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  • Writer's pictureBarney Townsend

How To Handle A Vinyl Record Without Touching The Grooves

They say there's no such thing as a silly question! So when a follower on our Twitter profile replied to our humorous tweet about touching the grooves of a record with a question of his own, we were moved to answer. Today, we go back to basics: here's the right way to remove a record from its sleeve and prepare it for placement on the platter.

Back in May, we posted a classic art meme on Twitter of some medieval characters apparently falling about in conniptions at the sight of someone handling a record by touching the grooves and Paul Davy, AKA @cycletogs, posed a question in reply:

"How do you handle it without touching the grooves then?" - @cycletogs

Well, Paul, thanks very much for asking. The trick to handling a record without getting your fingers on the grooves is by holding your record by its edges and the central label. Here's how it's done:


Carefully slide the inner sleeve out of the record's outer jacket. Gently adjust the angle of the inner sleeve to find the 'sweet spot' where the record easily slides out without forcing or pulling at the packaging.


Using your torso as a fulcrum, with one hand slightly squeeze the sleeve to buckle the opening and slide your other hand in, brushing against the inside of the sleeve and taking care not to touch the vinyl with your fingers. When you get to the centre of the sleeve, touch the central label sticker with your middle and ring fingers and grip the edge of the record with your thumb.


Supporting the record with your thumb, middle and ring fingers, carefully slide the record out of its jacket.


Place the jacket nearby (preferably on a 'Now Playing' stand!) and reach back up to hold the record on its edges with both hands, ready to spin.

Be sure to drop us a line on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram if you have any tricks and tips of your own and - of course - any questions!

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