Removing dust from negs? Ilford Antistatic Cloth? Kinetronics Brush? Blower?

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by GarageBoy, Jan 8, 2014.

  1. GarageBoy

    GarageBoy Member

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    I need to pick up a few toys for removing dust after I accidentally spit on a negative blowing on it...

    What works best and what order should I use them in? I was told not to touch the negative too much, so wouldn't wiping a negative with a cloth or brushing it off scratch the neg?

    Thanks
     
  2. ic-racer

    ic-racer Member

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    I have a few brushes. A large 10" Kinetronics and some smaller ones of various manufacture. Best is to not let any dust get on the negative. Other than that there is no a single 'best' solution to the problem. I have never tried a cloth, but I wouldn't be surprised if modern microfiber cloth is easier on a negative than bristles of an antistatic brush.
     
  3. Dan Daniel

    Dan Daniel Subscriber

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    My order of cleaning: Fine mist sprayer of water with a drop or two of PhotoFlo in the air to settle dust. Blower. Kinetronics brush. Blower. Study under side lighting. If blowing and dust won't remove something, I will try a push with a folder corner of the Ilford cloth. If it's a bad day and the dust just keeps flying back in, I will hold a piece of the Ilford cloth on one palm and wipe the negative across it from above. Then blow. It actually does help.

    Well, all of this is for scanning, so the final step is Photoshop's healing brush. Few other pieces of technology have changed my life as drastically as that tool!
     
  4. Kevin Caulfield

    Kevin Caulfield Subscriber

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    The best thing to do would be to put about ten ml of Photoflo in about one litre of water and dip it thoroughly in that. Maybe give it a very gentle wipe with your fingers. Then hang it to dry.

    Sent from my C6603 using Tapatalk
     
  5. summicron1

    summicron1 Subscriber

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    i have a handful of those hold anti-static brushes that used radioactive americium, or something like that. Probably long dead, but they produce dustless prints after just a gentle swipe.
     
  6. silveror0

    silveror0 Member

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    Grounding the enlarger is always a good idea. Can't hurt, as it may reduce its ability to generate a static charge that attracts dust in the first place.
     
  7. Richard Jepsen

    Richard Jepsen Member

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    Rinse the negative in distiller water. When drying negative rolls I avoid fotoflow. A distilled water rinse works better. No touching the negs.

    Avoid low humidity when enlarging....do not pull negs from a plastic sleeve creating a charge. Use an enlarger that resists dust migrating on top of the the neg after insertion of the carrier.

    The LPL 7700 works well in this regard as does the Leitz 1c.
     
  8. DREW WILEY

    DREW WILEY Member

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    Just depends on how serious you want to get about this. All the advice above is valid, but basically a Stone Age approach to the problem.
    There are probably quite a few more extensive discussions on past threads somewhere. Or just pull up a site or look at a catalog from any
    clean room supply co, like those that serve the circuit board industry. Then identify the sources of lint and dust in your darkroom - where they
    are actually coming from. Something as simple as a cotton shirt can give you hell.
     
  9. Mainecoonmaniac

    Mainecoonmaniac Subscriber

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  10. Henry Alive

    Henry Alive Subscriber

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    I use the hair dryer for my wife. Works!
     
  11. DREW WILEY

    DREW WILEY Member

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    Forget what I said about the Stone Age.... now we're into pre-hominid techniques.
     
  12. AgX

    AgX Member

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    Would be brushes that contain Polonium-210. Alpha-Radiation decay half-time is 138 days.
     
  13. DREW WILEY

    DREW WILEY Member

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    The KGB bought all the fresh brushed containing Polonium, just in case they get a grudge on darkroom enthusiasts.
     
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  15. Simon R Galley

    Simon R Galley Subscriber

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    Needless to say ILFORD Anti-Staticum Cloths are designed to clean negs and lenses and cameras

    and Flat screen TV's and Computer Screens and Glasses and Motorcycle Helmet Visors and Car Windscreens and everything else dust settles on or you want to stop misting up.....ever

    We actually MAKE them here at Mobberley we don't 'buy them in' HOW we do not sell a million of these cloths a year I will never know, I know you expect me to be 'Pro ILFORD' but I love this product, I mean I really love it once you buy one you I promise you will never be without one.

    Sales pitch over...apologies

    Simon ILFORD Photo / HARMAN technology limited :
     
  16. miha

    miha Member

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    Simon, maybe the reason you don't sell a million of these lies in the fact that they are impossible to buy. I don't know a sigle internet store in EU that stocks them.
     
