Bought a Spin Clean on Black Friday - it's going back this Friday

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by csgreene, Dec 5, 2019.

  1. ssmith3046

    ssmith3046 Forum Resident

    Successfully used a Spin Clean for several years before I bought an Okki Nokki about eight years ago. Great investment for my records.
  2. vinylontubes

    vinylontubes Forum Resident

    Katy, TX
    I will state that judging the merits of a RCM on the result of a groove worn record is like judging the merits of a great book that has missing pages. And it would seem the expectation could be verified some a single record cleaning. I own an Okki Nokki and before that I owned a Record Doctor. Even though I paid $400 more the Okki Nokki, I never expected it to outperform the Record Doctor. What I paid for is convenience. The Okki Nokki is much easier to use and it's much quieter. The scrubbing process isn't any different from what you can do in a sink. I haven't used the stock goat hair brush in years. I don't follow the directions word for word in the Okki Nokki manual. And the I think the process is better. I think the point in using something like the Spin Clean is that it gets you away from the kitchen sink, because other activities like cooking and washing dishes occur at that location. If you are cleaning records at the sink, you can use any fluid or brush because, it's your own DIY method. For any RCM, I wouldn't recommend strictly following the instructions. This would preclude using a different manufacture's fluids or brushes. Now if you have a utility sink in the laundry room or a basement, something like a Spin Clean isn't going to be better than that. Why would it be? It's the same thing, possibly worst, if better better brushes and fluids are used at the sink. You soak a record and apply a scrubbing with a brush. I would still expect the Spin Clean to be faster because both sides are being scrubbed simultaneously. For some people this would be reason enough for it to be better than sink cleaning. I would think that any sink cleaning would include a rinsing. Not including a similar rinse with a Spin Clean and comparing to sink method that includes a rinse isn't really a fair comparison to me. It's not like there is magic in the stock Spin Clean fluid.
    JackBnimble and recstar24 like this.
  3. The FRiNgE

    The FRiNgE Forum Resident

    Two things I can suggest if you still have the spin clean.

    1) Towel dry introduces lint in the groove. The first play tends to displace the lint particles as they are not adhered. The second play should be quiet. (the lint may be still there but out of the path of the stylus) The remedy is to air dry. I use warmed water which greatly shortens dry time. But also this warning, some people have the idea to use a blow dryer on the record... don't... the heating elements shed micro-metal particles continuously, not good for the records.

    2) The spin clean instructions may be too general on how to spin the record. I've had consistent results by moving the record more slowly. I move the record on shorter arcs, then reverse, then forward again a little further. This method takes longer, but only one to two full rounds will do the job, and a better job. The more frequent reverse tends to stand the pad bristles more vertically, therefore clean deeper in the groove, as opposed to a fast spin which flattens the bristles. The bath really does most of the work. Most of the debris simply floats out of the groove.. but try the method prescribed, and let us know if that makes a difference!

    It does no harm to final rinse with soft, filtered water
  4. Generally, you only get what you pay for. The cheaper the price, the cheaper the quality.
    The problem with RCM's like the Spin Clean is air drying. So, you wetclean a record and do a good job, then you let it sit out in the open to dry. Unless you are doing this in a spotless clean room, a record will draw dust to it like a magnet.
    If you want to see where the crackle and other surface noise is coming from, look at it under a microscope. High-power USB microscopes are pretty cheap.
  5. classicrocker

    classicrocker Life is good!

    Worcester, MA, USA
    I do a Spin Clean followed by a vacuuming with a Record Doctor and then a second cleaning and vacuum with the Record Doctor. I found the two together are better than each by themselves.

    I am a big believer, based on experience, that vacuum drying is far superior to air or towel drying. YMMV.

