Quantcast Fungus/mold on VHS, safe to put in VCR? - digitalFAQ Forum
  #1  
08-05-2018, 03:07 AM
naripeddi naripeddi is offline
Free Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 244
Thanked 11 Times in 11 Posts
I have two VHS tapes that have fungus/mold visible from the clear plastic window.

Is it safe to put this in VCR and capture the video or I need to clean the tape before putting it in the VCR?

I do not have a spare VCR to use it as cleaner, neither there are cleaning services available in my city.

Regards


Attached Images
File Type: jpg IMG20180805101548.jpg (51.2 KB, 23 downloads)
File Type: jpg IMG20180805101602.jpg (47.8 KB, 16 downloads)
Reply With Quote
Someday, 12:01 PM
admin's Avatar
Ads / Sponsors
 
Join Date: ∞
Posts: 42
Thanks: ∞
Thanked 42 Times in 42 Posts
  #2  
08-05-2018, 03:29 AM
lordsmurf's Avatar
lordsmurf lordsmurf is offline
Site Staff | Video
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Posts: 8,477
Thanked 1,392 Times in 1,224 Posts
NO!

It is not safe!!!

What will happen is the mold will spew all over the inside of the VCR, ruining it, as well as infecting any future videotape put into it. Mold spores are pervasive, and often toxic. They will leech outside the deck, through every vent hole, and get everywhere in your home.

The only DIY method to mold cleaning is to take the VCR outside, and don't be downwind of it. Wear a face mask. Realize this VCR will be trashed afterwards, and only usable for mold removal. Never again to be used inside, never again for playing tapes. There are guides and other surfaces of the VCR where you'll want to attach cleaning pads with alcohol. You're essentially turning the VCR into a poor man's RTI TapeChek. You'll play the tape to clean.

But it's more complicated than that.
It's tedious.
You'll constantly have to change pads, re-wet with alcohol.
You also do not want to let wet tape touch, or it'll stick. So you play, stop, play, stop, over and over, so the alcohol is dried before being sucked back onto a reel.

By hand would be better, but the risk of getting mold all over yourself is great. And not good.
And then mold usually sticks the tape hard, and you'll want to VCR to basically pull it from the spool.

You'll have to verify every spore and sign of mold is 100% gone before even considering putting it into your good VCR in the home/office.

This is a sloppy process, but can work. The alternative is a lab for about $100+ per tape.

Youtube is full of idiots with bad advice on this topic, so beware. They're screwing themselves (health), their VCRs, and the other tapes in their collection/possession.

I rarely touch mold tapes. Before last year, I outright refused, and my advice was to use SpecBros for it.

I can source crappy VCRs for $9 from Goodwill, but they function well enough for this purpose. Do you have any thrift shops nearby?

- Did my advice help you? Then become a Premium Member and support this site.
- Find television shows, cartoons, DVDs and Blu-ray releases at the TVPast forums.
Reply With Quote
The following users thank lordsmurf for this useful post: captainvic (06-13-2019)
  #3  
08-05-2018, 03:47 AM
naripeddi naripeddi is offline
Free Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 244
Thanked 11 Times in 11 Posts
Ok, I take your advice.

No, VCRs are no longer sold here, impossible to find even second-hand. Let me try.

There is a shop in my area (probably the only one in my city) who used to clean mold for my tapes (not sure what machine they use, but it used to be effective) but now they say the cleaning machine has a motor problem. They promised to repair the machine by end of this month. I will probably wait for them then.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
08-06-2018, 06:24 PM
dpalomaki dpalomaki is offline
Free Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: VA
Posts: 804
Thanked 178 Times in 151 Posts
IS there any specific reason to limit the search for services to your city?
Reply With Quote
  #5  
08-09-2018, 02:32 PM
Judd_the_budd Judd_the_budd is offline
Free Member
 
Join Date: May 2018
Posts: 19
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Mold spores live/exists on almost every surface on the planet. You are exposed to countless billions of them every day. That’s how they got to your tapes in the first place, combined with the fact that they were exposed to moisture for a long enough time to thrive.

