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old Kodachrome II


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#1 Steven Budden

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Posted 28 November 2005 - 07:00 PM

I just got some old rolls of Kodachrome II with a camera. By old I mean the box says process by 'May, 1969'. I've heard that Kodachrome lasts a really long time, but what might be wrong with this film if I shoot and process it? I'm an experimental filmmaker so I don't mind an unconventional look, but I was just wondering if I could get a vague idea of what that look might be? Does it tend to go red?

Also, one of the boxes is kodachrome II photoflood. Is this the same as tungsten? What filter do I use to enable me to use photoflood film in daylight?

Thanks!

Steven
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#2 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 28 November 2005 - 09:33 PM

It's a Type A film balanced for photoflood illumination (3400K). So an 85A or 85 filter (same thing for most filter makers) converts daylight (5500K) to 3400K. A slightly more orange 85B filter converts 5500K to 3200K.

Edited by David Mullen, 28 November 2005 - 09:33 PM.

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#3 Steven Budden

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Posted 29 November 2005 - 01:28 AM

It's a Type A film balanced for photoflood illumination (3400K). So an 85A or 85 filter (same thing for most filter makers) converts daylight (5500K) to 3400K. A slightly more orange 85B filter converts 5500K to 3200K.


Thanks. So it may be safe to use such old film? i've heard of people using 10 year old Kodachrome that came out just fine, but not this old...

Steven
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#4 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 29 November 2005 - 01:35 AM

John Pytlak of Kodak could tell you if the processing of 1969 Kodachrome has been altered or whether it was the K14 process back then.

If it's still the same process, then your problem will probably be a loss of sensitivity, foggy blacks, and graininess, maybe a shift to the green or blue.

Shooting a test is the best way to know what you're dealing with.
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#5 John Pytlak RIP

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Posted 29 November 2005 - 08:49 AM

John Pytlak of Kodak could tell you if the processing of 1969 Kodachrome has been altered or whether it was the K14 process back then.

If it's still the same process, then your problem will probably be a loss of sensitivity, foggy blacks, and graininess, maybe a shift to the green or blue.

Shooting a test is the best way to know what you're dealing with.


That old Kodachrome II film used the K-12 Process, which was discontinued in 1974. No one has offered that process for decades. Film designed for the K-12 process will not survive the hotter K-14 process.

Even if you could process the film in the recommended K-12 process, film that old would likely show adverse effects from aging. Even if refrigeration was used to slow chemical deterioration, ambient radiation (e.g., gamma rays) would have caused some fogging.

Here are some links to background information:

http://members.aol.c...icesPage10.html

http://lavender.fort...12bwnegdev.html

http://www.rockymoun...om/kiimovie.htm

http://www.k-14movie...uestions.asp#55

http://www.k14movies.com/

http://www.kodak.com...nuals/z50.shtml (K-14 Process Specs)
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#6 K Borowski

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Posted 29 November 2005 - 08:58 AM

That old Kodachrome II film used the K-12 Process, which was discontinued in 1974. No one has offered that process for decades. Film designed for the K-12 process will not survive the hotter K-14 process.

Even if you could process the film in the recommended K-12 process, film that old would likely show adverse effects from aging. Even if refrigeration was used to slow chemical deterioration, ambient radiation (e.g., gamma rays) would have caused some fogging.

Here are some links to background information:

http://members.aol.c...icesPage10.html

http://lavender.fort...12bwnegdev.html

http://www.rockymoun...om/kiimovie.htm

http://www.k-14movie...uestions.asp#55

http://www.k14movies.com/

http://www.kodak.com...nuals/z50.shtml (K-14 Process Specs)


According to a friend of mine that processes 8mm film as a hobby/business, it would actually be possible to process K-12 in the K-14 process with the right prehardener. He gets old K-11 and K-12 films all the time right before the holidays, but he can only develop it as a B&W due to the complexity of the process. You'd have to talk with D'Waynes about it. You might be able to get a hold of their on-staff chemist. It would be possible to treat the film in a prehardener (in the dark), dry it (in the dark), send it to D'Waynes (in the dark) and then have them process it as normal, but again you probably want to consult with their chemist first. There'd be a lot of people angry at you if their chemistry got messed up.

Regards.
~Karl Borowski
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#7 John Pytlak RIP

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Posted 29 November 2005 - 09:47 AM

According to a friend of mine that processes 8mm film as a hobby/business, it would actually be possible to process K-12 in the K-14 process with the right prehardener. He gets old K-11 and K-12 films all the time right before the holidays, but he can only develop it as a B&W due to the complexity of the process. You'd have to talk with D'Waynes about it. You might be able to get a hold of their on-staff chemist. It would be possible to treat the film in a prehardener (in the dark), dry it (in the dark), send it to D'Waynes (in the dark) and then have them process it as normal, but again you probably want to consult with their chemist first. There'd be a lot of people angry at you if their chemistry got messed up.

