A Christmas gift for my turntable. I put a cork on it.
Static can make a record sound scratchy even though it's not.
Records are spun here on Technics SL-D2 tables. The original rubber mats had to go bye-bye as they were decomposing into an oily goo. At first I thought it was just some oil surrounding the moving parts that got loose, but was advised by a turntable tech that it was the rubber. I then sought out felt 'anti-static' mats.
These looked cool, but it seemed to me they generated static on their own. Sometimes I'd even take an LP off the platter only to have the 'anti-static' mat come up with it. Didn't seem like they were doing their job of sucking away the charges.
After about 30 seconds of research online, I saw that cork was the way to go. Great. Then I saw that cork mats were in the neighborhood of $50 unless they had some advertising on it. Some were even as high as $120.
I then did about 30 more seconds of research to discover that they could easily be made at home.
This is exactly what I did. The process is very simple.
1. Go to a craft store and get a sheet of cork. I got a four pack of 12 inch squares for under $10. You can even find some patterns and colors if you choose. I got green ones. Usually you won't see it if you're playing LP's, but I play a lot of 45's.
2. Find an LP you don't care about. A hacked up disc or any Eagles album will do. The LP WILL get damaged. I recommend using an Eagles album. It's good for humanity.
3. Take a sharpie, mark the center hole and trace the perimeter.
4. Cut it out using an exacto knife.
It's got a nice grip. It's kind to your records. It looks nice.