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Monochrome negative flaws - age or processing?


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I've just started scanning some of my many thousands of b/w negatives. I'm noticing a crazed appearance on many of them, as shown in this crop:

http://www.alanwrigley.com/images/10227.jpg

 

The negs are 40 years old and have been stored in sleeves (not the shiny kind that stick to the film) since they were processed. They've never been kept in harsh or extreme conditions. So is this just natural deterioration over age or does it indicate faults in the original processing? I've never been able to see them at high resolution before.

 

Alan

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17 minutes ago, Inchiquin said:

I've just started scanning some of my many thousands of b/w negatives. I'm noticing a crazed appearance on many of them, as shown in this crop:

http://www.alanwrigley.com/images/10227.jpg

 

The negs are 40 years old and have been stored in sleeves (not the shiny kind that stick to the film) since they were processed. They've never been kept in harsh or extreme conditions. So is this just natural deterioration over age or does it indicate faults in the original processing? I've never been able to see them at high resolution before.

 

Alan

 

I can't answer your question Alan but thanks for the heads up. I will have to examine my negs stored in a similar way to yours, most of which are over 40 years old.

 

Allan

 

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Never seen anything like that and I also have some 30+ year old negs which are ok.

Harry's link looks like it might be the answer...

I'd have a go at some of the suggestions made for cleaning on a less important neg and if successful carry on with the rest.

Phil

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28 minutes ago, Harry Harrison said:

I've got a nasty feeling it might be a 'spider web' like fungus though I've not seen it myself, this page seems to show something similar:

 

https://www.photrio.com/forum/threads/fungus-on-negatives.137466/

 

https://www.photrio.com/forum/threads/fungus-on-negatives.137466/

 

It does look a bit like that, doesn't it? There's no evidence that I can see of any fungal growth on the surface of the film - would a fungus not leave traces of some kind? The films do look pristine and have only ever been stored in the sleeves, in a ring binder either in a filing cabinet or on a shelf in whatever room I was using as an office, so they should never have been exposed to damp or sunlight or any other adverse environmental conditions.

 

As Phil suggests, I'll try cleaning and see if it makes any difference.

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5 minutes ago, Inchiquin said:

It does look a bit like that, doesn't it?

Yes, but I could only find that one page so it's not definitive, just a guess. It doesn't sound like your storage conditions would have encouraged fungus. Fungus on lenses can etch itself in to the glass though so it may not be just on the surface. A microscope could be handy!

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I don't have it on negs, but I do on some Agfachrome Super-8 from 1980. That's just what it looks like. I didn't think my storage conditions were problematic, but my negs have always been filed on shelves rather than piled on a shelf as the film cans were.

Unfortunately unlike lens fungus you can't rub it off with IPA- you could try a surplus neg, but if the food source is actually the gelatin you've had it. Glass is a lot more indigestible.

Annoying to find the present eating the past like that!

Edited by spacecadet
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Posted (edited)

Brilliant! Many thanks for your help guys.

 

I had some PEC-12 on my shelf which I bought several years ago after The Original Chuck recommended it on this forum a number of times, but which I never got round to using. A quick wipe of the neg and the problem is gone.

 

Untreated: http://www.alanwrigley.com/images/10227.jpg

 

Treated: http://www.alanwrigley.com/images/new10227.jpg

 

Now I just have to do the other 4 or 5 thousand....

 

And thanks Chuck if you're reading this.

 

Alan

Edited by Inchiquin
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13 minutes ago, Inchiquin said:

Brilliant! Many thanks for your help guys.

 

I had some PEC-12 on my shelf which I bought several years ago after The Original Chuck recommended it on this forum a number of times, but which I never got round to using. A quick wipe of the neg and the problem is gone.

 

Untreated: http://www.alanwrigley.com/images/10227.jpg

 

Treated: http://www.alanwrigley.com/images/new10227.jpg

 

Now I just have to do the other 4 or 5 thousand....

 

And thanks Chuck if you're reading this.

 

Alan

Good to see! It's like a new coat😁

Phil

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Wow. Impressive. Wonder what your greeblies were eating?

I think there may be a tiny bit of water in PEC- it's not pure IPA- so if anyone else tries it, don't let it soak in for too long. I use IPA neat for everything except sensors.

Maybe I'll have a go at the Super-8.

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4 hours ago, Inchiquin said:

Brilliant! Many thanks for your help guys.

 

I had some PEC-12 on my shelf which I bought several years ago after The Original Chuck recommended it on this forum a number of times, but which I never got round to using. A quick wipe of the neg and the problem is gone.

 

Untreated: http://www.alanwrigley.com/images/10227.jpg

 

Treated: http://www.alanwrigley.com/images/new10227.jpg

 

Now I just have to do the other 4 or 5 thousand....

