There is a lower-cost machine from VPI where you clean the record and the machine does the
vacuuming, in other words it doesn't have a brush-arm to do the scrubbing. That is as low as I would
go on cleaning records, I don't see an alternative to the vacuum. There are DIY guides to making a
vacuum cleaning system using a shopvac, but I would never use those contraptions on my records.
Bottom line, if you don't clean out the grooves, you'll get more pops and ticks and distortion than
you should, you won't get the best sound out of the record. Plus, you'll wear down your stylus and
grind that grime into what's left of the grooves, thus destroying any potential sale value of the
records. I don't see an alternative to a vacuum removal of cleaning fluid and grime.
-- Tom Fine
----- Original Message -----
From: "Lou Judson" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Thursday, January 14, 2016 7:42 PM
Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] Cleaning stylus
Tom, my record cleaning and playing is almost exclusively just making personal digital copies of my
own Lps - what would you suggest for routine cleaning of casual transfers? Anyone else can chime in
Investing in an expensive machine for cleaning my old records is just not feasible. I only want to
hear them again! :-)
On Jan 14, 2016, at 4:19 PM, Tom Fine <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> By the way, I am NOT a fan of the Discwasher or similar "record cleaning brushes." They just don't
> clean out the grooves, in my experience. Only a wet cleaner with vacuum finish like a VPI or
> similar really cleans out the grooves. There is now an ultrasonic wet cleaning machine that the
> audiophile mags have raved about. I'd want to see some science (ie scanning microscope photos) to
> prove that it really cleans out a groove better than a VPI. The exception might be caked on grime,
> it's very possible that ultrasonic would blast out the grime whereas a brush and vacuum wouldn't.
> But this is not something typically found in cleaning LPs, I say that having cleaned thousands of
> LPs over the years.
> -- Tom Fine