I've been baking longer, but edge shedding as you describe is common if
the tape is slit a bit wide (hard to measure, but that is why the event
is so random--it might be one reel out of a jumbo roll where the
slitting blades were mis-adjusted).
I don't think 24 hours (my norm these days) would show a difference as I
saw this off some 1/2-inch 456 just recently, but it was only the edge.
It is frightening, but I'd just vacuum up the little hairs and be done
with it. Remember, those are about a mil wide and you're dealing with
nominally 82-mil (minimum spec'd is 75 mil from Ampex) track width that
doesn't even go completely to the edge, so you probably don't have any
sound on the little hairs. (I did want to write "hares" in honour of the
I would check for debris in the corners of the guides (where the face
meets the top and bottom caps) which can exacerbate this hair-shred but,
overall, if it's coming just from the edges, I think you're safe.
I see 456 doing this more (though I've seen it more on 1/2-inch than
1/4-inch). It has also happened on Agfa and BASF, but not regularly.
I don't have this variant specifically listed, but you might find this
resource of use:
On 2013-04-01 12:10 PM, Peoples, Curtis wrote:
> Hi Richard,
> I believe the tape is Ampex 456, not positive though. The studio generally bought Ampex 456 tape. It is a ten inch, quarter inch reel (two track master recording). For this collection, we bake 8 hours at 130 degrees. We have found this to be a suitable process for this collection. The shredding appears to be from the edges. We are transferring on a relatively new Otari MX 5050. The machine was cleaned so I don't have pics of the shred. They are usually about 3 inches long before breaking and are about the thickness of fine hair.
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Association for Recorded Sound Discussion List [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Richard L. Hess
> Sent: Monday, April 01, 2013 10:48 AM
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] Sticky SHRED
> Hi, Curtis,
> Please provide specifics as to type of tape, width, reel type, baking process and duration.
> Also photographs are really useful.
> Is the shredding from the edges only or across the entire width of the tape?
> What is the playback machine?
> On 2013-04-01 10:35 AM, Peoples, Curtis wrote:
>> Hi Folks,
>> We have a collection of tapes that have sticky shed and we are baking and transferring them. Things are going as planned except for one tape. It is shredding into fine hair like stands. I thought it needed to be baked longer so I baked it a second time. Same problem. I have seen tape shed before and this looks different.
>> Any help identifying the problem is greatly appreciated.
>> Curtis L. Peoples, Ph.D.
>> Associate Archivist, Crossroads Music Archive,
>> Unit Head, Crossroads Recording Studio,
>> Director, TTU Americana Ensemble,
>> Contact Info:
>> Southwest Collection, Texas Tech University P. O. Box 41041 Lubbock,
>> Texas 79409-1041
>> Email: [log in to unmask]
>> TEL: 806-742-3749 ext. 278
>> FAX: 806-742-0496
Richard L. Hess email: [log in to unmask]
Aurora, Ontario, Canada 647 479 2800
Quality tape transfers -- even from hard-to-play tapes.