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I've seen one of those earlier Presto discs Mike refers to, and almost 
mentioned it in my post but decided not to. This one was really thick 
and had the gromet. Almost had convinced myself that it was not really a 
record, as it had no laminate.

Mike, was yours laminated? Perhaps the one I had in my hands was just a 
core with laminate removed?

joe salerno


Michael Biel wrote:
> -------- Original Message --------
> Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] Quick ID - shellac, instantaneous, vinyl
> From: Shai Drori <[log in to unmask]>
> Date: Thu, November 19, 2009 1:10 pm
> To: [log in to unmask]
> 
> I never thought of this. It's sort of automatic to me and I guess to 
> everyone else. The look and feel totally different, that I never spent 
> a second thinking about it.
> 
> Having handled records for over sixty years, this is generally my
> reaction also, except that I have been a teacher and in addition to what
> I told my classes about the common items, I have been teaching my
> daughter about all of the various media we come across.  Whenever we go
> thru records and I spot something unusual I always point it out to her. 
> But it comes as second nature to me, even by feel.  I usually can
> immediately tell if a lacquer disc is aluminum, glass, steel, or fibre
> instantly.  Glass can fool many people but I somehow just know if it is
> glass.  They immediately feel different to me, just as Shai also seemed
> to know that the discs she handled were glass.  The visual clues include
> the edges, the center hole, the weight, as well as, of course, the ring,
> the translucency, etc.  There also is a difference in how the light
> reflects in addition to transmission thru the disc.  But you can't teach
> it -- you learn it by doing.  
> 
> There are two variations of glass beyond the normal, by the way.  The
> first Presto glass was twice as thick and had a center hole grommet. 
> They seem indistructable but they aren't.  When I moved from Missouri to
> NJ in 1974 all the glass survived EXCEPT the thick Presto I had.  But it
> was a common FDR speech.  AudioDiscs had a fibre center about 2 inches
> in diameter.  So the spindle and driving holes are not in the glass but
> in that fibre disc.  It is held in place by the lacquer and the paper
> labels.  It can fall out, but all you have to do is replace it!  
> 
> Mike Biel  [log in to unmask]  
>  
> 
>  Vinyl is light flexible has a certain shine 
> to it and almost no sound when you handle it. Shellac has this sound to 
> it when you handle it that sounds brittle, sort of like a "don't @#$^ 
> with me". And instantaneous are very heavy compared to the others of the
> 
> same size. Of course there are exceptions to the rule but over time you 
> sort of just know.
> The last time I was puzzled by a record that felt "wrong" was a few 
> years back when I got a shipment of glass records. During the War 
> aluminum was gone to the army and different substances were used for the
> 
> base, glass among them. Never been more scared than handling those 
> records and that includes nitrate stuff. The up side was that they were 
> ruler flat and played on the emt like a dream, great sound.
> m2c
> shai
> 
> Tracy Popp wrote:
>> Hello All,
>>
>> I have a question on visual identification of, and differentiation among
>> shellac, instantaneous and vinyl grooved disks. Are there quick visual and
>> non-destructive methods of determining the type of disk?
>>
>> I am aware that most instantaneous have three "spindle" holes in the center,
>> and one can generally determine that a disk is an instantaneous based on the
>> core material (if one can see the core material.) Any other suggested
>> methods of quick ID and differentiation - barring cracking the edge of the
>> disk to see the material composition? Is gently tapping the disk surface,
>> and listening for aural cues about material density an useful practice?
>>
>> Thanks for your assistance!
>>
>> Best,
>> Tracy Popp
>> UIUC Graduate Student MLS
>>
>>
>