If you're into vinyl records and you get yours at the same places I do, at flea markets, yard sales and Goodwill, you know how frustrating those "snap, crackle and pops" can be. Trying to get the decades-old dust and crud that causes those noises out of the grooves can easily turn into an all-day affair.
Here's a device you can easily make, that uses a remarkable polymer sold just about everywhere as "Removable Putty" that can deep clean your vinyl records and return them to their original state.
I get my putty at our local grocery store. I like the blue color, as it's easily seen in case any is left behind. This stuff is tenacious, sticks to anything but it has a stronger bond to itself, so if you stick it to something, it will stay there until you pull on it. It comes away, leaving what you stuck it to as it was...
Well, almost... If the object you stuck it to has anything not firmly attached to it, the putty will pull that away as well.
I decided to use that attribute to my advantage after realizing a $1000 record cleaning machine wasn't in my budget. The gadget I made worked far better than I ever expected and cost less than $10... That's over a 99% savings, and no liquids or dirty threads have to be dealt with.
I've checked and have found nothing like this, but if I've missed someone that needs to be credited, please let me know. If this is original, and enough people try it, I'm sure suggestions will be made and maybe someone will even come up with a better version. If you do, use the term "Block and Bar" in the title and we'll all be able to find it.
This method falls neatly between mattdp's excellent instructable on washing ( http://www.instructables.com/id/Cleaning-Vinyl-Records/ ) and Knarx's full-featured cleaning machine ( http://www.instructables.com/id/Make-your-own-professional-record-cleaning-machine/ ).
Step 1: What You'll Need
For materials, you'll need:
1. One 1/2" wooden dowel. Optionally, you can use a 1/2" plexiglass rod like the one I'll be using.
2. A block of wood approximately 3/4" x 4" x 6". I used mahogany, but any wood will do.
3. A 4" x 6" thin sheet of plastic. The type of plastic isn't important, but make sure what you use isn't any harder than record vinyl. If you have a blank vinyl record, you can use that. An empty 1/2 gallon milk container may be another good source (use the inside for the working surface because it will be smoother).
4. Two strips of removable putty.
You'll also need the items to cut, form, sand and glue these parts together.