 

And thanks Chuck if you're reading this.

 

Alan

Alan,

 

Yes, I would rather read about film problems thnt the 111 pages of contract discussion....

 

I was going to recommend trying some PEC-12 on the negs, Glad it worked for you.

I would add that there is a serious warning on using PEC in a well ventilated area.

 

Chuck

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22 minutes ago, Chuck Nacke said:

 

I would add that there is a serious warning on using PEC in a well ventilated area.

 

 

I wasn't aware of that so thanks for mentioning it. Shouldn't be a problem at this time of year when all the windows are open.

 

Alan

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15 hours ago, spacecadet said:

I use IPA neat for everything except sensors.

 

I've been using it too, much cheaper than PEC for cleaning transparencies.

 

Mark

Edited by M.Chapman
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3 hours ago, M.Chapman said:

 

I've been using it too, much cheaper than PEC for cleaning transparencies.

 

Mark

PEC/Eclipse smells a bit different, maybe a hint of ammonia as a cleaner? But Romanée Conti is probably cheaper.

I'm fortunate in having an analytical chemist OH, so we get the analytical grade stuff. A bit of a waste for cleaning but watcha gonna do.

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Note to all,

 

PEC-12 was recommended to me years ago by both KODAK and FUJI reps

as the best way to clean film emulsions.  Well the reps are gone, but PEC-12

thankfully is still with us.  I have no experience with IPA.

 

Chuck

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1 hour ago, Chuck Nacke said:

I have no experience with IPA.

 PEC-12/Eclipse (I may be conflating them) says methanol on the bottle- quite silimar properties, but IPA can leave a residue, hence the cleaning, and I assume wetting, agents in PEC.

 

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IPA.  You mean India Pale ale?

 

Allan (NOT a chemist).

 

 

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3 hours ago, Chuck Nacke said:

Note to all,

 

PEC-12 was recommended to me years ago by both KODAK and FUJI reps

as the best way to clean film emulsions.  Well the reps are gone, but PEC-12

thankfully is still with us.  


Is there a connection - is it toxic? 

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11 minutes ago, Allan Bell said:

IPA.  You mean India Pale ale?

 

Allan (NOT a chemist).

 

 

Isopropyl alcohol, alias isopropanol, (which you call it depends on when you learnt your chemistry), C3H8O. Not the stuff you drink, that's ethanol, C2H6O. Preferably dilute with some additives.

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1 minute ago, MDM said:


Is there a connection - is it toxic? 

Not too tasty- methanol is antifreeze, so it's poisonous, but I doubt you could do serious harm to yourself in the quantities you usually buy. IPA dries the skin a bit, but no problem for a bit of cleaning.

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4 minutes ago, spacecadet said:

Isopropyl alcohol, alias isopropanol, (which you call it depends on when you learnt your chemistry), C3H8O. Not the stuff you drink, that's ethanol, C2H6O. Preferably dilute with some additives.

 

Ahh yes!  I use it for cleaning up after mixing and applying two part Epoxy adhesive.

 

The first one NOT the second.

 

Allan

 

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2 minutes ago, spacecadet said:

Isopropyl alcohol, alias isopropanol, (which you call it depends on when you learnt your chemistry), C3H8O. Not the stuff you drink, that's ethanol, C2H6O. Preferably dilute with some additives.

 

I'm using Lab Grade IPA (99.9% pure) so there's no residue that I've noticed. I use it as it is (undiluted and nothing added)

 

Mark

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1 minute ago, spacecadet said:

Not too tasty- methanol is antifreeze, so it's poisonous, but I doubt you could do serious harm to yourself in the quantities you usually buy. IPA dries the skin a bit, but no problem for a bit of cleaning.

 

Rubber gloves.

 

Allan

 

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3 minutes ago, M.Chapman said:

 

 I use it as it is (undiluted and nothing added)

 

Mark

😀No, I meant the ethanol- you drink it diluted, with additives, essence of grape, tonic, whatever!

 

3 minutes ago, M.Chapman said:

there's no residue that I've noticed

That's helpful, I'll go to it when I run out of Eclipse.

 

3 minutes ago, Allan Bell said:

 

Rubber gloves.

 

Allan

 

No need really. It's not like John Haigh in a tin bath! Too fiddly anyway.

You'd have to be up to your elbows in it all day.

Edited by spacecadet
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9 minutes ago, spacecadet said:

Not too tasty- methanol is antifreeze, so it's poisonous, but I doubt you could do serious harm to yourself in the quantities you usually buy. IPA dries the skin a bit, but no problem for a bit of cleaning.

I will forego checking that out thanks. I am avoiding investing any and all forms of alcohol for the foreseeable future. I had a very unpleasant reaction to a single glass of wine recently related to a medication I am on at the moment.  Coffee and orange juice it is for me. 😀

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