Please help: Is it possible to save photos from bad developed film?

Discussion in 'Color: Film, Paper, and Chemistry' started by pdmk, Jun 11, 2014.

  1. pdmk

    pdmk Member

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    Hi all.

    Let me start this story with telling you about my stupidity and incompetence..

    So I was developing two portra 400's today. First was ok. But with second one I had problem to get it on reel (probably because reel was still a little wet from first development, I tried to dry it with towel but probably that wasnt enough..)
    And I was really struggling over 30mins to get this film on reel, my hands and probably also film was all sweat... at the end I was able to reel 3/4 of film, then it got stuck and I really really didnt have will and energy to un-reel it and try again.

    I was super angry and disapointed and I put it into jobo tank and start developing. Some photos are ok, but some have this dark stains on them, probably because the un-reeled film sticked to that part of film.

    And my question is, if there is any chance to save those photos? I know they will not look nice as the normal photos, but please at least something, so I can try to do more work in PC.

    I didnt try to scan this film yet, it is still drying, but if anybody has advice how to save those photos I would be very very very thankfull.

    Maybe I can try to put it again into bleach and fix and lets see.

    Any ideas would be very much appreciated.

    attached is photo of the film, please tell me there is chance :sad:
    Thank you !
     

    Attached Files:

  2. cliveh

    cliveh Subscriber

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    Patience is a virtue and you are on a learning curve. In future make sure the spiral is bone dry and take your time.
     
  3. Jaf-Photo

    Jaf-Photo Member

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    It wouldn't hurt to bleach and fix it again. But if it would help, I don't know.

    Tanks and spirals aren't that expensive, so maybe you could get a few extra spirals or even a bigger tank?
     
  4. Nikanon

    Nikanon Member

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    Your film is ruined. Don't have any expectations in photography.
     
  5. F4user

    F4user Member

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    Your digital picture is as worse as film, i can't see well .. well, bleach & fix it again and hire a very good photoshoper.

    I edit my post addind bleach step to avoid your confusions. As another member noted, there is something like an image on your film.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 11, 2014
  6. snapguy

    snapguy Member

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    story

    I know your color negative roll is not the same as slide film but permit me to mention a little story, something that happened to me long ago. A fellow came to me and said he wanted me to take a photograph of his mother to send to the relatives back East. He wanted color slides. I said okay and he said I should meet him at the local funeral parlor. His mom had recently become deceased. I photographed her in her coffin and she looked very nice. It's an old tradition, by the way, to send such photos to loved ones who cannot be there for the funeral. So I shot a roll of 120 Ektachrome and took it to the local camera store (remember, this was a long time a go) to be processed locally. When I got the roll back it was opaque. There seemed to be no photos. Now I had a dilemma. Should I suggest we dig the lady up so I can try photographing her again? Bad form. So instead I asked to talk to the camera store manager. He looked at the film and declared that the young fellow who developed the roll had done the first few steps but had gotten mixed up and did not do the last several steps which are the ones that can be done in daylight. So the guy stuck the film back in the soup, went through the final steps, and the slides came out fine.
    Moral of this story: why not try running the film through the latter chemicals again? Can't hurt.
    PS: as to the poster who seems to say you should abandon photography because you seem to be totally inept -- I think his English is faulty and that isn't quite what he meant. Keep in mind -- you have to make all the mistooks before you are a real pro at this.
     
  7. TheFlyingCamera

    TheFlyingCamera Membership Council

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    Basically, the part that's got problems is hosed. Kaput. Just re-shoot it if you want the images you were trying to make.

    For future reference, when dealing with plastic reels, they need to be bone dry after each batch to make sure the film doesn't stick. Get a cheap hand-held hair dryer that has both a hot and cool air setting, and use it to dry the reels. The blowing air will be able to get into the small grooves in the spiral and dry them much better than a towel will, and it won't leave lint on the reels either. Alternate hot and cool air when running the dryer so that you don't overheat the reels. Too much and you could potentially melt the reels, or at least heat them enough that they alter the chemistry temperature when running the next batch of film and cause development issues.
     
  8. Rudeofus

    Rudeofus Subscriber

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    I concur with jaf-photo, despite those dark stains there is image matter visible in those regions, and an additional bleach and fix (or BLIX) run could at least get rid of the stains. The downside to this is that you will most likely have underdevelopment in these regions, which means a hybrid work flow with lots of post processing will likely be necessary.

    And your guess is right: film will stick really well to wet or even moist spirals, so don't ever bother to try this again. In case you find out too late that your spiral is still wet, you can put the whole unwound film roll into your tank (with spindle, but no spiral), then close the lid. This will keep your film in the dark while you can take measures in normal room light to get that spindle 100% dry.
     
  9. bdial

    bdial Subscriber

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    You have nothing to lose at this point, so you might as well see if running it through the bleach and fix helps any.
    Make sure you wash and stabilize again too.
     