Regards.
~Karl Borowski


Not very feasible for several reasons:

1. KODACHROME film has rem-jet, which would likely need to be properly removed (in total darkness) before the prehardener step.

2. Pre-hardeners were often chemicals like formaldehyde, which is now very restricted due to health and safety concerns.

3. As you note, a commercial lab like Dwaynes would not want to risk contaminating their process with non-standard chemistry.

4. Is it really worth all the effort for 35 year-old raw stock that likely has adverse effects from old age?

Maybe it would be worth doing if they discovered an unprocessed roll of KODACHROME showing the JFK assasination from a different angle than Zapruder. But for a few rolls of old unexposed film found in a closet? -- no way.
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#8 K Borowski

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Posted 29 November 2005 - 09:52 AM

Not very feasible for several reasons:

1. KODACHROME film has rem-jet, which would likely need to be properly removed (in total darkness) before the prehardener step.

2. Pre-hardeners were often chemicals like formaldehyde, which is now very restricted due to health and safety concerns.

3. As you note, a commercial lab like Dwaynes would not want to risk contaminating their process with non-standard chemistry.

4. Is it really worth all the effort for 35 year-old raw stock that likely has adverse effects from old age?

Maybe it would be worth doing if they discovered an unprocessed roll of KODACHROME showing the JFK assasination from a different angle than Zapruder. But for a few rolls of old unexposed film found in a closet? -- no way.


John: Agreed that it is not very feasible, but it is at least possible. . .
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#9 Sam Wells

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Posted 29 November 2005 - 12:00 PM

Long time ago I shot some short dated (16mm) Kodachrome 40. On sale for $1 roll so I tried one.

Slightly grainy, and the d-max went very blue. So I bought a couple more, shot in daylight with no filter and had a kind of blue tint / blue toning effect, kinda neat.

YMMV I think :)

I'm not quite sure, in the abcense of dye couplers what is degrading in this example IOW why it had that color shift. John ?

-Sam
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#10 John Pytlak RIP

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Posted 29 November 2005 - 02:08 PM

I'm not quite sure, in the abcense of dye couplers what is degrading in this example IOW why it had that color shift. John ?

-Sam


With old film, the color shift can be due to fogging of the larger silver halide grains with age or radiation, causing a contrast mismatch in the shadow areas of the image. Chemical changes with age can affect the speed and contrast as well. So the silver halide grains are likely the most sensitive components to aging effects.
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#11 Erdwolf_TVL

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Posted 29 November 2005 - 02:42 PM

B)-->
QUOTE(Steven B @ Nov 28 2005, 04:00 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I just got some old rolls of Kodachrome II with a camera. By old I mean the box says process by 'May, 1969'. I've heard that Kodachrome lasts a really long time, but what might be wrong with this film if I shoot and process it? I'm an experimental filmmaker so I don't mind an unconventional look, but I was just wondering if I could get a vague idea of what that look might be? Does it tend to go red?

Also, one of the boxes is kodachrome II photoflood. Is this the same as tungsten? What filter do I use to enable me to use photoflood film in daylight?

Thanks!

Steven
[/quote]

I shot a roll of 20-odd year old Kodachrome that I found in an old camera in an attic. (This film was obviously outside of its protective wrapper for quite a while.)

It came back from Kodak, processed, but completely transparent!

Now I've got 50 feet of leader.

Why don't you put it on E-Bay?

I'm sure someone will be silly enough to buy it.
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#12 John Pytlak RIP

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Posted 29 November 2005 - 04:06 PM

I shot a roll of 20-odd year old Kodachrome that I found in an old camera in an attic. (This film was obviously outside of its protective wrapper for quite a while.)

It came back from Kodak, processed, but completely transparent!


I suspect it got processed in the wrong process. Without incorporated couplers, running KODACHROME in an E-6 or negative process will leave the film clear, as all the silver is bleached and fixed out and no dyes are formed.
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#13 Steven Budden

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Posted 29 November 2005 - 05:29 PM

I suspect it got processed in the wrong process. Without incorporated couplers, running KODACHROME in an E-6 or negative process will leave the film clear, as all the silver is bleached and fixed out and no dyes are formed.


Thanks. I'll hold off on shooting it for the time being.

Steven
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CineTape

Tai Audio

Ritter Battery

Rig Wheels Passport

Technodolly

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Glidecam

CineLab

Opal

FJS International, LLC

Metropolis Post

Wooden Camera

Aerial Filmworks

Visual Products

rebotnix Technologies

Broadcast Solutions Inc

The Slider