One aspect of record cleaning has not been mentioned here. Shellac is an
organic compound and as such responds to storage conditions. One particular
label - HMV used a vegetable based release agent on their stampers - which
forms part of the surface of the record. As this material ages it shrinks
leaving little blemishes on the surface of the records, resulting in crackly
playback. This is not something that can be remedied with a feather duster -
vacuum brush or conventional means. I am in the practice of using old school
technology - namely my Victrola credenza on gramophone era records - later
ones will be damaged by this. I 'wear in' a new steel needle. in the
eccentric end goove of the record to smooth the sharpness of a new needle
then play the record - of course always using the needle only once. This
will phyically clean out any imperfections from improper storage -
moisture - etc. I find that the record will play much more quietly - they
were designed to play that way.
I then use a nail brush spinning the record on my old work-horse turntable -
a Micro 16" turntable with a substantial motor. This is intended to further
clean the record and polish the grooves, and activate the lubricants built
into the pressing. I also use bamboo needles to further polish the grooves.
Keep in mind this is only for records mid thirties back. Newer pressings can
be destroyed this way - Forties pressings are made of softer material that
will not withstand this process - but also they are less susceptible to
blemishes reom moisture anyway.-Mickey Clark
Follow me on Twitter
M.C.Productions Vintage Recordings
710 Westminster Ave. West
----- Original Message -----
From: "John Haley" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Tuesday, January 19, 2016 11:00 AM
Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] Cleaning stylus
> Sorry, I am not about to put ANY kind of chemicals on something as easily
> damaged as a vinyl record, or a precious acetate disc. Plain warm water,
> patted dry with paper towels and allowed to dry is quite effective. Not
> the same as a fancy machine, I am sure, but still quite effective in
> washing away grime and dirt. In this case, low tech is the way to go, for
> John Haley
> On Tue, Jan 19, 2016 at 1:33 PM, H D Goldman <[log in to unmask]>
>> Hi Clark,
>> Photo-flo is classified as a “wetting agent” with “very little" activity,
>> at best, as a detergent. We never found a good reason to include it in
>> any formulation. But with the right RCM surely you can just suck
>> everything off …. unfortunately that’s wishful thinking.
>> It’s usually quite easy to demonstrate this with any RCM. Clean a side
>> with your favorite wetting agent, play it twice & listen carefully on the
>> third play back. Then repeat with the addition of a suitable water
>> If you feel the need, reverse the process.
>> It’s an interesting observation that a number of KM owners I’ve talked
>> with seem to believe that the focused vacuum & just about any fluid will
>> do. Unfortunately this simply is not the case. It has been our
>> & that of our various testers that thorough cleaning with an effective
>> detergent was necessary for consistent, high quality cleaning which
>> includes removal of the mold-release agents.
>> A substance that reduces the surface tension of water or another liquid,
>> causing the liquid to spread across or penetrate more easily the surface
>> a solid.
>> detergent: a water-soluble cleansing agent that combines with impurities
>> and dirt to make them more soluble and differs from soap in not forming a
>> scum with the salts in hard water. Some detergents have both properties
>> varying degrees.
>> We chose to use a mixture of a high purity surfactant blend coupled with
>> small but critical amount of I-propanol. The is not isopropyl alcohol.
>> Extensive evaluations confirmed the safety & effectiveness of this
>> which was further confirmed by listening evaluations over a period of
>> from a larger number of interested testers.
>> First the doubters claimed it was all BS & then they listened to the
>> results …. then they said you could never use the same solution on vinyl
>> shellac & they realized they were mistaken; ask the folks at LOC or a
>> variety of respected universities & archives; finally we demonstrated
>> we could also thoroughly & safely clean Edison diamond discs. If you
>> confirmation call the Edison Historical Site as well as the remarks
>> volunteered by the head of Yale’s Historical Sound Archive at the ARSC
>> meeting in Nashville in the early 1990s.
>> Duane Goldman
>> H D Goldman Lagniappe Chemicals Ltd.
>> PO Box 37066 St. Louis, MO 63141 USA
>> v/f 314 205 1388 [log in to unmask]
>> On Jan 18, 2016, at 6:24 PM, Clark Johnsen <[log in to unmask]>
>> > Hi Duane.
>> > Aren't Photo-Flo and Dawn redundant?
>> > c
This email has been checked for viruses by Avast antivirus software.