The splash of doom…

Or, HOW TO CLEAN BIRD MESS OFF YOUR COVER – without destroying it.

We’ve all had those days – come out to our car, bike, boat, only to find that a Seagull, and several of his mates have decided to use your pride and joy for target practice. Whats to be done? How to clean?

The definite DON’T’s.

Let’s assume that we are talking some sort of fabric cloth cover, either for a cockpit, sprayhood, sailcover, or whatever the issue might be. These tips also work for solid things like Cars and Bikes, but as I’m a COVERMAKER, I’m keeping it confined to what I know. So;

  1. Don’t Use a pressure washer at all.
  2. Refer to 1 – no pressure washers – ever.

The main reason for this is pressure washers will blast that horrible gritty sandy concotion out and through the fabric, even sanding away the surface on thick heavy PVC and other plastic coated material will destroy it’s integrity if you do it often enough.

And as for woven proofed fabric like Marine Acrylics, a pressure washer, or even a normal powerful hose will turn a fairly rain-proof polyester acrylic into something akin to cheese cloth, blowing the stuffing out of the fibres, in seconds. Don’t do it.

The easy Do’s.

So, how do you clean badly, or even lightly soiled covers? I’m glad you asked.

Firstly, marine acylics do not react kindly to hot water, so don’t be tempted to chuck the kettle over the mess as you try and stand back. The fibres of the cloth will shrink faster than a lambswool cardie in a boil wash.

You will need:

  • A bucket of hand-warm water with a little detergent or even non – bio laundry soap.
  • Kitchen roll.
  • Waste bag
  • soft scrubber like a soft nail brush
  • Marigold gloves to taste.

The Method;

  1. Soak a sheet or so of kitchen roll in the warm water.
  2. Drape this now wet sheet over the affected area. Press the sheet lightly into any of the ‘crevices’ of the poo.
  3. Leave for a few minutes.
    Allow the warm water vapour to ‘steam off’ the muck.
  4. After a few minutes, scoop off the sheet with some poo in it and dispose.
  5. Repeat till all the muck is removed.
  6. In desperation, you can use the nail brush to GENTLY scrub any remaining hard to shift bits using plenty of warm water, but only gently.

You will now have a clean cover which has retained all it’s fabric and not had the gritty bits eat away at the fabric.

Alternatively; you could hand the item into Pixie Marine Services. We can get anything washed professionally, and it will come back in a nice plastic bag, smelling of roses.
And not just covers. If you’ve any grimy stiff ropework, it works well for that too.

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