Record Preservation

Record Preservation

Why preserve records?
Shock Waves - The Major Cause of Record Wear
The major cause of record wear/damage is "shock-wave fracturing”. A pressure wave is produced by the phono stylus (needle) as it passes through the record groove. Rapidly moving pressure waves radiate from the two areas of stylus contact on the groove wall. These pressure waves travel ahead of the stylus as it moves along the groove in the same way as a bow wave moves ahead of a boat.
When the pressure wave encounters a micro-crack, flaws in the vinyl, or other surface imperfections, the energy builds up, forming a shock wave that can exceed the cohesive forces holding the surface together. When this happens, cracks occur in the vinyl and fragments can be blown off the groove wall. This kind of damage can occur on the very first play, and will increase exponentially as a function of both the number of plays and stylus loading.

Clean, pristine sound begins with a clean record. Although a new record may look clean on the surface, it is not. Every new record has surface chemicals and record-pressing compounds left from the manufacturing process.
From the moment a record is removed from its cover, it electro-statically attracts dust particles from the air. The stylus then embeds these particles (hardness up to 8, a diamond being 10) into the soft record vinyl (hardness less than 1). The resulting pits and holes cause noise, distortion, "clicks" and “pops" in the music. Handling the record deposits debris, fingerprint oils, salts and residues.
Upon playing, the record stylus scrapes the record surface, exerting extreme pressure at the stylus tip (14 to 40 tons per square inch), raising the temperature to almost 315 degrees F (the melting point of vinyl) and embedding dust particles and debris into the soft vinyl.
Heat, pressure and debris cause microscopic cracks to appear on the record surface, even on the first play. With each play tiny pieces of the record vinyl pop out, leaving holes and pits in the record surface. These holes cause noise, distortion and "clicks" and "pops" in the sound.

Protect and Preserve your Records for Long Life

Your new records can be completely protected from wear damage. Further damage to your previously played records can be stopped.

Shock-waves are the primary cause of record wear. Dirt and friction exacerbate the problem. Even new, clean records are subject to shock-wave damage.

LAST's scientists have discovered how you can protect your records from the damage caused by shock-waves, dirt, and friction.
Four Steps You Can Take to Protect your Valuable Records from Wear
1. Clean the Record Surface
First Time Record Cleaning
The record manufacturing process leaves behind pressing residues and contaminants on the record surface. These sticky residues are tightly bound to the groove wall and attract and hold dirt and debris. Furthermore, they build up on the stylus as the stylus traverses the groove wall creating noise, distortion, and damage from wear. The usual water or water/alcohol mix record cleaner cannot remove these tightly bound contaminants and residues.
LAST Power Cleaner is a record cleaner specifically designed to remove pressing residues and contaminants left over from the manufacturing process. Just one cleaning with LAST Power Cleaner results in a record surface that is pristinely clean.
Maintenance Cleaning
Routine maintenance record cleaning prevents abrasion damage that is caused when dirt and debris that have collected on the on the record surface are dragged against the groove wall by the stylus.
LAST All Purpose Record Cleaner is the most advanced everyday record cleaning solution available. It is an economical and highly effective way for general purpose cleaning operations.
2. Preserve and Protect Against Shock-Wave Damage
Once you have a clean record, you can totally protect it from the effects of stylus caused shock-wave damage by applying LAST Record Preservative.
LAST Record Preservative chemically enhances the molecular stability, and therefore the cohesiveness of the groove surface so that it completely resists the effects of stylus shock waves. The 30-second treatment affects the vinyl to a depth of about ten molecular layers and becomes part of the grove wall. There are no surface residues that can be picked up by the stylus. In fact, overuse is harmless.
LAST Record Preservative has been universally applauded by the super-critical editors of audio publications. And numerous writers have made the point that LAST Record Preservative produces audible benefits far beyond its original purpose as a preservative. This can be accounted for by the fact that the groove surface integrity achieved by the preservative also provides an improved interface between the indenting stylus tip and the rapidly moving groove walls. According to the editor of International Audio Review, LAST Record Preservative provides an almost 10-dB reduction in high-frequency IM distortion as measured on a test record. Others have reported even greater improvements in overall fidelity from their preservative treated records.
A new record that is treated with LAST Record Preservative, kept clean, and not physically abused can be played a minimum of 200 times without discernible wear. A record treated today should be in pristine condition for future generations.
3. Clean Your Stylus to Protect Against Abrasion
A clean stylus protects your record from abrasion damage caused by dirt that has adhered to the stylus tip.
LAST Stylus Cleaner chemically cleans the stylus. It removes all accumulated deposits and particles. It is completely safe for all stylus and cartridge assemblies because it contains no alcohol or other components that can damage the stylus suspension.
Recommended stylus cleaning frequency: Clean the stylus after the end of playing a succession of records so that you start with a chemically clean stylus the next time you want to play records.
Also, clean your stylus anytime you see any visible debris or hear any playback distortion.
4. Increase Stylus and Record Life with StyLAST Stylus Treatment
Stylast Stylus Treatment dramatically reduces the friction at the stylus/groove interface by reducing the surface free energy of the vinyl. Stylast uses the same thermodynamic principles that led to LAST Record Preservative resulting in:
• Stylus life extension up to 10 times.
• Reduced distortion and improved sonic performance
• Increased stylus tracking ability
• Increased stylus suspension life
• Reduced record wear
Stylast is not a lubricant and leaves no residue. It is effective throughout the entire play of one side of an LP record. By following the directions, Stylast cannot be over-applied.
Recommended usage: Apply Stylast just prior to every play.

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