My version of an Ultrasonic Record Cleaner - Page 11 - diyAudio
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Old 29th September 2012, 09:52 PM   #101
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bbftx View Post
Wow, that is some crud, alright! Do you have any "before" pics of the record?

B B
Yeah it was pretty gross actually. I was surprised that it turned out to be very playable afterwards. Cover is toast and the moldy side of the label needed a scrub so it's pretty much illegible. I forgot to take a picture of the before and after but I have another couple of candidates that will do nicely I think. I will be sure to post them.

BTW have you decided on an optimum temperature for your setup yet?
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Old 30th September 2012, 05:34 PM   #102
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Default How well do carbon fiber brushes work?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vinyladdict View Post
I have to say that the 40KHz machine seems to work just fine. The results have been great with no damage to the vinyl. I had a few nasty, moldy records to use as a test. One Beatles album I picked up in a garage sale collection was so bad I had to peel the original paper record sleeve off before doing a test clean. A 12 minute cycle got almost all of the crud off. I used a carbon fibre brush and some cleaning solution to manually go over the problem spot, then back in the machine for another 12 minute cycle. The record came out sparkling clean and sounded great when I played it a while later. I am completely sold on this method of cleaning.

Once I get the motor installed I will take more photos and assemble a complete cost sheet but I think my total cost outlay will probably come in around $320.00. I am already thinking about my next machine that will have an increased record capacity.

Thanks again to everyone who has contributed to this thread, especially BB who has provided so much valuable insight.
Hello, Vinyladdict, I like your setup and might give it a try. I didn't know about Synchron motors until I read the posts. Looks like there are a lot on ebay and I suppose a cheapskate like me could get one out of an appliance. I assume you used the DAK fibre brush. Short of the ultasonic solution, have you been happy with that method?
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Old 30th September 2012, 06:42 PM   #103
bbftx is offline bbftx  United States
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Default Temp and Filtering

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vinyladdict View Post

BTW have you decided on an optimum temperature for your setup yet?
For temp, I'm liking 110 to 120F. It's not too hot for vinyl or hands. If my cleaner is filled adequately, the heater on my URC may be left on and the temp seems to stabilize at 120. The heat definitely improves the cleaning process. For good LP groove cleaning without the need for a brush of any kind, I think 60 khz, heat, and an appropriate cleaning solution are best.

The 120F temp is also the max for the filtering setup I'm currently putting together. It will combine an excellent surplus motor/pump with a sub-micron filter for about $40. This optional setup will use the drain from the UC, piped to the inlet of the pump (whose max fluid temp is rated at 120F) then through the filter and back up over the tank lip into the URC tank. The tubing outlet back into the tank will be below the liquid level so as to not introduce bubbles into the cleaning solution. The filter setup can be run between LP cleaning cycles. And I think it will probably work while a cleaning cycle is ongoing, such that continuous filtering will be possible if a user desires. This filter arrangement should allow extended use of one batch of cleaning solution.

More info, part numbers and pictures to come as I get the filter set up and working.

B B
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Old 30th September 2012, 07:15 PM   #104
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bbftx View Post

More info, part numbers and pictures to come as I get the filter set up and working.

B B
Can't wait to see the filter system!

In case anyone doubts the effectiveness of this type of record cleaning here are some pics of some nasty records I cleaned yesterday. They both sound great!
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Old 30th September 2012, 07:24 PM   #105
bbftx is offline bbftx  United States
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Default Nasty

