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How best to clean LPs?

maldenny 19 Jul 07 - 06:11 PM
skipy 19 Jul 07 - 06:19 PM
s&r 19 Jul 07 - 06:34 PM
Liz the Squeak 19 Jul 07 - 06:45 PM
oldhippie 19 Jul 07 - 06:47 PM
pdq 19 Jul 07 - 06:52 PM
Peace 19 Jul 07 - 07:02 PM
Steve Shaw 19 Jul 07 - 07:16 PM
collierlad 19 Jul 07 - 07:19 PM
Q 19 Jul 07 - 07:37 PM
GUEST,Barnacle 19 Jul 07 - 07:42 PM
GUEST,Mr Helpfull 19 Jul 07 - 08:38 PM
Rowan 19 Jul 07 - 10:23 PM
Q 19 Jul 07 - 10:41 PM
Jerry Rasmussen 19 Jul 07 - 11:02 PM
Gene 19 Jul 07 - 11:02 PM
Peace 19 Jul 07 - 11:57 PM
Peace 20 Jul 07 - 12:07 AM
GUEST,.gargoyle 20 Jul 07 - 12:16 AM
The Fooles Troupe 20 Jul 07 - 05:59 AM
Dave Hanson 20 Jul 07 - 08:08 AM
Mr Happy 20 Jul 07 - 08:11 AM
beardedbruce 20 Jul 07 - 08:17 AM
The Fooles Troupe 20 Jul 07 - 08:20 AM
Mr Happy 20 Jul 07 - 08:27 AM
maldenny 20 Jul 07 - 10:07 AM
Bonecruncher 20 Jul 07 - 06:26 PM
johnross 20 Jul 07 - 10:34 PM
GUEST,.gargoyle 20 Jul 07 - 10:52 PM
iancarterb 20 Jul 07 - 11:27 PM
Gurney 21 Jul 07 - 02:53 AM
Gurney 21 Jul 07 - 03:24 AM
Q 21 Jul 07 - 02:37 PM
Cluin 21 Jul 07 - 03:09 PM
Gurney 21 Jul 07 - 05:59 PM
Q 21 Jul 07 - 06:12 PM
autolycus 22 Jul 07 - 07:15 AM
pattyClink 22 Jul 07 - 05:42 PM
Dave the Gnome 22 Jul 07 - 06:51 PM
GUEST,woodsie 23 Jul 07 - 11:51 AM
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Subject: How best to clean LPs?
From: maldenny
Date: 19 Jul 07 - 06:11 PM

I'm recording some old LPs onto my computer prior to copying them to CDs. I've tried a few methods, but the tracks are pretty worn anyway, and I need to get them as clean as possible to reduce the amount of work needed in cleaning up the recordings. Any suggestions as to the best way of cleaning them?


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: skipy
Date: 19 Jul 07 - 06:19 PM

Lps, Lamp posts need cleaning when dogs have pissed on them, a passtime of theirs, this is best left to the local council.
Skipy


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: s&r
Date: 19 Jul 07 - 06:34 PM

Play them first with a new stylus and see how bad they really are. The grot in the bottom of the groove causes most noise with a worn (sharpened) stylus. A new stylus rides high in the groove. Use the normal velvet pad thingy, then if still problems deionised water might help - brush along the groove and dry thoroughly.

Stu


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 19 Jul 07 - 06:45 PM

Have a goodly supply of new needles available if you've not played the vinyl for a while. Nothing clogs up a new needle more than an old record. We bought a new turntable, played 3 records on it - having not played them for a while - it needs a new needle already or risk damaging the other records.

LTS


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: oldhippie
Date: 19 Jul 07 - 06:47 PM

Clean radially along the grooves, never wipe from the center to the edge, the way a CD is cleaned.


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: pdq
Date: 19 Jul 07 - 06:52 PM

Check to see if you have any 'audiophile' stores in your area. They sell record cleaning machines which will not damage the records and get them very clean.

All records that are worth transferring to CD are worth cleaning.

