First, something like an Oreck might work well. It comes done to having a practical attachment to reach the lp surface. Yes, a home VAC could work if it is practical (as far as attachments and convenient outlet goes) if there is sufficient suction. I agree that the amount of liquid volume should not be an issue.
However, more vacuum is always better with DIY RCMs. It's easier to relieve vacuum than create it.
Second, you could buy the pads but if you check out the local Lowes or Home Depot you should be able to find a crevice tool and if you check out the local WalMart you should be able to find some velvet material that you could use on this tool. It's only used for protecting the vinyl and velvet seems to not soak up the fluid. You would just want to change the velvet often enough to avoid cross-contamination.
Get the Mobile Fidelity brushes to use for the application of the fluid and light scrubbing. Soaking and vacuum will do most of the work.
Extra credit. Get some Magic Eraser for cleaning the stylus or go for some Zerogel stuff.
A good LP cleaning and cleaning the stylus after each lp side will greatly improve playback of all of your lps. Yeah. This simple regimen will improve and eliminate the rice crispies.
Thanks, Dan_ed. I'm presently using the Audio Intelligent Two step cleaner with Record Doctor brushes, and then drying the LPs with a lint free cloth. Using a carbon dry brush before each play, and using an "old school" Disc Washer stylus brush before each play.
I'll look into the Magic Eraser. What's the procedure for using the sponge?
Good idea for the crevice tool and the velvet material. I'm sure I can find something perfect at a local fabric store.
BTW, here's some very interesting background about Melamine foam (the material Mr. Clean Magic Eraser is made from)
As someone who sold vacuums for a living almost 30 years ago I will tell you to NOT use any home vac not designed for wet use (ie. not a shop vac) to vacuum even the smallest amount of fluid. You can buy small shop vacs (I can't really vouch for their effectiveness) for $30 or so.
Before my KAB EV-1 arrived, I couldn't resist and simply used a shop vac with the upholstery attachment covered in felt with a slice cut into the felt along the opening of the upholstery tool. Worked fine but the suction was heavy duty-a hole drilled through the attachment would have allowed me to regulate the suction by varying coverage over the hole, but my KAB was on the way so I didn't bother.
If you feel your commitment to vinyl is going to be permanent, buy the KAB for $160 and use it with a top quality vacuum and decent fluids. Short of Loricraft or Monks it will give you the best quality cleaning there is, be easier on the ear than any of the Nitty Grittys or VPI's and be hundreds cheaper.
Found a couple of procedures for the Magic Eraser in this thread
Hdm, what's the reason for not using a home vac? I see the KAB EV-1 is used with a home vac...
You can use any vac, wet or dry, with the KAB, because the KAB traps all the fluid. Vacuuming any liquid directly into a machine not designed for wet use is going to kill it; the fluid will end up in a motor which is not designed to handle fluid. Unless I misinterpreted your post and your statement that "I wouldn't think there's enough fluid to be any concern", I was taking you to be vacuuming the fluid into a home vac designed strictly for dry use. Just pointing out that this is definitely not adviseable.
Look at http://www.smartdev.com/loricraft.html and see how Loricrft uses a Mason Jar to seperate the fluid from the vacuum air. This would work with your Oreck and you wouldn't have the shock hazard of getting liquid in the Oreck.
You can get a small 1 HP-1 Gal. ShopVac at WalMart for about $20. Modify the crevice tool (plug the end and cut a slit 1/8" x 4". Line the slit with self adhesive felt and you are good to go for about $25 or less. If too much suction, drill a small hole where your thumb rests to control the suction. I built mine 2 or 3 years ago and it does the job, which is to suck the suspended dirty solution off the vinyl.
Hdm is probably right. If you do have trouble with the house vac it might get you in trouble with the cleaning persons and cost you a lot to replace or repair. I've been using the motor and vacuum from an old Hoover upright for about 3 years now. However, if it ever is damaged by vacuuming up the liquid I'm not really out anything. From what I can see, the liquid is exhausted too quickly to reach the motor. That's probably due to the design of this model. The motor is horizontal with the vacuum chamber and the shaft from the motor is above the exhaust port. So in this case, there is not much chance that the liquid can reach the motor.
I'll look into the small 1X1 (1HP, 1 Gallon) Shop Vac. Online reviews are dismal, but it might be fine for record cleaning.
I found a 2-pack of Coralite Ultimate Sponges (generic version of Mr. Clean Magic Eraser) today for $1.19! Talk about a bang-for-the-buck audio tweak.
Tvad the small shop vac works and before my KAB 1 i taped a 100% cotton wash cloth over the small attachment no need for cutting the cloth as it is porous enough for air flow. it works very well i used a lazy susan to spin the lp easy while vacing and cleaning,
I used that 1HP Shop Vac for about two years before buying a RCM. It works okay, but I'd expect the KAB to work better and be easier/faster to use. Also, the Shop Vac is LOUD!!! You'll certainly annoy everyone in the house. You might even annoy the neighbors.
As the partner of the materials scientist who first researched and recommended the Magic Eraser for stylus cleaning, I can vouch for its safety and effectiveness. As long as you don't eat it, snort it or ignite it there is no danger to you or your stylus. And it works...
Since I already have $50 invested in Disc Doctor record cleaning brushes, I don't intend to switch to a RCM in the near future.
Thanks for the input, everyone. I have some really good ideas to work with.
The choice is not between a RCM or good brushes. You need both.
Brushes are for applying fluids to the record. RCM's are for vacuuming them off. This is true whether you use Dan's $50 DIY machine or a $2K Loricraft. Even RCM's that include one or two integrated brushes don't have ENOUGH brushes. You need one for each fluid to prevent cross-contamination.
Understood, Doug. Thank you.