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Author Topic: sticky shed on prerecorded tapes ?  (Read 9713 times)

Offline steveidosound

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sticky shed on prerecorded tapes ?
« on: October 04, 2008, 02:39:40 PM »
 I listened to a Moody Blues prerecorded Quad (4 channel) tape I had gotten a while back on ebay.
It shed a LOT of brown oxide. Is this sticky shed or something else. I think it is new enough to be on polyester tape. I had understood this only affected back coated tapes which this is not. It does say duplicated on Ampex tape.
When did they typically switch from acetate stock for prerecorded tapes anyway?
Steve Williams

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Offline U47

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Re: sticky shed on prerecorded tapes ?
« Reply #1 on: October 04, 2008, 05:36:08 PM »
HI Steve
I doubt it is sticky shed on this tape. I've dealt with hundreds, if not thousands of sticky shed Ampex 456 and Scotch 250 tapes. They have ALL been black backcoated tapes. Sticky shed tapes will stop your machine dead in it's tracks by depositing a black goo on the heads, guides and even the capstan.
Baking/drying is a good fix for sticky shed tapes. I would not recommend doing that for the tape you mentioned.

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Offline steveidosound

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Re: sticky shed on prerecorded tapes ?
« Reply #2 on: October 04, 2008, 11:29:33 PM »
Thanks for the reply. It didn't look like the black sticky goo I had seen. Just a lot of brown oxide.
Is there a cure for this if not baking? This was using a machine that I play regularly and does not have an issue with other tapes, so nothing is scraping it off.
One pass caused loss of high frequencies by half way through via oxide buildup on the head and you could see brown crud on the capstan, pinchroller and guides etc. But it was not particularly sticky. It came off easily with a normal cleaning.
Again, the album dates from 1972, so I would think by that time or later it would be some form of (Ampex) polyester tape.
As it is, being a quad reel, I would really like to salvage it even if it means just one dub to something else. It started out sounding fine at the beginning of the reel.
Anyone else have issues like this with 70s prerecorded tapes and how did you solve them?
Steve Williams

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Offline ironbut

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Re: sticky shed on prerecorded tapes ?
« Reply #3 on: October 05, 2008, 12:34:02 AM »
It could be a loss of lubricant Steve. Sometimes when a tape has been stored in a very dry climate the built in lubricants in the oxide can dry out. You could try cleaning it with Pelon but I doubt that it would help that much. I use Last Tape Preservative on old fragile tapes and it really minimizes shedding to almost nothing. Here's an old post of mine that outlines my early experiments using it.
http://www.tapeproject.com/smf/index.php/topic,240.msg1118.html#msg1118
It's pretty expensive but IMHO, it works great.
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Offline TomR

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Soft Binder Syndrome
« Reply #4 on: October 10, 2008, 08:58:31 AM »
Steve, thanks for the link to the tape restoration page. I have a few squealing tapes, but there is no residue to speak of left on my deck after playing. Based on the description it looks like these tapes are suffering from soft binder syndrome and not sticky shed syndrome. Will a LAST treatment help these? Is it worth trying?
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Offline ironbut

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Re: sticky shed on prerecorded tapes ?
« Reply #5 on: October 10, 2008, 06:15:17 PM »
Hi Tom. Any squealing is caused by the rapid "stick-release" of the tape to a fixed guide or head with the tape as a soundboard. There are some squealing problems not caused by sticky shed but their origins can be tough to track down. Sometimes it can be caused by exposure of the tape to a harsh chemical (such as head cleaning solution) but that usually results in some residue left on the tape path. Sometimes it can just be something sticky like the adhesive from splicing tape that the heat from friction will move from the tape to a fixed guide/head or even your pinch rollers and latter be deposited on another area of tape.
These squealing problems won't be solved with the Last Tape Preservative because the sticky stuff is mobile. In many cases these sticky contaminants are actually tiny balls of sticky stuff and get rolled around by the fixed guides/heads. As a result, the untreated( Last) bottoms would become exposed and be sticky again.
From my experience, the Last tape product does a very good job with old tapes by;
1. Cleaning the tape
2. Reducing friction which results in improved high frequency, less wear on fixed guides/heads, and less oxide shedding from normal use.
3. Making machine cleaning easier because of less oxide shedding and less adhesion of deposits.
Squealing tapes (I've been lucky only to have a few) really have to be addressed one at a time. For the most part, I toss 'em.
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Offline Ben

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Re: sticky shed on prerecorded tapes ?
« Reply #6 on: November 05, 2008, 12:37:51 PM »
I only HAVE one slightly squealing/sticky tape, and LAST seems to have fixed it.
Note you have to now buy your own colored dots. I find 1/2 a dropper
full is good for the 20 minute/side tapes I have.

