From: Patent Tactics, George Brock-Nannestad


humidity works, according to Nadja Wallaszkovits (Phonogrammarchiv, Centre 
for Linguistics and Audiovisual Documentation, Austrian Academy of Sciences, 
Vienna). It is part of the re-plastification process she reported on without 
giving details in Berlin in June (see my report of 14 June 2011 on ARSCLIST).

A patent had been applied for, publication was to be "soon", but to my 
knowledge this has not yet happened. Perhaps your information from Mitchell 
Heller was published in its day, and this could prevent patenting today. In 
such a situation, the applicant frequently withdraws the patent application 
without letting it publish, to keep the information to himself, as there are 
no rights to be derived from it.

Best wishes,


P.S. I have just read the posts by Richard Hess and Steven Smolian, and I 
agree completely.


Don Tait wrote: 
> I agree with Scott Phillips. I'd like to read everyone's comments  about 
> this on the ARSC site if everyone is willing. Because I have some acetate 
> tapes from circa 1957 that are dried, curled, and that I want  to preserve.
>   I'll tell something that was told to me about a possible rescue  method 
> by Mitchell Heller, who's been an engineer involved in recording since  the
> early 1950s: humidity. Mitchell said the basic problem is that acetate tape 
> dries out, and curls as a result. He recommended putting a piece of wet 
> cloth or  paper towel in at least one corner of a tape enclosure, the more
> corners the  better, trying to cover all openings of the enclosure with
> something 
> like  plastic wrap to trap the moisture inside, and letting it sit for a 
> while. He  said that would rehydrate the tape and cause it to flatten enough
> to be played  successfully.
>   Despite my problems with a few acetate tapes I've never had the  energy 
> to try it, so I don't know whether it works. Others probably will. In any 
> case, that's my contribution. I hope to read others' thoughts about the 
> topic.
>   Don Tait