Dupont Superior 4 B&W pancromatic film

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by Cruzingoose, Jan 29, 2007.

  1. Cruzingoose

    Cruzingoose Member

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    At the local antique shop, I found, (and purchased) a NEW and UNOPENED 100 foot can of this film dated 1959. Before I open it and give it a try, Is there anyone that believes it may have more value in its unopened state? I'm sure the base fog has increased a little bit, and it may deliver some very interesting images, but I'm curious as to what it will do.
     
  2. Alex Bishop-Thorpe

    Alex Bishop-Thorpe Member

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    100ft of interesting never hurt anyone :wink: I don't think it'd be of particular worth except to other photographers, and a number of them would probably be looking to shoot it as well. But I've seen old empty Ilford Paper boxes sold for $20 here, so who knows. I'd use it, given the chance.
     
  3. Cruzingoose

    Cruzingoose Member

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    Dupont Superior 4 B&W pancromatic film UPDATE

    Well the deed has been done. I coaxed myself to open the new (old) sealed can, wound a 36 exp roll and shot it outside. Developed with D76 for 8 minutes at 70 deg F and was extreemly surprised at the results. The first several inches were slightly fogged but gradually cleared up and a foot later revealed amazing beautiful negs. Very nice, clear base and great d-max. Printed on Illford mg needed just the slightest addition of magenta to make great prints. Estimated effective speed is about 150-200 using an 8 stop bracket and developing times. With old film, sometimes you win and others not. This time I got lucky.
     
  4. donbga

    donbga Member

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    I think that is pretty cool!
     
  5. Neanderman

    Neanderman Member

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    Care to share? An image, I mean, not film. (Though some people might ask for film, too. :D )

    Ed
     
  6. jackc

    jackc Member

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    Wouldn't mind sharing film either. You can bulk load some rolls and sell them to other photographers or give away for the cost of shipping. Some people would be interested to see how 50 year old film behave. There may be nostalgia value too. Some people might have shot that DuPont film in the fifties in their romantic years.
     
  7. Jim Noel

    Jim Noel Member

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    Sperior #2 and #4 bring back memories from the 40's. They were the only films easily available during the war. #2 had a Weston rating of 50, and #4 a Weston rating of 200. They were sold in 27 1/2 ft lengths which were cut almost through at the appopriate length for 36 exposures. At each juncture the leader was properly cut and attached to the appropriately cut tail of the previous length. No bulk loader was needed, or available.

    I used an immense amount of these films in high school.
     
  8. Cruzingoose

    Cruzingoose Member

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    Sounds like a great idea. I'll share my experience of working with 50 year old film by a trade of sorts. But in order to satisfy the many of you that may want to participate, I'll send one 15 exposure roll to anyone who sends me a roll of 35 or 120 B&W film of any speed or brand. I would like to keep this within the lower 48 (US). I know 15 exposures is not a lot, but with this limited supply I would like as many APUGers as possible to share the experience. Due to postage cost, I'd like to keep it in the lower 48 and return shipping by USPS Parcel Post. Here is an image of the can taken with my 10 year old digital camera. My ship to can be found in my profile. If there is any personal questions please PM.
     

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  9. nworth

    nworth Subscriber

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    Superior 4 was DuPont's high speed motion picture film. I shot some of it back in the 1960s. It's pretty good, with reasonably fine grain. But watch out for the contrast and avoid overdevelopment. Test by bracketing exposures around ISO 250. You may need to use benzotriazole in the developer for film this old.
     
  10. Cruzingoose

    Cruzingoose Member

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    No benzotriazole needed

    QUOTE=nworth;608993]Superior 4 was DuPont's high speed motion picture film. I shot some of it back in the 1960s. It's pretty good, with reasonably fine grain. But watch out for the contrast and avoid overdevelopment. Test by bracketing exposures around ISO 250. You may need to use benzotriazole in the developer for film this old.[/QUOTE]


    Good practice, but after two rolls shot from this batch, I like it as it is. The film base density compares to my other current B&W films and any fog it may have is minimal. At this point I am sure the film was optimally stored and it survived its long hibernation. It reminds me of Kodak Super XX which was and still is my all time favorite. If I can find more I'll still buy it.
     
