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Vinyl Flat & Groovy Pouch

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by DR.J, Nov 5, 2012.

  1. tubesandvinyl

    tubesandvinyl Forum Resident

    Bubba,

    It will repair dished records, but you need at least 6 hours or so. On some new dished records, I go 8 to 10 hours. I've had great success flattening new records. I go about 1/4 turn past snug.
     
    LeeS likes this.
  2. bubba-ho-tep

    bubba-ho-tep Forum Resident

    Location:
    Texas
    Thanks, I'm going to try for 8 hours today on my dished 200g record. It's part of my Analogue Productions Prestige subscription so I can request a replacement if this doesn't work .
     
  3. Akhorahil

    Akhorahil Well-Known Member

    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    You didn't, because most of the advises (including myself) don't specify the records they tried.
    After 20 records I tried so far, I think that the final result primary depends on WAX composition, less on age of warp/dish and much less on heat/cool time and number of cycles.
    For example, with modern domestic pressing (Friday Music) - I have 100% success with 1 cycle of 2 hr/2hr heating/cooling in GP.
    Modern import pressing (PHD) - I have 75% success with 3 cycles of 2 hr/2hr heating/cooling in GP.
    Japan pressing (EAS series Beatles) - I have NO SUCCESS at all even after 8 hr/8 hr heating/cooling in GP.
    So my guess is that you just have very difficult record(s) to correct the warps.
    Hope it helps.
     
  4. bubba-ho-tep

    bubba-ho-tep Forum Resident

    Location:
    Texas
    Well, another cycle of 8 hours in the Groovy Pouch totally trashed my AP Sonny Rollins LP. Serious "orange peel" and abundant surface noise. At least I'm getting a replacement from Acoustic Sounds.

    I'm definitely going to be MUCH more conservative on my heating times from now on.

    I do know from experience that QRP pressings are extremely difficult to deal with.
     
  5. bubba-ho-tep

    bubba-ho-tep Forum Resident

    Location:
    Texas
    When it comes to minor dishing, I'm wondering if it may be better to use a clamp/ring combo. Thoughts?
     
  6. dasacco

    dasacco Senior Member

    Location:
    Massachussetts
    My turntable came with a clamp, and I certainly use that before I try to flatten a record. The clamp works very nicely with dished records.
     
  7. tubesandvinyl

    tubesandvinyl Forum Resident

    Sorry to hear about your AP LP.

    I flattened my QRP of Axis: Bold as Love. About 7 hours in the GP. No orange peel and no surface noise at all. It played just as quietly as before. None of the records I've flattened have had increased surface noise.

    I fully clean them on my RCM before flattening. So far, so good.
     
  8. bubba-ho-tep

    bubba-ho-tep Forum Resident

    Location:
    Texas
    Not a problem at all. Since I was getting a replacement, I decided to push the limits with my GP and see what happened. Well, now I know.
     
  9. MikeyH

    MikeyH Stamper King

    Location:
    Berkeley, CA
    I suggest those with the groovy pouch use a kitchen thermometer to verify temperatures. Don't be shy, post them here.

    It sounds to me that there may be a variability in the pouch that can cause this damage. I've seen records destroyed by sunlight and/or indirect heat, and the range from 'flattening' to 'elastic' to 'orange peel' is surprisingly small. That's why vinyl is such a good material to make records out of.
     
    TLMusic likes this.
  10. TLMusic

    TLMusic Musician & record collector

    How is it possible that you can keep records in the groovy pouch for so long and get absolutely no orange peel? My experience is nothing like that.

    In fact, last week I put a 115 gram LP in for one hour (carefully following the instructions) and there was already evidence of orange peel in the deadwax. I'm feeling more and more wary...
     
  11. TLMusic

    TLMusic Musician & record collector

    Just stick the thermometer inside of the pouch and leave it on for an hour or so? Would that be the best way to measure perhaps?
     
  12. tubesandvinyl

    tubesandvinyl Forum Resident

    I don't know?

    I just did one 180 gram record for 8 hours. There is no evidence of increased surface noise. The vinyl surface looks as shiny as it did before flattening. Under a bright light, there is a few tiny micro-dots in the dead wax, but only if I look really hard for them and hold the record at the appropriate viewing angle. I wouldn't call it orange peel by any stretch. If surface noise resulted from flattening, I would never use the thing. But so far, all has gone well.
     
  13. TLMusic

    TLMusic Musician & record collector

    Many thanks for your reply. It makes me sort of wish I could send my problem records up to you, as you seem to have the magic touch with this product. Glad you've had such great experiences.

    Perhaps MikeyH's theory of widely varying groovy pouch temperatures has significant merit. That at least could explain how people have reported such drastically different results with the Vinyl Flat.
     
  14. SergioRZ

    SergioRZ Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Portugal
    Is it confirmed that the new soft Groovy Rings are made from felt material? So basically they are just standard felt turntable mats that can be bought pretty much anywhere?

    Another big difference between the old rigid rings and the new soft rings is that the new rings don't have the large label sized center hole, I would expect this to have some kind of impact on the way the device works, probably better for dished records but not as effective for warps...

    The felt mats (if they are indeed just regular felt) provide an easy to find and cheap option to use in other flattening systems (such as the glass plates method) where some "soft" agent is required to compensate for the edge and/or label indentation, making it more effective flattening the entire surface area based on even weight distribution made possible by the felt mat.
     
  15. TLMusic

    TLMusic Musician & record collector

    I don't think the mats are made of felt. They appear to be some sort of synthetic felt-like material.


    Perhaps someone here knows for sure?
     
  16. tubesandvinyl

    tubesandvinyl Forum Resident

    I don't know from what they are made, but as you say, they are some sort of synthetic felt-like material. Sort of like the felt mat that comes with some turntables.

