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 Post subject: Cleaning 78 RPM records?
PostPosted: Nov Sun 02, 2014 3:59 pm 
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Joined: Jun Sun 16, 2013 10:12 pm
Posts: 711
Location: Brandon, SD
Does anyone out there have any advise on how to properly clean 78 RPM records? I recently pick up around 200 78's from an old mans basement. They are all in good shape with clean, clear labels and no cracks but they are in serious need of cleaning. Some of them have dirt and grime and some have what looks to be a green powder on them.(mold?) I was just wondering what some of you out there use to clean these records. Any advise would help! Thank you for your time.


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 Post subject: Re: Cleaning 78 RPM records?
PostPosted: Nov Sun 02, 2014 4:33 pm 
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Joined: Apr Mon 04, 2011 4:23 am
Posts: 695
Location: SW PA
I just use dish detergent (like Dawn) and lukewarm water and scrub them with a soft brush. A brush like these paint edgers work excellent on all types of records. http://www.homedepot.com/p/Shur-Line-Pa ... 5yc1vZc5da I dry them with a soft towel, and then put them in the dish drainer to finish air drying.

DO NOT USE ALCOHOL. It will dissolve the shellac that most 78s are made of.


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 Post subject: Re: Cleaning 78 RPM records?
PostPosted: Nov Sun 02, 2014 5:09 pm 
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Joined: Mar Mon 24, 2014 5:19 pm
Posts: 2011
Location: Eugene, OR
Ditto on the dish soap and soft brush (Baby's hairbrush for me), and let them air dry overnight before playing them.

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 Post subject: Re: Cleaning 78 RPM records?
PostPosted: Nov Sun 02, 2014 5:58 pm 
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Joined: May Mon 19, 2014 6:51 pm
Posts: 39
Location: Ghent, Belgium (Europe)
I used my Knosti record cleaner with lukewarm water and soft bio dish wash product.
They came from my Dad and had never been cleaned before: couldn't beleive my eyes (and ears) about the result!
Just be careful not to damage or wet the labels. I used the Knosti supplied label protectors.
No alcohol!
Good work!

Cheers,

Hugh.


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 Post subject: Re: Cleaning 78 RPM records?
PostPosted: Nov Mon 03, 2014 2:15 am 
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Joined: Apr Mon 04, 2011 4:23 am
Posts: 695
Location: SW PA
You're not kidding! I've cleaned 78s that had close to 100 years of filth on them. The soapy water that came off them was black as coal. :shock:


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 Post subject: Re: Cleaning 78 RPM records?
PostPosted: Nov Sun 16, 2014 2:39 pm 
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Joined: Sep Thu 28, 2006 12:51 pm
Posts: 9246
Location: Sarasota, Florida
Seems we get a lot of threads about record cleaning, but that's okay as it's good advice.

Probably the best thing to use for shellac 78's is mild soap and water. Leave it at that. If the record is vinyl I've had good luck with Windex -- but -- be careful. Use real Windex -- not Glass Plus or some other brand. Amway has a concentrated glass cleaner that, well, works well on glass but will eat vinyl. And remember, Windex is NOT good for 78's, as the ammonia in it can hurt the shellac.

Do you have any Edison Diamond Disks? These are the 80 rpm records that are 1/4" thick. These are celluloid over a fiber base. DON'T use water on these, DO use alcohol on them and try to find a pure alcohol -- not rubbing alcohol which is 70%, and 30% water.

Remember, THIN records use water, don't use alcohol. THICK records use alcohol, don't use water.

There's another method that will probably draw some flack, but I know I'm not the only one who has had success with it. Pledge furniture polish. If you've got a record (either shellac or vinyl) that's really noisy and just won't come clean with the above methods, this really crappy trick DOES work sometimes. I've had a few records that sounded so bad I was ready to toss them -- and this REALLY worked! Spray the furniture polish onto the record and wipe it down. Then play the record -- no, not with your top-of-the-line Grado cartridge with nude hyper-elliptical whatever, but with a round needle with a little heavier tracking. More than likely you'll get 30 seconds into the record and the needle will get all gunked up and will start skipping. Lift it, gently clean the needle. Play a little more and do it again -- until the record has been played through. Play it a second and third time, and yes -- you'll still be pulling the Pledge out of the grooves and cleaning the needle. But it pulls out the dirt with it. Yes, some will nit-pick and say the dirt disturbs the molecular structure of -- yada yada, but I can see no harm in doing this to any record that would otherwise be tossed. I've salvaged several this way.

