The Return of Torumat TM-7XH Record Cleaning Fluid?

Back in the late 1970s and '80s, which wasn't long after vacuum type record cleaning machines were first introduced, a chemical engineer and solid rocket fuel designer named Toy Shigekawa introduced a record cleaning fluid he called TM-7, which later was improved and called TM-7XH.

The fluid contained no alcohol because Mr. Shigakawa believed that with continued use, alcohol based fluids could damage records. It quickly became one of the most popular fluids used for record cleaning. It was my fluid of choice and after buying it in quart sized containers, I graduated to gallon-sized bottles. At one point I met Mr. Shigekawa. He was a memorable character.

I still have a half-gallon of 7XH vintage 1985 but I haven't used it because I wasn't sure if it was still good. Fortunately, Mr. Shigekawa wrote down his formula and a new company, Groovy Hi-Fi Solutions, Inc. is marketing TM-8, a new formula based on Mr. Shigekawa's, which is based upon the use of the highest quality ingredients beginning with ultra-pure laboratory grade deionized water that's quad filtered to meet 'ASTM and CAP/ClSI' specifications. It is far more expensive that the distilled water commonly used in record cleaning fluids, though it's certainly possible others use the same water.

The commercial grade surfactants in TM-8 emulsify the fluid, helping it to break loose dirt, dust, smoke tar and finger oils while also helping to reduce static build-up.

The fluid will soon be available in 32 oz size bottles. I was given a bottle to try and will do so ASAP using the Loricraft cleaning machine. The formulator of the TM-8 said that chances are good that the "vintage" 7XH I've kept for all of these years should still be usable and effective because it contains no organics. If that's true a comparison between the new and old should prove interesting.

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JayTrez's picture

Do you think it could improve on the use of distilled water in a Spin Clean?

Jim Tavegia's picture

I have not had any issues and it seems if it is recommended for baby formula it ought to safe for my much older lps. Certainly cheap enough at a buck a gallon.

Zardoz's picture

This is great. I have almost used up all of my stock piled Torumat and have been "auditioning" other cleaners to try to replace it. Now I won't have to give up my favorite cleaner.

Jim Tavegia's picture

Curious as I have not tried anything other than the Spinclean solution.

decameron's picture

I would be very interested to know which surfactants are employed. I have found a mixture of Tergitol 15S3 and 15S9 do be excellent. Superior, in my opinion, to Photoflow which is very commonly employed.

decameron's picture

The email address for goovyhifi is not operational.

Brother John's picture

that I bought on your recommendation Mikey and It was my favorite one step vacuum record cleaning fluid until I tried the Disc Doctor Miracle two step cleaner you reviewed a few years later and found I could hear a substantial difference after a single cleaning on my modest system. However I'm glad Torumat's back again and can't wait to try the new formula. I just realized without your wonderful reviews Michael I never would have discovered any of these amazing products that have significantly taken my listening pleasure of recording to greater depths than I ever thought possible.
So huge thanks to you for everything you do.


TommyTunes's picture

I always felt that it did a great job. I remember discussing it with Brooks Berdan and he said that "they" were trying to get the formula to bring it back. I guess with Brooks passing that lead died also. Anyway it great to see it coming back.

Scott Hicks's picture

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simply me's picture

$165 a gallon? LOL.

Slammintone's picture

But I did just get a 32 oz. bottle of TM-8 and compared to my home brew cocktail of alcohol distilled water and photoflow, omg! TM-8 is an amazing cleaner that removes much more filth and grime and the records play quieter with more detail, much more. The music flow seems more natural. This is an amazing cleaner and I am so happy I read Michaels review here as well as an old 1993 TAS article he wrote about the VPI HW 16 in which he mentioned the old TM-7XH fluid.

Bob Henneberger's picture

god i have read so much b.s over on the hoffman forums of these people saying certain record cleaners make your records sound to hard and brittle when other record cleaners make the music sound too warm and fuzzy so he mixes two cleaners,,,lol so much b.s in this business ,,, a good record cleaner will give you whats in the grooves nothing more ... a bad record cleaner wont get all the dirt out of the grooves,,, simple.... i used to use tm 7 exclusivly till they became unavailable and never felt the need to try others... but thats me....