Marco's cleaning process with new vinyl, using an RCM
Indeed, and of course it's important to remember that, because of that, the levels of static and dust experienced will vary depending upon the environment one inhabits
Originally Posted by YNWaN
For reference, here's the process I use for cleaning new records (bearing in mind that I use a VPI RCM):
1) Ensure that one's hands, together with the platter mat of the VPI machine, are spotlessly clean before handling records, and also for placing the first record on the platter for cleaning. Fit the nozzle, used in the drying process, reserved specifically for cleaning new records, and prepare the VPI brush for use, also reserved solely for the same purpose. Ensure that both are spotlessly clean before beginning the cleaning process.
Yes, to avoid the contamination of new records, I have separate brushes and nozzles for cleaning both new and used vinyl!
2) Switch on RCM, and whilst the platter is in motion, slowly 'drizzle' the cleaning solution (which I make up myself), in small amounts, onto the surface of the record, ensuring even coverage.
3) Switch off RCM, and in a circular motion, with the pristine clean brush, reserved solely for cleaning new records, gently 'work' the liquid into the record grooves, ensuring that the entire surface of the record is coated in the cleaning solution. Then allow it to penetrate into the grooves for about 10 seconds and loosen any dirt or mould release agent, located deep within the grooves, which may remain as a by-product of the vinyl manufacturing process.
4) Switch RCM back on, and whilst holding the brush vertically over the record surface, press it gently into the record grooves, as the platter is in motion, and keep it there for a two or three revolutions, allowing the brush to lift up any 'crud' that shouldn't be there, and allow it to accumulate underneath the bristles.
5) Lift the brush off of the record, and whilst the platter is still in motion, place the drying nozzle over the accumulated cleaning solution, containing the removed debris (invisible to the naked eye), switch on the vacuum cleaner and proceed to 'hoover up' all of the solution until the record is bone dry and sparkling clean. Leave the record on the platter just for a few seconds to allow it to 'air dry' before turning it over and repeating the whole cleaning process for 'Side B'.
6) Once done, [this is where the Zerostat gun comes in], there is usually a small build of static, as a result of the felt strips, fitted to the drying nozzle, passing over the record surface and making light contact with it, during the drying process. Therefore, simply 'zap' the record surface once with the Zerostat gun, thereby discharging it from any static, lift the record off of the platter and pop it into an anti-static record sleeve.
Job done! The record is now pristine clean, totally static-free, and ready for use. It will also stay that way for a very long time, unless mishandled
The same process is used for cleaning second-hand records (using the dedicated brush and nozzle for that purpose), although depending on how dirty the records are, this could affect steps 3) and 4), where more effort may be required to loosen off any 'crud', in order that it is removed thoroughly.
"A man is a success if he gets up in the morning and gets to bed at night, and in between he does what he wants to do". - Milan Kundera.
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