Emblem Care


Customer Cars

click to see more photos of this '37 Dodge

Mr. D. Upton's '37 Dodge. Enameled emblem restoration by Emblemagic.

click to see more photos of this '52 Studebaker

Mr. J. Irwin's '52 Studebaker. Plastic insert emblem restoration by Emblemagic.

Hemmings Articles

Emblem Collecting Part I
Emblem Collecting Part II





Emblem care and maintenance



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enamel emblems

It is a privately owned, sole proprietorship that has been in the business of reproducing, restoring and stocking classic and collectible car emblems for the past 25 yrs.  The business includes the websites, all stock: original plastic pattern emblems, and the reproductions in stock, made from them, Original unrestored enameled emblems as well as all restored ones, tooling, all molds, and equipment, plus office software and records.  There are written illustrated guides for reproduction and restoration training purposes.  If you are interested, use the contact us link.

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Cleaning and Polishing

These tips apply to the Plastic Insert emblem and the Enameled emblem, whether or not they are purchased from us.

The plastic or enameled emblem can be washed safely with the same mild detergents that are recommended for the car's finish.  Both of these types of emblems have smooth top surfaces that can be easily cleaned.  Dirt and wax buildup can collect in the bezel or edges which have grooves or other designs.  A soft toothbrush, or Q-tip can be used to finish cleaning around the emblem.  

Plastic insert emblems that are dull or mildly scratched can be polished to a high luster with a fine metal or plastic polish.  The best polishes come in tubes, and should be suitable for nickel, chrome, gold and even plastic!  

Enameled emblems are glass and plated metal, so use caution with any polishes.  If the plating is becoming thin, polish may remove what little is left.  

Both types of emblems can and should be waxed using a non-cleaning, non-polishing type of automotive wax.  For the plastic emblem, this will seal in the natural plasticsoap and water bucket oils that when lost cause cracking and crazing.  For the enameled emblem, the wax will protect the plated finish, including gold finishes.

Installation tips

Both types of emblems should be installed in the same way they were originally.  
The enameled emblem may sometimes be glued on instead of using the original solder method,  rivets, or press fits.  When gluing this type of emblem we recommend 100% RTV silicone rubber that comes in tubes. It is sold in auto parts stores and hardware stores. We recommend the Permatex brand.  This will give the emblem a bit of cushioning from vehicle shocks, seals the backside from moisture, and holds very well.   This same glue is good for the plastic insert as well.  It will seal the backside, which has the painted coatings, from drying out and eventually flaking off. It is safe to use on the plastic emblem and the metal of the car. Once cured it is very rubbery and difficult to remove, so wipe off any excess before it has cured.  On the plastic insert emblem, this glue will hold so well, that it may be necessary to break the emblem to remove it again. 

Removal tips

When a plastic insert emblem is glued into its bezel, removing it can be difficult.   We don't recommend prying it out with sharp objects.  One customer sent us this tip:  Thanks to Mr. Furry, of Forsyth, IL.  "O.K., I finally got that emblem off its housing. What finally worked best was boiling it in a Styrofoam cup in the microwave for three successive boil-cool cycles, cooling only back to room temp. This is sent to you for future advice to customers, as the freeze technique did not seem to work well on my emblem. The emblem shows no more crazing than it did prior to the boil treatment, leading me to conclude(perhaps falsely, as this is only a one-time experience) that it is reasonably safe. I will call soon regarding a run of these, the shipping, time lines etc. Thank you for providing this valued service."

The "freeze" technique mentioned above, also suggested by a customer, involves letting the plastic insert emblem assembly stay in the freezer overnight.  Using a good adhesive tape, attached across the smooth top surface, the emblem might be "popped" out, assuming the glue has been made brittle enough to break and let go.  This technique may not work with the RTV or rubbery glue, but should work with the black emblem glue that was often found on emblems in the 60's.

Do you have any more suggestions?  Let us know, and we will post them here along with an acknowledgement! 

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