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In the Forum: Analog Playback
In the Thread: Sensible record cleaning: vinyl piranhas and record Vaseline
Post Subject: Sensible record cleaning: vinyl piranhas and record VaselinePosted by Romy the Cat on: 11/7/2009

I do not claim any special vinyl cleaning inelegance. In fact I did quite stupid things in my past playing with a few cleaning and playing “improvement” solutions.  Well, I went over it and have learned that I would like to practice only something that I call “dry cleaning”.

The concept of “dry cleaning” implies that record is moisturized, then vacuumed and cleared record is “dry”, means has no residue on the record of any kind. I do not feel that scabbing of records clean them. I feel that wetting records with Grease absorbing liquid (alcohol) and then sucking the juice with vacuum is all the necessary to clear the records. As the result my clean records are “dry” and highly abrasive. I do admit that the “dry” records, being played by the needle with contemporary complex profiles, might have some noise. I feel that this is the noise that the records have naturally. My last two cartridges in my reference stereo arm are both hard-reading cartridges (Shelter 901 and Ortofone Jubilee) What I play clean records, with good surface and good quality of vinyl then they are silent. Otherwise I do pick some noises here and there and I do feel that is how it shall be the noise-reading of a record shall reflect the condition of the record…

Last few weeks I have a local guy who debates this position and who has his alternative view. He feels that the residues and dirt solidified under the bottom of the grooves and the regular alcohol vinyl cleaners can’t dilute it and therefore vacuum does not remove the bottom-laying dirt. He feels that to deal with the situation records need to be scabbed with “right” brushes and the cleaners liquids have to be active.

He considers his record cleaning tech as a “high-end cleaning” and he describing his techniques using terminology that kind of make me to be afraid.  He talks about some kind of biological active things, sort of "vinyl piranhas" that live in liquids and affect any non-vinyl dirt. Then the records need to be s scratched in special ways and then exposed to a few other types of liquids… This is a totally new way of thinking not me, and I am not sure is I am agree with it.

He made me to buy the Osage brash for scabbing and one of the brands of Osage's single-step cleaner.

I do like the brash very much. I do not like the Osage single-step cleaner  -it is too greasy and I need to wash my hands after touching it. I am afraid that all of his “high-end cleaning” might end up dounf will be oiling the records... Anyhow, we agreed that when my preamp be back and my system be up and running we will come together and he will show me how the “really good cleaning” might be performed. It might be interesting as his records do sound very quite silent but I am not willing to step away from my “dry” approach and I would like to preserve all natural vinyl's abrasiveness .

I am interested to see how it will end up. Meanwhile, I did not use any of the “Audio Intelligent” (AI ) cleaners and I am awaiting for a convincing cleaning demonstration/competition that would not affect sound negatively.

The Cat

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