What does The Vinyl Archivist use to treat your records?
Explore below for more information on the equipment and materials used to clean and flatten your records. I have included links to the manufacturer’s websites for further reading.
Ultrasonic Cleaning System
My custom built system is based on years of Audiophile tweaks and R&D as popularized on the Audio Nirvana forum.
I use a Dekang medical grade ultrasonic unit with 10L capacity and 240 Watt transducer power.
The Kuzma RD Ultrasonic Record Cleaning Kit provides the wire frame and rotisserie motor and spindle that rotates the records in the bath. Filtering is provided by an external housing with 0.35 micron filter continuously pumped from the bottom of the tank and recirculated through the top, making sure that all dissolved solids are removed from the bath.
One of the world’s very best record cleaning machines, the American-Made VPI HW-17 is a fully automatic machine that takes all the effort out of record cleaning. It features automatic fluid application and will scrub in both clockwise and counterclockwise directions, making your vinyl sound better than new. With an 18 RPM high-torque motor that allows deep cleaning without strain, the HW-17’s powerful, integral vacuum system ensures quick, deep solution removal, as well as the removal of old, built-up residue, and prevents further accumulation of foreign matter. This machine is used at the Library of Congress to maintain their incredible collection of vinyl.
Orb DF-01iA+ Flattener
Japan-based Orb enjoys a reputation for continually developing and improving its unique treatment process. The DF-01iA+ uses a high-tech, automated process whereby heat is applied evenly on contact to only the outer edge (for warping) and inner label of the record (for dishing). The most important and delicate part of the record–the groove architecture–remains nearly unaffected by the process. The result attempts to remove warps while preserving the sonic output of the record, and is considered by many to be the gold standard for warp reduction and elimination.
After experimenting with different brands and types of polyethylene sleeves over the years I have come to prefer those manufactured by Sleeve City.
Diskeeper™ 1.5 Round Bottom Inner Sleeves come standard with every record cleaned. The 1.5 mil High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) sleeves offer resistance to static build up and protect against abrasions. The round bottom makes insertion into the record jacket easier. These inners are best if you would like to put them back into the inner that came with the album.
Diskeeper™ Audiophile Inner Sleeves are rice paper sleeves made from 3 layers of High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) and 1 layer of acid-free paper which is sandwiched between 2 of the layers of HDPE. The acid-free paper neutralizes migrating acids as well as absorbs moisture. The HDPE resists static build up and protects against abrasion.
Polyethylene Outer Sleeves measure 12-3/4 x 12-3/4″ in 3 mil density. These top loading sleeves will fit over almost all 12″ sleeves including double albums. These sleeves come standard with any sleeve cleaning.