  11. tiberiustibz

    tiberiustibz Member

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    You may be receiving a lot of rolls of film :smile:
     
  12. nickdanger

    nickdanger Member

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    In 1969 there was a photo equip. sale flyer that came to my house from the east coast. Sorry I can't remember who sent it. I bought many 100' rolls of Superior 4 to re-spool in my Watson bulk film loader. It shot just fine at ASA 200, developed in D-76 for 8minutes at 68 degrees F. Didn't have a lot of money then and the Superior 4 was very inexpensive. The guy from the local camera shop, said it was probably cut from bulk motion picture film. He said that was a bad thing, because an occasional frame with a surface defect in a motion picture was allowed, but a defect could cost us single frame still photo guys the "picture of a lifetime." No big deal, I shot everything in at least three bracketed exposures. I never found a defect in several thousand frames. I say "shoot it" and then look for more if you like it.
     
  13. cmacd123

    cmacd123 Subscriber

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    From the label it is Military surplus. from your results it must have spent part of the last 50 years under refrigeration.
     
  14. Cruzingoose

    Cruzingoose Member

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    Its all gone !!!

    Yup, used the last of it a while ago. I now working on a 400' roll of Kodak 5222. This stuff is the kitty's wiskers! Do Kodak a BIG favor and buy some! Only $140 for 400 feet. It's not had to pull off a good chunk of it in the darkroom and fill the bulk loader and work from there. You can shoot at indexes from 25 to 6400 (the range of my test camera) and have nice printable negs on the same roll. Although at 6400 an extra minute in HC110/B would make it perfect. Treat it as Plus-X for developing. And for $20 bux, you can get 100' of the same stuff or Tri-x in 16mm for your sub cameras.
     
  15. cmacd123

    cmacd123 Subscriber

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    Yes 5222 is great stuff. Although I did stuff some away in 1986 and when shot recently is did prodiuce nice pictures but with a lot of base fog! I am tempted to get a fresh roll just to encourage Kodak to keep it in the line. As it stands it is Kodaks Only NEGATIVE motion B&W film, with ONLY tri-x Reversal as the only reversal film..

    I am curently playing with some of the Filmtec ORWO N74 Plus. so I wonder if another 400 ft roll would be wise. :smile:

    If you bought some of the "Legacy Pro" bulk, it came on a nice 100ft 35mm spool {stamped FUJI FILM} which would help in spooling off a bulk loader size roll from one of the motion stocks. (delux way is a 35mm split reel and a set of rewinds.)

    As far as Motion film and surplus film. when I started out in the late 60s every copy of Popular photography had a nice fine print add filled with all sorts of film - mostly "Outdated but fully guaranteed" Much of it was military surplus and movie stock. The company is still arround and now sells factory fresh film as a popular APUG advertiser called Freestyle.

    As far as defects, Any defect would show as a annoying flash magnified 500X if it was on a movie neg. so if anything Movie stock has tighter tolerances. ALthough there are "short ends" which are the "rest of the roll" after a shot in taken, which are sold to low budget productions, they may have some fog in the first few feet, but lately most to sale are ECN type colour negative which is a challenge to process at home.
     
  16. cmacd123

    cmacd123 Subscriber

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  17. bluebutterfly

    bluebutterfly Member

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    Hi All,
    I'm not a photographer, but just found a can of this same type of film in some of a relative's belongings. It sounds just about identical in description to your film, and it does seem to be military surplus, in a green can, with an expiration date of Sept. 1959. It is partially sealed around the edge with tape, although since it is so old, the tape has started to peel off a bit around one edge. My question is this: if I opened the can and looked inside, does it "expose" the film? There definitely is something in the can, so I presume this is essentially "new" (old) unopened film. Is it blank film? I ask because my relative shot a lot of movies and I was wondering if this was film with something on it, or is it blank film in this can? Sorry to sound so clueless, but I know absolutely nothing about this type of film. And if it is blank film inside the can, would anyone want it? From reading this thread, it seems some photographers do buy it, but I have no idea what condition it has been stored in. Would the film still be any good? The can is a bit worn, but not too bad. The fact that the tape sealing has come undone a bit (but has stayed fairly well sealed around the edge), might indicate that it wouldn't be good film anymore. Any thoughts? thanks!
     
