Tank Badge Removal and Re-Attachment

So, You Think Your Vulcan Might Look Better Without Tank Badges? Take em' Off!


By Jeffrey James

Every now and then (quite often it seems) people ask about the removing of tank badges. The following is the tried and true method.

What you need:

  • Heat Gun or hair drier (the hair drier will just take longer to soften the adhesive)
  • Welders Leather Gloves (or something that will protect your hands from the heat)
  • Dental Floss or fishing line
  • Goo Gone or 3M "stripe off" wheel to remove adhesive
  • Clean Cloth

I did each side differently and got different results so I'll go through them one at a time. Take your pick.

Right Side (if sitting on bike)

Used heat gun to heat up badge and soften adhesive, did this for a good five to ten minutes with a sweeping and circular motion from about 4-5 inches away. Used Floss to "saw" behind the badge and it went through like butter. Used heat gun again to soften the adhesive that was left on tank and used finger (reason for welders gloves, wasn't affected by heat gun) to rub off the thickest spots. Held cloth against tank under adhesive and soaked with Goo Gone (cloth kept it from dripping all over the place), I then let it sit and went on to other side.

Note about the Adhesive, on the 1500A there is relatively little used, it's cut to fit in a thin circular ring with wings under the badge. This is much different than the 750 (mine was a '95) that has the entire area under the badge covered with the adhesive, therefor much more to take off and much more work.

Left Side

When I took the badge off the right side I actually used enough heat to warp the badge after it had cooled, I figured I wouldn't need to do the left side as long (and I wanted to have a badge that wasn't warped in case I ever wanted it for anything). So this time I didn't leave the heat on for nearly as long, only a couple of minutes. Went to use the floss and it didn't go through all the way so I did a minute or two more and off it popped. This time looking at the adhesive I noticed that it wasn't split down the middle as much as the other side had been (most likely due to less heat and less "melting" of the adhesive), in fact very little adhesive stayed on the badge this time sometimes to the point of shiny parts still being on the tank. To my surprise I was able to peel (like a well behaved sticker) the remaining adhesive off the tank without any heat or rubbing. I then used the Goo Gone (didn't need to soak anything) to clean off the residue and it was all done.

Went back to the right side where we had left the remaining adhesive soaking, I was pretty much able to rub off what remained with my finger the way you rub at rubber cement, it rolls and picks up more of itself. Then some final cleaning with the Goo Gone and then out to the driveway to do a normal wash of the tank.


I did this in my garage, I noticed when I did the 750 in the driveway that the Goo Gone dried up quickly in the sun and wind. My bike was "new" so it's possible that the badges didn't "sun bake" on as much as an older bike would. The left side badge is the side that leans down so it's possible that is why it was easier to take off. I only mention these things (true I just made them up) so you know it won't necessarily be as easy or as hard when you go to try it.



Want To Put Badges Back On? Here's How

By Marty Kronen VROC #5830

Buy some 3m super attachment tape. It's white and a little stickier. Put it all around the perimeter of the emblem, then in the middle put a wad of some epoxy, urethane windshield adhesive, or some other glue, then apply. The reason for this is in case the tape doesn't hold real well, (known to happen after repeated dousings) the glue makes a permanent bond. The tape will hold it in place at least long enough for the glue to set, as well as keeping moisture out, to a point. You don't want to go with glue totally, because not enough and it will let moisture in and set in there, possibly contaminating the bond, and too much will ooze out and give you a real mess.


More Tips

  1. The best way to get stubborn adhesive off is with a 3m "stripe off" wheel. It looks like a big round yellow eraser that chucks up in a drill. Takes the adhesive (any adhesive) right off and no damage to the paint. Costs around 20 bucks, and worth it just for this one job. It can be used for taking off pinstripes, or any other kind of nasty left-over trim adhesive. The 3-M part number is 07499 (wheel only) looks like a big yellow eraser.
    Marty Kronen VROC No. 5830
  2. There are multiple references to a product called "Goo Gone" above. If that isn't available in your area another product called "Goof Off" gets the job done and also removes decals.


Use It Again!

Jim (Pariah) Fassett VROC #4145 Says

Once your logo is off what do you do with it? Well, if you're proud of your ride you can re-use it! A couple layers of double sided sticky tape to build up the inside surface and it makes a great emblem for the windscreen; the curve on the windscreen just matches the curve of the logo.

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