Storing vinyl the proper way

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by Kraan, Jan 9, 2018.

  1. McGuy

    McGuy Forum Resident

    I look at everything with vinyl as a process and I personally enjoy it. get a new/used album, clean it with whatever method you choose, put a mofi cover on the vinyl and an album cover over the album. Store the album outside the cover, inside the album cover. then before playing, swipe the album with an anti-static brush and use the onzow zerodust on the stylus (I don't do this with every album). Some people I know then use the static brush again before putting the album back in the cover. I'm too lazy for that.
    Aftermath likes this.
  2. sublemon

    sublemon Forum Resident

    no issues with this here. the replacement inners (mofi and sleeve city for example) that have the thicker piece on one side are fine. It doesn't really matter if it is the record jacket or another record in a sleeve that is touching. isn't going to hurt anything.
  3. sublemon

    sublemon Forum Resident

    ringwear takes time to develop. Yes you could be very careful with storage and not moving the lps at all and avoid it. outer protective sleeves and storing properly make it easier to enjoy them and prevent extra wear.
    Wallflower and McGuy like this.
  4. 4011021

    4011021 Forum Resident

    I used to put the records outside the cover and inside the plastic sleeve but I don't do this anymore since I believe that if you handle your records carefully you won't cause any wear. I appreciate when record dealers ship them outside the cover however.
    McGuy likes this.
  5. McGuy

    McGuy Forum Resident

    do you guys/gals use the static brush AFTER each album as well? I don't personally, but...maybe a good idea? I don't because I'm so ready for the next album I don't want to waste any time
  6. Spinmeout

    Spinmeout Forum Resident

    Welcome to the insanity asylum!! It sounds like the Vinyl beast has already sunk its claws deep into your flesh.
    Enjoy the downward spiral into the abyss.
    Hooe you have deep pockets
    Kraan and Aftermath like this.
  7. RhodyDave125

    RhodyDave125 Streetwalkin' Cheetah

    I have records that I've owned for over 30 years. Many of them are not in plastic outer covers, and look pristine. Some of them look bad but that's how they were when I bought them secondhand.

    For me, it comes down to taking basic, common sense care of your albums; store them vertically, handle them gently, use some form of cleaner. I use a Discwasher handheld brush and the R4 fluid. Been using that for 30+ years, my albums are in great condition unless purchased in some other condition.

    The point I'm trying to make is that owning records is supposed to be a pleasurable experience. Music is best enjoyed by listening to it. You can go down rabbit holes regarding storage, cleaning, hardware, etc, but at some point there are diminishing returns on the actual enjoyment of listening to your tunes.

    Don't sweat the details too much. Records have been around for more than 100 years and if you treat them with a decent level of care, you'll have years of enjoyment ahead of you. Relax, put a record on, and turn it up!
    4011021 likes this.
  8. rhing

    rhing Forum Resident

    Amen to cleaning all records — new or used. You not only extend the life of your vinyl, but you can really enjoy your music collection and hear nuances you could miss in the midst of unnecessary pop, clicks and heavy surface noise. I use a Record Doctor V vacuum record cleaner with a KAB bearing upgrade. Cleaning with a good record cleaning machine has transformed ratty records from the bargain bins into some real gems.

    The Record Doctor cleaning solution is actually really good when used generously and allowed to completely wet the surface and dissolve all the junk deeply embedded in the grooves. Since my Record Doctor disk rotation is completely manual, I slowly rotate the record several revolutions to insure the vacuum sucks all the fluid and junk out of the grooves. This requires some effort, but I’m always rewarded with virtually live musical performances in my living room. I also use Mobile Fidelity inner sleeves and generic Polyethylene outer sleeves that are large enough to slide over the record covers with plenty room.

    You would be surprised how much of an improvement you can get with cleaning your CDs with a soft lint-free cloth and a little distilled water or eyeglass cleaner.
    Stone Turntable likes this.
  9. GyroSE

    GyroSE Forum Resident

    I usually do you use my carbon optic brush after playing each side and I always use the Zerodust also after playing each side.
  10. 4011021

    4011021 Forum Resident

    Well it happens that today I put some records to play and remembered I read here that if you store the record out of its cover, inside the outer plastic sleeve, you don't have to manipulate the cover. Then I thought "of course!" and did it like that. Gonna do this again from now on.
  11. mishh

    mishh New Member

    South Florida
    Just be careful with Polypro, if its thick like 5mm or even less it can have sharp edges that can damage a fragile spine. High quality Polyethylene is soft and recommended by many comic book collector web sites. But I use either PP, PE or mylar depending on the album cover and what I have available, manly PolyPro, loaded SIDEWAYS and ALWAYS re sealable to keep dust and air pollution off the covers.
    lightbulb likes this.
  12. lightbulb

    lightbulb Not the Brightest of the Bunch

    Smogville CA USA
  13. Ken Clark

    Ken Clark Forum Resident

    Chicago Suburbs
    I clean every record once, then rarely again unless for some reason it looks or sounds like it needs it (on a VPI 16.5). I also change inner sleeves to poly if they come with paper, and have removed all outer sleeves from all my records. It’s easier to see titles, looks better and wear in the cover is very minimal anyway.
    Leonthepro likes this.
  14. Just Walking

    Just Walking Forum Resident

    Abingdon UK
    Generally I don't have a static problem. I live in the UK, which sits close to the triple point of water almost always. I've taken to using MoFi sleeves, and note that the Library of Congress archival recording process uses them, with other recommendations too:

    "Grooved Discs: When possible, replace record sleeves with a high density polyethylene sleeve (e.g., DiscWasher V.R.P., Mobile Fidelity Original Master Sleeve, Nagaoka No. 102 Anti-Static Record Sleeve); the Nagaoka sleeves can fit inside paper sleeves when an original paper sleeve needs to be retained"

    From Care, Handling, and Storage of Audio Visual Materials - Collections Care - (Preservation, Library of Congress)
    JNTEX likes this.
  15. ggg71

    ggg71 Forum Resident

    Boston, MA
    The most important vinyl storage tip I can give is this: only pull out one record at a time. When you finish listening to it, put it away. Repeat.

