Pros:The fastest-cutting solvent I've used in the past 50 years.
Cons:Your throat may start closing up a few seconds after beginning to use it.
The Bottom Line: If you're dealing with sticker glue, use "Goo Gone" instead. But when you really need the cutting ability of a powerful solvent, "Goof Off" is the way to go.
I received a very valuable metal sample last week (a twenty-five pound round bar of 97% tungsten) that had seemingly permanent black, tarry remnants from the sintering process, extensive markings of weight and dimensions in red magic marker, yellow oil paint covering one end, and a different yellow paint identifying it as a "Class 4 Heavy Metal" written along the length of it. I went to the local Ace Hardware to buy some lighter fluid, my solvent of choice for the past 50 years, and I saw this little can of "Goof Off" for about $4.50 and thought, what the heck!
In short, it cut through the paint, magic marker ink, and manufacturing grime like nothing I've ever used. With three wipe downs using fresh paper towels, I wound up with a gleaming silver bar so clean it looked plated. Of course my fingertips turned white -- the solvent almost immediately sucked the moisture out of my fingers, leaving them "clean and dry" as well.
I also started getting a little dizzy and my throat felt like I was coming down with a cold within a few minutes of exposure to the fumes. So much for doing this in my enclosed office. I set a big fan by the door, but the solvent smell lingered for at least a couple of hours.
This is very effective stuff! Today the heavy-duty solvents from the 1950s (e.g., carbon tetrachloride) are consider "hazardous materials," and I have little doubt that "Goof Off" will meet the same fate someday. In the meantime, I'd tell you to stock up except for the fact that it's explosively flammable and probably should not be kept in the house. Even closed up tight and stored inside a zip-lock freezer bag, I could still faintly smell the solvents. This stuff has major penetrating power.
So should you use it? It's up to you. My first job as a teenager was working in a car wash during a hot Los Angeles summer, and the owner had us cleaning the inside of the windshields with a spray bottle of gasoline. It worked like a charm but was incredibly stupid and dangerous. I tend to feel the same way about "Goof Off." It's a guilty pleasure to use. Use it in the open, protect your hands with gloves, work quickly, and get the rags or paper towels out of the building and into a closed trash can as soon as possible.
I give this an A+ for effectiveness and a D- for health and safety.
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