Magnetic audio tape afflicted by sticky shed syndrome casts off gummy flakes of recorded media and develops a tacky residue that impedes playback. One short-term remedy for this problem is baking, a process that exposes tapes to elevated temperatures and reduced relative humidity. This study explores an alternative treatment, desiccation without heat. By using the acetone extraction method to evaluate binder degradation, the study yields information about the impact of desiccation on one measure of the severity of sticky shed syndrome, the amount of extractable binder. Two types of magnetic audio tape are studied, Ampex 456 and Shamrock 041, Reporting is contextualized within current audio preservation efforts and library and archives collections management practices.
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