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Styrene LPs...........

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by Tetrack, Feb 7, 2005.

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  1. Tetrack

    Tetrack Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Scotland, UK.
    Mmmm.....Judging by the description or what to look for, to identify a Styrene record in this thread, i was looking thru my LPs.

    The following are examples -

    Jimi Hendrix - Are You Experienced UK Track Mono 1st press

    Four or Five Plum/Orange UK Atlantic LPs

    These have flat/square edges, not tapered or rounded and are seemingly consistent in width across to the centre hole. I did find one Rascals Plum/Orange UK Atlantic LP with a tapered edge though.

    Are these styrene pressings?, would major labels like Atlantic use Styrene for LPs... :confused:
     
    Man at C&A likes this.
  2. Steve Hoffman

    Steve Hoffman Mastering Engineer Your Host

    Hmmm, Atlantic used it for some stuff in the late 1950's but DECCA, USA used it for everything from 1949-63 until they opened GLOVERSVILLE, NY or so; they called it DECCALITE. It was pretty good actually, not like the crappy styrene 45's that other plants used..
     
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  3. Ed Bishop

    Ed Bishop Incredibly, I'm still here

    Yeah, the Decca/Coral/Brunswick vinyl has held up very nicely, if you have clean pressings....

    Then there's that very fragile crap vinyl some labels used for a time: Laurie, Chess, Red Bird, and more than a few Sunset(Lib subsidiary)budget titles. The kind of vinyl where the label was known to literally fall of! Just pasted on. literally.

    Most recent acquisition along those lines: a JFK tribute album that charted(#42)on the Documentaries Unlimited label. Pressing is very quiet, but the kind of vinyl you don't want to handle too much, it's that fragile, subject to nasty cracks, though not like those atrocious Bell labelless Bell 45's, lost many of those as a kid, had to rebuy 'em later....

    :ed:
     
  4. Tetrack

    Tetrack Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Scotland, UK.
    Maybe it's a UK thing with certain labels. I know the plum Atlantic label was replaced with the Green/Orange one around '71. The ones in question are -

    Rascals - Once Upon a Dream Mono
    Wilson Pickett - Hey Jude
    Clarence Carter - Patches
    Clarence Carter - Testifyin'
    Aretha Franklin - Never Loved a Man Mono

    They all look nice and clear & shiny, not grey or anything. They do have a slight raised edge at the label/ run out.
     
  5. rmos

    rmos Forum Resident


    But yet, DECCA pressed their 45s on vinyl during this period (at least the ones I've come across).

    I have one EP of the ROCK PRETTY BABY soundtrack that's sounds a lot better than my LP of the same tracks, as the LP was played with a heavy tonearm at some point and was ruined (thank goodness I can play the LP on one channel and the surface noise is minimized somewhat).

    I'll admit that when you get a good pressing on DECCALITE, it sounds pretty good. However, I always wondered why DECCA did it this way-LPs on styrene, 45s on vinyl-instead of the other way around, as Columbia was doing.
     
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  6. Ed Bishop

    Ed Bishop Incredibly, I'm still here

    Yes, I'm sure every Decca/Brunswick/Coral 45 I have is from vinyl....the Lp's, on the other hand, were made from fairly lightweight material during the '50s, but unlike the '60s styrene Lp's I'm thinking of, these were fairly durable.

    :ed:
     
  7. W.B.

    W.B. The Collector's Collector

    Location:
    New York, NY, USA
    Those pressings -- styrene, B.T.W., just as the 45's -- came from Shelley Products, Ltd., of Huntington Station, L.I., NY. At first, they had a reverse-stamped "X" (raised) on one side, replaced c.1969 by a reverse "S" in a circle (looking like the logo was designed by a dyslexic or something). Around 1967 they improved the label situation so that its adhesion to the record was on par with, say, Columbia's (and Columbia-pressed) styrene 45's, in short after then they didn't come off. Around late 1967, Shelley switched LP manufacture from styrene to regular vinyl, in which the label was embedded on instead of pasted. I also noticed that, from the mid-1960's on, whether styrene or vinyl, Shelley-pressed albums had center labels measuring 3⅞" dia. rather than the usual, customary 4".

    And speaking of Columbia and styrene LP's . . . Columbia pressed such, mostly for budget (Harmony) albums, right up to c.1960 - and never, to the best of my knowledge, on stereo Lp's. I have, however, seen early pressings of Mitch Miller's first Sing Along With Mitch album (mono, of course) in styrene . . .
     
  8. Ed Bishop

    Ed Bishop Incredibly, I'm still here

    Thanks for the info...:edthumbs:

    Yes, there are some mono pressings of some of Mitch's albums on that styrene...not sure I own one, only because what I've seen are either cracked, chipped or beaten to hell(and you're right, I've never seen a stereo pressing on that vinyl, only mono)....they do play well when mint, though, but must be prone to groove damage much more readily than regular vinyl, from what I've seen with the 45's....

    :ed:
     
  9. MMM

    MMM Forum Hall Of Fame

    Location:
    Lodi, New Jersey
    So I guess these "DECCALITE" pressing LP's need to be played with a conical/spherical stylus?
     