  10. pdmk

    pdmk Member

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    thank you for replies

    when I posted this it was already 11PM in my country yesterday, and I dont own any digital camera anymore so photo was taken just be phone that is why it looks as it looks.

    today I get more spirals, you think that work with metal spirals is easier? I have only plastic one

    I tried to scan this film and the result was that scanner was able to pick image under that stain. I will run it again in bleach and fix to see if that helps. Which times and temperatures should I use? The same as during standard development?
     
  11. Tom1956

    Tom1956 Inactive

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    Live and learn. Getting annoyed and giving up is the railway car to disaster. Just be glad you weren't on a printing press developing that kind of attitude. They would have had to wipe your finger mush up with a towel.
     
  12. Jaf-Photo

    Jaf-Photo Member

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    Plastic spirals are easier to feed.

    Temperature is less critical for bleach and fix, so you don't have to heat it to exactly 100F.
     
  13. pdmk

    pdmk Member

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    yes I know about temperature, but I was not sure mostly about times. In cca 8hrs when I come home from work I will run it the same times as during normal dev and lets see. Then I will let you know if it was succcessful or not. At least this is good lessons learned for me and other people :sad:

    Also stupid question, if the part of the film which was correctly developed will be in bleach again, it will not get damaged?
     
  14. pdeeh

    pdeeh Member

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    No, it will be fine.

    This is the counsel of despair, and is not helpful to someone just starting out
     
  15. Jaf-Photo

    Jaf-Photo Member

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    I usually bleach and fix for a few minutes longer than the prescribed time. For me it seems necessary to clear the base. It's hard to overdo it, so I extend to be on the safe side.
     
  16. miha

    miha Subscriber

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    Metal spirals are easier to load, especially when not bone dry. I can load my Kindermann 120 reels in seconds.

    Yesterday I had problems loading my Jobo with 6 sheets of 4x5 film as my hands started to sweat in the changing bag...
     
  17. F4user

    F4user Member

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    if you do not mind you can cut corect processed part to avoid wetting the gelatin and add more scratches. at least that is what I would do in your place.
     
  18. Wallendo

    Wallendo Member

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    In the future, if you cannot get the roll of film loaded well, instead of leaving the extra part of the roll hanging in the breeze, cut the film off and develop the second part separately. You will end up cutting one picture in half, but will save the rest of the roll.

    One thing that I routinely do is to have a metal reel and a Paterson reel available. That way if I have trouble loading a roll, I have a back-up available. I have only been developing for just over a year, but it seems that some films (Kodak and Foma) load easiest on metal reels, while Ilford loads easiest on plastic (It's probably just me).
     
  19. AgX

    AgX Member

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    -) have spare reels at hand

    -) finish drying with hairdryer

    -) If only one reel at hand in case of doubt use a test film to check that reel
     
  20. pdmk

    pdmk Member

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    well putting it into bleach and fix today didnt help at all :sad: there was one photo which I really wanted I dont care about others :sad:
    next time I will be more careful.

    I bought today extra plastic spiral and will order some stainless steel from ebay or somewhere. As Wallendo wrote, I have biggest problem with Kodak films, but Illford is more thick and gets easier into spiral
     
  21. Edward_S

    Edward_S Subscriber

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    I suggest that you try a metal reel in future. I've just bought one after a similar disaster. I've always had mixed results trying to get 120 film onto a plastic reel - it just seems too wide to manage the film and the reel reliably and then it either winds off the reel again when I work the 'wheels' back and forth or it gets so far and then jams. The problems really happen if you take too long, because sweaty hands make the humidity go up and vice-versa and then the film gets sticky too. My first attempt with a metal reel took five minutes from start to finish. [I pulled the stuck film off the plastic reel and put it in the empty developing tank until the metal reel arrived. At least in my case the film was B&W so the crease marks look 'artistic' (ahem)].
     
  22. pbromaghin

    pbromaghin Subscriber

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    We all learn from our mistakes. You have learned an awful lot from this one roll of film and seem to be headed in a good direction. I would call it well worth the price of one roll of film
     
  23. Wallendo

    Wallendo Member

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    When buying a metal reel, the brand does matter. My first metal reel was a no-name reel. I had trouble loading that reel in the light with my eyes open. I personally use Hewes reels, although I am sure there are other brands that work just as well. Whichever brand you go with, make sure you check customer reviews online before purchasing. You may pay more for a name brand, but it may save you from frustration and loss of images later.
     
  24. TheFlyingCamera

    TheFlyingCamera Membership Council

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    Yes. Ditto what Wallendo said about stainless reels. Buy Hewes. They are by far the best stainless reels out there. That said, you will need a stainless tank to use with the stainless reels. Plastic Paterson tanks (and their look-alikes) will not be light-tight with stainless reels, as the stainless ones aren't meant to fit around the opaque plastic core.
     
  25. pdmk

    pdmk Member

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