DiskAPeel Record/CD/DVD Cleaner: REVIEW

Discussion in 'Equipment Reviews & Opinions' started by jmathers, Feb 25, 2006.

  1. jmathers

    jmathers AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Royal Oak, Michigan
    Perhaps because I’m cheap, I’ve used a lot of different record cleaning products. When you’re buying used records at $1 a pop, you’ll try anything to coax the old buggers back into shape. I’ve experimented with the Discwasher system, cheap paint-edging brushes, Nitty Gritty dual action scrubbers, the Allsop Orbitrac, and various cleaning fluids, even going so far as to try the highly-touted Oxy Clean Carpet formula (not recommended). With all these products, the process of cleaning a record is essentially the same: squirt on fluid, brush, let dry.

    So far my DIY RCM with a batch of homemade alcohol-based fluid and the Orbitrac wins hands down. But for those folks who like to experiment with record cleaning – or even just delve into the bizarre – DiskAPeel is worth taking a look at.

    This stuff is probably the strangest and most quirky record cleaning system I’ve ever seen or used. It completely reinvents the record cleaning process.

    DiskAPeel is a “peelable coating for cleaning phonograph records, CD’s (sic) and DVD’s (sic) .” The system consists of a foam brush (for painting – yes, painting! –the special solution onto the record or CD/DVD surface), a jar of a thick, white, vaguely Elmer’s glue-like solution (it smells quite similar to the glue paste we used to make in first grade for paper mache), a record holding contraption that the record is clamped on to facilitate the painting and drying, and some paper tabs to help peel the dryed solution off the record surface (not included in my test batch – I used masking tape folded over onto itself).

    Basically, you clamp the record into the contraption, paint on the solution with the brush and wait “a few hours” (it took about 2 hours for mine to dry), and then peel off the dryed (“cured”) goop. The principle is that the stuff will dry in the groove and then LIFT out all the crud when you peel it off.

    THE RESULTS: Well, it improved the sound of an old Bob Marley “Exodus” LP that was virtually unlistenable on my system before the process. It should be noted however that as far as I know that LP had never been cleaned in all its life. It was visibly dusty, crackly, and marred. So it’s pretty hard to tell just how much improvement was due to the DiskaPeel process alone and would not be attributable to simply just cleaning the record in a standard way in the first place. Was the crackle present in the uncleaned record removed by DiskaPeel? – well, no. But we all know some damage can never be reversed by any cleaning system. The LP was quieter and more listenable after the treatment. And even after I re-cleaned the record with my RCM the crackle was still there.

    Would I use this stuff on a daily basis? Well, no, probably not. First off, it takes time – a minimum of two hours just to let the stuff dry on the record, for heaven’s sakes!. Second off, I’m not completely convinced that the product doesn’t leave some kind of residue behind on the album surface. A lot of folks worry about whether or not to use alcohol-based cleaners on records because there may be some microscopic residue left that interferes with styli and groove life – and that’s just alcohol which you can watch evaporate right off the record! This stuff is actually a thick, gluey goop that settles right into the groove and takes a “few hours” to dry. And while the record looked pretty darn clean afterwards, I didn’t have a microscope handy to check for what was left over.

    By the way if you don’t paint this stuff on thick enough, it will leave behind small bits of “cured” solution (“reluctant film”) that the manufacturer indicates should be removed before playing “with masking tape.” Masking tape? On the surface of my newly cleaned record?

    I must admit it was an interesting experience nonetheless. And it’s certainly good to see a company attempting to think outside the record cleaning box here and be inventive with what has been a pretty standard process. Kudos just for coming up with a unique method. In the never-ending quest for a miracle record cleaning solution for used vinyl, this is definitely a weird one to add to your list of tried products. DiskAPeel is available on Audigon for $35.95. See here for pics: http://cls.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/cls.pl?anlgcart&1145816388
  2. Grumpy

    Grumpy Krusty old SOB! Yes, I own Audiokarma Staff Member Admin Sponsor Subscriber

    Thanks for testing this stuff sir !

    Great write up.

    We are making this cleaning system available to members who are local to the Detroit metro area. Please feel free to contact me if you would like to demo it.

  3. Andyman

    Andyman Scroungus Stereophilus Subscriber

    Grumpy, I need to snag some of that stuff from you.
    I've literally got some moldy oldies that should give it a real run for it's money.
  4. ZebraBlvd

    ZebraBlvd AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Southeast Indiana - Tri-State
    Cleaning Process:

    1. Alcohol on soft cotton lint free rag (rub gently in circular motion)
    2. Shine with another soft cotton lint free rag until dry (again in a circular motion)
    3. Roll Nagaoka roller around LP
    4. Shoot with Zerostat gun
    5. Place in anti-static sleeve
    6. Let cure until play time

    Play Time:

    1. Shoot with Zerostat gun again
    2. Place on TT
    3. Lightly dampen cleaning pad with Goo
    4. Remove viewable foreign objects with #3 above
    5. Drop Needle & enjoy
  5. KeninDC

    KeninDC Nanker Phelge Subscriber

    7. Listen

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