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RE: [AV Media Matters] CD labels and inks

I was surprised myself to see the recommendation for labels. In general
- the archival community has LOTS of experience with adhesive labels of
one sort or another and my understanding is that the experience - in
general has been very poor. There are several issues - some relating to
the adhesives, and others relating to the paper stock used for labels.

Problems with adhesives relate not only to them losing their adhesive
properties over time and in proper storage environments (cold and dry),
but on the other end of the spectrum having adhesives that cannot be
removed without great damage to the object that they are on.

In the case with CD/R I would be very concerned about both of these
issues over time - particularly considering that the label will not be
on the polycarbonate layer but will be essentially on a varnish of one
flavor or another - what will happen to the adhesive over time?  If it
dries - can it be easily removed without taking the varnish with it
and/or will a solvent that would be used to remove the label adhesive
also damage the varnish ( I would suggest that this might be very
possible )?  Other issues might relate to the chemical interactivity
between the adhesives / varnish over time.  The paper stocks have been a
problem also - papers that are highly acidic may be used for label stock
- and that may cause a problem over time... I don't know.

Having said this, there ARE archival labels that are made specifically
for the archival community - but I have no idea whether they are made in
the correct size for CD's - and I have no idea what type of testing (if
any) has been done.

Over at VidiPax we have specifically avoided adhesive labels for the
reasons mentioned above - we use an ink jet printer which is rather a
pain to use - very slow - lots of re-work too - registration is tough on
it. It is essentially an Epson Stylus Photo 700 that has been modified
by a manufacturer with a device to hold the disk as it goes through. The
inks are the same used for photo printing so there does not seem to be
any alcohol and appear to be fairly inert (that is what the vendor says
anyhow) - but we can only use certain media with it - it is fairly slow
- the ink is expensive - and I think that it is fair to say that the
production crew hates it. If anyone has positive experience with another
ink-jet printer I would be eager to hear about it.


Jim Lindner - President
VidiPax - The Magnetic Media and Information Migration Full Services
Telephone 212-563-1999
Moderator of A/V Media Matters@topica.com

smolians@erols.com wrote:
> I have received verbal reports, from test work not yet pubished, which
> regards the entire stick-on label process as exceedingly detrimental to
> the
> survival of a CD-R over the long term.  Others on this list are in a
> much
> better position than I to furnish storong evidence to this effect.  Step
> forward, you guys.
> Steve Smolian
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Graeme Jaye <gjaye@retemail.es>
> To: AV-Media-Matters@topica.com <AV-Media-Matters@topica.com>
> Date: Thursday, February 24, 2000 2:01 PM
> Subject: Re: [AV Media Matters] CD labels and inks
>>At 05:29 24/02/00 -0800, you wrote:
>>>I would like to ask the question: is there any "safe" way of labelling CDs?
>>> Either by sticking labels (what type of glue?) or by writing on them (what
>>>type of ink?)
>>Personally, I would recommend that you go for a label rather than just
>>writing on the disc with a pen (even one of the 'correct' type).  The
>>will also provide a degree of protection to the most easily (and
>>permanently!!) damaged side of the disc, whereas a pen provides nothing
>>other than identification.  There is not a lot between your valuable
>>data and the outside world on the top of a recordable CD.
>>There are plenty of companies who supply CD labelling systems and
>>materials.  I would avoid using labels from an 'unknown' source - the
>>does have to be of the correct type (and no, I don't know what that is).
>> I
>>would have thought that anything coming from a major company would be
>>acceptable though, as they have a reputation to protect and it would not
>>last long if they produced labels that destroyed their customers discs.
>>all events, use a label which is *designed* for the job, not just any
>>sticky label that happens to be the right size.
>>If you want a personal recommendation, we have been using labels
>>by a company called Neato for several years now and have never had a
>>problem which could be attributed to them.
>>As a side issue, considering the minimal cost of the discs and the value
>>the data, do you not think that a backup of the backup would be a good
>>idea.  You should also keep the two backups in separate and different
>>locations - it's not a lot of good if the computer and its backups are
>>in the same building when it catches fire!
>>Graeme Jaye
>>Personal-CD - Affordable Audio Restoration

Jim Lindner - President
VidiPax - The Magnetic Media and Information Migration Full Services
Telephone 212-563-1999
Moderator of A/V Media Matters@topica.com

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