Cleaning your LP covers.

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by mambo, Jan 18, 2005.

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  1. mambo

    mambo New Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Spain
    Perhaps some of you have a magic solution or maybe this is not even a new discovery but here goes anyway!

    In Europe we have a furniture polish made by Johnson & Johnson. It is silicone based. It comes in a brown aerosol can. It is marketed in the UK as "Pledge" and in Portugal and Spain as "Pronto".

    I use this to clean and protect lp covers. I have cleaned over 200 lp covers to date and only had one that it wouldn't work on and that it almost damaged - an original copy of the Modern Jazz Quartet's "Pyramid" which is in a matt cardboard cover.

    It works great on all glossy or semi glossy covers such as MFSL and DCC. Generally application improves the grade of the sleeve by one or even two grades. Works best on black. It can also make mild ringwear almost disappear.

    I use it on all my new lp covers as well now because as it contains silicone, the cover is protected by an invisible layer that seems to reduce wear by 100%! You will notice that the sleeves just slide out of the protective plastic covers after application, also your lp's will smell nice instead of musty in damper conditions.

    I usually just spray a small amount onto the sleeve directly unless I am not certain in which case I spray it onto the cloth and then apply. I take care to put a bit extra on the areas that are more prone to wear such as edges etc.

    I use one of the new generation super absorbent cotton cloths (they look like thin towelling but are very smooth and soft and will not catch on rough or raised edges.

    Try it you will be amazed at the reults and your Lp covers will be thankful for it.

    Regards

    raymon
     
  2. Ed Bishop

    Ed Bishop Incredibly, I'm still here

    There are ways to clean grime from Lp covers, many ways and solutions, cloths, etc....but as a rule, if the cover is in fairly good shape, I tend to keep any type of friggin' with it to a bare minimum. Just like vinyl: the less cleaning it needs, seems to me, the better not to go nuts every time you pull it out of the sleeve.

    :ed:
     
  3. Mark Kelley

    Mark Kelley New Member

    I usually use windex (ammonia) for really dirty and/or smelly records. Seems to work and does not cause too much damage if you don't spray it directly on the records.

    I should give Pledge a try, although I am not sure this is the same product here in the States.

    Mark Kelley
     
  4. mambo

    mambo New Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Spain
    The UK version of pledge is in a brown aerosol can and says "Natural furniture polish" and has a slogan that says "extra protection for wood", and another slogan "cares for all your furniture"
     
  5. Ed Bishop

    Ed Bishop Incredibly, I'm still here

    Probably got a can of Pledge kickin' around, think I'll try it on a few dupes I've got kickin' around...ya never know! (Besides it's January and boring...:D )

    :ed:
     
  6. Joe Nino-Hernes

    Joe Nino-Hernes Active Member

    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    I generally use Novus plastic polish #1 for glossy covers.
     
  7. bonjo

    bonjo Forum Resident

    Location:
    USA
    This may make the covers look shiny-new, but nonetheless what you're doing is adding a layer of Pledge to your LP covers, a layer that was not present originally.

    For me at least, this lowers the grade of the record, since I don't know anything about the long-term effects of Pledge on album covers, and (AFAIK) there's no way to safely remove it.

    - joe s
     
  8. Dean De Furia

    Dean De Furia Active Member

    Location:
    Northern NJ
    The stuff Mambo is talking about is NOT standard Lemon Pledge. It is marketed here as "Spray Kitchen Wax" made by Johnson and Johnson. I've been using it on select covers for about 20 years. It really does work great and doesn't have any adverse effects that I can see. None of the covers that I have treated have ever yellowed or otherwise been damaged. It only works on Glossy or semi-gloss covers. DO NOT USE it on matt finish covers because it will soak in.
     
  9. thxdave

    thxdave Forum Resident

    I was over at a friend's house this weekend and he showed me something that he uses for album covers....."and a whole lot more". Actually, it is a cloth bag containing something similar to ground up pencil erasers. He said he got it at an art supply store years ago and it is used for removing pencil work from canvases, I assume. You basically rub the bag back and forth over the dirty area and it "erases" it. Anybody else heard of this?
     
  10. Lord Hawthorne

    Lord Hawthorne Currently Untitled

    Location:
    Portland, Oregon
    I would not use anything that leaves something behind on my album covers. You may not notice it now, but all the products mentioned cause a slow chemical reaction with the inks and acids in the paper on the cover. You'll notice it in a few years. What I use to clean dirty covers is to spray water or Formula 409 (if needed) on a paper towel and lightly wipe away the grime. If I use anything other than water, I do a second wipe with water to thoroughly cleanse the surface. Also, I recommend pacing yourself in the procedure so that too much wetness doesn't soak into the cover, resulting in warping or staining. When dry, keep your cover in a plastic sleeve.
     
