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 Post subject: diy cleaning fluid
PostPosted: Sun Jan 11, 2009 11:34 am 
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I have read a few post on here listing different formulas for cleaning. before making any decisions, read this article I found & the reasons for NOT using certain ingredients.

"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".


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 13, 2009 12:32 pm 
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OK, I know this thread is months old, but I have to interject here.

First of all, the claim that Triton or Monolan won't leave a residue is completely false. There's no way these liquids are going to evaporate at room temperature, so they're going to stay on your record until they're washed off. Same story, in fact, with photo-flo. However, at the dilutions being used (Kodak suggests 200:1, many photographers use more like ~500:1 It comes out a few drops, basically), it's probably safe to assume it's essentially gone by the time the record is washed and dried. (Although I typically use uncoloured washing liquid and then a second rinse with just water/alcohol)

I see that Laura Dearborn recommended Triton X-114 or Monolan/2000 at one point. I suspect this is just her being her typically loony self, and eschewing anything commonly available.

Whether isopropanol is safer than ethanol on the record is an interesting question, but not likely an important one. In moderately high dilution (greater than 1:1) and short exposure, either would probably be harmless. However, it's MUCH MUCH easier to get pure isopropanol--ethanol will be denatured with 'crud', or exists as vodka, which may or may not be pure.

Has anyone tested the residue content of drugstore isopropanol? It's pretty clean, actually. (hint: put a teaspoon of it on a clean glass mirror on the counter, put a glass over it to keep dust off but keep the bottom raised with a pencil or something, and let it evaporate. Any residue will show up clearly.) On the other hand, so called "lab grade" solvents can be relatively dirty, depending on the grade. 'Wash solvents' for instance aren't even remotely appropriate.

Distilled water, definitely. Distilled, triple-DI is...well, what are you hoping to achieve? How much cleaner than clean do you want?

Honestly, isopropanol, distilled water in glass, and photo-flo are going to get about 99.9% of the gunk that you might get by going to a lab supply shop. That 0.1% you might not clean out (or might leave behind as a result of using 'dirty' compounds) will be swamped by the amount of dust that settles onto the record as it plays.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 13, 2009 1:02 pm 
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I use a solution of Tergitol 15s-3 and 15s-9 in a 0.1% concentration in de-ionized water, as recommended by Collections Canada. This is safe for all media, including shellac and acetates. For vinyl, I boost it by diluting it 20% with methyl hydrate. Both mixtures need to be rinsed.

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 15, 2009 9:47 pm 
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I use the same tergitol s3 s9 solution mentioned above minus the methyl hydrate. It works extremely well when combined with a Nitty Gritty Record Cleaning Machine. I use a reverse osmosis/distilled water rinse.
Here's a very useful link:

http://www.sensusaudio.com/vinylcare.html


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 06, 2010 8:49 am 
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Just read your link, Kelv. Makes a person question the purchase of used vinyl :!: Maybe this explains why some discs sound so much better than others.
Cheers,
Loyd

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 06, 2010 11:03 am 
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The opinions on different formulations of record cleaning solution are as wide and as varied, it seems, as every other subject regarding audio...it seems strange that for all the technological advances one indisputable record cleaning fluid formulation eludes consensus.
I know that the Library of Congress published several tried and true DIY formulations specific to particular mediums and given their role and task in preserving sound pressings have some credible authority. I've used them for decades now and they are both economical and proven.
While the VPI and Monks machines do a wonderful job in every respect...they aren't affordable for most and their insistence that their fluid formulations are the only ones suitable for the job are like so many other claims in Audio World...implausible.


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 06, 2010 11:19 am 
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Vinylhampton wrote:
The opinions on different formulations of record cleaning solution are as wide and as varied, it seems, as every other subject regarding audio...it seems strange that for all the technological advances one indisputable record cleaning fluid formulation eludes consensus.
I know that the Library of Congress published several tried and true DIY formulations specific to particular mediums and given their role and task in preserving sound pressings have some credible authority. I've used them for decades now and they are both economical and proven.
While the VPI and Monks machines do a wonderful job in every respect...they aren't affordable for most and their insistence that their fluid formulations are the only ones suitable for the job are like so many other claims in Audio World...implausible.


