• Welcome to The Upholster.com Forum. Please login or sign up.
July 07, 2020, 12:30:29 am


Welcome to our new upholstery forum with an updated theme and improved functionality. We welcome your comments and questions to our forum! Visit our main website, Upholster.com, for our extensive supply of upholstery products, instructional information and videos, and much more.

removing ink from vinyl

Started by lizzieb, May 10, 2016, 04:32:36 pm

Previous topic - Next topic


Help!  I am working on a boat seat and inadvertently got ink on the vinyl (about a dime size now) - it was just a few dots then I tried to use Goof Off on it and it spread a little - also the Goof Off is taking part of the vinyl with it.  What's the best stuff to use?  Or is it hopeless?

Virgs Sew n Sew

May be hopeless.  I've used a combination of things to get sharpee ink off boat vinyl with good results.  I used Dawn dishwashing liquid straight and gently rubbed it in.  Left it in for a while and then gently rubbed it off.  Then went to Dow Scrubbing Bubbles (we work hard so you won't have to .. glug glug glug).  Did the same drill.  That took off most of it.  I continued to alternate several times and finally got it down to a teeny little dot that looked like a tiny fleck of dirt and called it good enough.

Didn't try it but was going to also use a toothpaste rub but felt like Dawn and Scrubbing Bubbles did their job.

I now move all pens, felt tip markers, etc way far away from my vinyl when cutting and sewing.  Makes life much easier.

Fuck this place.


One of the main solvents of Sharpie is alcohol.  I have used denatured alcohol (DNA) to remove Sharpie from wood and it works wonders.  Dampen a rag with it and lightly pad with touch-and-go motion.  (Just don't use it on anything where the finish is shellac as that is also its solvent.   Also really old lacquer can succumb to DNA). 

I have not used it on leather/vinyl in many years and Methanol (the denaturant in DNA) can strip some leather finishes.  My leather kit had isopropol alcohol in it as a leather cleaner.    So testing on scrap before trying on your vinyl is in order.

The other solvent, at least on  black Sharpie, is glycol ether, but it's not as easily available, and I am not sure what it might do to vinyl.   It's the co-solvent in water-based finishes.  Sometimes sold as Cellusolve.

See FAQs #13 and #15 http://www.sharpie.com/en-US/sharpie-faqs#QuestionAnswers_64013

"Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work." Thomas A. Edison


I've had  luck with lacquer thinner. Sometimes only making the marker blemish lighter which is some help.  You must go easy - work mostly dry.  If it doesn't come all the way out I would color over using vinyl paints.