First of all, CAREFULLY. Be careful of mold. Wear a mask and gloves.
Second, I never bother trying to clean cardboard tape boxes, I just replace them and, after copying
down whatever text I can read on the box, I carefully dump the moldy mess (and seal the plastic bags
when I'm done -- and I NEVER do any of this in the house).
As for the tape itself, again be careful. I've had success with everything from just wiping off the
mold to using a very mild amonia solution and wiping the cleaned area carefully afterward in order
to soak up any solution that's left, all of this on polyester tape. On acetate tape, most mold I've
seen has eaten the tape and the tape is therefore completely ruined or partially ruined. I've
wondered about low heat, to dry the mold out and see if it will just turn to dust, with acetate
tape, but I've never tried it.
I'm interested to hear other solutions to the kind of problem Tom has described. I've been very
lucky with moldy tapes in that most of the time, the box is where most of the mold is and what's on
the actual tape pack can simply be wiped off. I've previously described the mold-caked boxes of
brown powder which had once been Scotch 111 that I found in a damp corner of a basement once.
In my opinion, the thing to be most conscious of with mold is BE CAREFUL. You don't want to get a
lung infection or a skin infection or an eye infection from some hostile nasty mold that may or may
not be growing on that tape box.
-- Tom Fine
----- Original Message -----
From: "Tom Diamant" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Monday, June 04, 2012 4:20 PM
Subject: [ARSCLIST] Cleaning Mildew/mold off of recording tape
I recently went to my personal archive (my garage) to recover some old 7 inch reel to reel audio
tapes and found they were all damp and had areas covered with big, furry mold. Some are plastic
tape, but at least one seems to be paper tape. How can I clean these?
10341 San Pablo Ave.
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