Bugs found on negatives, living in camera.

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous Equipment' started by thomsonrc, Apr 22, 2008.

  1. thomsonrc

    thomsonrc Member

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    I noticed on a few prints that there were some bugs, checked the negatives and they were on them too. I presume these insects are living in one or more of my cameras, but I cant understand why they are in focus. Surely they should be well out of focus? Any ideas how to get rid of them?

    Cheers

    Ritchie
     
  2. JBrunner

    JBrunner Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Sounds like you have camera lice.

    When they are small enough and crawling on the film plane, they would be in focus, or very nearly so. Put the camera in a plastic bag and put it in a freezer overnight. Bring it back up to room temp before you take it out of the bag, and then blow out the camera body.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 22, 2008
  3. PhotoJim

    PhotoJim Member

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    The digital shooters have to worry about bugs. Apparently now we have to too. :smile:

    I had a shutter in a Fed 3a that was stuck. I found out that an insect got stuck inside it (a decent-sized one - no idea how it got there) and had caused the curtains to stick together. Ugh.
     
  4. Vaughn

    Vaughn Subscriber

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    I wonder how Brady and his bunch photographed with wet plates during the Civil War...seeing how there were thousands of horses and mules and probably a thousand flies for each one of them!

    Vaughn
     
  5. ricksplace

    ricksplace Member

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    If freezing doesn't do it, try the old trapper's trick. Put the camera in a garbage bag, give the bag a good shot of Raid and tie it shut. Give it about an hour, open the bag, and whatever was alive when you tied it shut is dead. Trappers do this to kill the lice before skinning.
     
  6. BradS

    BradS Subscriber

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    I had a spider living in the bellows of my enlarger for a while. It really confounded me because he would move in and out of the picture. It took me a while to figure out where he was.
     
  7. kombizz

    kombizz Member

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    I am sure if you put your infect equipment under not too hot sun, th bug would escape
     
  8. TheFlyingCamera

    TheFlyingCamera Membership Council Council

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    That's easy- between the ether and the alcohol, any bugs getting near the collodion would get asphyxiated/intoxicated/poisoned by the fumes.
     
  9. Vaughn

    Vaughn Subscriber

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    I did not think of that! Which means the photographers ran the danger of dropping like flies, too...

    But since the plates were still a bit sticky (I assume) when used, one would have to chase the flies out of the camera before loading it. Must have been "fun"! But I don't remember seeing any Civil way images with the sillioette of flies on them!

    Vaughn
     
  10. FilmIs4Ever

    FilmIs4Ever Member

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    No, that was when they used gaseous mercury to develop their plates. . .
     
  11. RobertP

    RobertP Subscriber

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    By the time Brady, Gardner and the Brady Corps were shooting their war images they were using wet-plate collodion. Mercury was used in processing Dags, which Brady did use earlier in his career. Their biggest danger was mistaking their potassium cyanide glass for their whiskey glass or accidently allowing their developer (acetic acid) and potassium cyanide to come in contact with each other. This would produce a nice little toxic cloud inside of their Whatsit Wagons that would kill any bug and the photographer too. I heard a story not long ago about the title "The Mad hatter" apparently mercury was used in the production of felt hats. The workers would eventually go mad from the mercury fumes over time, thus the term. I guess this was before we had OSHA.
     
  12. FilmIs4Ever

    FilmIs4Ever Member

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    Sorry, I wasn't clear. I meant that photographers were dropping like flies when they were using mercury, not that they were using mercury in the Civil War.
     
  13. JBrunner

    JBrunner Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    I'm confused, when where the flies using mercury? :wink:
     
  14. Vaughn

    Vaughn Subscriber

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    They still do -- that's why they always rise up and get in your face as the day warms up.

    Photographing around my in-law's dairy farm in Australia, I'd start before sun-up and finish not too long after it rose before the flies got too bad...then I'd go over to the dairy and help finish milking the cows. But I guess better in my face than in my camera!

    Vaughn
     
  15. yellowcat

    yellowcat Member

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    I had some mites living in an old Nikon once, I wonder if they were nikkormites?
     
  16. keithwms

    keithwms Member

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    lol

    I recall Adams complaining about mosquitoes in his bellows when he shot in Alaska.