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Thread: Bicast: How to 'refinish' Bicast?

  1. #1
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    Question Bicast: How to 'refinish' Bicast?

    Bicast, Bycast, Pleather are the particle board of leather. While not exact, the ones we have been able to speak with the manufacturer on indicate ground leather, bound with a resin then a urethane coating. It is run through a platen to produce a 'grain'. When it splits (cut or weak spot) it frays. Both manufacture's brochures state it needs no conditioner, can be wiped off and is not repairable. We can debate all of these but primarily interested in redying sections. We see the type of color loss caused by alcohol (perfumes etc) and acetone (fingernail polish remover) Any thoughts on getting a good bite either mechanical by scuffing (400 and up) or chemical through an adhesion promoter? Also separate topcoats or mixed with the dye?

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    Preferred leather service provider to retail outlet a constant source of repeat business!

    Picture #1 shows damage at back of right hand rest.



    Picture #2 shows the close-up



    Picture #3 shows the finished close-up

  3. #3
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    Default Bicast Structure Repair

    This is “Structural Repair” where the emphasis is more to the strength than beauty.

    Picture #1 Localized structure weakness that causes this typical characteristic phenomenon is particularly associated to bicast leather only.


    Picture #2 Shows the typical bonding repair (leatherBond3D™) with matching sub-patch usually from the reverse side.


    Picture #3 Shows pigment (pigColor64™) touch-up follows with polyurethane top coat (autoTop62G™) to fill to satisfaction.


    Picture #4 A finish that carries a one year warranty.


    Roger Koh
    LeatherDoctor® System

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    Roger, so are we to assume there is no surface prep prior to the application of color (pigcolor)? We have used a crosslinker with standard topcoat which gives excellent results on the poly finish.

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    My experience with surface prep is not to use any solvent, alcohol or alkaline cleaner.

    These ingredients either degrade the polyurethane coating or cause polar molecular disorientation that reduces surface bondage.

    Liken to the same principle as practice in electrostatic spray application (like poles repel, unlike poles attract).

    Scuffing with appropriate 1000, 1200 or 1500 sandpaper does etch the surface for better surface bonding too.

    Adhesion promoter applied by padding or foam brushing rather than spraying helps open these microscopic pores up with better anchor bonding prior to color coat.

    This is my experience with “Surface Prep”.

    Discuss this step first before we move on to (pigColor64™ or equivalent)

    What do you think?

    Roger Koh
    LeatherDoctor® System

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    This discussion is now focusing on step 1, before moving into step 2.

    These are the steps for Bicast Leather refinishing we shall be discussing in details.

    Step 1:
    Prep Cleaning: d’Ink7.7™ > clean3.8™ > rinse3.0™ or equivalent system

    Step 2:
    Scuffing: 1000, 1200 or 1500 grit or equivalent system

    Step 3:
    Adhesion Promoter: adhesion73™ or equivalent system

    Step 4:
    Color Coat: pigColor64™ or equivalent system

    Step 5:
    Scuffing: 1000, 1200 or 1500 grit or equivalent system

    Step 6:
    Dye Coat: *bicastDye27™ or equivalent system

    Step 7:
    Top Coat: autoTop62G™ with 1-3% crossLinker25™ or equivalent system

    Step 8:
    Wax Effect: waxEffect95™ or equivalent system

    Step 9:
    Routine Maintenance: leatherScent’D™ or equivalent system

    Viewers please join in the discussion, as you will most like meet these “leathers” too!

    Roger Koh
    Leather Doctor® System

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    These 6 repair pictures may be a little out of place now!

    But is the response to the original post of: “Both manufacture's brochures state it … is not repairable”.

    Can you guess the “type of sub-patch” is been used here different from the type of sub-patch used on the earlier picture?

    And since the damaged is so tiny on the surface, why such a huge repair is doned on the reverse?


    Picture #1


    Picture #2


    Picture #3


    Picture #4


    Picture #5


    Picture #6


    Roger Koh
    LeatherDoctor® System

  8. #8
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    Yeah I don't get why the subpatch is so big on the reverse side, nor what material is used for the subpatch. But I will say I've learned to hate those little cuts in the middle of cushions. I've been bit by thinking they're easy, but out in the open like that they tend to be harder to visually hide.

