How To Dye A Grey Aerostich Roadcrafter Black - Kind of?

Discussion in 'Equipment' started by TommyBBQ, Jul 8, 2017.

  1. hamiamham

    hamiamham Been here awhile

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    Maybe I missed it but why the vinegar?
    #21
  2. 16VGTIDave

    16VGTIDave Reaver made me do it...

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    Some dyes are set using an acid. Vinegar is easy to get and works well enough. It has something to do with opening pores and allowing the dye to enter the surface of the individual fibers. My wife dyes wool yarns for knitting. She used to use vinegar, but now uses citric acid which is available as a powder at most bulk food stores.
    #22
  3. sprouty115

    sprouty115 Long timer Supporter

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    Thought I might add my experience to the thread.

    Tl;dr - much happier with the new color black/very dark blue, though no one will confuse this with an actual factory-dyed garment.

    First, I had the same grey R3 that the OP did, only mine was trending grey/green as it got older and I wasn't digging it (the color).

    1 - went to the store and bought 10 packs of Rit black dye (powdered version, not the liquid), a bottle of white vinegar and a 32gallon rubbermaid container. (should have also bought dishwashing gloves...you can guess the results without them)

    2 - removed all padding from the suit and washed it twice with no-fragrance/softener detergent.

    3 - Dumped the dye in the container and then found the biggest pot we had (22quart), filled it to the top with water and heated it up on the stove. Once it was boiling I dumped it into the container along with a second 22quarts of hot tap water. Added 4 cups of vinegar and stirred it all up.

    4 - took the still wet suit and dropped it in the tub with the dye and poked at it with the other end of a broom stick. At this point I realized I could have used another 22qts of water, because the suit wouldn't stay fully submerged under the water.

    5 - left in there for about 30 mins and then pulled it out. Probably should have figured out where I was going to let it hang to dry before that but...

    6 - about 5hrs later it looked mostly black and it was mostly dry, so I decided to bring it inside for the night. And that's when I realized there were about 200 honey bees buzzing all around and a whole bunch more on the suit. I have no idea what they were attracted to, but I thankful they weren't aggressive as I quickly walked away with my suit and a trail of bees.

    7 - the next day I decided I would give it one more dunk in the dye to see if I could get it a little more black. So the suit went into the tub again, this time with cold dye and the tub relocated to my basement (to avoid bees, but possibly not my wife...) and I let it sit for about an hour.

    8 - pulled it out and it looked pretty good. So I let it dry overnight and went to find some DWR at the local outdoor/camping store.

    9 - sprayed a full 16ounces of DWR on the suit, waited for that to dry and now I'm done.

    Overall, it has some uneven coverage but it looks "black enough" and I'm much happier than when it was grey. So if I don't end up stained black the first time I wear it, I'll consider this a success.

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    #23
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  4. Dave.0

    Dave.0 on the spectrum

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    I have the aerostich version of high viz, which is just yellow. It looks dirty despite washing it and has faded to to a pretty unappealing color. I'm going to try to go black. Almost anything would be an improvement.

    Just one question to those that have done this -- what happens to the reflective strips?
    #24
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  5. sprouty115

    sprouty115 Long timer Supporter

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    No change with the regular Rit dye I used.
    il_570xN.531320404_gnkz.jpg

    But from the posts above, the synthetic dye may cause a problem, but having said that, I don't think it comes in black.

    Look for synthetic on the label...
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    #25
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  6. TommyBBQ

    TommyBBQ More Road than Dirt

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    Rain had no effect.
    #26
  7. sprouty115

    sprouty115 Long timer Supporter

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    I hit rain once now with it died and is hasn't ran. I will say that I put a liberal coating of DWR after it was dry from dying.
    #27
  8. TommyBBQ

    TommyBBQ More Road than Dirt

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    Nothing happens to the reflective. But expect hi viz to turn brown or olive drab vs black.
    #28
  9. TommyBBQ

    TommyBBQ More Road than Dirt

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    No regrets here.
    #29
  10. TommyBBQ

    TommyBBQ More Road than Dirt

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    Holding up awesome. Seems to get darker with time.
    #30
  11. antwon412

    antwon412 Been here awhile

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    Along the same lines.....

    I bought a pair of nice held gloves. They’re tan. Wish I had bought black.

    Anyone dyed gloves? I’d hate to ruin a pair of $120 gloves because I’m shallow and vain.
    #31
  12. sprouty115

    sprouty115 Long timer Supporter

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    Leather dye. I've done it to boots and had good success.
    #32
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  13. TommyBBQ

    TommyBBQ More Road than Dirt

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    I agree. Leather dye should do it.
    #33