had a Versamark build up over time came clean (I just soaked them for a while). I take an old soft toothbrush, put a tiny dab of shampoo on it, get it wet with water and brush it over the stamp surface. If it's "fresh", I'll clean it (with the toothbrush). If it's been on for a while, I'll let it sit and come back to it later.

HTH
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Old 02-14-2009, 03:15 PM   #5
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I like the shampoo idea, it's got to be a lot safer than the solvent cleaner.
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Old 02-14-2009, 04:27 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeaniebean55 View Post
Here's a tip I got from the owner of a LSS: Use hair shampoo. Any brand will do so go for the cheap stuff.

I've been following that tip for a few years now. I try to get after it right away, but even stamps that had a Versamark build up over time came clean (I just soaked them for a while). I take an old soft toothbrush, put a tiny dab of shampoo on it, get it wet with water and brush it over the stamp surface. If it's "fresh", I'll clean it (with the toothbrush). If it's been on for a while, I'll let it sit and come back to it later.

HTH
Thanks for passing on the great tip! I'll have to try shampoo!
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Old 02-14-2009, 07:08 PM   #7
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Great Idea
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Old 02-15-2009, 08:00 AM   #8
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Are you talking about the embossing stamp pad or black or some other color?

I used full strength Simple Green to get the embossing ink off my stamp pads, then clean them again with a good quality stamp cleaner.

I don't use the Versamark black but the SU black is pretty much the same way. Again, Simple Green, then a good stamp cleaner like SU or CTMH.

I clean my scrub pads just about every time I'm done using them with Simple Green, squeegie them to get most of the water out, then just let them air dry over night. It sure keeps them a lot nicer!

For about 3 years, I've been using the white paint pads attached to plastic lids, and I love them. I recently became a CTMH consultant and got their double scrub pad. I used it, all excited about having a "real" scrub pad. It took about three uses for me to decide I liked my cheapy paint pad scrubbers better! They're softer, don't seem to have a "direction" like the CTMH ones do, and they are easier to clean.
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Old 02-15-2009, 08:45 AM   #9
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I'm going to get some of those "white paint pads" and some shampoo or Simple Green to have handy for those extra clean-ups. I'm thinking anytime I use Versamark Embossing ink or pigment.
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Old 02-15-2009, 10:22 AM   #10
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When you buy the paint pads, they have a loop on two or three sides, and you can just cut them off with a pair of scissors so they lay flat on the lids.

I went to the dollar store, bought two containers with flat lids, then used two pads (I think each pad is about 3" x 5") on each lid for a bigger cleaning surface. I just used Scotch double stick tape to attach the pads to the lids.

Unless I'm cleaning acrylic stamps, I use about 1 teaspoon of Simple Green and fill an 8 oz. bottle with distilled water for the regular cleaning, but I use Simple Green full strength in a spray bottle for Versamark cleaning. I always follow up with good stamp cleaner for the versamark to keep the stamps in good condition.

Nice thing about using Simple Green, when it's time to clean my homemade scrubbers, I just run them under warm water and there's enough cleaner that I don't have to use anything else to get the pads clean!
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Old 02-15-2009, 10:51 AM   #11
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Thanks for the details. What do you do different if you're using acrylic stamps? Will Simple Green damage them?
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Old 02-21-2009, 06:16 AM   #12
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Thanks for all of the great ideas. I think these will help keep my regular scrubber clear. You are all so great!
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Old 02-21-2009, 08:07 AM   #13
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Ladies....if using the VersaMark with brass stencils, I would put the stencil in a dish of mild soap/shampoo and warm water immediately after using the stencil. That way the ink does not have a chance to harden on the stencil.

Also, the scrub pad you are using (no matter what kind or brand) should be cleaned after each session. I sometimes will clean mine in the middle of a session. Just blot it dry (or as much as possible) on a thick terrycloth bath or dish towel. A little bit of dampness, will not hurt anything.

To the best of my knowledge, the Stazon stamp cleaner is the strongest cleaner you can use. I have several bottles and use it all the time. I have never tried the other cleaners mentioned in this thread.

My comments apply to rubber stamps only. I have never tried anything other than a regular stamp cleaner on the acrylic stamps. I do many times just use mild dish soap on them too.

Patti
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Old 02-21-2009, 09:54 AM   #14
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I use my StazOn all purpose cleaner and baby wipes for both versamark and stazon ink. The paint pads work well as a scrubber too. I cut the tabs off and mounted it on the lid of my stamp cleaner, use it as the "cleaning" pad first then do a second wipe on the actual cleaning pad. My thinking was that the paint pad would take the most abuse and be less expencive to replace if needed. When I start to notice it's not cleaning or leaving residue I use diluted dish soap to give the whole thing a good cleansing, rinse well and dry by blotting with papertowels and leaving open to finish air drying. So far so good but I will keep the shampoo hint in mind should the dishsoap not cut it. TYFS
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Old 03-02-2009, 04:53 AM   #15
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i just got my first Versamark pad so it is nice to know to clean my stamps extra well. glad to know i can use cheap shampoo too!
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Old 03-02-2009, 08:03 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pjw2855 View Post
Ladies....if using the VersaMark with brass stencils, I would put the stencil in a dish of mild soap/shampoo and warm water immediately after using the stencil. That way the ink does not have a chance to harden on the stencil.

