VPI Record Cleaner

I have a chance to purchase an older VIP H.W. 16-5 record cleaner. It looks clean on the outside, and seems to work
well. My problem is the guy wants 250 dollars and will not
deal at all, he's getting out of Analog and swears it's worth every dime.
I do know that this machine does NOT have a catch basin - there no way to pull out anything from anyplace on this machine. How old is this thing anyway?

Pay it and run. I had a chance to buy one at Christmas from a used dealer here in Atlanta for $350 including tax. You can buy a new one for around $450 including shipping. The same used dealer just brought in his 17 series to sell for $500. I am thinking about it. $250 seems like a fair price as these do not hit the used market often.
$250 for a used 16.5 is quite fair, especially if it's in good shape and you can see it operate. Sean
Catman and Shawn are right.If you don't take it let me know and I have a buddy who will.No catch basin?Not sure.But you could just keep the drain tube open into a plastic jug.Never worried about it and when I had problem with mine the tech at VPI said don't sweat not draining each time.Will evaporate or kick into tube.The problem I had was self induced.I like to really slosh the stuff on and my whole cabinet started to split up.After the (wondeful) folks at VPI fixed the tech suggested that I use Spar marine varnish to fix teh seams.Since I did it no problem at all.While I am here I will tell everyone what great products the LAST ones are.The VPI tech said he wouldn't be without it and he heard LP's played hundreds of times with the Preservative that sound like five or six.I use their power cleaner if it's really a funky/gunky LP.The tech said VPI's regular cleaning fluid was a pretty economical but told me a recipie he found on line which works great and is cheap.Get a Gallon of distilled H2O and pour it out into a pot.Add a pint of Alachohol back into bottle.Use eyedropper and add 2-3 drops of CLEAR dish liquid and tw2-3 drops of Koday Photo flow to break upm surface tension in the water and let it spread evenly.Go at the lp once more with plain water if you like before using the LAST preservative.This has worked very well for me.Being a bit anal I even got an Alsop Orbitrac to clean off the Power Cleane before I use the machine.If you absolutely have to use an expensive liquid for the main clean get the Disc Docotr stuff.Bes at Music Direct swears by it and it get's great reviews.I am going to stick with home brew between the Last products.
The 16.5 is probably the best from VPI, because it is nearly impossible to ruin it. I never heard that there is one out there with problems.When you don't clean 50+ records a day, buy it.
Replacement parts are available.
For $ 250,-- you will never find something better ( and the seller knows that too )
To Chazzbo,
I have heard that in the past the Kodak photoflow material can be harmful to vinyl.
Chazzbo. Both the alcohol and photo fluid can be VERY harmful to vinyl. Dtergent is good for really dirty records, but for daily cleaning, water with a special surfactatnt is all you should use. The beauty of vinyl is that very few things really bond to vinyl so it cleans very easily.
Guys - I picked it up after work today. The darn thing is in great shape, guy took good care of it and had the box and even the original invoice (8/3/92 - $395.00), everything.

Thanks Chazzbo for the DIY recipie, anyone else using a different brew you might care to share? I assume one can purchase "Alachohol" ...at a drugstore or hardware store??

Klhender, just be sure to use pure isopropyl alcohol (typically shown as 91% - the balance being water) and NOT "rubbing" alcohol. I've used a formula very similar to the one Chazzbo just gave you for 12+ years now with my VPI cleaner on hundreds of records with no indicaton of any problems. The 91% isopropyl alcohol is readily available in many drug stores. Enjoy your new record cleaner!
Hmmm.Just wondering if 2-3 drops (!!!) in a Gla. of water is enough to be harmful.If anybody has another surficant other than dish liquid without dye let me know.BTW I told the owner of LAST the rercipie and he said it would be cool.
Hey All,
I've been cleaning my records for a number of years now using a homebrew vacuum-based cleaner - it got the job done and was probably the single most important thing I did for my analog collection. Last week I just picked up a used HW-16.5 and I can't recommend it enough! They are really great machines. If you have the chance to buy one (new or used) - I'd say go for it! Even at full retail price it is worth the expense if you are serious about your analog.

Here's a video I made showing off my new toy. I'd be curious to hear what other people are doing to clean their records - http://www.knoodle.com/go/935
If you want to buy record fluid the MoFi ones does a great job on my vinyl.
You will find this machine is indispensible once you own it and wonder why you hesitated to purchase it when you had the chance. I bought mine new eight years ago and this has to be one of the best purchases I ever made.