[Table of Contents]

[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: [ARSCLIST] Proper way to store 78s

From: Patent Tactics, George Brock-Nannestad


Yingfen asked and a few replied, however there are a few more things to 
consider; vertical is not always good and horizontal is not always bad.

> The reason why I asked is because I have heard that if stored vertically
> and
> exposed to sunlight for too long, the 78s may peel off like onion.

----- this seems to refer to lacquer records (often but mistakenly called 
"acetates". All records should be kept in the dark, so we will exclude light 
from the discussion. But lacquer records are different to shellac records 
(also, but not as mistakenly called "78s") in the way they are made. Lacquer 
records have a core and an outer layer of a nitrocellulose lacquer. Usually 
the outer layer goes all around the edge, so that there is a continuous layer 
of lacquer from side to the other, really only broken near the center hole on 
either side. When a lacquer record is stored vertically, its full weight is 
supported at the point where the circular disc touches the flat shelf, and 
that creates a stress in the lacquer layer. As it becomes more brittle (with 
consequent internal shrinkage tension) a crack is more likely to start at a 
place with high mechanical stress. Also, if the layer has already begun to 
lose adhesion to the core (peeling), both sides have a risk of losing flakes 
to the bottom of the record cover. For this reason, horizontal storage is 
preferential, because of less stress and because at least one surface (the 
top one of the record) will remain in place.
> Also, the
> old record storage cabinets were designed for about 10 78s to be placed
> horizontally in one drawer (it would be bad for the 78s if over 10 are
> stacked horizontally together). For example:
> http://page10.auctions.yahoo.co.jp/jp/auction/m67473195

----- any 78 (shellac) storage, vertical or horizontal, is only relevant if 
the discs are absolutely flat. Horizontal storage to a pile that it 
comfortable to grip and carry with two hands is quite safe, but it requires 
drawers as you say. If vertically stored records are not held together with 
some pressure the records may warp. 

----- in case of flooding, horizontal storage in a pile is preferential, 
because then the water only affects the bottom part of the pile, whereas if 
it is a shelf, the lower part of the full width of the shelf will be 
affected. With flooding 10 cm (4") above the bottom of the shelf 2 meters (6 
ft 8") long it would mean affecting 600 records, rather than the bottom 30 
records in each pile. We shall disregard capillary action in the covers.

----- at a low temperature, such as 18 degrees Celsius, even a pile one meter 
(3 ft 4")  high is not detrimental to shellac records. 25 years ago I had two 
"reject" piles of 10" records sitting like that for more than 5 years, and 
without covers! The only condition was that the records were dusted free of 
grit before the piling. Those were my collecting days, where I could not bear 
to destroy the "insignificant" records just so that I could recycle the 
covers for "better" records. It turned out that the "insignificance" was 
merely a symptom of my lack of knowledge--when revisiting the piles some 7 
years later I found what amount to great rarities among them. I had simply 
interpreted the label information wrongly.

----- I would be very interested in hearing more about the reversed 
impression of record numbers cited by Steven Barr:

"In fact, one can
occasionally run across 78's which have reversed record numbers
(raised on the disc on top) permanently impressed in them!",

-- because that would imply that only one of the records had appreciably 
softened under stress (and elevated temperature?). I would love to see an 
example of this.

So, after another lengthy response,

Kind regards,


> On 2009/6/20 5:00 PM, "Marie O'Connell" <azile50@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:
> > Upright, vertically is the correct way
> > Cheers
> > Marie
> > 
> > On Sat, Jun 20, 2009 at 8:36 PM, Ying-fen Wang <nanguanl@xxxxxxxxxx>
> wrote:
> > 
> >> Dear List,
> >> 
> >> I wonder if any of you can advise me on the proper way to store 78s.
> Should
> >> it be stored upright or horizontally?
> >> 
> >> Best, Ying-fen
> >> 
> -- 

[Subject index] [Index for current month] [Table of Contents]