But don’t think that mold spores are some alien toxin that will destroy all that come in contact with them. They won’t, and don’t. If you’re highly allergic (like me) an n95 or p100 mask is a good preventative measure.

I don’t know anything about saving vhs tapes w mold, so defer to LS or whomever. I have heard archival recovery of audio tapes in this condition usually involve baking. (And I don’t mean the good kind, although that might help) There’s a big recovery project of Grateful Dead soundboards being undertaken right now.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
08-09-2018, 04:06 PM
dpalomaki dpalomaki is offline
Free Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: VA
Posts: 804
Thanked 178 Times in 151 Posts
Quote:
But donít think that mold spores are some alien toxin that will destroy all that come in contact with them.
As you noted above, with most molds the problem for humans mainly arises with allergies/sensitivities, and for gear it is the damage they can do inside the machine. Playing moldy tape can give a new crop of mold a head start in the machine, and will foul heads, guides, and other parts. It will facilitate propagation/migration to "infect" other tapes. Generally not worth the risk.

If the mold developed on tapes that were stored in your house it is already in the house. (A few may be deadly poisons, but if you have them it may well be too late already.)
Reply With Quote
  #7  
06-12-2019, 11:47 PM
Master Tape Master Tape is offline
Premium Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2016
Location: Scotland
Posts: 49
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by lordsmurf View Post
NO!

It is not safe!!!

What will happen is the mold will spew all over the inside of the VCR, ruining it, as well as infecting any future videotape put into it. Mold spores are pervasive, and often toxic. They will leech outside the deck, through every vent hole, and get everywhere in your home.

The only DIY method to mold cleaning is to take the VCR outside, and don't be downwind of it. Wear a face mask. Realize this VCR will be trashed afterwards, and only usable for mold removal. Never again to be used inside, never again for playing tapes. There are guides and other surfaces of the VCR where you'll want to attach cleaning pads with alcohol. You're essentially turning the VCR into a poor man's RTI TapeChek. You'll play the tape to clean.

But it's more complicated than that.
It's tedious.
You'll constantly have to change pads, re-wet with alcohol.
You also do not want to let wet tape touch, or it'll stick. So you play, stop, play, stop, over and over, so the alcohol is dried before being sucked back onto a reel.

By hand would be better, but the risk of getting mold all over yourself is great. And not good.
And then mold usually sticks the tape hard, and you'll want to VCR to basically pull it from the spool.

You'll have to verify every spore and sign of mold is 100% gone before even considering putting it into your good VCR in the home/office.

This is a sloppy process, but can work. The alternative is a lab for about $100+ per tape.

Youtube is full of idiots with bad advice on this topic, so beware. They're screwing themselves (health), their VCRs, and the other tapes in their collection/possession.

I rarely touch mold tapes. Before last year, I outright refused, and my advice was to use SpecBros for it.

I can source crappy VCRs for $9 from Goodwill, but they function well enough for this purpose. Do you have any thrift shops nearby?
How do you clean a moldy VHS tape by hand? I have a few moldy tapes and would save buying a VCR for cleaning.

Also isn't it unsafe to use alcohol to clean magnetic tape? I've heard using hydrogen peroxide is better, though the downside to this is it doesn't evaporate like the alcohol so would have to be dried manually.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
06-13-2019, 02:54 AM
themaster1 themaster1 is offline
Free Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 186
Thanked 30 Times in 26 Posts
google is your friend: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TMgjcECLUXA
Reply With Quote
  #9  
06-13-2019, 03:15 AM
lordsmurf's Avatar
lordsmurf lordsmurf is offline
Site Staff | Video
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Posts: 8,477
Thanked 1,392 Times in 1,224 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by themaster1 View Post
Google is rarely a friend these days, lots of fake/bad info online.

And this video is a perfect example of that.

#1 - Working with mold indoors = insane, a biohazard.

#2 - Rewinding a moldy tape actually makes it worse. Now instead of having mold just on the edges of the tapes, it's now all over the inner surface of the tape.

