I grew up in a family of left handers and watched as my brothers struggled to write without smudging their work. It took a lot of effort to learn just how to hold a pen or pencil.
When labeling a sound console with a Sharpie Marker, you really have to be careful to keep the side pad of your palm off of your labels until it has a chance to dry.
Since Permacel 724 paper tape is coated, it does not absorb the ink from the marker. Until the ink actually has a chance to dry (it takes only a few seconds), touching it with the side of your hand will smear the ink across your label, staining your hand in the process.
Either keep your hand off the labeling or learn to write from lert to right!
Several tape manufacturers have recently introduced console mixing tape in lots of colors. It is seductive to think about using a cool newer color that no one else has, but you should consider this before making the switch.
That makes no sense, now does it? Here’s what I’m talking about.
Permchrome is the kind of ink you find in black Sharpie Markers. Flatback is the kind of paper tape that is used for console marking.
Sharpie ink is considered to be permanent, and once it has dried it is almost impossible to get off of the tape (or your clothes). That means that once your console labeling dries, no matter now sweaty your hands get or how much beer you spill on the mixer, your labels won’t smudge or rub off.
Flatback is the type of tape that is used for the best console tape. It has a smooth coating to make it easy to write on and is able to prevent permchrome ink from bleeding through the tape and getting on the surface of the equipment you are labeling.
If you are labeling expensive equipment with a Sharpie, make sure that the tape you are using is flatback.
People who create temporary labels for sound consoles focus, rightly so, on “the horizontal”. By that, I mean that the primary purpose of the label is to indicate what microphone is represented by each input on the mixing desk. Normally the labels go directly under the mix fader and include information like “vocal”, “bass”, “kick drum”, etc.
Since most mixers are a long row of identical control strips, the labels make sure that the tech doing the mixing is moving the correct fader to make the changes they want.
The use of half-inch wide console tape allows you to expand this labeling to mark additional information about every control knob for each individual console input. Using tape that will fit between the fader strips means that you can also make notes and marks about equalization, aux sends, monitor mixes etc. It dramatically improves your ability to retain detailed information when you have dialed in a mix that you need to recreate later.
Rolls of tape on sets and stages have a way of sprouting legs and walking away. A request to “borrow” a little tape quickly turns into a permanent borrowing. The borrower had good intentions regarding returning the tape, but it just never happened. At the end of the day it wound up in somebody else’s tool box, someone who had managed to convince themselves that the tape was theirs.
You’ve got a roll of console labeling tape and you’ve got a Sharpie Marker in your pocket. Time to solve this problem.
Write your name on the inner hub of the tape roll so that whomever borrows it will be sure that it s never theirs. Better yet, write “stolen from )your name)”.
That roll of tape will magically find its way back to you, or most of it anyway.
One of the often overlooked qualities of Shurtape 724 console labeling tape is that it is “PH neutral”. PH is a measure of acidic someting is, and the adhesive in Shurtape 724 falls in the middle of the scale between acidic and alkaline.
PH specifically meas “potential of hydrogen” and in the case of tape, it references how likely console tape is to cause corrosion.
Since it is not uncommon for labels on electronic equipment to stay in place for many months, knowing that the tape adhesive will not interact with the paint and screen printing on a piece of equipment makes a big difference.
You can count on this “neutrality” of Shurtape 724 to protect expensive equipment and sensitive surfaces.