Scratched negatives?
Old 09-06-2018   #1
autorelease
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Scratched negatives?

Hi all,

I recently developed my first roll of 135 black and white film. The images seemed to come out fine (I used D76 1:1), but there are what look like large scratches that run across many parts of the negatives.

Here's an example (sorry for the low quality photo):


Are these scratches? I had a bit of trouble getting the roll onto the reel (I used a Patterson tank). My theory is that the film kept scratching against the torn open cannister while I had trouble loading it. Next time I plan on being much more gentle with it.

Anyway, just curious if this theory makes sense, want to make sure I correct for it next time.

Thanks!
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Old 09-06-2018   #2
Chriscrawfordphoto
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Take the film totally out of the cartridge before you load it on the reel. Don't pull it out through the felt. Pop the end off the cartridge and pull out the spool completely. That'll eliminate a big source of scratches.

Second, be sure you never touch the emulsion side of the film.
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Old 09-06-2018   #3
rfaspen
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Welcome to RFF! You will probably get some good ideas here.

I can't tell just what that is on the example image, but I'm curious why the torn open cannister was involved while loading film on the reel? I don't think its common practice to keep the cannister around during loading. I open the cartridge, remove the spool of film, unroll the film to the end and cut it off the spool, then set all those things aside and just have the film and the reel in my hands during actual loading. So, whether these are scratches or not, I would recommend a process that eliminates problems while loading reels.
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Old 09-06-2018   #4
autorelease
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I think I originally thought it would be more organized to load the film onto the reel directly from the canister, but in hindsight, not so much.

Next time I'll try removing all the film first, moving the canister aside, and then loading it onto the reel (and handling it a bit more gently).

Thanks for the help all!
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Old 09-06-2018   #5
Steve M.
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A bottle opener will pop the top off nicely. I often leave the leader out on the roll, pull the film all the way out of the canister in the change bag, and roll it onto the reel that way. Then snip it off when it's close to the end. Or you can pop the top on the canister and pull the film out. There are several ways to put the film on the reel, you just have to find the one that works for you.

The film looks great otherwise. You did a good job on your first roll. If you plan on scanning the negs, you can use the clone tool in photoshop and easily remove the scratches.
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Old 09-08-2018   #6
joeswe
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my 2 cents: you either remove the film completely from the cartridge by cracking it open and taking out the spool or you leave the cartridge as it is and pull the film out through the mouth. Both methods have their pros and cons.

If you follow the latter routine you should make sure that you work cleanly and replace the cartridge in its original PP canister immediately after unloading the camera) and keep the area where you load the film on the reel tidy. I have been following this method for 30 years and cannot remember having encoutered problems with scratching through the felt of the cartridge. The big plus of this method is that it is much easier to load the reel when feeding it directly from the cartridge on the reel and that the contact between hands and film is reduced to an absolute minimum. The obvious con is that you might scratch the film if some sort of debris is entrapped in the felt of the cartridge. However, as the film has already passed the mouth of the cartridge twice at that point, if there really was some problem with the felt, it is likely the film would have already been scratched at that point in time and there is little you can do about it.

In case you follow the other method and pop up the cartridge to remove the spool with the film prior to loading the reel you have to take care not to scratch the film on the edges of the opened cartridge which sometimes can be sharp. Keep the opened cartridge away while you load the film. Also, you will likely have more contact between your fingers and the film and it having the completle lenght of film removed from the cartrdige makes it a bit more difficult to load onto the reel, especially true for films that have strong tendency to curve. Still, with some routine this method is perfectly safe and fine and I use it without problems whenever I process a film that was completely rewound into the cartridge.

Keep the film chamber of your camera and your work area clean.
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Old 09-08-2018   #7
Bill Clark
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I always remove the film reel from the container. When I use a film that is preloaded I use a pliers to take the end cap off. Most of the film I use I bulk load with containers that can be reused so it’s easy to pop the end off. Of course this work is done in a room completely dark. Except when I load the film I have a few bulk loaders which enables me to work in the daylight when loading the cassettes.

I see the scrateches. They could come from a couple of steps during the process. Hard for me to pin point.

Any consolation, a scanned neg worked in a program on a computer could help with your film. I’d try to figure out what the cause is tho.
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Old 09-08-2018   #8
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I pop the ends off the cassette when I process but wouldn't be fussed if I had to pull it out of the cassette to load. I'm guessing that when the film was loose, it coiled up in a mess and that could be where the scratches came from.


Was this factory loaded or bulk film and how was the film loaded into cassette if bulk ? Arms length trick or bulk loader ?
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Old 09-16-2018   #9
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Thanks again for all the tips!

I did another roll and this time it came out super clean. I still used the not-so-elegant, rip open the canister method, but this time I completely removed the film from the canister and was much more cautious.

These changes + a wetting agent resulted in way cleaner negatives.
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Old 09-16-2018   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by autorelease View Post
Thanks again for all the tips!

I did another roll and this time it came out super clean. I still used the not-so-elegant, rip open the canister method, but this time I completely removed the film from the canister and was much more cautious.

These changes + a wetting agent resulted in way cleaner negatives.
Awesome!
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Old 09-16-2018   #11
Roger Hicks
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Use filtered/strained water too: see a piece on my old site about the Paterson filter.

Cheers,

R.
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