General Question

2davidc8's avatar

Typically, plastic becomes brittle with age. So how come vinyl records are still playable after all these years?

Asked by 2davidc8 (9204points) July 18th, 2018

I have LPs that I bought in the 1970s that are still good more than 40 years later!

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4 Answers

ScienceChick's avatar

Records are made out the same material your plumbing pipes are with some special additives. PVC itself is made to last a very long time. Did you know that the first cylinders Edison used were actually a type of metal soap? They are still in existence as well. There are many many types of plastic. Polymers and metal soaps is some of my favourite chemistry.

Here is an article about the material that has been used historically and presently. https://cen.acs.org/articles/94/i24/Groovy-chemistry-materials-science-behind.html

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

Another reason is how they are stored. Typically people keep them in the sleeves and in a climate controlled area. Just the protection from UV alone is probably enough to make them last a lifetime.

LadyMarissa's avatar

As a ding-a-ling female…simply put, vinyl is a much better quality of plastic than the plastic products that grow brittle!!! I have LP’s that I bought in the late 50’s early 60’s. Another factor might well be that we were taught to take better care of our LP’s than that plastic shoe box because we would be listening to the LP for the rest of our lives. Little did we know the changes that were ahead of us!!!

2davidc8's avatar

OIC. Thanks, everybody!

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