I have no idea why as its always been stored correctly in its rack and never exposed to heat/extreme sunlight. But for whatever the reason it became unplayable.
So what can be done?
Theres the old trick of sandwiching it between two sheets of glass and placing it in a low oven, but I have never been happy of that idea. Its all too easy to mess it up and end up with a blob of useless vinyl. You could of course buy one of the Record Flattening machines out there, but they cost well north of £1k. Not exactly economical, unless you have a shed load that need to be flattened. Now if you were a HiFi or Music business you could offer it as a reasonably priced service. Thats exactly what Analogue Seduction have decided to do with their ORB DF-01ia
How does it work?
Well, this is from Analogue Seductions website.
I like the idea of not heating the playing surface. That makes a lot of sense to me as a heated groove must change its profile.The Orb Disc Flattener uses a unique heating technique which is applied with two semiconductor heater films, one on the top and one on the bottom. By thermally controlling the heating-up phase and cooling-down phase, the warped record is allowed to properly relax and return to its original flat state.
The machine heats only the outer edge and centre of the record. The grooves are not heated and therefore their sonic shape is preserved.
The entire process takes four hours; two to heat up and two to cool down.
How does this service work and how much does it cost?
Its between £3 and £4 an LP depending on quantity. Pretty good value in my opinion. You order and pay from the Analogue Seduction website then pack up your LP(s) and post them off with a copy of the invoice. They then carry out the service and return them to you placing the LP inside a new poly liner. Nice touch there. Obviously the turnround time depends on how many LP's you have sent and how many others they have in the queue. I just sent this one LP costing £4 + £1.99 return postage, it then took 7 days for it to arrive back. Like you I was dying to see what it looked like on the platter.
That looks flat to me, and indeed it is (trust me, the platter is turning) but the important thing is how does it sound and play. Well, its years since I could play this album, and the HiFi has gone through many many changes since then so I have nothing to compare it to. So, how does it sound compared to any other new recording? Well, it sounds like any other new recording. You would have no idea of its previous state and the process it has been through and thats the whole point. The record is now how it should be.
If you have one or more badly warped LP's this service is exactly what you need. Excellent value and great service from Analogue Seduction.
This Analogue Seduction service was paid for by myself.