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ARSCLIST  August 2013

ARSCLIST August 2013

Subject:

Re: Sticky ACETATE tape and other Acetate Questions

From:

"Richard L. Hess" <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Association for Recorded Sound Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Tue, 20 Aug 2013 12:33:41 -0400

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (111 lines)

Hi, Scott,

Thank you for the update.

Do you recall if the defective roll peeled off more like masking tape 
(an exaggeration) rather than just unwinding like most tapes?

I think the way the tape unwinds under the influence of just its own 
weight and gravity is a good field test for layer-to-layer adhesion.

If there was this layer-to-layer adhesion on your defective Soundcraft 
tape, did you glean any insights into that?

And you again confirmed the concept that acetate mag film, the "poster 
child" for vinegar syndrome, is much worse than quarter-inch acetate 
tape. The big open question on this for me is will acetate tapes 
ultimately stink like the film. In other words, does the degradation of 
1/4 inch tape follow the same curve shape as mag film, only over a 
longer time frame, or will the tape never reach the critical threshold? 
This is another unstudied item.

Two more unstudied items are:

--Is Tom Fine's conjecture that the recommended storage conditions for 
"tape" which appears fine-tuned for PET-film based tape harmful for 
acetate tape by drying it out too much?

--Is the rule in the standards to not freeze tape eliminating the 
preservation technique which has been so good for acetate film? Or, is 
the potential damage from freezing worse than the potential damage from 
not freezing?

Very interesting. Thanks again!

Cheers,

Richard



On 2013-08-20 11:43 AM, Scott D. Smith wrote:
> Richard:
>
> I ran into a similar situation with some Soundcraft tapes years ago.
> Probably mid-fifties vintage. (Don't recall the oxide # right off hand)
>
> As I recall, I think we ended up having to hand wind most of them (this
> is way before we had special transports for cleaning), and cleaned and
> lubricated the oxide. I spoke with whoever the rep was at Soundcraft at
> the time, and he mentioned that he had heard of some cases of acetate
> tapes that had some issues with lubricant. He didn't come right out and
> say they were defective from the plant, but that is what I surmised from
> the conversation. There were other tapes from the same collectionwith
> the same oxide, which had no problems. I also have some tapes in my
> personal collection from the same era, and when I played a couple of
> them last year, experienced no issuesbeyond some minimal base warping.
>
> On the other hand, we have done transfers of some Soundcraft 35mm mag
> from the same period, and boy did it stink!
>
> --Scott
>
> Scott D. Smith CAS
> ChicagoAudio Works, Inc.
>
>
> On 8/19/2013 6:19 PM, Richard L. Hess wrote:
>> Hello, all,
>>
>> I have been in touch with a tape conservator who was asking about a
>> sticky ACETATE tape. She realizes that it should not be baked, but I
>> was wondering if any of you had run across this.
>>
>> The tape is in a Soundcraft box, but other tapes in Soundcraft boxes
>> in the same batch have transferred well. It is on a clear, six-window
>> reel (with three of the windows slightly larger than the other three).
>> It is brown oxide and not back coated.
>>
>> There are no visible signs (to the conservator) of water damage to
>> either the box or the reel.
>>
>> The symptoms are:
>>
>> (1) Tape sticks to underlying layer and does not drop cleanly
>>     off the reel
>> (2) No oxide appears to be pulling out at the outside
>> (3) When attempting to play the tape, it squeals
>>
>> The tape is half-track mono, perhaps both sides, at 3.75 in/s.
>>
>> Any and all thoughts/anecdotes would be appreciated. I may be getting
>> this tape to transfer and I have some ideas--I'll publish on my blog
>> if we have success or learn anything.
>>
>> Thanks!
>>
>> Cheers,
>>
>> Richard
>>
>> Richard L. Hess                   email: [log in to unmask]
>> Aurora, Ontario, Canada                             647 479 2800
>> http://www.richardhess.com/tape/contact.htm Quality tape transfers --
>> even from hard-to-play tapes.
>>
>
Richard L. Hess                   email: [log in to unmask] Aurora, 
Ontario, Canada                             647 479 2800 
http://www.richardhess.com/tape/contact.htm Quality tape transfers -- 
even from hard-to-play tapes.

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