Here are some tips to keep your reel-to-reel
tapes in top playing shape
Mediums to preserve:
Reel to Reel
Transfers to CD
Transfers to DVD
Audio Terms Explained
Reel-to-reel tapes will last for decades
or centuries--if properly cared for. The
main variables to control are: Temperature
- 60-70F or lower
Humidity - 20-40 percent relative humidity
Tape pack - wind end to end before long-term
Dust - store tape in a sealed container
Most tapes are iron-oxide coated on polyethylene
terephthalate (PET) base film using
binder. The iron-oxide and PET are
The polyurethane binder is hygroscopic
will deteriorate if stored at high
and/or high humidity
If a tape has been subjected to a high temperature,
cool it (under 20"C, if possible)
a couple of days. Then rewind it to
the stresses in the pack.
If tape has been subjected to moisture,
dry it before fungus starts. Place
in an oven at 120"F (50"C)
about a day. After it has cooled down
room temperature, shuttle it to the
back on a tape recorder with few tape-contact
parts. If the tape has been submerged
water, then repeat the heat-shuttle
a second time. To counteract the effects
of the water, store the tape in a cold
(not freezing) for a few days. After
to room temperature, shuttle to the
back to relieve stresses in the pack.
To determine if a tape is loose packed,
hold the reel by the hub and pull on the
outer layer. If the pack rotates, the pack
is loose and should not be accelerated or
stored for very long. Play the tape to the
end and then rewind. If the recorder tensions
are set properly and the tape is not damaged,
it will now be a tight pack.
Do not store paper inside reel-to-reel tape box.
Vacuum reel-to-reel tape pack if dusty. Use a vacuum which has a hose, and keep the motor away from the tape in order to reduce the risk of magnetizing the tapes.
Clean tape surfaces using a product such as 3M "Tape Cleaning Fabric" (610-1-150). This soft fabric product will pick-up loose debris commonly found on tape surfaces after being dislodged by the fabric fibers.
Tips for long term storage:
1. Before storing the tape, wind it
end and back to relieve any stresses
2. Secure the loose end of tape).
3. Expose the tape to a dry environment
a few days before sealing the tape
a thick, quick-seal plastic freezer
4. Store the tape in an area where the temperature
stays under 70F and does not vary much. Avoid
temperatures below freezing.
5. Keep the tape out of the direct sun.
6. Do not store the tape near combustibles,
such as wood and cardboard.
7. Do not store tape in a room that
8. Rewind the tape every few years.
|Sound Restoration example #6
|Music from Senegal
||For MP3, click below
|For RealAudio, click below
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