Larry S Miller wrote to the ARSC list:
> I have used Keith Monks, Nitty Gritty, and VPI record cleaning
> machines going back to the '70s in the case of the KMAL. All are good
> for varying reasons.
> For lacquers, I prefer the Keith Monks because of its controlled
> area of suction. However, I find it too slow for vinyl or shellac
> discs. Then there is the thread feed. Perhaps that has been improved
> in recent years, but I cannot think of the Keith Monks without lamenting
> all the problems I've had with its thread feed.
Producer David Lennick has a collection of about 250,000 records and has been
using his Monks Archivist machine for going on 10 years now, and so have I in
my Audio Restoration business.
I don't believe either of us has had any problem with thread that wasn't
traceable to failing to pre-clean a badly soiled disc, a poor vacuum problem or
some other problem of operation and those were VERY rare occasions.
Sorry to hear of Larry's thread problems but there is something he is doing or
not doing that is at the root of his problems.
There are certain minimum things you MUST do to keep your machine in good
operating condition... such as pre-clean a badly soiled disc as noted above,
test the vacuum periodically, and the other is to empty the waste jar before it
reaches 2/3 full. If you allow the waste to be sucked back into the vacuum
pump you damage the pump, necessitating replacement or very expensive repair.
The pump should produce vacuum of about 23 - 26 inches of mercury for the RCM
to function properly, and the waste jar MUST be fully sealed. If you've never
tested yours, buy a $25 vacuum gauge at a local auto supply store and measure it.
Major archival institutions seem to prefer the Monks machines because they are
reliable and do a superb job.
The Monks machine is a very elegant and simple design and with minimum care and
maintenance it will provide consistent excellent service long after the others
Oh yes... I became the North American agent for the Keith Monks Archivist
Record Cleaning Machine over 10 years ago when I was looking for the BEST
machine for the job.
If you want the best machine for cleaning records, talk to me.
... Graham Newton
Audio Restoration by Graham Newton, http://www.audio-restoration.com
World class professional services applied to tape or phonograph records for
consumers and re-releases, featuring CEDAR's CAMBRIDGE processes.