Footnote: Tried it again ... still has one bad spot, so I will be cooking
it for a few hours. I am using a food dehydrator rather than my oven.
Then I will try LAST treatment again. This is a black oxide tape on a 7" reel.
All my other ones are brown oxide.

 
 
« Last Edit: November 05, 2008, 02:27:38 PM by Ben »
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Offline Ben

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Re: sticky shed on prerecorded tapes ?
« Reply #7 on: November 05, 2008, 07:56:19 PM »
Squeek!!!  TOSS ... too bad that was new favorite tape of mine.
Next time, I'll find a EasyBake Oven and use that!
Tries again with LAST on a good tape ... Ooops I stretched the tape, oh well back to the CD :(.
I think I will stick, to the ONES that seem to just be in bad shape from now on.

 
« Last Edit: November 05, 2008, 10:01:28 PM by Ben »
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Offline intell

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Re: sticky shed on prerecorded tapes ?
« Reply #8 on: November 06, 2008, 03:12:08 AM »
I have some Chess-Cadet pre-record's thet suffer from Loss Of Lubricant, and have some oxide shedding on heads.
Tape is thin and look's like cheap logging tape.

You could try cleaning it with Pelon but I doubt that it would help that much.

I'm trying to gooogle "Pelon", but it didn't help.
Please explain what it is (is it some kind of chemical)?

Thank you.
Best regards! Anton

Offline ironbut

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Re: sticky shed on prerecorded tapes ?
« Reply #9 on: November 06, 2008, 06:57:07 PM »
Hi Anton. Pelon is a cleaning tissue that comes on a roll (2" wide). It kinda reminds me of lens cleaning tissue. It does contain some lubricants that's supposed to help a little with LOL but not much. It's pretty cheap and can be had from US Recording Media;
http://usrecordingmedia-store.stores.yahoo.net/
I know I've read some info specific to LOL and I'll see if I can dig it up. If so, I'll post it here.
Some of the smaller outfits that had releases on R2R used some very funky tape. Can you tell if it's an acetate backed tape? (you can see light through the side of the reel if you hold it up to a light)
steve koto
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Offline intell

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Re: sticky shed on prerecorded tapes ?
« Reply #10 on: November 07, 2008, 06:02:05 PM »
Hi Anton. Pelon is a cleaning tissue that comes on a roll (2" wide). It kinda reminds me of lens cleaning tissue. It does contain some lubricants that's supposed to help a little with LOL but not much. It's pretty cheap and can be had from US Recording Media;
http://usrecordingmedia-store.stores.yahoo.net/
I know I've read some info specific to LOL and I'll see if I can dig it up. If so, I'll post it here.
Some of the smaller outfits that had releases on R2R used some very funky tape. Can you tell if it's an acetate backed tape? (you can see light through the side of the reel if you hold it up to a light)

Hi Ironbut.

I wipe all used tapes with cotton disc with few drops of izopropyle alcohol, it helps to remove dust, metal particles (on used pre-records I found a lot of metal particles, maybe from heads/guides??), and tobacco residue. It absolutely necessary for low speed 3 3/4 ips tapes. Without wet wiping this tapes had a lot of dropouts.
My experience shows, that 3 3/4 ips tapes collect a lot more dust than 7 1/2 ones.

Recently, I get pre-record "Blind Faith", seems one of previous owners love to smoke a LOT, label almost YELLOW, I run wiping for FIVE TIMES to remove all visible tobacco residue sticked to a dust.

My tapes with LOL is a polyester tape, some old russian tapes fabricateb by "Tacma" factory (polyester, black oxide) affected to LOL too.

Thank's for information about Pelon, I try to get some and try, but US Recording Media ship to USA only :-(

P.S. Sorry for my poor english.

Best regards! Anton

Offline Marie

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Marie O'Connell
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Offline ironbut

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Re: sticky shed on prerecorded tapes ?
« Reply #12 on: November 07, 2008, 10:57:33 PM »
There's our favorite Kiwi/restoration maven. Thanks for the link Marie. I think that sometimes there's some confusion (not necessarily on this thread) regarding tape maladies. I wonder if you could take the time to outline the symptoms of loss of lubricant and other problems with older tapes.
BTW how was Sydney?
steve koto
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Offline Ben

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Re: sticky shed on prerecorded tapes ?
« Reply #13 on: November 07, 2008, 11:33:48 PM »
And the $ 64,000 question is "What can be done to fix the tapes?".
For the people who know, why did R2R tape become the forgotten
media? Preamps and amps in the early 60's had tape input. 
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