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 Post subject: Re: Cleaning 78 RPM records?
PostPosted: Nov Tue 18, 2014 10:19 pm 
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Joined: Mar Mon 24, 2014 5:19 pm
Posts: 2011
Location: Eugene, OR
Just got one with very old tape residue. Its at the beginning of one side. I washed the record the usual way, but it didn't make much difference. Any thoughts?

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 Post subject: Re: Cleaning 78 RPM records?
PostPosted: Nov Tue 18, 2014 11:24 pm 
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Joined: Apr Wed 09, 2008 3:37 am
Posts: 14328
Location: Little Rock, Arkansas
Squire wrote:
Just got one with very old tape residue. Its at the beginning of one side. I washed the record the usual way, but it didn't make much difference. Any thoughts?

I use woman's hair spray to remove tape residue. Learned that trick at Wally World when we used to put labels on the end of counters. Goo-Gone also will remove it... but you have to scrub it off in either case.


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 Post subject: Re: Cleaning 78 RPM records?
PostPosted: Nov Wed 19, 2014 12:48 am 
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Joined: Mar Mon 24, 2014 5:19 pm
Posts: 2011
Location: Eugene, OR
Larry Hillis wrote:
Squire wrote:
Just got one with very old tape residue. Its at the beginning of one side. I washed the record the usual way, but it didn't make much difference. Any thoughts?

I use woman's hair spray to remove tape residue. Learned that trick at Wally World when we used to put labels on the end of counters. Goo-Gone also will remove it... but you have to scrub it off in either case.


The Mrs doesn't use hair spray, but Goo-Gone I got! Thanks!

Edit: That helped a lot! Thanks again! Do you think it would help to play it with a steel needle before playing it with a modern stylus to maybe dig out what's left? I have a children's 78 player and a pack of new needles. I've heard of people doing this when using more extreme cleaning methods, but Ive never tried it.

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 Post subject: Re: Cleaning 78 RPM records?
PostPosted: Dec Sat 26, 2015 4:45 pm 
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Joined: Apr Fri 28, 2006 12:46 pm
Posts: 1132
Location: Düsseldorf/Germany
Hi all,

I like to add my little experience.
In general it is importent to use distilled water.
Limestone in the water is making noise, just when playing vinyl
records.
The guy from Belgium (thats in my neighborhood) talked about the Knosti,
you have to know it:
http://alltagshacks.de/schallplatten-wa ... hmaschine/

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dDppIeScHog

in dutch:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=II9S2DHN8qg

This machine is now available again as a new product.
But don`t use the record stand, it could damage records!
The content of the Knosti liquid is unknown, so don`t use is it for shellack
records.
A record dealer advised me to use Ferry:
https://www.allyouneedfresh.de/cat/?art ... GwodaaIDsQ
It is the only liquid which cleans from fat and dirt with COLD water!

Dry records with a microfibre cloth.

Hope this helps anybody.......

SIXMILLION DOLLARMAN

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From all the things I ever lost I miss my mind the most
ScottyBeamMeUpThereIsNo 4/3-TV/AM OnEarth


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 Post subject: Re: Cleaning 78 RPM records?
PostPosted: Mar Wed 27, 2019 7:05 pm 
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Joined: Mar Wed 27, 2019 6:54 pm
Posts: 2
Hi, just joined. I inherited a lot of 78's from my mother-in-law. Did some research and found that some are selling well on eBay. I picked out the most valuable one (Billie Holiday) and foolishly wiped it with a cotton ball soaked in alcohol. Luckily this is the only one that I messed with before I discovered that alcohol on shellac is a big NO-NO. Did I ruin it forever? :( It was shiny prior now it has a dull finish. Will wiping it with Pledge help?
Thanks


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 Post subject: Re: Cleaning 78 RPM records?
PostPosted: Mar Thu 28, 2019 7:09 pm 
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Joined: Jan Thu 01, 1970 1:00 am
Posts: 1644
Location: Long Beach, CA USA
Jazzmenco do NOT use Pledge, just clean with mild soap and water as described above.
78 grooves are pretty deep so depending on how hard you scrubbed with alcohol you may or may not have damaged the grooves.


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 Post subject: Re: Cleaning 78 RPM records?
PostPosted: Mar Thu 28, 2019 7:15 pm 
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Joined: Mar Wed 27, 2019 6:54 pm
Posts: 2
Thanks for the reply, I wiped it gently with a cotton ball so hopefully i didn't do too much damage. I rinsed it well with plain filtered water. I'm going to leave the remaining discs as is, they seem to be in very good condition. Thanks again


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