    If it was me I would keep the Spin Clean and either buy a RD V or one of the less expensive vacuum attachments mentioned on the forum many times that require an external shop vac.
    Jimbo912, The FRiNgE and HiFi Guy like this.
  6. bever70

    bever70 It's all about the soundstage

    No difference at all between spin clean and proper hand washing imo. A VACUUM step is what you need to have a difference! No need to buy an off the shelf RCM for that, find a good cheap shop vac and be creative. Lots of good info to be found how to turn one into an RCM for pennies.

    I have even skipped the 'used turntable' now as a basis for my vacuuming cleaning. I do it all by hand now, because this way I can clean 2 sides at a time and do the vacuuming also 2 sides at a time. Saves me time better spent on listening.
  7. dividebytube

    dividebytube Forum Resident

    Grand Rapids, MI
    I just don't trust my clumsy nature to even attempt handwashing. And I've bought a few records that were obviously washed by hand; lots of left over film and not a good rinse.

    The KAB EV-1 is my go-to; paired with a $12 mini shop vac that I picked up from Walmart. Simple, cheap, and no motors to burn out. If the vacuum goes, easy enough to buy another.

    And yes, any cleaning method is not going to repair a record. But I have heard miracles! When I was in college my apartment burned down (thanks to the neighbor downstairs). I was able to sort through the wreckage and pull out some records from a closet. They were smoke and the water damaged but somehow not warped from the heat. They played super crackly though from the dust and smoke. I saved two of them as a momento to that terrible day. Well fast forward a decade plus and I finally got around to cleaning those records with a KAB. And what do you know? The majority of the horrible crackle was gone. Now I wish I had taken all of the records!
  8. Tim 2


    Alberta Canada
    Cleaning is way over-rated. If it's not dirty don't clean it.
    I had a record microscope at one time, looking at the LP's before and after told me there wasn't much going on. The only exception was when I purchased an old heavily used LP.
    recstar24, willboy, Fruff76 and 5 others like this.
  9. Kyle Mooney

    Kyle Mooney Kwisatz Haderach

    Central PA
    +1 for the Record Doctor
    Wngnt90 likes this.
  10. Tony-A

    Tony-A Forum Resident

    Tampa USA
    I purchased a RCM (Vacuum) machine back in 2007 and have never looked back. I've changed (upgrade) about my whole system, and the RCM is the only constant :)

    I wouldn't know what to do with out it :shake:, specially when most of purchases are used records.

  11. NettleBed

    NettleBed Forum Resident

    new york city
    I would suggest trying the cleaner on a record for which the main cause of dirty sound is dirt, not damage.
    patient_ot likes this.
  12. hbucker

    hbucker Well-Known Member

    I don't care if you return it or not. You should do what you feel is best.

    I've cleaned about 750 LPs over the last few years with my Spin Clean and can testify that it does clean and it does make most of my LPs sound better if not perfect. (But it obviously can't polish a turd.) As with your Led Zep LP, some are too far gone for this particular process.

    Many here will attest that there are better systems for the right $$. If the closest to perfection possible is what you desire, you should take others' advice and invest in one of these systems.

    IMO, judging any system on what they can't accomplish with a previously damaged record is not necessarily a good measuring stick.

    Good luck!
    DeFriend and mertoo like this.
  13. patient_ot

    patient_ot Forum Resident

    The important point here is that you are doing your #15 soaking time on a device with a full platter, not the KAB itself. Flipping over with the liquid on also must take some effort so as not to make a mess with fluid. A full platter RCM, or at least a "label platter" type machine dispenses with the need for a second device for #15 soaks.
  14. patient_ot

    patient_ot Forum Resident

    Many of my purchases lately are used vinyl. After decades there is quite a bit of dust and grime embedded in the grooves when I get them, even if the records are visually VG+ to NM. Using an old style record brush isn't going to get all the dust and grime out of the grooves. An RCM will get most of it. For new vinyl, depends where it was pressed and how they handled it. Some plants are quite nasty and will have vinyl shavings on the record and use cheap paper inners which deposit paper debris in the grooves before you tear off the shrink. These records usually benefit from a cleaning too. In theory all records should be cleaned before play but I do not clean every single new purchase. ALL used records get cleaned before I put them on my turntable. Same thing with records I've taken out of storage after many years.
    Dignan2000 and rebellovw like this.
  15. rebellovw

