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JeffB

How to remove the plastic backing from patches

39 posts in this topic

Here is my method for removing the hard plastic backing from patches. These are the patches that come from National Emblem and have the warning label on the back.

Step1A.jpg

Most patches have a thin layer of flexible backing to seal the threads so they won't unravel and to keep the backing material from fraying around the edges. These can be sewn as is and do not need to have the backing removed.

Step 1 - First, read the warning label on the back and laugh at the part where it says putting the patch on a jersey will ruin it's value. Then, take a sharp knife and cut an "x" in the plastic, being careful to not cut all the way through the plastic and into the patch itself.

Step1B.jpg

Step2A.jpg

Step 2 - Fold the patch along the cuts to get the plastic to start to loosen from the patch.

Step2B.jpg

Step 3 - Boil the patch. Ten minutes should get the job done.

Step3A.jpg

Step 4 - Take a needle nose pliers and grab the point of one of the pieces of plastic and twist the plastic back on itself toward the outer edge of the patch. If you have boiled it long enough, you may even get a second piece off during this step.

Step4A.jpg

Step4B.jpg

Step 5 - Return the patch to the boiling water once it cools too much to get any more pieces off and, after another 5-10 minutes, repeat the removal steps by again grabbing the point of the plastic in the center of the patch and twisting if off towards the outer edge.

Step4D.jpg

Step 6 - Once all the plastic is off, scrape off as much of the warning sticker that remains and blot the patch dry with a paper towel. I make a habit of putting it under a stack of books or heavy cardboard box to flatten it while it dries. Once this is done, your newly flexible (but now devoid of "collectible value") patch is ready to be sewn on any jersey, which will only increase the jersey's collectible value.

Step5A.jpg

Step5B.jpg

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Nicely done! You forgot the salt and pepper to taste :lol: Seriously though great way to get the job done. :thumbsup:

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I used this exact method on a 2006 SCF patch yesterday and is worked like a charm...couldn't be easier!

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Another tip I'll throw in, even if your pot comes out of the cupboard it doesn't mean it's 100% clean >_< almost ruined my Jets inaugural season patch because when I started boiling it there was a reddish film around the whole edge of the patch. Luckily oxyclean and a toothbrush saved the day! Scrub your pot by hand before boiling kids !!!

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I was talking with a staff person at a local team's store - she said that she microwaves patches to heat them up before removing the plastic. Has anyone else tried this?

Wayne

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I was talking with a staff person at a local team's store - she said that she microwaves patches to heat them up before removing the plastic. Has anyone else tried this?

Wayne

I tried this one with a Colorado Avalanche 10th anniversary patch that had metallic threads. Within 10 seconds they reacted badly to being microwaved and left burn marks on my patch, ruining it.

Based on that experience, I wouldn't do that ever again.

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I just used this method on a Jets inaugural season patch and it worked great. I cut an X deep enough so that I could pull the plastic back from the sticker under the plastic. Again be careful cutting so that you barely start to scratch the sticker to get an edge you can grab and pull once the glue and plastic soften makes it a lot easier. Only thing I can add is to take you time removing the plastic, as a lot of threads from the patch will want to stick to the glue on the plastic. Take your time removing the threads from the plastic so they don't pull as you remove the plastic. On large patches, you might not be able to pull all the plastic off on the first try, so return it to the boiling water for a minute or two and then take it out and work on removing the plastic again. Taking your time will ensure the glue will be soften enough at all times to come off cleanly. Also once I had the water boiling, I turn the heat down to medium low to just keep a rolling boil. No need to keep the heat on full blast. If you use a small saucepan, you will be surprise how quickly the water boils off if you have your heat too high. After I was done cleaning off as much of the warning sticker off, I put the patch on a clean towel, folded the towel over it, then put a cast iron skillet on top of it to flatten it out. Don't use paper towels as there is any adhesive on the patch, the paper will stick to it. Big thanks to JeffB for developing such an effective method.

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I actually just removed the backing from a baseball patch with the iron method. Paper towel folded over once on top of the patch with an iron on it for five minutes. Softened the glue right up and the whole backing came off in one easy go. I think I may prefer this to the boiling method now days. I just had to remember to set my alarm on my phone so I wouldn't space it out while the five minutes was going on.

No matter what, I'll never microwave one again!

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I actually just removed the backing from a baseball patch with the iron method. Paper towel folded over once on top of the patch with an iron on it for five minutes. Softened the glue right up and the whole backing came off in one easy go. I think I may prefer this to the boiling method now days. I just had to remember to set my alarm on my phone so I wouldn't space it out while the five minutes was going on.

No matter what, I'll never microwave one again!

