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Tech: LP Cleaning. Advice Sought

Fred McCormick 29 Jan 09 - 04:56 AM
Jack Campin 29 Jan 09 - 05:12 AM
Richard Bridge 29 Jan 09 - 05:15 AM
GUEST,.gargoyle 29 Jan 09 - 05:24 AM
Newport Boy 29 Jan 09 - 06:02 AM
The Villan 29 Jan 09 - 07:32 AM
Dave Hanson 29 Jan 09 - 07:53 AM
The Villan 29 Jan 09 - 08:04 AM
VirginiaTam 29 Jan 09 - 08:29 AM
Geoff Wallis 29 Jan 09 - 11:30 AM
GUEST,leeneia 29 Jan 09 - 12:44 PM
pdq 29 Jan 09 - 12:49 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 29 Jan 09 - 01:46 PM
johnross 29 Jan 09 - 02:02 PM
Steve Shaw 29 Jan 09 - 03:22 PM
GUEST,Ravenheart 30 Jan 09 - 02:33 PM
JohnB 31 Jan 09 - 02:12 PM
Fred McCormick 01 Feb 09 - 05:26 AM
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Subject: Tech: LP Cleaning. Advice Sought
From: Fred McCormick
Date: 29 Jan 09 - 04:56 AM

I'm currently copying a large number of LPs to computer. The LPs are generally clean and in good condition. Unfortunately, in a great many cases - about 1 record in 3 - the stylus sticks. Close examination reveals the culprit to be a piece of muck which has become wedged in the groove, presumably over time. The LPs have often not been played in years.

Are other vinyl digitisers encountering this problem? If so can anyone recommend a UK marketed cleaning agent ?

Many hopefuls.


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Subject: RE: Tech: LP Cleaning. Advice Sought
From: Jack Campin
Date: 29 Jan 09 - 05:12 AM

Washing-up liquid in a sink of lukewarm water if there's a lot of gunge to deal with.

If it's just the odd fleck, dislodge it with a soft dry cloth.


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Subject: RE: Tech: LP Cleaning. Advice Sought
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 29 Jan 09 - 05:15 AM

Have you checked the arm and stylus?

If you wash with soap, the fusspots rinse with distilled water and are vrey careful about drying. Always work round the grooves, not in and out.

It may be worth playing with one of those wet cleaning heads you used to be able to get...

And there are gadgets that will wash your vinyl for you - or there used to be but I have not seen one for years.


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Subject: RE: Tech: LP Cleaning. Advice Sought
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 29 Jan 09 - 05:24 AM

Using a VERY worn/old 100% cotton T-Shirt or diaper...wipe around in the direction of the grooves with good quality Vodka. (Isopropol will leave an unwanted haze - and of course do NOT use if it is a lacquor disk.)

Sincerely,
Gargoyle


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Subject: RE: Tech: LP Cleaning. Advice Sought
From: Newport Boy
Date: 29 Jan 09 - 06:02 AM

I've just been copying the first few of a fairly large batch which have been stored in a damp workshop for at least 10 years. The main problem is small spots of mould all over the LP.

Unless you're after commercial issue quality, or copying exceptionally valuable LPs, I'd agree with Jack. I've washed them under a slow-running tap using a liquid soap and my fingers. I've then dried them using a worn cotton T-shirt, but only wrapping and patting them dry. The remaining moisture air-dries in about 5 minutes.

All the muck has been removed, and as far as I can tell I haven't inroduced any scratches or marks that weren't there before. I'm just about to start the next batch of 10 - it's a slow process.

Phil


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Subject: RE: Tech: LP Cleaning. Advice Sought
From: The Villan
Date: 29 Jan 09 - 07:32 AM

Don't put a hot poker in the hole, unless you want some flower bowls.

http://members.tripod.com/~Vinylville/clean-2.html


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Subject: RE: Tech: LP Cleaning. Advice Sought
From: Dave Hanson
Date: 29 Jan 09 - 07:53 AM

Dettol and wire brush.

Dave H


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Subject: RE: Tech: LP Cleaning. Advice Sought
From: The Villan
Date: 29 Jan 09 - 08:04 AM

LOL

http://www.amazon.co.uk/VC-1-Vinyl-Cleaner-Kit/dp/B00006I5UH/ref=sr_1_79?ie=UTF8&m=AO3C0EO70FD6B&s=generic&qid=1233234123&sr=1-7


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Subject: RE: Tech: LP Cleaning. Advice Sought
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 29 Jan 09 - 08:29 AM

Dab some spit on your cotton tshirt - the one you are wearing and wipe. Go with the grooves not against.

Oh wait! That is how to clean dirty little faces.


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Subject: RE: Tech: LP Cleaning. Advice Sought
From: Geoff Wallis
Date: 29 Jan 09 - 11:30 AM

I highly recommend 'Permaclean' manufactured by Milty - it's easy to find via a web search, but not cheap - which managed a wonderful job on some of my oldest albums, removing fifty years of accumulated gunge from the grooves.


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Subject: RE: Tech: LP Cleaning. Advice Sought
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 29 Jan 09 - 12:44 PM

I've cleaned records with tap water and sometimes with tap water plus dishwashing liquid. If there's anything gritty in the groove, the water washes it away, where a cloth might rub the grit in, scratching the vinyl furhter.

Sometimes I don't even get the water off. You can play a wet record.

Keep in mind that if the records had goo on them, some goo might have been transferred to the needle. You will want to make sure it is nice and clean.


