This topic may have been covered before, but I couldn't find an answer after a search here. So, I'll just ask. I recently purchased a couple of older matchboxes and noticed the paint was sticky. Any method to un-sticky the paint?
Interesting, me too - first time was this year in all the years I've been collecting. I'm wondering if at some point someone tried waxing them with something that ultimately started breaking down the paint as I've got lots of old Matchbox without the problem. That or possibly the plasticizer's being released from the aging vinyl carrying case they were stored in has some effect...
I have not found any way to re-harden the paint, and trying to clean it in any way removes it
I only have the two, #23 Trailer Caravan in Pink which is just slightly tacky on the outside and inside, and #30 8-Wheel Crane who's green body is very sticky while the orange crane part is fine. Makes me thinks wax wasn't the culprit. I would also think if it were an issue with the vinyl carrying cases more models would be affected.
It is caused by plasticiser or other chemical gas exposure which comes from carry cases as well as other sources like tobacco.All colours can be affected after decades however Lesney late 1960s emerald green enamel and tractor blue are the 2 colours which are reacting in much less time than any others which is a reflection on the individual paint forumlations