Author Topic: Record cleaning fluid  (Read 6885 times)

Offline OldiesButGoodies

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Record cleaning fluid
« on: March 29, 2011, 09:41:30 PM »
Any known to work suggestions for brewing decent record cleaning fluid?  Just ran out.

This is what I found on the net:

Laura Dearborn:
The safe formula is the same as archival commercial preparations, except that you are mixing it yourself and therefore it costs you a fraction of the price of ready mixed. It can be used for both hand and vacuum cleaning. It is a 25 percent solution of isopropyl alcohol in water, with a drop of surfacant. Ethyl alcohol, sometimes applied to records in the form of vodka is more damaging to vinyl than is isopropyl. Use it only in an absolute pinch.

Drugstore isopropyl contains too many impurities to qualify it for record cleaning. Use technical or lab-grade isopropyl, which is extremely pure. Reagent grade is unnecessary and far more expensive. Water should be steam distilled, triple de-ionized. Both of these are readily available at a chemical supply house, which should sell them to you in pint and gallon sizes.

You also need to add a drop of surfacant, or wetting agent, to reduce the surface tension of the water so the formula can penetrate down into the grooves. Very high frequency grooves, in the range of 15 kHz, can be as small as four millionths of an inch, according to Wald Davies of LAST. Though alcohol itself helps somewhat, you still need a wetting agent. Two excellent and safe choices are Triton X-114 from Rohm-Haas and Monolan 2000 from Diamond Shamrock. Both of these are nontoxic - but don't take them internally - and biodegradable. Very importantly, they leave behind no residue on the record. They are harmless in these small amounts to record vinyl and, as far as is known, to any of the conceivable by-products and impurities likely to be found in record vinyl.

Kodak's Kodaflow is sometimes recommended as a wetting agent. Do *not* use this as it contains chemicals in addition to surfacants that would leave behind residues bad for both record and stylus. Kodak recommends against this application.


Steven Rochlin's recipes
Distilled water
Alcohol
Detergent
1 part   1 part isopropyl   none
1 part   1 part isopropyl   a drop of Triton X-100
1 quart (~ 1 liter)   1/2 quart denatured   10 drops Photoflo
3 parts   1 part denatured   a few drops
3 parts   1 part rubbing   a few drops
4 parts   1 part ethanol   some (Genie in the Bottle)


Don Roderick's recipe
Distilled water
Alcohol
Detergent
4 parts   1 part isopropyl (91%)   7-8 drops dishwashing detergent w/o additives

Keith Monks's recipe (TAS)
Distilled water
Alcohol + Detergent
1 part   1 part denatured alcohol
Jonathan Scull's recipe (Stereophile)
Distilled water
Alcohol
Detergents
3 parts   1 part NON-lanolin isopropyl   10 drops Photo-Flo + 10 drops "Direct" tile cleaner

Which one is recommended here in the forum?

Thanks?

Pepe

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Offline schwarcw

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Re: Record cleaning fluid
« Reply #1 on: March 29, 2011, 09:52:48 PM »
Why not use the best?????  This solution was recommended by the US Library of Congress after a thorough research.  Look HERE

From the Library of Congress, Record Cleaning and Preservation:

Preparation and Directions for Use

1. To prepare 4 L (~ 1 gal) of solution, place 2 mL of Tergitol™ 15-S-7 Surfactant into a suitable container (glass, stainless steel type 304 or 316, fiberglass-reinforced polyester, polyethylene, or polypropylene) and fill with deionized water. This results in a 0.05% solution.
2. Store the solution in a non-food refrigerator to avoid degradation and transfer what is immediately needed to a spray bottle for manual cleaning or other container for mechanized cleaning.
 3. Store the pure Tergitol™ in its original container (preferably under nitrogen) and in a non-food refrigerator to avoid degradation that causes an undesirable color and odor.
4. To manually clean records, CDs, or DVDs manually, spray the solution onto the surface, and wipe with an eyeglass or other similar soft wipe to remove contaminants. ALWAYS FOLLOW CLEANING WITH A THOROUGH RINSING WITH DEIONIZED WATER TO REMOVE ALL TRACES OF DETERGENT: LEAVING DETERGENT ON THE OBJECT MIGHT FACILITATE DEGRADATION OF THE OBJECT. Finally, wipe the object dry using a soft, nonabrasive, lint-free cloth.
 5. To clean records, CDs, or DVDs in a mechanized cleaner, place just enough solution into the cleaner reservoir so that fresh solution is used each day (or remove the solution every day and store in a non-food refrigerator). ALWAYS FOLLOW CLEANING WITH A THOROUGH RINSING WITH DEIONIZED WATER TO REMOVE ALL TRACES OF DETERGENT: LEAVING DETERGENT ON THE OBJECT MIGHT FACILITATE DEGRADATION OF THE OBJECT. Finally, wipe the object dry using a soft, nonabrasive, lint-free cloth. This last hand-drying step may not be necessary if a record-cleaning machine with a vacuum arm is being used.