I purchased the VPI 16.5 record cleaning machine. While it does what they claim it's supposed to, it is definitely not a miracle worker as many owners claim but still worth the money I put out. It did not take me long to figure out how exspensive it could be in the long run when you have to purchase "their fluid" on a continual basis. That is why I chose to use the UHF concentrated fluid as it is much more economical. However, there are probably even cheaper and just as effective home concoctions that would work just as well.

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 06, 2010 11:34 am 
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I have some trepidation towards using alcohol of any kind, but even more towards mechanical abrasion. The tergitol solution is very effective against smoke but not fingerprints, as was made apparent to me when I began steaming the rinse - the steam would collect on the prints, indicating they had not been removed completely. Using a cloth and rubbing the spot would fix this, but at the risk of possibly scratching the record. Adding alcohol to the solution dissolves the prints more completely, without the added risk of abrasion.

There has been much debate as to which alcohol to use or whether any alcohol is even safe to use on vinyl. My take is that a 20% solution in brief contact with the plastic is less likely to damage it than the mechanical effort of simply cleaning the record.

Either way, these treatments are intended solely for used records in questionable condition. Records from my own collection have mostly only dust on them, and these get just a quick rinse/steam/vacuum to freshen them up - no chemicals whatsoever.

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 29, 2010 9:34 am 
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Location: Wetaskiwin, AB, CA
Hello,

I use automotive windshield washer fluid with excellent results.
Get the cheap stuff without any fancy additives and lubricants.
It works better than anything else that I have used and leaves my vinyl streak free!
I figure if it is safe on the finish and materials of my vehicles, it is ok to use on my vinyl.

Good Luck
John


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 02, 2010 10:03 am 
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it is quite useful


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PostPosted: Sun May 29, 2011 3:07 am 
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Wrong thread


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 14, 2011 6:13 am 
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johnnyj wrote:
Hello,

I use automotive windshield washer fluid with excellent results.
Get the cheap stuff without any fancy additives and lubricants.
It works better than anything else that I have used and leaves my vinyl streak free!
I figure if it is safe on the finish and materials of my vehicles, it is ok to use on my vinyl.

Good Luck
John


That contains Glycol, which leaves a film -- it's why ice does not form on your windsheild in winter storms.


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 30, 2012 2:46 am 
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Hey Guys,

Really late getting to this post but, I've been running all over the internet trying to find X-114 or Tergitol because I had read this link about NOT using Kodak Photo Flo (not Kodaflow - there is no such thing), which I had already purchased for $9.95 for a 16 oz bottle from my local camera shop, and I stopped for a moment and read the technical data on it and it says Triton X-114 is also known as:

octylphenoxypoly (ethoxyethanol). It says it's CAS No. is 9036-19-5.

Then I read the back of the bottle of Kodak Photo Flo 200. It says, and I quote:

Contents: octylphenoxypolyethoxyethanol (9036-19-5).

Same stuff. There are no additional chemicals in the product. You can look this up too. But I'm keeping the Photo Flo. Photo Flo has been recommended as an ingredient in the DIY record cleaning solutions but there are posts all over the internet apparently referring to Photo Flo as Kodaflow (No such product) and saying not to use it. Well, for the record, it is the same stuff as Triton X-114, for what it's worth. I don't think there is any more confusion at least over these products. Not sure why someone is posting erroneous information about Photo Flo, but I don't think this leaves any doubt.

Thanks!

Daina


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 10, 2012 6:57 pm 
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Thanks Daina, great first post. Welcome to CAM!


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 02, 2013 1:15 pm 
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Has anyone ever tried making/using Craig's Concoction? - http://www.diamondcut.com/vforum/showthread.php/1775-Craig-s-Record-Cleaning-Concoction If so could you share your results/opinions?


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