I have a bunch of old blues and rock records that are 1) uncommon enough that I've kept them in spite of point 2 and 2) scratched to hell.
I normally won't let these records anywhere near my turntable, because I'm afraid of runing a needle, and bacause they tend to sound like garbage.
I have a califone portable table that I use for 45s and 78s, that I won't normally play 33s on fo fear of ruining them with the heavy stylus, plus it's a mono unit.
So I'm listening to rare/forbidden records, and they sound better than I could have hoped.
I have a couple of spare needles for the califone kicking around just in case, but so far it hasn't even hiccuped.