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July 11, 2005 10:56 AM   Subscribe

Those godless stiff foil "Windows" and "Intel Inside" stickers that IBM insists on breaking up the Spinal Tap-esque blackness of my spiffy new ThinkPad with... any removal tips?

Bonus if your tip somehow gives Karl Rove the gout.
posted by dong_resin to Computers & Internet (23 answers total)
A fingernail will get the sticker off. Isopropyl alcohol should take care of the stuff that's left.
posted by smackfu at 11:01 AM on July 11, 2005

get a stanley knife (box cutter), put the blade under the corner and lift. use fingernails to peel back. if necessary, use solvent to clean off remaining gunk (test first).

this also works for those horrible barcodes they stick on us govt/funded equipment (hey, it's still there - it's just now sitting on the bottom og my spiffy black x31 rather than in the middle of the friggin lid)

as for your pathetic obsession with karl rove - do you really think it'll change anything?
posted by andrew cooke at 11:02 AM on July 11, 2005

He'll limp, which is change enough for a mere askme curse.

Any tips for someone who is chicken about scuffing up his otherwise virgin black surface with a box cutter?
posted by dong_resin at 11:06 AM on July 11, 2005

Mine came off with a fingernail after three months of exposure to sweaty forearms.
posted by Kwantsar at 11:13 AM on July 11, 2005

I actually read this thread and then pried it off with a fingernail slid in around all the edges, so it does work. It appears about half the adhesive had un-adhered from the sticker in the time I've owned mine. I guess if it was properly stuck down, it would be harder, but the stickers won't tear since they're foil.

(Of course, now there's a sticky bit, but luckily I don't use that keyboard at work.)
posted by smackfu at 11:16 AM on July 11, 2005

In the interest of taking one for the team, I just tried the boxcutter method on my (employer's) ThinkPad. Worked a treat, nary a scratch. Just take the blade out of the knife, and slide the flat, non-pointy area under the edge of the stickers.

We'll just have to rely on prison food for the gouty goodness.
posted by Optamystic at 11:17 AM on July 11, 2005

I just peeled them off and then cleaned the gunk with 409 kitchen cleaner; my X22 is now none more black.
posted by forallmankind at 11:20 AM on July 11, 2005

So if I'm reading this thread correctly, you all think I'm a massive sissy.

Fine then, we'll just see what mother has to say. Then you'll be sorry.
posted by dong_resin at 11:27 AM on July 11, 2005

For the sake of the thread, I placed a rag under some hot (not boiling hot) water, then damped the sticker with the rag. Leave damped one minute.
Peel sticker.
Worked with nvidia inside. :)
posted by LittlePrince at 12:59 PM on July 11, 2005

Ah. Little Prince is speaking to my inner wussy. I'll try that.
posted by dong_resin at 1:14 PM on July 11, 2005

Goo Gone. Get the smallest bottle you can find, hopefully the one with the built in scraper. It lasts forever.
posted by intermod at 1:28 PM on July 11, 2005

Lighter fluid is also a good solvent of the sticky stuff, though if you peel very slowly and exercise patience, you won't have much, if any, sticky residue left to remove.
posted by odinsdream at 1:39 PM on July 11, 2005

Goo-Gone is reasonably good, but smells awful and leaves an oily coating behind.

Better is Un-Du, which is more powerful and evaporates without a residue. See
posted by KRS at 1:56 PM on July 11, 2005

Personally every one I have ever had to deal with has come off just fine as a result of being picked at with a fingernail, even when that wasn't my initial objective. The scuzz mostly rubbed off with a fingertip and final goo removed (when I got around to caring) with rubbing alcohol.
posted by phearlez at 2:02 PM on July 11, 2005

Just now used fingernail and pull method on the Centrino sticker on my T42. Pulled slowly and at an acute angle (i.e. peeled back a corner and then lifted, rather than peeled), and it came off with only a tiny glue spot left. I used my clean finger to rub that off. No residue remains.
posted by pmbuko at 2:07 PM on July 11, 2005

dong_resin writes "Any tips for someone who is chicken about scuffing up his otherwise virgin black surface with a box cutter?"

You can also use WD-40 and a plastic single edge razor blade.
posted by Mitheral at 2:08 PM on July 11, 2005

I peeled mine off with just my fingernails, then rubbed the remaining adhesive with my thumb till it balled up. It's like it was never there. This is the third thinkpad I've done this with.
posted by roue at 2:16 PM on July 11, 2005

Is your thinkpad magnesium alloy or plastic? Lighter fluid ("Zippo" fluid) is (mostly) naptha and it shouldn't harm the plastic and works really swell.
posted by PurplePorpoise at 2:17 PM on July 11, 2005

I used my clean finger to rub that off.

In my experience, the best thing to use to remove the adhesive left on something after removing a sticker, is the adhesive that came off with the sticker. Just push the sticker down on the bit of leftover adhesive and pull it back off.
posted by kindall at 2:58 PM on July 11, 2005

If you're wary about playing with a razor with your bare hands, you can go to the hardware store and pick up one of those paint scrapers. Y'know, the hand held device that exposes the long, flat edge of the blade rather than just the fragile pointy corners. Once you wedge that under the sticker, take your bottle of lighter fluid (Ronsonol is a good bet) squirt a few drops under the sticker. The rest of the glue will soften up and the sticker will peel off pretty cleanly. If there's any adhesive left, put a few more drops of lighter fluid on the sticky area and use one of those green dish-scouring pads to clean it up. It should look pretty spotless.
posted by Jon-o at 3:52 PM on July 11, 2005

I just pulled the stickers off (in the name of science) using my fingernails to pry up a corner and then just pulled the sticker off.

Very little sticker-goo was left, and I just rubber it off with m finger (my laptop is silver, so it's possible that the goo is less visible in general).

on preview: the windows sticker gave me a lot more trouble than the Intel one. Figures.
posted by Amanda B at 3:55 PM on July 11, 2005

soak your laptop in scotch, then pile it in organ meat and peas. It may not get the label off, but it'll give jr gout.
posted by boo_radley at 4:52 PM on July 11, 2005

In the end the Intel one peeled off with a fingernail, the Windows one needed a razor (figures) and the gunk was buffed out with a tee-shirt. The computer then fell out of a window into a cement mixer. Karl Rove still stalks the night for the blood of infants without a limp.

Anyway, thanks for the tips.
posted by dong_resin at 3:31 AM on July 13, 2005

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