Collectors scour all kinds of places to find rare LPs from the 40s and 50s (or even older). These kinds of records are notoriously difficult to restore to playable condition. So, if you don’t know what to do with such relics, let’s see if there is a solution for old vinyl record treatment that could help you make these priceless LPs from years past sound great again.
The art of necromancy: how to revive vinyl records
Record stores aren’t just a place where you can buy some LPs: each item in the shop has its own story of how it got there. For newer records that story isn’t that engaging – it was delivered straight to record store after pressing; but older LPs have different stories. Yes, chances are most of them are remasters or not original pressings, but sometimes there are true gems from decades ago hidden among the shelves, waiting to tell their misadventures to anyone who listens.
Vinyl record collectors are really dedicated and sometimes obsessed with their work. You’ll often see them at garage sales, thrift stores and dirty basements (although this begs the question of what you were doing in that same basement) searching for more items to add on to their collection. Now, considering the places we just mentioned, it’s fair to assume the condition of these items is, well, not exactly mint. Collectors are almost archaeologists in that sense – they dig up (sometimes literally) relics of the past and then study them to see if they were worth the trouble.
Of course, you don’t need to go to abandoned buildings, shady basements or own an excavator to start “digging up” vintage LPs. It’s honestly as easy as asking your grandma if she has any records – maybe she’s been sitting on a gold mine this whole time, and you just never bothered to ask. Older relatives often have really valuable stuff in general – from treasured editions of books and cool furniture to expensive old cutlery and, again, vintage LPs. It’s kind of amazing, really, that you can start your own record collection basically for free.
Alright, let’s say your grandma/grandpa/uncle has an archive of LPs and he’s willing to give them to you. After you get over the initial excitement, the boring part comes in: you can’t play them until they’ve been cleaned. Well, you can certainly try, but you’ll hear lots of crack and pops at best and a huge noisy mess at worst. See, if your hypothetical uncle has kept these records in a dirty closet (or worse, a basement) and hasn’t touched them for years (which is often the case), they will be dirty. Like, really dirty. It’s almost a guarantee that you’ll have to throw some items out. Any collector, if given a moldy, warped record covered in a thick layer of dirt and with lots of scratches, will shrug his shoulders and advise you to throw it away – some things are just beyond the point where reasonable treatment is possible.
Beware: the process of vinyl record cleaning under these conditions is difficult and time-consuming. You’ll need a really good safe LP cleaning solution (preferably more than one), a record duster, an LP cleaning cloth and, if possible, a vinyl record cleaner (doing everything manually is possible, but it’s making an already complicated task even harder).
But if you believe that the reward of listening to vintage audio from the past is worth the effort you’ll have to put into and your records haven’t deteriorated to the point of no return, then we’re happily ready to help. Chisto has prepared a special and safe LP cleaning solution – Enzycaster – dedicated for vinyl record cleaning in cases that seem beyond redemption. It is a very powerful concentrate acting as a pre-wash solution before your standard cleaning procedure. It isn’t effective immediately, since we are dealing with a record that nobody bothered to clean for decades, but after it soaks in, cleaning is far easier and painless. Its application is described in detail on our website, same with other items in our Superset (that also includes the aforementioned LP cleaning cloth, a record duster and other cleaning liquids for different purposes).
Cleaning vinyl records comprising your newly acquired collection will take a lot of time (depending on the volume of the archive and the amount of items thrown out). But the feeling of accomplishment and pride after everything’s been done is truly indescribable – you’ve really made this LP library your own by connecting with your records on a physical and mental level. Believe us, the effort you’ve put into this work will be rewarded tenfold by your LPs, who have now seemingly come back from the dead after being forgotten and left to rot. In a way, it almost feels like adopting a pet from animal shelter: the love and affection you give in old vinyl record treatment always comes back to you.
So if you’re looking to learn the dark arts of bringing pieces of our past to life in present, then look no further than Chisto for an ideal set of vinyl record cleaning supplies you’ll need to perform your necromantic ritual.