  11. Lord Hawthorne

    Lord Hawthorne Currently Untitled

    Location:
    Portland, Oregon
    I'd also like to add that not all covers should be wet-cleaned. Rough-finish or uncoated paper will come out looking worse after being washed. For that cover of Neil Young's "Harvest", I recommend a common rubber eraser instead.
     
  12. mambo

    mambo New Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Spain
    One thing that perhaps I haven't stressed enough, is the reduced wear to Lp's because of the invisible silicone layer. I do not believe there will be any long-term damage to the sleeves and if it hasn't damaged Deans covers in 20 years that's good enough for me!

    Regards

    raymon
     
  13. proufo

    proufo Forum Resident

    Location:
    Bogotá, Colombia
    I use windows cleaner for grimy covers, sometimes also on the tops of box sets that are exposed.

    But I wouldn't use anything leaving a residue or smell in covers that do not cry for it. The smell of cardboard brings back memories of enjoyment of the albums when they were recent. I simply love the smell of Atco/Atlantic cardboard from the 70s!
     
  14. Tony Plachy

    Tony Plachy Forum Resident

    Location:
    Pleasantville, NY
    I find this thread a real eye opener, I have over 1000 LP's and have never even thought about cleaning the LP covers. I clean the vinyl all the time and have experimented with many techniques for vinyl cleaning but it never occurred to me that people would clean covers. :o
     
  15. TommyTunes

    TommyTunes Senior Member

    Unless the record is used and the cover is dirty, just wipe the cover with a dry cloth and insert it an protective outer sleeve.
     
  16. Metoo

    Metoo Forum Hall Of Fame

    Location:
    Spain (EU)
    This thread has got me wondering what was used to make the Beatles' White album white? Gotta ask Mr. Clean. ;)

    Now seriously, this is definitely an interesting thread although most of my LP covers do not need any special cleaning they, are in general terms, quite well. I bet the "Crosby, Stills and Nash" cover for one would be a difficult one to recover (no pun intended) from grime and other 'usual suspects.' That paper would surely come off with certain types of erasers.
     
  17. Sckott

    Sckott Hand Tighten Only.

    Location:
    Sagamore Beach, Ma
    Not sure I would use Pledge myself, but... Since I use a lot of outer sleeves, the waxy film may make storing Lps a problem? Something to think about.
     
  18. Metoo

    Metoo Forum Hall Of Fame

    Location:
    Spain (EU)
    Anything that has wax will surely gather a lot of dust that will stick to it with time. But I understand that Mambo said that Pledge had silicone not wax.
     
  19. 4_everyman

    4_everyman The Sexual Intellectual

    Yeah! I remember those things from when i took a Drafting class in high school...back in the 70s. The instructor recommended them for certain students who were not careful with their drawing tools. Never thought of using one on an LP cover. Hmm...
     
  20. quicksilverbudie

    quicksilverbudie quicksilverbudie

    Location:
    Ontario
    I use toilet paper dampened with Disk Doctor/VPI fluid and gentle wipe on the covers just to get the dust/dirt off before I put the cover into a new bag, also use compressed air to take out any dirt inside the album cover before I put a fresh cleaned record inside...anal yes....but hey seeing I'm cleaning the record I do the cover at the same time....if you rub too hard the ink will come off the cover so be careful.

    sean
     
  21. Nad 214

    Nad 214 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Ohio
    Here is what I use. For Beatles UK covers I use a soft pencil eraser for the nonlaminated paper I'm real careful and I take my time it does a wonderful job of getting dirt and ringware off. On the laminated fronts and flaps I use lps contact cleaner you'd be amazed at what it does on the flaps gets all those years of grease and grim and that area that runs along the laminate on the flaps. Then I use a little alcohol in dampened paper towel, and wow does it make the laminate shine, on some I’ve gotten them to almost perfect state. I never try to do US Beatles Lp's unless they’re real bad, as I wouldn't want to ruin the paper covers. For stickers or things like that WD40 works real well but it's greasy and it stinks follow up with alcohol.
    Alcohol also works on magic marker but be real careful and take your time.
    I hope these tips help.
    Nad 214
     
  22. quicksilverbudie

    quicksilverbudie quicksilverbudie

    Location:
    Ontario
    Tried Glass Plus yesterday with good results, took the old smoke off of the covers now the white is almost white... Spray on a piece of cloth first then gentle wipe it...the cover I mean....it works.

    sean
     
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