Flattening for fun

I’ve been living for almost six and a half decades, and for five have practiced a fairly warped sense of humour.

But when I rescue records and one turns out to be warped, I’m not laughing. It’s disappointing when I can’t play a found gem.

I could pay thousands of Dollars for a record flattening machine. Yeah, right!

Or I can harness the power of the Sun to soften the disc pressed between a couple of glass sheets. There’s lots of forum chatter about this non-agressive method. I once tried putting a record in the oven as per other recommendations. I set the temperature too high, and melted 20 tracks from Johnny Kidd & The Pirates Rarities!!


On a record hunting trip a couple of cake platters turned up for $2 each. Just the right size, and nice and heavy to create a flat press. One even has a frosted ring the size of an LP.

Now I just need that Sun to shine.

Update 3rd November: today we got our first full sunshine day in Spring.

It turned out to be stronger in heating the glass than anticipated. I had inserted corrugated cardboard sheets with centre holes to allow for the (unusual) ridge on the disc around the labels. The result was the imprinting of the cardboard ridges in the surface of the disc. It had softened too much.

And the warps were still too big to play the record anyway. The disc wasn’t flattened.

That one is now beyond recovery.

The next warped disc will be carefully treated to localised softening with a hairdryer – there are several videos on YouTube showing the method.

Even better, I’ll be sure to examine discs to avoid buying any more that are not flat.

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