Back to Black: Restoring a Sega Sports or Regulation 7 Dreamcast

Last year we revealed how you can brighten up your standard white Dreamcast using nothing more than a fairly cheap hair serum and a bit of sunshine. Granted, the sunshine might be a problem if (like me) you live in the UK and the sun appears only once every 16 years after a drawn out ritual and sacrifice; but if you managed to try it on a rare day that it stopped raining and the clouds parted, you'll find it worked a treat at banishing the dreaded yellowing. As a side note, all of the systems I treated back then are still bone white to this day, so the fears that the yellowing would return with a vengeance have not been realised as yet.

This is all well and good if you have a standard Dreamcast, but what if you have a Dreamcast that's a different colour? Black, for example? While black Dreamcasts such as the Sega Sports and Regulation 7 special editions don't suffer from yellowing, they can get scuffed and light surface scratches show up clear as day. I know this because recently I was lucky enough to take delivery of two such systems:
The seller did list them as not being in 'showroom condition' so I expected them to be a little beat up, but when they arrived the only thing I really noticed was the surface scuffing all over them. It's not overly noticeable from a distance - and both systems work flawlessly - but up close and from a certain angle the light catches the scuffs and the marks are quite visible. So, I wondered how I could go about removing these scuffs and return these rare beasts to their former glory. Turns out the answer is actually rather simple...

Yep, that stuff you put on your car's grey faded bumper to made it black again. Makes perfect sense really, and after a quick visit to Halfords (other motoring stores are available) I was all set to restore these highly coveted systems. I know I could have used DocEggfan's recently reported method of using industrial strength dye...but I didn't trust myself not to get it all over the walls and floor of my overly beige abode.

To give an idea of the level of scuffage, here's a picture illustrating how marked the Sega Sports one was (the R7 was similar but the picture I took appears to have corrupted):
Scuffs aplenty.
You can't really get the full impact from an iPhone's camera, but trust me these things were pretty much covered in marks. The first thing I did was take them apart and give them a clean out. The Sega Sports one in particular was full of what looked like Sasquatch hair; while the Regulation 7 was pretty much immaculate inside. Another thing I did was whack in a couple of UK power boards so I wouldn't need to rely on a step down converter to run these systems, and as I had a couple of spare ones lying around (doesn't everyone?!) that was a pretty simple operation. The next thing I did was scrub the years of accumulated grime from the cases and then leave them on the draining board:
This is important as it removes any surface dirt and also allows me to show off the fact that I recently splashed some cash and bought actual Fairy Liquid instead of own-brand washing up liquid. Once I'd cleaned them in the glorious suds, I let them air dry - this is very important as mixing electrical stuff with water can be bad for your health. In a deathy kind of way.

Once they were dry, I sprayed the shells with the bumper/tire colour restorer, let it 'soak in' for about a minute and then rubbed it off with a sock cloth. The results were pretty awesome, but I'm not entirely sure these pictures convey the true blackness restored to these systems. Indeed, they were fist-bumping and calling each other 'blood' and 'fam' within minutes and when I returned to the room they'd put a Chris Rock DVD on the PS2. Oh, the irony!*
Seriously though, these pictures don't do justice to how good both systems now look after a liberal application of the Back to Black spray. I've ogled images of both these Dreamcast editions for years, never thinking for one minute I'd ever actually own either of them. To have them both now in my collection and looking like they just came off the production line is amazing to me. Obviously, deeper scratches aren't removed using this method as the spray is little more than a way to disguise scuffs...but if you want to add a bit of lustre back to your black Dreamcast, you could do much worse.
Mr Yukawa would approve.
*Disclaimer: Before you complain about casual racism with the 'black' jokes - I know a guy who's mum has a black friend. So I'm not being racist. Also, my mother is Nigerian (and yet weirdly my twin brother is white) so if you'd like to give me your bank details so I can make a deposit of $89,000,000 and give you 50%, please let me know in the comments.


doceggfan said...

I don't think the dye would work in this instance, or at least nowhere near as effective. Did you have to cover the logos, or does the back to black stuff go on clear?

Tom Charnock said...

It goes on clear mate so can literally just spray it all over, leave if for a few minutes and then wipe it off.

Robert Jones said...

They look really good Tom. Great job.

ReigningSemtex said...

I am going to try this on my Sega sports dreamcast, thanks for the tips