How tightly/spaciously do you store your records? Advice from experienced collectors needed

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by Porkpie, Aug 13, 2017.

  1. Porkpie

    Porkpie Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    UK
    I've been really careful with my vinyl collection, keep each album in a protective outer sleeve, upright and not too tightly packed. However, I recently bought a bunch of records and kept putting them into one of the crates I keep them in that had always had space. Obviously that space was shrinking and this morning I noticed a couple albums have indents on the records showing on the jackets as I must have packed them too tightly. I want to avoid ringwear so have taken some out, but wanted to ask the opinion of people who've been collecting records for 30/40years and kept their covers immaculate what they recommend.

    I've put 2 photos below to show the crate now with space in it. First with lps standing and in the second with them leaning to show the degree of space there is. Do you think this is sufficient "wiggle room"? Do I need some kind of vertical supports spaced closely together? I see photos on here of people's collections leaning 30-40 degrees but assumed this would also place pressure on the covers. How have you managed to successfully store your records without sleeve damage?

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  2. cmcintyre

    cmcintyre Forum Resident

    In my experience, you have just the right amount of LPs - enough wiggle room and sufficient LPs to get them all to stand upright. On first glance your well selected photos allow that to be said.

    Just make sure they all stand upright, keep the plastic (non - PVC) sleeves on them ( perhaps with the opening on the spine, so no dust falls into them). The internal corner wooden bracing is not good though - they should be up against a flat surface. I'd either fill that space with cardboard until you can put a cardboard piece the full size of the space so it provides a full faced flat support.

    Once that support's in place, possibly you might have too many LPs, as you probably have a little less wiggle room that the image suggests. I'd take out the equivalent width of the braces.

    I don't think you need any additional support - the distance between supports is OK.
     
  3. Bathory

    Bathory Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Chicago
    /\ have mine packed in Odyssey 200 black cases. I leave about 1/2 of movement when i rock the stack back and forth.
     
    Porkpie likes this.
  4. Porkpie

    Porkpie Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    UK
    Thanks for the feedback and that's an excellent point about the braces. I did notice the end record seemed to be curving at the top and bottom and wanted to do something about. I might nail pieces of plywood inside the crate against them to give a flat surface as if I stuff it with cardboard it'll look a bit crappy
     
    cmcintyre and qwerty like this.
  5. jkull

    jkull Member

    Location:
    NJ
    Basically just the right amount go keep them holding eachother upright, but not crammed or mashed together. I have a ton of thick gatefolds, i keep those on the ends most often. I also have them all in clear outter plastic sleeves. No issue here.
     
    Aftermath likes this.
  6. malco49

    malco49 Forum Resident

    i store my records as in the first picture and have done so for decades with no problems.
     
    showtaper likes this.
  7. Porkpie

    Porkpie Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    UK
    Thanks for the replies, the problem was definitely overpacking and luckily I caught it before it caused any ringwear, just some indentation on 2 lps from the 60s with thinner covers. Have now padded the sides with sheets of cardboard as per cmcintyre recommended from record packaging.
     
  8. Matt R.

    Matt R. Member

    Location:
    Illinois
    Mine look more like the 2nd picture but I think the idea is that you can pull an album out without much difficulty.
     
    KT88 likes this.
  9. KT88

    KT88 Forum Resident

    Here are a couple of photos of much of my collection as taken maybe 8 or 10 years ago. The first photos shows the crates that I designed and constructed as they are individually packed with record albums. The second photo shows another space where I removed every other crate and used the space between to store records against the sides of the individual crates as well as inside the crates, so that I could expand the collection without having to build more crates. I just bought some boards and cut them to length as a sort of shelving to stack the crates on. I moved the crates and now the collection and added more records, and so the spaces and crates are packed much tighter. I really either need to build more crates or thin the collection at this point. I have removed most all plastic outer sleeves from Lp's so as to gain more space. It's a bit surprising how much space those take-up on their own. It amounts to a 1/2 inch to an inch of space per crate, depending upon the width of the crate. So just by not keeping the Lp's in sleeves, I expanded my shelving. It also makes it easier and faster to play records.
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    -Bill
     
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  10. Porkpie

    Porkpie Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    UK
    That looks good, I like your crates. Does the leaning not cause any ringwear though? I know about the extra space the covers take up too. When I decided to put my entire collection in them I didn't them about them taking space but once I'd done it I had to take quite a few albums out of each crate. For me though they're essential as otherwise the bottom of the albums would rub on the wooden crates plus the ones I use are very clear so make the cover art look a lot more shiny and new and also help protect from ringwear.
     
  11. Combination

    Combination Forum Resident

    Location:
    New Orleans

    Pork, your top picture is okay, but what happens when you get two more albums that have to go into that space? Not to mention that it's more difficult to take albums out in that setup.

    The bottom picture makes for an easier time all around. No way will a little bit of leaning cause ringwear.
     
  12. Porkpie

    Porkpie Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    UK
    I have another crate, plus shelving space on the walls where I keep the rest of my records. The two pictures have the same number of records, the second picture just shows the % by which they lean to give an idea of how much space I have (i.e. not jam packed)
     
  13. I store my records as tight as I can without having to apply a lot of force to slide them out / in the shelves.
     
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  14. KT88

    KT88 Forum Resident

    Leaning wont create ring wear; that is from friction from sliding the records in and out when they are tightly packed. I just don't like the hassle or space taking properties of the plastic sleeves. Yeah, I get some wear on my record covers, but it is very slight. The bottom of the record jacket can rub on the bottom of the crate, you just have to be easy and aware so as not to create too much friction there. A gentle lift and ease it out and back in.

    Much of my collection is vintage stuff and many were bought at record shops that have used Lp's. I don't consider them or electronics as investments. They are wear items and for my enjoyment. I bought them to listen to. The thing about being into collecting a lot of titles is that when you start to get over the 1000 mark, you'll find that you really don't listen to the same records much, so they get very little individual use and thus wear. I prefer to keep the whole ritual as casual and as relaxing as possible. I get a little bit of tension when cuing my $1k cartridge up, but once it finds the groove, I find mine right where I left it!
    YOLO
    :cheers:
    -Bill
     
  15. vinylontubes

    vinylontubes Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Katy, TX
    Agreed with KT88. After a few years you'll see that your record outer sleeves will in fact have ring wear, well scuffing actually. The Jackets inside will be pristine. Ring wear is just the ink being abraded off at the highest points. Most records have a groove guard which is just a thicker lip on the outer edges of the record. This keeps the records from abrading each other on Old Timey Record Changer decks. The records stacked only touch along this groove guard. There should be a small air gap between the surface where the grooves are actually cut. This added thickness protrudes the jacket outward there so you get more prominent wear forming the ring.
     
  16. The Top picture is fine, as I have many shelves just like that. Full...just leave a little wiggle room. You will know what's right by pulling them in and out. you want them to be "snug" but pull out easy.

    If you have less than a full shelf, keep a equal amount off to both sides till they fill up. it's as easy as that and that is how I've done it for over 30 years
     
    Porkpie likes this.
  17. Porkpie

    Porkpie Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    UK
    Thanks. I've made sure all my shelves/crates have good space so I can slide the records in and out. I've been buying records from the 60s & 70s and the sleeves on a lot of them are pristine so I want to make sure I look after them too.
     
    Larry C. McGinnis III likes this.

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