While the renewed appreciation of vinyl records have led to the highest sales numbers in nearly 30 years, equally fascinating is how vinyl manufacturing equipment –– most of which is just as old –– have been put back into commission to give listeners that “warm and fuzzy sound”.
Starting with the manufacturing of the compression molding metal stampers –– metal plates that contain reverse images of the disc –– a perfect copy of the original mother copy is created with articulate precision before going through an arduous testing process.
Once these stampers have been rigged up, PVC pellets are loaded into a hopper where they are heated into “biscuits” before being pressed with 150 tons of compression molding force. The critical paper labels –– which have been cured overnight in an oven to ensure there is no moisture –– are embedded into the vinyl during this process.
Once finally stamped, the newly–pressed records are trimmed of any excess material before getting packaged up and sent to your local record shop. More recently, the team over at Super Deluxe took a closer look at this meditative manufacturing process:
Although it might be a bit of a ways off, the tenth anniversary of Record Store Day will be celebrated on April 22nd, 2017 –– expect it to be one of the biggest celebrations for all things vinyl to date.