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Stock testing for degradation


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#1 Jessica Greene

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Posted 05 January 2007 - 08:18 AM

Hi,

I am working on a shoot, where the stock has been bought second hand, and the condition of storage seems ominous . ( Kodak vision 2/ 3 cans 500T, 2 cans 200T /unopened/ unrefridgiated for a year)

I was wondering what checks people would suggest running to make sure the footage is OK, and that it is worth shooting on. What properties would the stock possiblly have lost, and what measures can you take to check for this? I have full access to a dark room and cameras ( I am a university student) and have already developed unexposed ends to check for x-ray fogging.

Before then the cans had not been open. I am fairly new to the field of motion picture but have done still photography developing and I am confident that through this one resealing of the can no (further if there was previous) damage has been done.

I'm getting a mixed opinion from my tutors about whether I need run further tests, but I'd like to get more opinions. Also if anyone has come across a good article on degradation of film stock, the effects and how to test for it, either in a book or online I'd be very grateful if they could point me in the right direction.

best regards,


Jessica Greene

(Student, Newcastle, Uk)

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#2 Mike Panczenko

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Posted 05 January 2007 - 08:57 AM

I'd call your local lab and try to arrange for a snip test, where you cut maybe 2 or 3 feet off of each roll and have them throw it on a densitometer. That will tell you whether it has been age fogged, xrayed, whether all the color layers are where they should be, etc. Film that's older or improperly stored can have damage ranging anywhere from some fogging, or, if left in extreme heat-say, a car in summer sun- can be completely unusable.

If there is some age fog, you can try overexposing, which will minimize the age effects. How much to overexpose depends on how bad it is.
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#3 Jessica Greene

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Posted 08 January 2007 - 02:47 PM

Thank you Mike for you reply.

I was wondering if you knew of anywhere I can read up on the process of clip testing, so I can maybe attempt it myself, this isn't purely to save money, it is because I would like to learn how to complete the process for my personal project. I have recently ordered a copy of Happe's book 'Your Film and the Lab' i'm just awaiting it in the post.


cheers,

Jessica
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#4 Matthew Buick

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Posted 08 January 2007 - 06:22 PM

I don't think high ASA stock last very long, it seems doubtful that they'll be absolutely perfect, maybe still usable, though.
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#5 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 08 January 2007 - 06:26 PM

I would think that the problem with processing the test yourself is that you won't know if any off-standard result was the result of the stock or your processing. Plus removing rem-jet is a pain-in-the-a---.
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#6 John Pytlak RIP

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Posted 09 January 2007 - 03:47 PM

Have your clip test done by your lab, in a controlled process. For critical work, you may want to process some footage of a scene to look at graininess and non-uniformity too. An EI500 film will usually be compromised by a year at room temperature.
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#7 Jessica Greene

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Posted 11 January 2007 - 07:14 PM

Thank you all for your help.

Best regards,


Jessica Greene

(Student, Newcastle, Uk)

onlinegurl@gmail.com
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