    rebellovw Forum Resident

    Prescott, AZ
    You need something decent - you shouldn't have all new records - point is to go the vinyl shops and come home with tons of used 1.00 records - those need to be washed.
  16. rebellovw

    rebellovw Forum Resident

    Prescott, AZ
    Then you are doing it wrong. Many things are overrated and provide hardly any sonic difference in this hobby and an RCM plus a good cleaning regimen is not one of them. It was one of my best upgrades.
    DeFriend, riverrat, nosliw and 2 others like this.
  17. patient_ot

    patient_ot Forum Resident

    If you can find things in the $1 bin worth buying! I rarely do, if the store even has a dollar bin anymore. Many don't. I do find many great purchases in the $3-20 range though.
  18. rebellovw

    rebellovw Forum Resident

    Prescott, AZ
    Yeah - I'm probably wrong about that - it was @5 years ago when I was last at Amoeba Records in Berkeley where I bought a ton of .99 cent albums. I have a bunch and they play great.
  19. TarnishedEars

    TarnishedEars Forum Resident

    Seattle, WA
    I would not expect a spin-clean to do a better job than a thorough hand washing. I would merely expect for it to be more convenient.

    To me spin cleans are best for running batches of records through at one time. If you are cleaning records one at a time, then a hand wash is probably isn't much more work.
    hbucker and jeffsab like this.
  20. patient_ot

    patient_ot Forum Resident

    Maybe a year or two ago I found a nice copy of Armageddon's s/t record in the dollar bin. Little bit of ring wear on the cover but the vinyl was very nice. Most of the time I don't even bother looking, because if the store even has a dollar bin it's stuff that's scratched up or things I don't want. Even classical records and old film soundtracks that used to go to the dollar bins are $5-10 records now at many stores, IME.
    classicrocker and rebellovw like this.
  21. rebellovw

    rebellovw Forum Resident

    Prescott, AZ
    Agreed - depends on the location and store. A 1.00 record from Revolver in Phoenix is no where near Rasputins, Amoeba standards (Berkeley) - so I pay @3 on up here.

    But the fun part of this hobby - is to buy many used albums (inspect the vinyl) and discover new artists etc - it is hit and miss - but when it hits - wow what pleasure.
    patient_ot likes this.
  22. patient_ot

    patient_ot Forum Resident

    Yep, cratedigging can be a lot of fun if you're into it. Lots of "new to me" but old music makes it way into my collection. I let the records find me most of the time, if you get my drift.
    The FRiNgE and rebellovw like this.
  23. rebellovw

    rebellovw Forum Resident

    Prescott, AZ
    Completely. Too many records have found me - my IKEA Expedites are all full - I gotta stop buying vinyl - or give up storing other items like clothing and books.
    patient_ot likes this.
  24. Sterling1

    Sterling1 Forum Resident

    Louisville, KY
    The Spin Clean works as advertised when instructions are followed using distilled rather than tap water. I diverge however from wiping dry instead allowing LPs to air dry. I clean new, as well as used records. Biggest benefit is elimination of static electricity pops. Pops from record defect of course can not be eliminated yet micro line stylus minimizes the annoyance of such pops. Over all I am pleased with my cleaning system consisting of Spin Clean, audio-technica Anti-Static Record Brush, Onzow, audio-technica Stylus Cleaning Formula, and Stylus Brush. My regimen is Spin Clean, air dry, brush stylus, Onzow stylus, brush record, and play. If the record is new and still pops I take the record back and get a refund.
  25. Kevin j

    Kevin j The 5th 99

    Seattle Area
    sounds like you wanted the spin clean to fix your records, not clean them. it can't do that.
    GentleSenator likes this.

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