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Subject: RE: Tech: LP Cleaning. Advice Sought
From: pdq
Date: 29 Jan 09 - 12:49 PM

This may seem too obvious, but nothing cleans a vinyl record as well as a record-cleaning machine.

I bought a washing machine for the clothes, a dishwasher for the dishes and a record-cleaning machine for the records. Banal, I suppose.

They cost about $100 to perhaps $550 US dollars. There are shops that will use their cleaning machine on your record: cost $1. Common sense suggests that if you plan to use such a servece 350 times, it is best to buy the $350 machine.


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Subject: RE: Tech: LP Cleaning. Advice Sought
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 29 Jan 09 - 01:46 PM

Threads on this before, see thread 103433. Cleaning LPs

I collect old LPs from 2nd hand stores, etc., and clean them before playing and transfer. I have found some gems.
Wash with mild dishwashing liquid soap if necessary, being careful not to damage the label.
Rinse well.
Spray with distilled water and remove tap water (absolutely necessary if one is in a hard water area like I am, and easy to get at the grocery or drug store). A laundry spray bottle is handy.
Carefully pat dry with soft cloth.
Put on turntable and remove remaining dust by following grooves with a small soft brush. (My daughter uses an antique brush made for the purpose back in the Victrola days).
If a record is essentially clean when I get it, I moisten lightly with a spray bottle, and follow the grooves with the sable brush. It is amazing how much dust can be collected. I don't transfer until I am sure the record is clean.
As recommended above, be sure the cartridge needle is clean, and check after each transfer.
Removing dust reduces the amount of crackle. It doesn't hurt to record from a slightly damp record, as mentioned above.

I have two turntables, since I sometimes find the old timers at a house auction, and need the right size cartridge needle.


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Subject: RE: Tech: LP Cleaning. Advice Sought
From: johnross
Date: 29 Jan 09 - 02:02 PM

I will second (pdq)'s recommendation of a record cleaning machine. I have a VPI, and it has made a tremendous improvement in the sound of my record collection. Even ex-library and junk-store records often can be returned to close-to-new quality.

However, they are almost prohibitively expensive -- the least costly VPI sells for about $500, and others go up from there. But if you have a large collection, it may make sense, if you can afford it.

If a machine is not an option, consider using one of the record-wash fluids from either Disc Doctor or Record Research -- brush the fluid into the grooves to release the crud, and then flush it out with distilled water. Dry with a lint-free cloth, or air-dry in a dish drainer rack. Google "disc doctor" and "record research" to find dealers in the UK.

As for Fred's problem of the stylus "sticking," you might want to try using a soft artist's brush and some isopropyl alcohol to clean the stylus -- very gently -- to remove accumulated crud, and maybe increase the tracking force just a bit. Or find a new cartirdge that has an attached brush (such as the Stanton 681EEE) that will remove loose debris before the needle passes over. Consider that the noise you pick up on your digital transfers will stay with the sound every time you play them, so it makes sense to do whatever you can to make as clean a copy as possible.


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Subject: RE: Tech: LP Cleaning. Advice Sought
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 29 Jan 09 - 03:22 PM

Geoff's mention of Permaclean reminded me of another product from the same stable, Permastat, which was supposed not only to clean the disc but also permanently remove static (which causes clicks and pops just as much as dirt). I had variable success with it, and found that treated LPs would stick to the insides of the inner sleeves when put back after playing. I hung on to the felt pad, though, and now I just dampen it with a few drops of isopropyl alcohol before playing. I clean the side I'm going to record immediately before playing it. It's well worth checking the stylus for fluff picked after cleaning (the cleaning loosens debris that may still be present on the record's surface) after each LP side, or even after just a few minutes of playing. The hazard that comes with rinsing under the tap is that tap water has got calcium salts in it which are left behind as a minutely-crystalline residue in the grooves as the water evaporates. I have never had success with the kitchen sink method and I would not recommend it. Two other hints for reducing the effect of static: do your recording on a damp day (or humidify the room in some way) and keep the record deck lid down if it has one.


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Subject: RE: Tech: LP Cleaning. Advice Sought
From: GUEST,Ravenheart
Date: 30 Jan 09 - 02:33 PM

I've done well with Last Power Cleaner (followed up with their Preservative), and I see that they're still around and have a dealer in England (I don't get called upon to use it very often any more). It doesn't damage the vinyl chemistry or leave residues, as far as I know.


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Subject: RE: Tech: LP Cleaning. Advice Sought
From: JohnB
Date: 31 Jan 09 - 02:12 PM

I have a litle "gizmo" with carbon fibre bristles which you use as the record rotates on the turntable prior to playing. You start in the middle and work your way to the outside, it is about 3 inches long and half an inch wide with two rows of bristles.
I don't think it has ever caused any damage to any of my records.
I also don't know what it is called or where you could get one.
It does a good number on dust and static though.
Far more damage was caused by my kids jumping from the third or fourth stair onto our spongy bouncy floor.
JohnB


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Subject: RE: Tech: LP Cleaning. Advice Sought
From: Fred McCormick
Date: 01 Feb 09 - 05:26 AM

Thanks for all the suggestions, and my apologies for not following various comments up sooner. Unfortunately, as I said, the problem isn't the usual muck and gunge. It's bits of grit, and what sometimes looks like flakes of paper which have wedged themselves in the grooves over the years.

Unfortunately, I can't afford a record washer. But a combination of permaclean and carbon fibre gizmo sounds as though it might do the trick.

I've just checked on-line and Maplin have carbon fibre cleaners in stock at £9.99.


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