    If you've got multiple albums floating around outside their sleeves, it's only a matter of time before it becomes a coaster.

    And don't leave an album on the turntable when you finish a listening session. Invariably, you will forget, pull out another album later on, and then be standing in front of your turntable thinking is there anyway I can do a hot swap??? :)
  16. Dream On

    Dream On Forum Resident

    Hi Bill...could you expand on this a little?

    I'd like to know what the velvet brush looks like. Something like this? Velvet Record Brush

    Also, how do you apply the water? I'm assuming it would be the smallest amount of distilled water and that when you brush the record it will dry very quickly. Or, is the record a tiny bit wet when you start playing it?

    Personally, I think I do what most folks do and that's a quick pass over with a carbon fiber brush right before playing. I this this is fairly effective but to some degree it will just move dust around on the record surface and so I'm sure this step could be improved.

  17. KT88

    KT88 Forum Resident

    I use something very similar to the Discwasher brush. It is a nicer version made by Signet, which I bought years ago when they were in operation. I also used the Discwasher for many years prior. I sell both the Discwasher and a similar velvet brush to the one you suggested although under a couple of different brand names in my record store / hi-fi shop. The Discwasher systems, and the rectangular velvet brush types are used the same way for most effective cleaning. I also have a record cleaning fluid that I have created, which is similar to the old Nitty Gritty Pure2 fluid, and use that. You get the leading edge of the felt brush damp with fluid, just enough to give the record surface a shine from the thin film of fluid on the surface. You allow the record to rotate a few turns like this and then roll the brush slowly to its drier edges to absorb the fluid from the record during the next few rotations. That mostly dries the record and it is ready for play, where it will be completely dry in just a few seconds into the first track if you don't want to wait before playing it. It's way less complicated than the description. Basically you are just allowing the record to turn a few times, maybe four revolutions total, while gently holding the brush over it. That all takes less than a minute and you are cuing the stylus. This is great for records that were already clean enough to have been inserted into my collection. So the records that this method is used on are already cleaned and this is just a before each play routine.

    When I buy records and visually inspect them, I know if they need further cleaning. Many do. If I get a used record that is dirty, then I will clean that on a towel over a hard, flat surface with a lot of my RC fluid first. I will then use a vacuum RCM to get them spotless if they are going to be played much. I have thousands of Lp's, so many I don't plan on even playing much but they are always there on stand-by. Then they are all ready to go in my collection shelving, ready to play. I don't bother with a major cleaning for new records unless they show signs that they need that. I always use my damp record brush method before each play. I sometimes use the brush dry or use a carbon fiber one at my shop for a faster demo of equipment for folks. Sometimes I just drop the needle if it looks dust free and people are always impressed with the sound. There is a subtle difference in surface noise between the no brushing, dry brushing, and damp brushing choices. This is because the records are all already cleaned and in decent condition. I would rather spend more time listening than cleaning, so I minimize the number of steps and combine tasks a bit to add no more than a minute to cuing up a new Lp side.
  18. swvahokie

    swvahokie Forum Resident

    Sent you a message
  19. Stone Turntable

    Stone Turntable Dedicated Listener

    New Mexico USA
    Strongly advise not skipping record cleaning. Especially for used vinyl, but even for new LPs. (MFSL, for example recommends cleaning their brand-new records before playing, to clean off residue from manufacturing.)

    I saved up and bought a Nitty Gritty RCM that’s still going strong, but for years before that I hand-cleaned using the excellent Disc Doctor brushes and cleaners. They’ve also got detailed instructions for DIY cleaning on the web site. In fact I miss puttering around cleaning records while listening to records, but the Nitty Gritty motor and vacuum makes a godawful racket....

    There are other relatively inexpensive options. Here’s a thread that’s a few years out of the date but still useful:

    Best Cheap Record Cleaning Machine

    Devoting the time and effort to cleaning your records (and the stylus on your cartridge) will extend the life of your cartridge and add a little purity and beauty to the sound.
  20. Chris Schoen

    Chris Schoen Forum Resident

    Maryland, U.S.A.
    Maybe in the "dollar bin"....
  21. John Schofield

    John Schofield Forum Resident

    Still LMFAO!!
  22. lesterbangs

    lesterbangs Forum Resident

    They get mixed reviews around here... but I am a firm believer in using a Spin Clean on all records.

    Also Mo-Fi sleeves... which mainly receive positive reviews
    Bill Why Man likes this.
  23. marcb

    marcb Senior Member

    DC area
    Here’s a piece of advice...don’t take advice from anyone who says they don’t clean new records and then rationalizes why it isn’t needed.

    New records may be unplayed, but they are not clean. Clean them first. Your stylus and your ears will thank you.
  24. Chris Schoen

    Chris Schoen Forum Resident

    Maryland, U.S.A.
    I don't automatically clean new records, but then I have rarely had problems with the way they sound either. Maybe I'm just lucky.
    Ben Toscano likes this.
  25. krlpuretone

    krlpuretone Forum Resident

    Grantham, NH
    The one thing not on your list, and possibly the most common mistake I see new vinyl users make - is to handle the records in such a way that you're not getting fingerprints on the playing surface of the record...

    Pick them up with the edge of your hand on the edge of the record and balance with a finger or thumb on the inner label if necessary...

    It may seem obvious to some, but it does bear mention!
    Leonthepro and marcb like this.

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