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    And Roger I pm'd you, also asking about pricing and products. Thanks, Jay

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    Yeah I don't get why the subpatch is so big on the reverse side,

    Good question!

    This is typically a bicast repair.

    And do you notice that the surface is pretty new with sign of wear.

    Just that tiny rip and the cause is just simply been sat on, why?

    When body weight is exerted on these weak areas the leather split (vertically) just like pictures shown.

    Bicast construction as Leatherstore points out, it’s “the particle board of leather” or also known as laminated leathers.

    The bottom layer provides the strength, but occasionally this bottom “split layer” may hit across some voids (veins and arteries) that result in weakness to the bottom layer (split).

    This large reverse reinforcement is recommended because it is in the middle of a stress area and also sign reveals that the entire section is weak.

    Customer expresses the desire to have at least 5 years of useful life because this cushion is part of a larger sectional.

    So I put on a 5 years warranty to this work, I think for $599!

    As this cushion unfortunately is everybody’s prime sitting spot.


    nor what material is used for the subpatch.

    The material used may shock you!

    It’s the aluminum insect mesh typical use for windows.

    This is rigid enough when simply bonded with leatherBond3D™ to withstand stress from body weight for at least 5 years.


    But I will say I've learned to hate those little cuts in the middle of cushions.
    I've been bit by thinking they're easy, but out in the open like that they tend to be harder to visually hide.


    Surface repairs that look like natural scars are acceptable to most leather lovers.

    (www.harryrosen.com approved our “bonding repairs” even to their Brioni® www.brioni.com leather jacket).

    Obviously the repairs must withstand the typical wear and tear and subject even to recommended restoration cleaning without failure.

    Roger Koh
    LeatherDoctor® System

  11. #11
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    Very similar to our repairs when you can reach the back. We will use the fiberglass screening rather than the aluminum. Often we have to go in from the top and there is where our canvas approach comes in. It is cut in an oval or circle then worked in with a palatte knife, adhere it to the back side then adhere the fibers together fill, dye etc.

    Laminated leather down here is the same as bonded leather. This is a vinyl top bonded to cotton then to a split of leather on the back side. Very difficult to tell since the back looks just like the normal back of a piece of leather. We saw some in cross section. Seems like a lot of people are trying to imitate the cow!! The give away is that on the top it stretches in ALL directions.

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    This is the type of sub-patch we used for the non-stress areas






    If there are more cows, then there is no need to do all the imitation which is far more inferior then we get it straight from nature.

    Talking about imitation!

    Can you guess which leather type is bicast trying to imitate?

    Roger Koh
    Leather Doctor® System

  13. #13
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    Cool

    According to Grammacy they tried to imitate Pigskin hence the pronounced 'grain' and rough appearance of their 'hides'. the initial concept was good, just like particleboard. Sweep up all the scraps (chips) mix them up and bond together, run through a platen and we have a new fabric, just like Pleather (microfiber). The major issue is people (not in the UK or New Zealand) think they are buying leather but it is these same people who would never call particle/flakeboard Wood!! "Oh what a web we weave when first we try to deceive!"

  14. #14
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    Since we are talking about “refinishing”

    My initial question on bicast imitation should be referring to another type of genuine leather finish.

    The answer should be one of below “type of finish”.

    1. Patent Finish
    2. High Gloss Finish
    3. Aniline Wax Pull-Up Finish
    4. Antique Finish

    One of the above is the correct answer.

    Which one, and why do you think so?

    Roger Koh
    LeatherDoctor® System

  15. #15
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    Thumbs up

    Wasn't the question what is the 'type' of leather?
    If now you are after the finish, patent was usually the piano finish, much like the high gloss so I would have to throw those two out.
    An antique finish is usually 'close to the hide' and usually mottled but invariable dull. So I guess I would go with the Wax since the finish, not the type, more closely resembles it. So what do you say???

  16. #16
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    You’re right! The answer is #3 (Aniline Wax Pull-up finish).

    Isn’t it a give away as the common finishing products is also used for Aniline Wax Pull-up!

    Like: dyes (anilineDye21™ for the genuine and bicastDye27™ for the imitation), waxEffect95™, leatherScent’B and also d’Scuff94™ works equally well for both.

    Do you like to move on with the next step?

    Roger Koh
    LeatherDoctor® System

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