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Re: Beer Budget CD Release Strategy as an Alternative to The Way It's Normally Done

Good grief. That is way too expensive. I thought by now they would have some nifty machine that would just crank them out like Shrinky Dinks.
Maybe we should rebel against vinyl and go back to, was it wax? :)  You know, we can record with one of those machines with the horn on it that transfers the sound waves to a wax album.

----- Original Message -----

Well, sort of.  Here's a story:

Back in the mid-90's, I worked at a indie record store.  There were literally a half-dozen micro labels being run out of the back room by the various buyers and clerks.  Most of them were putting out some percentage of vinyl--45's, EP's and LP's.  One guy decided that it would be better to buy his own equipment and press his own vinyl, and then offer that service to others (he was thinking of a co-op style arrangment).  In the days before eBay, or even widespread net access he managed to hunt down the smallest vinyl pressing setup he could find, several states away.  As I recall, it cost $20K to get it bought and delivered.  It was industrial grade machinery--big heavy things that get moved by several guys, put down and bolted to the concrete floor.  He had had some money (despite working in a record store...) and a few investors.

Then he found he needed another $20K in permits, licensing, electrical upgrades, plumbing upgrades, fire alarms, toxic waste disposal, etc.  Before he could even switch the thing on.  More investors are found.  The necessary work is done.  Then he had to learn how to press vinyl.  It's not like running a Xerox machine, it's more akin to running an off-set printing press, and takes a lot of instruction and practice.  He went through hundreds of bad pressings--warped, off-center, cracked, and so on.  All of which was costly in terms of time--you had to set aside a day to do this, and monetarily.  Raw vinyl is not free, electricity, etc.  After six months, he gave up and sold it all off to someone else at a tremendous loss.

So, I'd say unless you're going to go into it whole hog and run it as a business full time for the next five years, I suspect it's not an viable option.  Maybe things have changed in the last decade or so.


On Wed, Dec 31, 2008 at 9:02 AM, Krispen Hartung <info@krispenhartung.com> wrote:

Also, is it possible to make your own vinyl? Is there equipment you can buy to press your own?