    I've not measured the temp of my GP. When I put my hand on top, it is just warm. When I pull the VF out from a heat cycle, it is warm, but not hot. I can touch it with my hands comfortably. I don't know why I'm able to allow a record to cook for 8 hours plus without problems, but so far all has gone well. I've flattened at least a couple dozen records by now. As I stated earlier, it doesn't work that well for old records.
     
  17. Akhorahil

    Akhorahil Well-Known Member

    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    OK, I post since you insist.

    Record to fix: Black Sabbath, s/t, Earmark Pressing (Italy) in 2003, 180g, has 2 back-to-back edge warps.

    Experiment: Usual assembly in VF with 1/4 turn past snag + 6 binder clips, one holds the tip of kitchen thermometer (oxo digital). Tip is thick enough to contact both metal plates and long enough to have the reading head just outside of GP.
    Heating starts at 68F , after 1hr - 95, 2hr - 120, 3hr - 130, 4hr - 133 and I stop heating.
    Cooling starts at 133F, after 1hr - 100, 2hr - 90, 3hr - 82, 4hr - 78, 5hr - 75, 6hr - 72 and LP is out of GP/VF.

    Result: Perfectly flat record with a tiny bump (origin of the first warp). No visible damage and no sound damage, e.g. it's my best result so far to completely fix 2 edge warps, probably by accident, since I usually do several sessions not exceeding 3 hr each.
    I was curious after 3hr of heating to find out how high the temperature will go in GP. So my GP version is likely 130F, even bought recently.

    Conclusion: I still think that the melting point of record to fix (WAX composition) is the primary factor, since I have already destroyed one record in just 3 heating hr in GP (orange peel and severe sound damage on Tower of Power, Urban Renewal, Warner Bros. USA BS2834, 1974) and I had no improvement at all after 8 heating hr in GP (The Beatles, 2nd record, Japan pressing, EAS77002, mid 80s).

    Any thoughts?
     
  18. MikeyH

    MikeyH Stamper King

    Location:
    Berkeley, CA
    Thanks!
    My thoughts are .. if the vinyl mix itself is that variable in 'destruction temperature' then all these devices are a crapshoot.
    70's WB could be a Dynaflex pressing. It would not surprise me if part of the function there were lower pressing temperatures (leading to faster cycling and lower energy costs for the manufacturers)
     
  19. Akhorahil

    Akhorahil Well-Known Member

    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    Just found on Furutech website:

    "Note: The following LPs should not be treated in the DF-2.
    •LPs weighing less than 110g
    •Light LPs that were manufactured between 1973-74 (Oil crisis) weights range from 100g to 115g."

    So your guess about 70's WB pressing is probably correct.
     
  20. David.m

    David.m Forum Resident

    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    Thought I should give this a plug in light of the great customer service I've received from John at Vinyl Flat. My pouch died, emailed John and very quickly he resolved the issue & sent me another pouch (& of course he is in the US & I'm in Australia).
    I've had nothing but great success using the VF & pouch. I've read other posts saying they're not having success with older records but my experience is otherwise. Both LPs of my original pressing of Lou Reed's Take No Prisoners (1978) were from new dished so badly that if you bocked the spindle holes you could eat soup from them (it was a special import for me back then so I was stuck with it). Both are now perfectly flat and dead quiet after two goes of 3 & 6hrs each. The deadwax has a little of the 'orange peel' affect that others have mentioned but no detrimental affect to the noise floor. I think the most important thing is to make sure the record is clean before it goes in the VF.
    I no longer stress about the occasional record arriving warped, and the VF/pouch virtually paid for itself just fixing my MFSL copies of Lost In Space & Hot Buttered Soul. IMO this is an essential accessory to vinyl ownership.
     
  21. mikeburns

    mikeburns Forum Resident

    I signed up to this forum primarily to make this post. The vinyl flat and groovy pouch is awesome! I had trouble with my initial pouch not heating so John sent me anew one all the way to New Zealand free of charge. New one works perfectly. Flattened 13 records so far that range from minor as new warps through to left in the sun wasted looks like a skateboard ramp terrible. E worst one was a joy division record for the early 80s. With a mixture of ever increasing lengths of time and using the bulldog clip method mentioned by another forum member here I got it to playing perfectly and can hardly see the bump.

    No orange peeling at all after I accidentally left it on over night!

    Bass sounds that sent my drivers blowing are ow gone entirely!

    I cannot recommend this product enough, it has paid for itself over and over and like the other people I no longer am concerned with new warped vinyl. My brand new purple vinyl copy of stone temple pilots - purple arrived warped! No worries with the vinyl flat!

    A very very impressed user who almost gave up on vinyl as a result of a pile of warped records due to sun damage!
     
  22. mikeburns

    mikeburns Forum Resident

    Ps thanks for all the help this thread has given me, definitely made the vinyl flat produce a flatter record eg bulldog clip method and timing.
     
  23. Akhorahil

    Akhorahil Well-Known Member

    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    I want to share my positive experience with warp correction on Frank Zappa, Freak Out! ZR3834-1, 2013.

    Just bought the record and 2nd LP had the big edge warp to fix. So, usual assembly in VF (130F version) with 1/4 turn past snag + 6 binder clips, 3 hr of heating followed by 4 hr of cooling in GP.
    I found the record perfectly flat with a tiny bump (origin of the warp). No visible damage and no sound damage, which is very consistent with all modern pressing I fixed so far.
     
  24. tubesandvinyl

    tubesandvinyl Forum Resident

    Totally agree with you. The VF and GP are awesome. They are great for flattening new records. Not so great on vintage vinyl.
     
  25. bubba-ho-tep

    bubba-ho-tep Forum Resident

    Location:
    Texas
    What size binder clips are recommended for the VP/GP?
     

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