#3 - Mold is pervasive, the spores (inert or not) infests anything it touches, in addition to being airborne. So if you stick a moldy tape into your VCR, even a tape you think is formerly moldy, you've transferred that to the VCR. And then to every other tape put into that VCR. And if the spores are NOT inert, you've just made a huge mess. Your VCR was patient zero.

And finally, seeing as how the "fixed" image from this guy was using a cheap VCR (easy tell from all the timing wiggles), it's quite obvious that he doesn't know about quality VHS video. So that means his other on care/maintenance information is suspect at best. Or just outright wrong, as is the case here.

In fact, that guy's entire Youtube channel is a travesty, so many timebase wiggles, an example of what not to do with video conversion. He needs a quality JVC/Panasonic VCR with TBC. For the non-VHS, he needs an ES10/ES15.

- Did my advice help you? Then become a Premium Member and support this site.
- Find television shows, cartoons, DVDs and Blu-ray releases at the TVPast forums.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
06-28-2019, 04:38 PM
LightWorker01 LightWorker01 is offline
Free Member
 
Join Date: May 2019
Posts: 29
Thanked 7 Times in 5 Posts
What I advise with moldy tapes and you try this AT YOUR OWN RISK due to most molds being benign, but some can be deadly (I had 2 moldy tapes to deal with in my past) was as follows:

Use a mask. Sit the opposite side of the tape to the direction the wind is blowing.

Take the tape apart outside (DO NOT WIND IT BEFORE HAND!), and then exposed the mold to a UV lamp for a few minutes or even the sun if no lamp available but it will be less effective. No longer than a few minutes! UV light may harm polymers in the tape binder so test your brand of tape with the UV lamp first. This was a germicidal UV lamp. Use a mask and proper goggles or do not look at the light, or you will get wielders flash. Cut the part of the tape off that was not wound on the spools, as this may have mold on it's surface that will clog your heads.

Then clean the pancakes of mold with a lint free cloth and pure iso alcohol, and wound them to a clean spool. DO NOT WIND it until mold is wiped off or you got a real mess. Give another short UV lamp blast on both sides of the pancake. Use a new shell and discard the contaminated shell.

Use a VCR DEDICATED to mold tapes. Buy one for say couple of quid from a boot sale or something.

Clean the heads when you are finished and sterilise the deck with the UV lamp for about 20 - 30 minutes when finished covering capacitors with blu-tac (This is a recent piece of advice based on some research I did on UV light and capacitors, following advice of a capacitor manufacturer not to expose capacitors to UV light). Store the tape in a sealed bag with silica gel when you are finished to keep it dry. Don't discard your originals. Hopefully the cleaning keeps the originals good.

I did not notice UV light harm the tape binder for short amounts, but I am aware that some polymers will break down with UV light and thus you do this at your own risk, as well as health risks with mold.

I lived in two moldy flats and had moved all my tapes out to my aunts house at the first hint of trouble to avoid contamination. One flat was fine, but the other made me severely ill with an elevated white blood cell count until I got a HEPA air purifier and then later moved out. Mold is no joke, be careful with it. If you are in doubt at all, get a professional to do it, and my UV light advice should be tested on some non critical material on your brand of tape, to ensure binder is not affected. The lamp is optional, but is more to stop the mold spreading to other things and make it safer to work with when you start wiping it. Won't hurt you anywhere near as much if it is dead. If you must do it indoors (please don't!), then use a HEPA air purifier, not one of those cheap ones, but a true HEPA, certified at 99.97% of 0.3 micron or larger particles. Use a HEPA air purifier near your deck anyhow that you will be using, and your chances of spreading the crap round your house or breathing anything in is lowered, though the UV light should have taken care of it.

Please, please use care when dealing with mold. Most molds are benign (some, such as penicillium was where penicillin originally came from, for example), but some can be deadly and may look very similar to non-lethal strains. I am not an expert at dealing with mold, but I give the above advice in hopes it may help someone. If any experienced in the field of mold or whatever have advice against this, please feel free to chip in.

Of course, if you have mold allergies of any kind, just get a professional to deal with it if you can pony up the cash. I could not, thus dealt with them myself.