These stores will likely let you use a machine free for a few records, then charge for additional ones. If you plan to clean 50 records or more, consider buying one of the cleaning machine. I did and consider it a prized posession.


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: Peace
Date: 19 Jul 07 - 07:02 PM

I'm with pdq on that one.


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 19 Jul 07 - 07:16 PM

I have a soft velvet cleaning pad which I soak in isopropyl alcohol. I clean the disc on the rotating turntable with the pad held very gently to the record. Then I play the disc once and remove any fluff that collects on the stylus. Then it's time to record. A humid room is better than dry air.


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: collierlad
Date: 19 Jul 07 - 07:19 PM

As a Vintage jukebox restorer I have found the best way of cleaning records is to soak them in luke warm water with some washing up liquid (to hot will distort the record) then use a soft cloth in the wahing up bowl in a circular motion to clean the record. Rinse under cold water & place on the drainer to dry.


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: Q
Date: 19 Jul 07 - 07:37 PM

I buy old 78s at auction and house sales. There is a good thread on cleaning them but I can't find it.
A cleaning machine is expensive. Some specialists in 78s offer the service for a price.

I use mild dishwashing soap and water and a clean soft cloth. Take your time and do not scrub. Oldhippie's advice, follow the grooves, is good.
Rinse well. Then spray with distilled water from the grocery or drug store. Use a Soft cloth to blot most of the water and let air dry.
I have an old lp brush for final touch-up or for getting dust from 'clean' records.
I found a supply of fresh sleeves, and store the records in them.

When ready to transfer, very lightly spray the cleaned record with distilled water from an atomizing bottle, blotting excess. I turn on the turntable, and with a sable brush, clean dust from the barely damp grooves.

The cartridge should have the right needle, and make sure that the tip is clean and not worn. Use hand lens to examine.

A tip in an old thread says to keep fluids away from the paper label, but a little water can be blotted off. If one concentrates mostly on cleaning the grooved part, very little water gets on the label.


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: GUEST,Barnacle
Date: 19 Jul 07 - 07:42 PM

I have always used soapy water and it works fine for me. I sold some of my really old albums (the ones where a complete change in taste means I would never play them again and certainly don't want to bother transferring to CD) and the majority of them were really clean. They have been on a shelf, stored upright for 30 years plus and just needed a slight dust.

Good Luck


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: GUEST,Mr Helpfull
Date: 19 Jul 07 - 08:38 PM

see:


thread.cfm?threadid=103418&messages=79


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: Rowan
Date: 19 Jul 07 - 10:23 PM

Oldhippie got the radius mixed up with the circumference. Never wipe LPs along the radius (centre to rim or vice versa) but always circumferentially; the direction the needle would travel in the groove. And do it gently with something 'soft' but capable of extracting crud from the groove without damaging the groove.

Cheers, Rowan


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: Q
Date: 19 Jul 07 - 10:41 PM

Oops! I got in the wrong groove too.


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: Jerry Rasmussen
Date: 19 Jul 07 - 11:02 PM

I'm for warm, soapy water, too. I've miraculously restored old 45 rpms that I never thought would sound good again. A soft cloth, washing following the grooves, as suggested.

Jerry


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: Gene
Date: 19 Jul 07 - 11:02 PM

a local pal of mine cleans them in normal way and lubricates
them with a special oil or something that costs about
3/4 dollars a small bottle...just a few ounces...

he gave me some of it one time and wow did it make a difference
on the lps...

but i quickly forgot about it....and started transferring
8-tracks and cassettes --- got about 2,000 of them.


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: Peace
Date: 19 Jul 07 - 11:57 PM

And remember, there are only two grooves on a 33 1/3 LP.


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: Peace
Date: 20 Jul 07 - 12:07 AM

Has anyone yet suggested extra fine diamond grit sandpaper? If so, ignore whoever suggested it. I tried. Works well. nothin' left but the hole.


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 20 Jul 07 - 12:16 AM

VODKA on an old, worn, soft, 100 percent cotten t-shirt.

