Sticky Shed Help Thread

miroslav

Cosmic Cowboy
Hey...just spool it up...play it for like 1-2 minutes, if that.
If it's sticky/shedding...you're not going to have to go for too long to find out.

I just did that with an MRL tape that I got real cheap. The guy wasn't sure...it was cheap...I rolled the dice.
When I got it, I spooled it up on my 2"...and within the first 30 seconds or so I could see it was smooth as silk. :)

If you do get some SSS...just stop the deck, RW...and then clean the guides/heads.
Nothing is going to be permanently damaged.
 

RFR

Well-known member
Oh my God! Simply unbelievable! 14 minutes of play time, and I have spotless heads and guides. All good so far. Keeping my fingers crossed.
 

lo.fi.love

Functionally obsessed.
Oh my God! Simply unbelievable! 14 minutes of play time, and I have spotless heads and guides. All good so far. Keeping my fingers crossed.

:thumbs up::thumbs up:

At the very least, you've got that cool gold reel. I have a couple myself, they make great takeup reels. Six screws and thick, sturdy metal...

327_large.jpeg
 
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RFR

Well-known member
Well, I went through the whole reel. Stuff sounds like the day I recorded it. No pitch problems, no slowing up, no squeal, no stopping, and clean heads. I'm amazed. I got lucky.
:D
 

miroslav

Cosmic Cowboy
Well, I went through the whole reel. Stuff sounds like the day I recorded it. No pitch problems, no slowing up, no squeal, no stopping, and clean heads. I'm amazed. I got lucky.
:D

I would transfer that tape to digital as soon as you can. That way, you got it, and no worries.
 

RFR

Well-known member
To lo fi, ghost, and miro, yup, yup,and yup!
@ miro you gave me the push over the edge to try it. I was dying to anyway.
 

Lance Lawson

New member
I haven't been concerning myself with running sss tapes in a while. It's a very simple matter to avoid sss tape. All back coated Ampex, Scotch/3M, SONY and all of the off brand tapes those companies made tape for in the 70's through to the early 90's will be sticky period. All back coated Quantegy tape is fine as is Maxell, BASF and the two current producers ATR and PYROL. There may be the odd reel of offending tapes that will play but these are time bombs and will go off sooner or later. Unless those sss tapes mentioned are being offered dirt cheap the PIA they represent is hardly worth the so called bargain.
 

miroslav

Cosmic Cowboy
I haven't been concerning myself with running sss tapes in a while. It's a very simple matter to avoid sss tape. All back coated Ampex, Scotch/3M, SONY and all of the off brand tapes those companies made tape for in the 70's through to the early 90's will be sticky period. All back coated Quantegy tape is fine as is Maxell, BASF and the two current producers ATR and PYROL. There may be the odd reel of offending tapes that will play but these are time bombs and will go off sooner or later. Unless those sss tapes mentioned are being offered dirt cheap the PIA they represent is hardly worth the so called bargain.

And here I thought you were going to once again recommend rubbing Nu Finish car polish on SSS tapes to "fix" them. :p ;)
 

Lance Lawson

New member
And here I thought you were going to once again recommend rubbing Nu Finish car polish on SSS tapes to "fix" them. :p ;)

Well this is something that can be done. I maintain a dozen reels of sss tape and treat them when I want to play them. I don't recommend anyone building a library of sss tapes. Upkeep is a consideration no matter how you treat them. Imagine 100 reel of sss tape that needs baking or NuFinish periodically. Not a lot of fun. My library consists of RMGI, Quantegy and ATR. My sss reels are for nostalgia mostly.
 

miroslav

Cosmic Cowboy
Well...whatever the treatment to get your SSS tapes to play...baking, boiling, polishing...I would think the best solution is to treat-n-transfer to a non-SSS tape or even to a digital format.

I mean...WTF would be the point of "maintaining" SSS tapes for repeated playback...?
YMMV...but that's just my opinion.
 

mdainsd

New member
"All backcoated Ampex..." Hm, News to me.

Guess I better get busy pitching that storage room full of 499 then?
 

Lance Lawson

New member
"All backcoated Ampex..." Hm, News to me.

Guess I better get busy pitching that storage room full of 499 then?

499 AMPEX came late in the game. Ampex branded 400 series tapes from the early 90's is OK they changed the formula for the binder by then. But there's way way more sss AMPEX out there. Consider that there's 2 decades worth of it compared to a few years of the new formula. But Qunategy is AOK I have non sss Quantegy from the early blue boxes that say AMPEX on the reels that's how close there were to the switch over in production.
 
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Lance Lawson

New member
Huh...?

How do you mean that?
Quantegy 499 and Quantegy GP9 are two different tapes.

Correct I had it wrong. In any event the late Ampex tapes are the only ones worth buying now unless you are OK with the issues of the older tapes. That said the current production tapes are the best option of all.
 
Many times a tape is said to be bad just because of the model number- this is like the idea of lapping heads makes them new again and all the stupidity that goes along with that. Tape can be evaluated by running them on a machine and then checking the lifters- you do not have to run that on your heads. The lifters should not accumulate a lot of black residue and if it does then expect that tape to be sticky. I have found that a sticky tape can be rendered usable by Nu Finish process and cleaning with denatured alcohol which drives of the moisture which is the cause of the problem. The Nu Finish Surfactant act as a sealer and a lubricant. I took a Scotch 807 tape that was new and would not play on a Tascam 42 for 5 minutes and after the process the entire tape played through the deck without issue. I have also treated alignment tapes that were made with Ampex 406 and they still work today.
Don't through out 456 just because of wives tales as when at Teac I never had a bad roll of tape the whole time I was there but that was previous to that Indian guy selling the companies that garbage binder in 1992. That is when things went south. Ampex, Scotch and Sony. The other companies wisely would have none of that stuff.
The Richard Hess website has a list of known bad tapes. He is in the business so he would know. After all they sent him the Challenger flight recorder for recovery and they don't trust just anyone.
 
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