This episode of forensic files, is an extreme example but shows the dangers of the more lethal mold strains:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AjNfAozdT50

Last edited by LightWorker01; 06-28-2019 at 04:59 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #11  
06-29-2019, 02:47 AM
lordsmurf's Avatar
lordsmurf lordsmurf is offline
Site Staff | Video
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Posts: 8,477
Thanked 1,392 Times in 1,224 Posts
What sort of "germicidal UV lamp" are you using? Exact details...

Perhaps there is a light bulb that can turn a mechanic lamp into a UV light like this?
Maybe this? https://www.amazon.com/Germicidal-Li...language=en_US

What about harm to your own self from such a light? How did you deal with this?

This topic is interesting. And perhaps something I can incorporate into my own setup.

- Did my advice help you? Then become a Premium Member and support this site.
- Find television shows, cartoons, DVDs and Blu-ray releases at the TVPast forums.
Reply With Quote
  #12  
06-29-2019, 02:20 PM
dpalomaki dpalomaki is offline
Free Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: VA
Posts: 804
Thanked 178 Times in 151 Posts
A couple potentially useful bits of information.

A fumigant.
https://shop.biocidelabs.com/Mold-Bo...SABEgIUf_D_BwE
I cannot say whether or not it works, but it may be a way to reach nooks and crannies in gear.

General info.
https://nonprofithomeinspections.org...CAAEgIzKPD_BwE

Once the mold is killed the residue still has to be removed lest it clog heads, etc..

UV light can kill, but must reach the mold with sufficient intensity.
Reply With Quote
  #13  
06-29-2019, 03:12 PM
lordsmurf's Avatar
lordsmurf lordsmurf is offline
Site Staff | Video
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Posts: 8,477
Thanked 1,392 Times in 1,224 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by dpalomaki View Post
Once the mold is killed the residue still has to be removed lest it clog heads, etc..
Leaf blower from several feet away.

Seriously.

- Did my advice help you? Then become a Premium Member and support this site.
- Find television shows, cartoons, DVDs and Blu-ray releases at the TVPast forums.
Reply With Quote
  #14  
06-30-2019, 08:11 AM
LightWorker01 LightWorker01 is offline
Free Member
 
Join Date: May 2019
Posts: 29
Thanked 7 Times in 5 Posts
I am using a lamp similar to this but without the cover, on the UVC wavelength: https://www.amazon.co.uk/UV-C-Light-...A1Q5BABEWPG9G7

From what I can gather, UVC light is the most effective for mold and is what I advise using. The one above has a timer so you can set it before leaving the room and it will come on. The bulb lordsmurf posted is a good idea, you could make any normal lamp for the purpose with such a bulb.

Exposure can be minimised by using an extension cord and switching it on when you are out of the room or a timer plug, though some lights like the above come with a timer. You should never look at them and they can cause surface skin burns if exposed but seldom deeper burns, but wielders' flash can be painful such as the eyes (if you look into one of them while it is on without protective goggles).

There are some LED models at around 350nm marketed, but you need a germicidal lamp between 200 - 300nm (UVC) for the best results I think. Many UV air purifiers contain a UVC tube and you can fit them into flourescent fittings. I am betting there may also be screw in models available but I never looked.

UVA/B i think will affect mold if exposed for a long duration, but UVC is the most effective at killing it.
Reply With Quote
Reply




Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Where to send VHS tapes with mold? vhsdigital34 Project Planning, Workflows 10 06-03-2015 11:43 AM
Can DVD+R get infected by a fungus? gamemaniaco Blank Media 45 11-26-2013 09:58 PM
Fungus in CD and DVD Media? cecil paladin Blank Media 3 11-26-2013 07:10 PM
Mold on VHS Cassette - How to deal with it? naripeddi Project Planning, Workflows 3 02-10-2013 11:49 PM
Are Discsox Safe To Use thefan007 Blank Media 2 02-21-2011 02:38 PM

Thread Tools



 
All times are GMT -5. The time now is 05:27 PM