Good for vinyl, NOT wax or shellac.

Sincerely,
Gargoyle

There are previous Mudcat discussions on the topic.


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 20 Jul 07 - 05:59 AM

"And remember, there are only two grooves on a 33 1/3 LP."

Sorry, not always true... :-)


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: Dave Hanson
Date: 20 Jul 07 - 08:08 AM

Dettol and wire brush.

eric


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: Mr Happy
Date: 20 Jul 07 - 08:11 AM

Brillo pad + elbow grease?


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: beardedbruce
Date: 20 Jul 07 - 08:17 AM

re grooves-

One of the Python albums has two groves on one side, one on the other.

warm ( NOT hot ) water with a little dishsoap, spray on, then rinsed off , followed by a SOFT brush in the direction of the grooves works for me. Standing water drops should NOT be left to dry- shake them off, or rebrush.


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 20 Jul 07 - 08:20 AM

There used to be 'horse race' LPs - 4-6 tracks on each side.


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: Mr Happy
Date: 20 Jul 07 - 08:27 AM

...........also some novelty 78's with about 4 different songs with the lead in tracks staggered along the edge of the disc, so it was hard to predict which one would play


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: maldenny
Date: 20 Jul 07 - 10:07 AM

Thanks for all (or, at least, most of) the advice. I've ordered a new stylus after realising that mine is a few years old, although not used very often. When it's been fitted I'll give a few of your tips a try.


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: Bonecruncher
Date: 20 Jul 07 - 06:26 PM

I have a gadget called a "Zerostat" gun which supposedly directs an anti-static stream of air at the record.
It certainly seeems to loosen the dirt in the grooves, which can then be removed by tapping the record vertically on the table.

Colyn.


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: johnross
Date: 20 Jul 07 - 10:34 PM

I've just recently gotten one of those fancy record cleaning machines, so I've been researching this question a lot. There are a bunch of moderately expensive fluids out there, but the Library of Congress recommends a mixture of about two parts distilled water, one part isopropyl alcohol (get the techincal or lab-grade stuff, not the drugstore kind that's only 70% alcohol with too many impurities) and a couple of drops of some kind of surfactant to make the mixture "wetter." The surfactant could be good-quality dishwashing detergent (like Dawn or Palmolive), or Triton X-114 or Monolan 2000 from a lab supplies place.

Don't use any alcohol on 78s; it will eat the shellac and ruin the records.

Dribble some of the mixture onto the record and work it into the grooves with a brush. You can buy a special brush from VPI or Mobile fidelity, or use a relatively soft nylon paintbrush.

The advantage of the cleaning machines is that they vacuum up the fluid after you spread it around with a brush, and they take the crud that you have loosened from the grooves with it. If you don't have a machine, use a dry, soft lint-free cloth to remove the fluid.

As you might expect, there are several web site that offer advice about cleaning records, with and without a machine. Google "record cleaning" to find more than you would ever need to know.


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 20 Jul 07 - 10:52 PM

From my experience USA isopropyl alcohol (70 percent = 140 proof) ....seems to have an "additive."
I get a white/chalky film residue after using it.

My reason for premium Vodka is no sugar....

Perhaps, EVERCLEAR 180 proof, with DISTILLED water.

However, water is the unversal solvent in the natural world....and too much alcohol might discolve more than transitory stain.

I have cleaned hundreds of Yinyl records with Vodka...some totally encrusted with mold/mildew, as with women, be soft, be gentle, caress the groove with a compassionate pleasure.

Sincerely,
Gargoyle


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: iancarterb
Date: 20 Jul 07 - 11:27 PM

If you do use alcohol, definitely get 99% isopropyl- see Gargoyle's post above. Residue is the reason. I personally use dishsoap, rub it around around WITH the grooves, as many others above have warned, and use warm running water long enough to get all the detergent residue out. Shake the drops off and dry them off with a soft old t-shirt. I've never used a cleaner, but I may go and try one- got several hundred LPs to part with after retirement, before moving.   Carter


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: Gurney
Date: 21 Jul 07 - 02:53 AM

A sound specialist once told me... that if I was recording from microgroove records, to run the stylus in Isopropyl Alcohol, applied with a paintbrush as the stylus travels. It cuts out some of the dust-crackle. Tedious, though.