MSDSs and Other Information

The following links can be accessed to obtain information for Tergitol™ and the Library of Congress MSDS for the Record Cleaning Solution. Because the Record Cleaning Solution contains less than 1% of Tergitol™, it does not have to be listed on the MSDS.

 1. DOW Surfactants: Tergitol 15-S Series

2 . MSDS for Library of Congress Record Cleaning Solution [PDF: 65 KB / 4 p.]

Carl

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Re: Record cleaning fluid
« Reply #2 on: March 29, 2011, 11:13:18 PM »
Great article, Carl! Extremely helpful, thanks a million.

Offline Kingman

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Re: Record cleaning fluid
« Reply #3 on: March 29, 2011, 11:19:04 PM »
Great info!!! Thanks!!!  ;)
IN REALITY IT ONLY MATTERS WHAT IT SOUNDS LIKE TO YOU!!!!!

Offline OldiesButGoodies

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Re: Record cleaning fluid
« Reply #4 on: April 01, 2011, 07:06:16 PM »
Thanks!

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Offline OldiesButGoodies

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Re: Record cleaning fluid
« Reply #5 on: April 02, 2011, 08:12:10 PM »
I went with 4:1 spring water to 70% isopropyl alc plus one drop of Dawn. Tergitol is very tough to source locally (and/or I am looking in all the wrong places).  This seems to work well.

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Offline schwarcw

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Re: Record cleaning fluid
« Reply #6 on: April 02, 2011, 09:18:47 PM »
I went with 4:1 spring water to 70% isopropyl alc plus one drop of Dawn. Tergitol is very tough to source locally (and/or I am looking in all the wrong places).  This seems to work well.

OBG,

That mixture has worked well for a lot of folks.  Let me suggest that you go back and get the 93% alcohol.  I found it at Giant Eagle.  Dawn detergent has a surfactant which performs the same function as Tergitol.  Tergitol doesn't have the coloring, perfume and some of the other stuff.  It won't leave a residue.  Some folks don't like to use alcohol on their records.  I have not seen it harm any of my records. 

Tergitol is hard to find.  A bunch of us made a group buy.  I could mix you up a bottle but with the postal regulations, I don't know if I can send it?
Carl

Offline wkhanna

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Re: Record cleaning fluid
« Reply #7 on: April 03, 2011, 02:29:11 PM »
As a self admitting vinyl snob, I have to agree with the recommendation for using >90% Isopropyl.

Also, spring water will typically contain minerals (as in Not Deionized). FDA allows TDS's (Total Dissolved Solids) of 500 PPM (Parts Per Million) for spring water. Distilled is better than spring water, but is not 100% Deionized either.

For simple, cheap & easy to find water, I use Aquafina (TDS of less than 4 PPM). Next to ultrapure medical grade, it is one of cleanest & purest available.

As always, JMHO, YMMV
« Last Edit: April 03, 2011, 02:41:14 PM by wkhanna »
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Offline OldiesButGoodies

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Re: Record cleaning fluid
« Reply #8 on: April 03, 2011, 07:35:13 PM »
Ok - I went back to the pharmacy and got Isop 91% alcohol.  Made a new batch,  this time with only one drop of Dawn. Still working on finding ultrapure water. 

Have you all noticed that these recipes are very similar to the typical lens cleaning solutions sold in the stores? 
http://www.amazon.com/Flents-Wipe-Clear-Eyeglass-Cleaner/dp/B001LQ39S2/ref=pd_sbs_hpc_2


Isop + water + detergent

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Offline Sir Thrift-a-Lot

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Re: Record cleaning fluid
« Reply #9 on: July 03, 2011, 09:01:35 PM »
I've been using Sporacidin Enzymatic Mold Cleaner.   It is inexpensive (mail order), foams nicely with a brush and really reduces clicks and pops.   For light cleaning I use 91% iso and a cotton pad, but for the moldy thrift store records (which is to say, any thrift store record in this city) this stuff is da bomb!

 

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