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  10. vanmeterannie

    vanmeterannie Forum Resident

    I'm curious about that too...I've played a bunch of styrene 45s LPs with both my Stanton 500 EMKII and Shure V15VMR and have never noticed any groove gouging.
     
  11. Steve Hoffman

    Steve Hoffman Mastering Engineer Your Host

    No.
     
  12. Steve Hoffman

    Steve Hoffman Mastering Engineer Your Host

    You never noticed when you put your elypt. stylus on the lead-in groove of a styrene 45 and it makes that scraping sound (like it's cutting a new groove)? It IS cutting a new groove.
     
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  13. MMM

    MMM Forum Hall Of Fame

    Location:
    Lodi, New Jersey
    Thanks Steve! :)
     
  14. vanmeterannie

    vanmeterannie Forum Resident

    It's very odd; now that I'm thinking of it the only time I had this happen was with a 45 of "Don't Stop Til You Get Enough", which sounded exactly like you describe. That was years ago with the Shure. I've played bunches of 45s since and haven't had the problem that I can tell...in other words, I don't hear scraping, and the records play fine more than once with no distortion or hissing. I think another poster mentioned here one time the same experience with the Shure. But I haven't had trouble with the Stanton, either, although I don't use it as much.
     
  15. quicksrt

    quicksrt Senior Member

    Location:
    City of Angels
    I have only come across two different LP issues that I can recall being on this material that is much more commonly seen on 45s. This was a sealed copy of a Red Bird album on the dreaded styrene.

    shangrlas lbl.jpg .
     
  16. Wally Swift

    Wally Swift Yo-Yoing where I will...

    Location:
    Brooklyn New York
    Columbia/Harmony is often made of that stuff. The $$$$$ collectible Jazz label Transition was also styrene.
     
  17. quicksrt

    quicksrt Senior Member

    Location:
    City of Angels
    My Columbia/Harmony records are all vinyl. Reissues of older titles right, I think my Everly Brothers Christmas Album on Harmony is vinyl.

    Perhaps W.B. will chime in and tell us a bit about this Shangri-Las 65 album.
     
  18. W.B.

    W.B. The Collector's Collector

    Location:
    New York, NY, USA
    Two words on the Shangri-Las LP: Shelley Products. Doubtless on one side there's an embossed "X" in the deadwax. Pressed LP's in styrene from the 1950's up to '67 when they switched to vinyl for the 12" stuff. It was around this time that Shelley's LP label diameter shrunk from the 4" standard to 3.875". However, even their styrene LP's, up to '67, had the issue of labels falling off the records. (On a side note, Shelley's label typesetting in those days left a good deal to be desired.)
     
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  19. Wally Swift

    Wally Swift Yo-Yoing where I will...

    Location:
    Brooklyn New York
  20. W.B.

    W.B. The Collector's Collector

    Location:
    New York, NY, USA
    Actually, Columbia was pressing the occasional LP in polystyrene as early as 1952; I have a copy of the 10" LP Jerome Kern's "Roberta," "Lovely To Look At" pressed in styrene. Also in my collection are two styrene 10" LP's - one by Percy Faith, the other by Erroll Garner - in their 1955-56 CL 2500 "House Party" series. And the first Sing Along With Mitch album (on 12", natch') from 1958, oddly enough. So Columbia already had the means to produce styrene LP's at the point Harmony was relaunched as a budget label in 1957. (On such LP's, the label holes were 0.34375" diameter rather than the customary 0.28125" for vinyl pressings.)
     
  21. Walter H

    Walter H Santa's Helper

    Location:
    New Hampshire, USA
    Tale Spinners for Children, from United Artists.

    Are the fifties Deccalite pressings styrene? They seem like more brittle material than regular vinyl.

    I have seen Royale (fifties budget) 10" styrene.
     
  22. crispi

    crispi Vinyl Archaeologist

    Location:
    Berlin
    How can you tell when it' styrene?
     
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  23. Beattles

    Beattles Forum Resident

    Location:
    Florence, SC
    Thicker square edge (not tapered) and not as shinn as vinyl, labels don't stick as flat or as well on some.

    Question for WB. Does this Shelley have any relation to the Shelley(or Shlley) found on some issues of The Rolling Stones Hot Rocks LP?
     
  24. D Schnozzman

    D Schnozzman Forum Resident

    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    I have seen mention in another thread here that some Everest classical titles were pressed on styrene. I have a few LPs on this label, and I think most of them are on vinyl (but I haven't checked them all).
    I had no idea there was such a thing as a styrene record until I read it on this board. Were they only pressed in the USA?
     
  25. EasterEverywhere

    EasterEverywhere Forum Resident

    Location:
    Albuquerque
    Flick the rim of an LP with your finger,it goes "DONG"

    Yes they were only pressed in the USA.

    Limiting just to LPs here
    All American Decca LPs from roughly 1954-59 were styrene.
    Most of the independent budget label LPs of the late 50s were styrene Halo,Design,etc.
    Golden Crest were styrene
    As stated,some Columbia Harmony LPs of the late 50s were.
    Probably think of more
     
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