OT: Cleaning video head on my Betamax VCR
gene.heskett at verizon.net
Sun Aug 10 03:08:56 UTC 2008
On Saturday 09 August 2008, John Aldrich wrote:
>On Saturday 09 August 2008, Nigel Henry wrote:
>> On Saturday 09 August 2008 22:20, Frank Cox wrote:
>> > On Sat, 09 Aug 2008 21:59:50 +0200
>> > Nigel Henry <cave.dnb2m97pp at aliceadsl.fr> wrote:
>> > > Any suggestions as to what I can use to manually clean the video head?
>> > > I'm thinking cleaning fluids here.
>> > Alcohol.
>> > That's what I use to clean crud out of the film projector in my theatre
>> > .
>> Thanks Frank. I was sort of thinking along the alcohol line, but just
>> wanted some confirmation.
>> What are you showing in your theatre this evening?
>PLEASE don't go out and buy a bottle of rubbing alcohol. Go get some medical
>grade alcohol, or PGA (as pure as possible) and take a piece of an old,
> CLEAN sheet and soak it in the high-grade alcohol, hold it *LIGHTLY*
> against the drum and then spin the drum. Try very hard not to let it catch
> the cloth on the heads.
>FWIW, I've got my BS in Mass Comm and spent about 8 years as a videographer.
>If you can get ahold of it, there was some special cleaning solvent that the
>chief engineers used to use. I forget what it was called, but if you can
> find a TV engineer, they can probably help.
I'm one, with 45+ years of experience, and that stuff was "Freon TF", and TBT,
using paint thinner alcohol means you need to do it less often, a *lot* less
often. I was amazed at the reduction in cleaning frequency when I switched
to that after the ozone hole started to be a concern 20 years ago.
FWIW, rubbing alcohol has water in it, and that dries much more slowly, even
holding the moisture long enough to start a rust film on good steel, and can
also leave water someplace the tape can touch it, and wet tape is instantly
glued to the spinning head, so stay the hell away from that stuff. It also
doesn't clean (because of that water) with anything like the real stuffs
solvent action. The old sheet isn't that bad an idea, but make sure its not
some nylon/acetate mix which the alcohol can dissolve and then coat the
machine parts with a micron thick film of superglue, but good old 100%
cotton. Because its thin, use the first piece to scrub your fingers free of
skin oils using the alcohol, then use another alky dampened clean piece for
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