Thanks JeffB. I'll try that on my Red Wings patch tonight. It's size and shape had me worried how I was going to do it using the boiling method.

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Iron method, and fast hands get my vote!

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Do I need to remove the plastic back from this or can I just sew it down? It doesn't bend too easily.

IMG_20120501_181742.jpg

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I think that is glue...you should be good! Where's my 85th :P

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Here is my method for removing the hard plastic backing from patches. These are the patches that come from National Emblem and have the warning label on the back.

Most patches have a thin layer of flexible backing to seal the threads so they won't unravel and to keep the backing material from fraying around the edges. These can be sewn as is and do not need to have the backing removed.

Step 1 - First, read the warning label on the back and laugh at the part where it says putting the patch on a jersey will ruin it's value. Then, take a sharp knife and cut an "x" in the plastic, being careful to not cut all the way through the plastic and into the patch itself.

Step 2 - Fold the patch along the cuts to get the plastic to start to loosen from the patch.

Step 3 - Boil the patch. Ten minutes should get the job done.

Step 4 - Take a needle nose pliers and grab the point of one of the pieces of plastic and twist the plastic back on itself toward the outer edge of the patch. If you have boiled it long enough, you may even get a second piece off during this step.

Step 5 - Return the patch to the boiling water once it cools too much to get any more pieces off and, after another 5-10 minutes, repeat the removal steps by again grabbing the point of the plastic in the center of the patch and twisting if off towards the outer edge.

Step 6 - Once all the plastic is off, scrape off as much of the warning sticker that remains and blot the patch dry with a paper towel. I make a habit of putting it under a stack of books or heavy cardboard box to flatten it while it dries. Once this is done, your newly flexible (but now devoid of "collectible value") patch is ready to be sewn on any jersey, which will only increase the jersey's collectible value.

This worked like a charm for my Helsinki Premier patch. Make the cuts then fold and the plastic will crack. My fell off within five minutes in boiling water.

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Has anybody had to do this with the NYR 85th patch? The more I look at it and play around with it the more I feel like I don't need to do this. The plastic on the back of this one feels very thin, almost like I can feel the stitching through it. I don't think I can cut it off.

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Do pro teams take the plastic off or see on as is

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The patches pro teams get normally don't have the hard plastic backing.

The hard plastic backing is on the retail versions of patches normally sold by National Emblem as an NHL "collectible".

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So definately take take the plastic off to make them more authentic. Guessing the plastic for retail is on there to display the patches instead of putting them on the jerseys

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Nothing like beating a dead horse, but I just attempted this for the first time and it worked. I'm left with some loose threads on the back of the patch because the ###### thing must have been stored in heat. The adhesive was sealed to the backing when I took it out of the plastic, but it's no big deal. Nobody's going to see the back of the patch anyway. Glad this method worked.

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Hi Guys,

I've got another method that is pretty reliable and doesn't involve boiling or microwaving. Takes about 5-10 mins.

I use a standard Heat Gun http://www.amazon.com/Wagner-Power-Products-503008-200-watt/dp/B00004TUCV

and set it on low. Important to use low, otherwise, you'll burn the patch.

I heat up the plastic backing EVENLY, until it starts to soften, (and get very hot). You can notice when it's starting to melt.

Then I take a blade or a sharp edge to separate the plastic from the patch, and then I pull the whole thing off.

The plastic cools rather quickly, so make sure it's nice and hot, then work quickly.

If the entire backing isn't soft enough to remove, keep at it, making sure to heat it ALL up slowly, careful not to burn the patch edges.

The heat does two things, softens the plastic and melts the adhesive.

After it comes off, the plastic cools and you have your patch, ready to be applied to your jersey.

Let me know if anyone needs a video, as I have a 2008 patch I haven't yet liberated.

S

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Necrothread revival.

I know this forum loves Goof Off, has anyone tried that for the removal of the hard plastic backing? seems easy enough, but so does boiling/ironing.

Thanks in advance!

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The boiling method is beyond easy, just did it with one not even a week ago. Just make sure you have a sharp razor blade and don't cut too deep, I usually make 4-5 light passes over the plastic rather than one heavy pass to ensure that. Really no reason to try anything else and risk damaging it somehow.

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Don't try to reinvent the wheel. Boiling works. Just do that.

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A regular clothing iron works just as well, no boiling necessary.

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I did the boiling method on a patch for a jersey. Super easy, super quick. I had a small sauce pan I used and got the water rocking boiling, did the X cutting and had a pair of needle nose pliers. Dipped it in and it reminded me of those plastic things you put in the oven that would shrink when I was a kid. I just grabbed each piece of plastic and they basically took no effort to come off. Maybe, 5 minutes invested and most of that was waiting for the water to boil.

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