  18. Mick Fagan

    Mick Fagan Subscriber

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    Hello and welcome to the mysterious world of film photography.

    Firstly, DO NOT OPEN THE CAN AT ALL. Keep it closed.

    We can and do open cans of film, but only in total darkness.

    I would suggest this film was intended for movie camera use by your relative.

    Basically the film is almost worthless, but at the same time it does have some worth. Hard to explain but that is pretty much it.

    Effectively if I lived around the corner from you, I could place the film into a bulk film loader and upload to a film cassette then place that roll of film into a 35mm camera and go out and shoot it. The chances of getting a very good negative to make a very good print would be reasonably low, but the fun factor would be very high. But I should be able to get a good enough print of something to pass around and have a bit of fun with.

    So another way of answering your question, the can of film is worth something, but what that something is, well .................

    I assume you live in the USA, if so perhaps you can give your location and someone nearer to you than I, could help you with your request.

    Please do not open the can.

    Mick.
     
  19. bluebutterfly

    bluebutterfly Member

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    Hi!
    Yes, I am in the U.S., in Las Vegas area. Thank you SO MUCH for warning me not to open the can! I was almost tempted to open it!!! EEEK! But then I remembered or knew generally that it's not a good thing to expose film to light, so I'm glad I fought the temptation. Since it remains fairly well sealed on one side, I presume no one else over the years has opened it either. i've attached some pics so you can get an idea of how the can is still sealed. My main concern was that there was film inside that had images on it, but apparently that would definitely NOT be the case, because if it had been shot, it wouldn't be stored in this can like this....it would be developed film on a filmstrip, right? So, if I did list it on ebay or somewhere, or if someone here at the forum wanted to buy it, it's blank film. That's why I was tempted to open it to see if the can was storing developed film with images, but that seems highly unlikely I have occasionally seen such cans of film listed on ebay if there's photographers out there who like to play around it, , being aware that the film might no longer be good after so many years in unknown storage conditions.

    I've also heard that some people collect the film cans, with or without the film. Anyway, thanks again for your advice. I'll look around and see if anyone in my area would like to buy it for photographic fun or general collectible value.
     

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  20. Mick Fagan

    Mick Fagan Subscriber

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    Yes the film, if it had been exposed and developed, would more than likely have been stored on a small movie reel. Perhaps your relative had a movie projector?

    Regardless, if the film had been exposed then developed as either a movie film or as a stills film for B&W photographic prints, then the film really wouldn’t have been stored in the original film canister. So I would think what you have in the can is brand new unexposed B&W film.

    I assume you wish to move the film on, if so, you have a few options, you can advertise on this forum, but to sell on this site you need to be a subscriber, which in your case is not a viable proposition.

    That said, perhaps we can get around the situation in this instance as I’m sure acquiring this 30.5m length of film would be advantageous to many of the members on this forum. Which for your benefit, is an exclusive film format forum.

    Another possibility is to use ebay or Craig’s list or some other place to move it along.

    My goodness, I wish I lived closer to you, this would be a real fun thing to play with.

    Mick.
     
  21. bluebutterfly

    bluebutterfly Member

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    Thanks so much for your further comments and advice. If/when I get around to selling it, I will keep this forum as well as ebay, etc. in mind for those who might be interested. Currently, there is only one listing on ebay for the same type of film, 100 feet, fairly low price of !3.99 (USD), plus $11 shipping. Not worth a lot, but still perhaps fun or interesting to a film buff. Yes, my relative was into making movies, and I will go forward with the assumption that it is indeed, blank, unexposed film. Always fun to find such things!