Patti
Patti, great tips, thanks!

Another help when using brass stencils with VersaMark is to rub your stencil with vegatable oil soap. This is a tip I learned from Dreamweaver when using stencil paste. I use coconut oil soap and I'm not sure why it has to be vegie oil soap, I imagine any soap bar soap might work. The soap coats the stencil keeping the VM from sticking. Clean up is a breeze.

To clean my stamps I use the homemade stamp cleaner and toothbrush. It does a great job.
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Old 03-02-2009, 10:05 AM   #17
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This last Christmas I got a bottle of Avon Bubble Bath with a photocopied list of all the household jobs Avon Bubble Bath is supposed to be great for. The other day I had a light bulb moment, I've mixed a 1/2 tsp. with 8 oz of water and I'm using it with the white paint pads I purchased to preclean any stamps that have been used with Versamark or pigment ink and I'm liking it so far.
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Old 12-11-2016, 02:05 PM   #18
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Thank you for the shampoo trick. It got the versamark off my stencil easily.
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Old 12-16-2016, 08:29 AM   #19
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My two cents. My versamark is my original about 9 years old. I have never encountered any of the problems here. I always stamp off no matter what ink or versamark I use. Then I use a alcohol free baby wipe to clean residue off stamp. If needed I use a soft toothbrush with mild soap and water. This is my normal routine for all my stamps. I have not used versamark on any stencils. Maybe a little obsessive but I like my stamps clean and may have only 2 /stamps that are a little stained due to what I believe was a bad brand of ink.

I wonder if they have changed the composition of versamark. As to the best of my memory I have not read about this problem here before......but I do stand to be corrected.
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Old 12-24-2016, 08:18 PM   #20
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Patti, great tips, thanks!

Another help when using brass stencils with VersaMark is to rub your stencil with vegatable oil soap. This is a tip I learned from Dreamweaver when using stencil paste. I use coconut oil soap and I'm not sure why it has to be vegie oil soap, I imagine any soap bar soap might work. The soap coats the stencil keeping the VM from sticking. Clean up is a breeze.

To clean my stamps I use the homemade stamp cleaner and toothbrush. It does a great job.
Oh thank you for this post. I bought the coconut oil soap and forgot why. Now I must get it out and use it.
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Old 12-24-2016, 09:12 PM   #21
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My two cents. My versamark is my original about 9 years old. I have never encountered any of the problems here. I always stamp off no matter what ink or versamark I use. Then I use a alcohol free baby wipe to clean residue off stamp. If needed I use a soft toothbrush with mild soap and water. This is my normal routine for all my stamps. I have not used versamark on any stencils. Maybe a little obsessive but I like my stamps clean and may have only 2 /stamps that are a little stained due to what I believe was a bad brand of ink.

I wonder if they have changed the composition of versamark. As to the best of my memory I have not read about this problem here before......but I do stand to be corrected.
I also wondered if it was changed. I don't have any trouble removing Versamark either, and don't ever use a toothbrush. : )

Except for the last few posts, this thread is from 2009.
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Old 12-26-2016, 07:29 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeaniebean55 View Post
Here's a tip I got from the owner of a LSS: Use hair shampoo. Any brand will do so go for the cheap stuff.

I've been following that tip for a few years now. I try to get after it right away, but even stamps that had a Versamark build up over time came clean (I just soaked them for a while). I take an old soft toothbrush, put a tiny dab of shampoo on it, get it wet with water and brush it over the stamp surface. If it's "fresh", I'll clean it (with the toothbrush). If it's been on for a while, I'll let it sit and come back to it later.

HTH
I use extra strength DAWN to clean up my messes of varies mediums on my stencils and stamps. I keep a rectangular plastic container with warm water and Dawn off to the side of my desktop. For scrubbing stencils I use a scour & sponge pad. As for stamps, I found a circular face scrubbing brush with handle at the $1 store that gently cleans them up.
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Old 12-26-2016, 07:36 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by canada goose View Post
My two cents. My versamark is my original about 9 years old. I have never encountered any of the problems here. I always stamp off no matter what ink or versamark I use. Then I use a alcohol free baby wipe to clean residue off stamp. If needed I use a soft toothbrush with mild soap and water. This is my normal routine for all my stamps. I have not used versamark on any stencils. Maybe a little obsessive but I like my stamps clean and may have only 2 /stamps that are a little stained due to what I believe was a bad brand of ink.

I wonder if they have changed the composition of versamark. As to the best of my memory I have not read about this problem here before......but I do stand to be corrected.
Not sure if they changed the formula over the years, I have a pad that is quite old, a new pad and reinker. To re-ink the older pad I use a small amount of vegetable glycerin. It gets the job done and cleans up easily (DAWN water scrub brush).
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Old 12-27-2016, 08:32 AM   #24
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I was only with wondering if they changed the formula for those that are having problems. Mine may be old but still keeps me happy with no problems as mentioned in op.
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