I've used detergents (first) at washing-up strength without any problems. NOT washing-up temperature, though. Heat will ruin them.


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: Gurney
Date: 21 Jul 07 - 03:24 AM

Has anyone ever tried compressed air? I've been giving it thought, as I'm currently half-heartedly engaged in digitising LPs to CD, and I have about 300+ to go! I have a compressor, and as far as I can see it should work well, as the air is clean and you can vary the pressure. Would pay to soften the dirt with detergent first, I should think.

If anyone's tried it, I'd like to know. Failing that, I'll try with one of the LPs I don't like.   Trouble is, I've not played those ones much, so they are in pretty good condition. Have to buy one from a junk shop.
Using 'LP Recorder' from a cover-disk, and 'Nero 6', and an Optimus LAB1100 turntable. Cheap and good enough, as far as I can hear. Diamond stylus, built-in pre-amp.


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: Q
Date: 21 Jul 07 - 02:37 PM

Gurney, some of the gunk in the grooves is gummy or oily stuff; compressed air doesn't work on that.
A few years back there were good turntables in the thrift shops,but I haven't seen anything lately.


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: Cluin
Date: 21 Jul 07 - 03:09 PM

"...as with women, be soft, be gentle, caress the groove with a compassionate pleasure..."

Lick `em.


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: Gurney
Date: 21 Jul 07 - 05:59 PM

Q, I haven't seen a turntable recently either, and I think never with a pre-amp. My two certainly hadn't.
This Optimus is brand-new, from Dick Smith Electronics, which is the Australasian version of Radio Shack. About US$75.
Compressed air will take oily gunk off a motor. It would have to be something approaching glue to resist it when you get the nozzle up close. 110psi and considerable volume. The worry is that flying debris would add scratches, and I wouldn't want to do it on a turntable.
Neither would Cluin.


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: Q
Date: 21 Jul 07 - 06:12 PM

My old Luxman amplifier accepts both turntables, but the 78 gets 95% of the work. I will probably keep using it as long as tubes are available.

I don't have the nerve to use compressed air at that pressure, but you are free to go ahead and try it.


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: autolycus
Date: 22 Jul 07 - 07:15 AM

I was recently told about the washing-up liquid and very lukewarm water method. The only difference in the advice I got was using an old soft tothbrush.

Just after i was told about this, I happened topick up a long sought recording. It was one of the worst for condition I'd come across.

put the advice into practice. The discs looked spanking new, and only the odd clicks were left. The rest of the rubbish was gone.

If you'll excuse me saying, ladies - ecstasy.






       Ivor


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: pattyClink
Date: 22 Jul 07 - 05:42 PM

We use the warm water with a few drops of detergent method, trying to keep the label out of the soup the whole time.

We gently rinse, then dip in a basin of water with a bit of Jet-Dry or other dispersant, to make the water run off without leaving deposits.

Then, blot on clean old bath towels (again to preserve the label without blurring), dry in an clean old dish rack.

Is the dispersant dangerous to the vinyl?


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 22 Jul 07 - 06:51 PM

Sulphuric acid?

:D


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Subject: RE: How best to clean LPs?
From: GUEST,woodsie
Date: 23 Jul 07 - 11:51 AM

Actually you can use fairly hot/warm water - hot but not so hot as to scald yourself or warp the vinyl. You should be able to just about put your hand in it. Into this pour a fairly large portion of detergent (FAIRY LIQUID) use a soft cloth or sponge soaked in this to work the fluid into the grooves. then plunge the record into it! Rinse off the detergent in warm water and allow to dry. This gives true clarity to your old records. You have removed the years of grease and sweat that has gathered in the grooves.


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