Want to flatten your warped records? We have got the remedy.
Tried to bend a vinyl back in shape before? It won’t work.
This guide to flattening warped vinyl records will get you back on the path to vinyl enlightenment.
If your reading this article means that you are suffering from warpy vinylitis. This probably wont help but the best thing to do is prevent your vinyl being warped in the first place.
Let’s start with some basics about vinyl care to prevent it ever happening again.
Don’t put your records on a shelf with too many records leaning on one unfortunate record on the end. This poor record will bear the brunt of the records and will cease to play as it did when ut was sat in the middle of the shelf. If you have the correct vinyl record storage that should help to prevent the torment in the future. Check out the daddy of all vinyl storage here…
Similarly, don’t stack your records on top of each other. If you stack them horizontally, the records on the top will be okay (probably), but on a stack too large (or left too long) you will inevitably add excessive pressure on your records.
Finally dont leave your records in excessive heat. Dont leave your records in a car and forget about them. If you do you are risking damaging those lovely black circles for ever.
Method 1: Pressure And Time
Think weeks and days, not minutes and hours
This is essentially the leave-it-between-two-large-object-for-a-long-time. If you have some large and heavy books to cover the record you’re trying to flatten, this method will serve you well. But it will take a lot of time to really make a difference.
Clean your record first and consider leaving the record in the inner sleeve when putting it between your books — that should help prevent dust building up on any part left uncovered.
Method 2: Pressure And Heat
Vinyl sandwich, toasted, on glass
I’m not even going to link to some of the how-to websites that will teach you ways to fix a warped record by putting it between two large panes of glass and putting it in the oven. If you pay attention to all the warnings in the sidebars, you’d have a clear picture in your mind of how wrong this could go. If you are going to attempt to flatten your record this way, I would emphasize low temperature and patience above all else.
But please avoid all method 2 if you can, until its a last resort.
Method 3: A Machine, Heat And Pressure
Expensive and questionable equipment
If Dave down the pub told you that there are machines you can buy that are specifically made to flatten out vinyl records he was correct. With a little online hunting you might be directed to the Furutech – DF-2 LP Flattener (essentially a less effective George Foreman grill for your records). The problem is the cheapest you are going to get is north of £2000. Not everyone has that kind of money (us included).
For that amount of money you could replace the warped records in question and buy a loads of new vinyl.