  17. AgX

    AgX Member

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  18. walbergb

    walbergb Subscriber

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    This is a double-prong problem. Drew is right: controlling the dust is the first step. I periodically blow out the bellows on the enlarger with compressed air. I am very fortunate that our community darkroom has built-in compressor ports; but if I didn't have them, I would still find a way (e.g., vacuum, manual air blaster). All the other advice from using Photo-flo to using compressed air, anti-static brushes, and cloths covers the second prong of the problem. However, I caution against overusing these procedures. I was working with a negative that had some dust. The more I treated the negative, the worse the problem got until a professional photographer friend of mine told me that overusing compressed air or anti-static cloths/brushes actually increased the static electricity.
     
  19. David Lyga

    David Lyga Subscriber

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    I have always placed the clean negative carefully into the (clean) negative carrier and then perform this high tech exercise (on both sides):

    Dry your lips completely, then as you blow onto the negative use a camel's hair brush to simultaneously help matters along. It actually works. The reluctant, clinging pieces of dust are dislodged by the brush and the unidirectional air coming from your mouth gets those loose particles going away in only one direction.

    Again, it actually works, even though it is extremely high tech. Make certain that those lips are dry or you will be washing your negatives once again. - David Lyga
     
  20. Bruce Robbins

    Bruce Robbins Member

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    The best way I've found is to breathe on the neg and let it dry to remove some static. Then just hold the neg by the edges and knock the edge next to the frame you want to print from hard against the baseboard. Give it a good, sharp rap. Turn it over and do the same on the opposing edge. You won't damage it but it's enough to dislodge any dust particles sticking to it. Of course, you'll still get the odd wee bugger that just refuses to move whatever you do. :sad:
     
  21. DREW WILEY

    DREW WILEY Member

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    Some hints. My own film room, where critical color work is done too, has all the walls and counter surfaces washable, including enamel paint (latex or acrylic
    paint is prone to static). I wouldn't dream of having high-end enlargers and lenses in the same room as a sink line. I wear a 100% dacron cleanroom smock
    which is lint-free (and only cost about $30 - and don't confuse it with an ordinary cotton lab coat or Tyvek suit). Recently I've been printing fiber-based
    prints in that room, which produce lint, so I'll have to sponge the whole thing down before doing any tricky masking or color film work. But it's the best
    insulated room in my lab, so easy to heat in winter. I have an small oiless pro air compressor in an adjacent room, with sub-micron triple inline filtration,
    until the airline reaches the blowgun in my film room. I live in a foggy climate, so static is a minor issue; but when humidity does happen to be low, I have
    an ionized antitstatic gun optionally available right there, to attach on the air line. My work station has a true industrial recirculating air cleaner with a lot
    of expensive copper plates inside. Someone actually gave it to me; but one could use a simple residential circulating air cleaner too. It sits atop my black
    Formica work station. For the purist, you can also buy antistatic Formica itself, like they use in electronics cleanrooms, but it's expensive, and would have
    been overkill for my needs. I wipe my surfaces down with a lint-free chamois routinely. I have a halogen machinist's inspection light atop the air cleaner,
    and a light box beside it. The air gun has a soft rubber tip, with the air pressure set at about 20 PSI, and the negs are blown off toward the air cleaner.
    With the inspection light and a good pair of reading glasses, every little bit of dust is visible. I have things like microfiber cloths and PEC20 film cleaner on
    hand for problems, as well as lens cleaners for things like filters or negative carrier glass (which I blow off after cleaning into the sink next door - filtered
    air works much better than any cloth or chamois). All this might sound like a lot of fuss and investment, but actually, the whole nine yards cost less than
    a typical SLR lens - and just how much film and paper can one afford to waste anyway? Since I work mainly in 8x10 format, being as clean as possible pays back pretty quick. But yeah, I know, this would just spoil the whole day of anyone who just loves to spend hours on end spotting negs and prints
    either by hand or in PS. Hate to rain on your parade.
     
  22. miha

    miha Member

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  23. cliveh

    cliveh Subscriber

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    If you have accidentally spit on a negative, then picking up a few toys to remove dust will not remove your spit. I would suggest you rinse and dry your negative.
     
  24. Bob Marvin

    Bob Marvin Member

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    "Blower. Kinetronics brush. Blower"

    Me too. Most of my prints are spot-free; for the others, spotting is pretty easy with a really good brush [the $5 brush I bought at B&H is useless; the $15 one I got at an art supply store is great].
     
  25. bvy

    bvy Subscriber

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    I have one, and I swear by it. It might be the best kept secret in dust control.
     
  26. GarageBoy

    GarageBoy Member

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    Thanks
    My bed room where I *scan* is impossible to control dust in
    My scanner seems to attract dust like no tomorrow