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vinyladdict View Post
... here are some pics of some nasty records I cleaned yesterday.
Addict, I think that record takes the prize for worst ever. Looks like extreme biohazard!
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Old 30th September 2012, 08:49 PM   #106
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Originally Posted by bbftx View Post
Addict, I think that record takes the prize for worst ever. Looks like extreme biohazard!
Yeah it was pretty disgusting but the real irony is that I am not even much of a Cat Stevens fan!
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Old 30th September 2012, 08:53 PM   #107
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 78RPMcollector View Post
Hello, Vinyladdict, I like your setup and might give it a try. I didn't know about Synchron motors until I read the posts. Looks like there are a lot on ebay and I suppose a cheapskate like me could get one out of an appliance. I assume you used the DAK fibre brush. Short of the ultasonic solution, have you been happy with that method?
Cool 78RPM! Just let us know if you have any questions. My setup is basically a knock off of BBFTX's build except I went with a pretty inexpensive 40KHz unit that seems to be doing the job just fine. I like Synchrons slow speed capability and at 19.95 is pretty good value.

Good Luck!
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Old 1st October 2012, 02:45 AM   #108
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 78RPMcollector View Post
I assume you used the DAK fibre brush. Short of the ultasonic solution, have you been happy with that method?
Prior to the ultrasonic machine, I have used a variety of methods to clean my records. Most recently I would clean the lps on an old turntable with some DYI cleaning solution,and a $7 carbon fiber brush or a paint pad, then vacuum up the residue. In my experience so far the ultrasonic method gets superior results.

In the recent photos in my earlier posts I only used a brush on the few really grungy garage sale finds as part of an experiment to see if it was possible to get them clean and playable in my ultrasonic setup. I am positive that my old brush and vacuum method would not have been successful on these moldy old records that are now like new and sound very good. Most of my records are in pretty decent condition but recently I purchased a collection of 500 records that had been sitting in someones basement for the last 30 years. I was searching for a efficient and thorough way of cleaning them and thankfully i found this thread. I have been spinning them manually in the ultrasonic bath and have probably cleaned close to 100 records. The task will be less labor intensive I am sure once my motor arrives.

Cheers
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Old 5th October 2012, 03:57 AM   #109
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Default Checking in

Hi Vinyladdict and BB,

I'm still lurking here and following your experiences and ideas with interest.

I have nothing to report yet, but have parts starting to come in now for a design that is a hybrid between the designs on this thread and the Bent Audio prototype that never made it to market (see below). Features that might be of interest include an alternative take on the spacers between the LPs, the ability to easily move the entire 'rotisserie' unit from the ultrasonic cleaner onto third-size polycarbonate food pans for rinse or presoak steps (the pans also have airtight lids for storing the liquids between runs), and a variable-speed DC motor to explore different rotational speeds and cycle times for cleaning, rinsing and drying.

One thing that still confounds me is the discrepancy between the ~10 RPM speed the Audio Desk cleaner uses during its cleaning cycle of only 1-2 minutes vs. the much slower speeds and longer cycles used all across the diy community. The AD cleaner only slows down to roughly 1 RPM for drying.

I'm not sure how much difference rinsing will make, but the on-line info from the ultrasonic cleaning industry claims it's important. I've also ordered some Alconox free-rinsing detergent as an alternative to isopropyl alcohol and photo flow. You might find some of this information useful. They recommend about 120 degrees F for cleaning with the Alconox detergent. If this proves inferior to alcohol + photoflow, I can still use it to clean stainless flatware, glasses, etc.

I'll post results as I get them.
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Old 5th October 2012, 04:20 AM   #110
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Default A safety consideration

While weighing the pros and cons of a 12 VDC motor vs. a 120 VAC synchronous motor, it did occur to me that there is a safety concern if we have mains power coming within inches of the wet environment of an ultrasonic cleaner. This was not a deciding factor for me, but I do recommend using a GFCI outlets to power your AC motor. If you don't have one convenient to your location, you can either install a replacement GFCI outlet or purchase an inexpensive GFCI adaptor that plugs into an unprotected outlet. Apparently, these adaptors work even with non-grounded outlets in older homes.

Some claim their prized LPs are to die for, but in my opinion, not so much.

I will say that using 120 VAC synchronous motors makes for a much simpler, less expensive, no-fuss implementation compared to the path I chose.
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