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  1. #1

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    Film ruined by processing

    Hi APUG,

    Long time no see. I had a portrait shoot this past weekend and shot Portra 160 on my MZ-S. Shoot went great, and right after dropped the film off at a local pro camera shop for processing. Picked up the film today and noticed the proof prints I had were off color and exposure. Nothing that was outside the realm of possibility (shooting in shade so color was a little off, and perhaps I didn't rate the film quite where it should be, plus the people are black so maybe the Frontier they used is not used to black people).

    However, when I looked closer (and yes I will admit, I had the film in my Plustek s****** for proofing), I saw pinholes and scratches on the negatives. These pinholes look too regular to be caused by poor processing (they almost look mechanical). I have attached a screenshot of what one set of these pinholes look like. The pinholes affect perhaps 10 shots on 2 rolls (rough estimate based on viewing them against a bright lamp) There are also scratches along both rolls. The pinholes have completely removed the emulsion, but the base remains.

    Any idea what may have caused this? I would like some artillery when I go back to the camera store tomorrow. I don't want them to blame my camera unless that's literally the only thing that could have caused this issue. What may have gone wrong?

    I have had precisely 0 issues with my Pentax MZ-S scratching film or pinholing.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Screen Shot 2013-11-04 at 7.59.01 PM.png  
    Pentax MZ-S, Calumet 4x5 Monorail

    Favorite Films: Foma 100, Acros 100, Delta 400, Portra 400.

  2. #2
    Dr Croubie's Avatar
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    Looks exactly like the corners of my 4x5s that I just got back from the lab, I'm presuming it's either caused by their dip'n'dunk processor and/or the clips used to hold them up to dry. Not so much a problem for me because they're on the corners, but where are these on your film?

    ps, if you're going to go complain to the lab, best make damn sure that it wasn't your camera at fault either...
    An awful lot of electrons were terribly inconvenienced in the making of this post.

  3. #3

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    The lab was a Frontier minilab exactly like you'd see at Walgreens. I assumed (foolishly) that because it was in a professional camera store the machine would be well maintained. They probably bought the equipment from a defunct Ritz camera, since they put the film in Ritz Camera sleeves. The pinholes are all in the middle of the frame. There are also several scratches that run the length of several frames, along with chemical residue.

    I honestly doubt it's the camera (though I suppose anything's possible), since the pinholes are in the middle of the frame and other film I've shot with the camera has had no issues. I honestly don't know what could cause this issue in a camera other than a loose screw banging around in the film box. The pinholes also exist on the proof prints, so it's horribly unlikely that mishandling caused the issue when sleeving.
    Pentax MZ-S, Calumet 4x5 Monorail

    Favorite Films: Foma 100, Acros 100, Delta 400, Portra 400.

  4. #4
    DanielStone's Avatar
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    sorry to hear about your troubles.
    but to be quite frank, go back in and DEMAND your money back
    then find a new lab. don't be afraid to send your film out by mail if needed, there are LOTS of wonderful labs nationwide that happily accept mail-order, and won't scratch your film or leave chemical residue on your negs

    -Dan

  5. #5
    ambaker's Avatar
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    Another roll of film through the same camera, at a different lab, should answer that question...


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD

  6. #6

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    Spoke with the lab tech today, she was apologetic and seemed to take responsibility. I couldn't make it over after work in time, so I'm stopping by tomorrow. Going to try to sneak out of work early.
    Pentax MZ-S, Calumet 4x5 Monorail

    Favorite Films: Foma 100, Acros 100, Delta 400, Portra 400.

  7. #7
    mts
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    Fixer dribbled across the undeveloped film? The damage does not look like anything produced mechanically.
    By denying the facts, any paradox can be sustained--Galileo

  8. #8

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    its time to stop trusting other people and DIY
    CatLABS of JP
    Darkroom resources and service

    www.catlabs.info | https://www.facebook.com/CatLABS.of.JP | www.jobo-usa.com

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by mts View Post
    Fixer dribbled across the undeveloped film? The damage does not look like anything produced mechanically.
    That's what I was thinking...some kind of chemical drips. If you look around the edge of the larger spots, there seems to be a ring of uneven development.

    Perhaps the film dragged against something sharp and contaminated with liquid, leaving droplets and scratches.

  10. #10
    bvy
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    Quote Originally Posted by CatLABS View Post
    its time to stop trusting other people and DIY
    Shameless plug, but good advice in general.

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