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Tragwag's Presto 6Ns by Steve E. on Thu Apr 17, 2014 12:05 pm
I visited AudioGeography's Tyler Bisson in Bethel, Connecticut, USA, and we compared his two 1940s-era Presto 6Ns record cutters, which are separated by 2420 serial numbers.

They are not the same. So we geeked out on the differences.

Our man Kris Dorr (aka Kris D) of Washington state is one of our Presto 6N experts. He wrote me after I posted the video and expressed that he wished he could overdub a response track. I wish he would, too! Apparently we got some historical stuff right, but a few of our hunches are wrong here. As with many on this forum, we are often shooting in the dark, doing our best to recapture knowledge which is on the verge of getting lost. The nice thing about Presto 6Ns is that they can work great even if you don't use the equipment quite in the way it was originally intended. For example, several on the forum (including Tyler and Mike Dixon/piaptk) use them to emboss, which works great even if it isn't...

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Beck's "Edison Beer Bottle" Cylinder Record by Steve E. on Mon Mar 31, 2014 4:43 pm
We at the Secret Society of Lathe Trolls are proud that one of our recent members, Andrew Turney (aka Gyro on this site), with his team at Gyro Constructivists of Aukland, New Zealand...

...was responsible for last year's technological stunt, the Beck's "Edison Beer Bottle" Cylinder Record. That is to say, it is a glass beer bottle that is also a playable audio record, much in the manner of Edison's cylinder player. The latter of which, as you might know, was the earliest invention that recorded playable audio (circa 1877).

The chat thread in which the process's evolution was discussed and reported on can be found here. We were honored to be asked to be a part of the virtual roundtable brainstorm discussions on how best to approach this challenge. It is unclear as to whether or not our input actually...

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Mastercraft: Plating records for 30 years! by Steve E. on Sat Mar 15, 2014 2:13 pm
In February 2013, Leandro Gonzalez of Stereodisk drove me to Elizabeth, New Jersey, USA to meet Desmond of Mastercraft Metal Finishing.

As many who hang out at Lathe Trolls know, Mastercraft has an eosteric specialty: They make the metal stampers which are used to press vinyl audiodiscs.

After an acetate-based master record is cut on a record lathe lathe, it is sent here, and then the magic begins. (After Mastercraft creates these stampers, they are sent to any number of pressing plants around the world, and vinyl records are produced. But that's the next step...Mastercraft doesn't press records.)

As of 2014, they've been in business for 30 years, and I do believe Desmond's run at Capitol Records preceded that for a significant duration. I'd love to follow this video up with a proper interview of Desmond's career and get that story straight.

Desmond, Walter and Izzy took time out from their day to show us how the process...

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