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07-21-2012, 02:40 PM   #1
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Best Practices: Controlling dust during scanning

Any pointers on how to control dust while scanning negatives? I am scanning Ektar 100 120 film on a Canon 8400f flatbed scanner, and while I am generally happy with the overall quality of the scans, I'm constantly battling little bits of fibers that appear in sky views. I get a lot of newton rings too, but that's another post.

My scanner is in an open location and is exposed to household dust. What steps should I take to clean both scanner and film before attempting to scan?

Regards and thank you.

07-21-2012, 07:41 PM   #2
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I vac around the scan area part of the room a day before. Dust scanner bed with micro cloth, also use a blower. Negs get lite brush and blow each side. As I am putting negs in scanner I blow.

No way to get it all, you get dust with film. That is a sucky part of film.

Wet scans do better. But they are more work.
07-22-2012, 09:19 AM   #3
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With the flatbed, I clean the scanner glass with Windex and a soft cloth before use and shut the lid. Canned air for the negatives, though a soft brush may work. And finally (for color), there is digital ICE. Both my scanners have it and in my opinion, it is worth the extra money.

07-22-2012, 09:59 AM   #4
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My DustHutch has a range hood with fan reversed and drawing air through a duct filter and blowing gently downwards

07-23-2012, 08:11 AM   #5

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When your scanner is not in use, cover it with a cloth. You can also get anti-static glass cleaner. Get an air supply. Either cans of air or a medical CO2 tank with air regulated to around 50psi with a small, pointed nozzle.

Increase your resolution at detecting dust. Get a headband magnification visor. You'll see small dust not easily seen with the unaided eye. Look at the scanning surface and negative under bright light, wipe and blow the dust off best you can. With that and an assumed ICE (infrared cleaning) capability of your scanner/scanning software, your scanned results should require very little clean up in post for color negatives/positives.

Last edited by tuco; 07-23-2012 at 08:18 AM.

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