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01-08-2018, 12:58 AM   #1
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Lines on 120 film negatives

Hi All,

I am fairly new user of a Pentax 645Nii. I had some Ilford BW film developed a few weeks ago and the scanned images have vertical lines, not perfectly straight but the frame. The lines are not exactly straight but are very consistent and quite visible. They were rescanned by the local shop that does the developing but it made no difference. Any ideas on what could have caused the lines? More specifically, does this look like a camera issue, a user issue (something I did), or a developing/scanning issue?

https://www.flickr.com/gp/jimp/79B5Hu

Thanks

01-08-2018, 02:58 AM - 1 Like   #2
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Jim,
Are the lines visible on the negatives backlit under a loupe?
Was the film processed by a machine (not hand processed)?

If the answer is yes to both: The direction and uniformity of the lines suggests it is caused by the machine it was developed in.

There are racks on most processors with plastic rollers on them. Photo chemicals will, over time, leave deposits on the rollers which must be cleaned periodically. Cleaning racks and rollers involves dumping all the chemicals manually, cleaning with some strong solvent cleaners, and then remixing chems, getting them up to temp, testing.....it's a pain, so many labs don't do regular maintenance as they should, but rather wait for a problem to force them to fix it.

I've switched labs more times than I want to remember, but all it takes is one negligent owner, manager, employee, and you'll get scratches, spots, pressure marks, etc. Now if I can develop the film myself (B&W other than Ilford XP2), I will. Recently I've been sending my film (from Hawaii) to Utah to a lab I trust. There are two local labs in my area, but they are both inconsistent and there is nothing more aggravating than to pay money for someone else to mess up your precious film.

My favorite lab in California is A&I:
http://www.aandi.com/film/
01-08-2018, 04:07 AM - 1 Like   #3
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I agree with Alex645 that it could be lack of processor maintainance if the film has been fed through a roller processor. But it may have gone through a different processing system. As it is black and white FP4 and assuming the lab does not have a huge demand it may have been either tank processed or (believe it or not!) just rolled by hand in a dish of developer or for higher volumes the use of a dip and dunk processor (probably the best way to process film in commercial volume IMO).

To show minus densities on a print must mean that there are plus densities on the negative. These must have occurred after development step as prior to development would result in black marks on film
a. The result may be due to poor washing and drying or introduced by squeeging the film and causing dirt tracks
b. Residual chemical dirt deposits in the emulsion or backing
c. It is possible that a light scratching could turn enough silver over to form an extra density (similar to plowing a field). TBH I think that a long shot!
d. Another long shot. Check your film guides in camera (I really do not think this is it due to the lack of real irregularity). Any dirt that can create pressure on the film can have the same effect as exposure to light

It may be possible to remove any deposits by rewashing the film and then soak in photo flow solution finally gently wiping down both sides with a natural sponge to remove most surface water.

I would also be tempted to speak to the lab and ask exactly how they process B&W film and also how they explain the marks on film.

Good luck and lets us know how you get on.
01-08-2018, 08:51 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by TonyW Quote
As it is black and white FP4 and assuming the lab does not have a huge demand it may have been either tank processed or (believe it or not!) just rolled by hand in a dish of developer or for higher volumes the use of a dip and dunk processor (probably the best way to process film in commercial volume IMO).

I would also be tempted to speak to the lab and ask exactly how they process B&W film and also how they explain the marks on film.

Good luck and lets us know how you get on.
I agree with Tony that you should show this to the lab IF the lines are on your negs.

Is this Ilford FP4+ or was it XP2+? If it's FP4, then it was less likely to be machine processed, but your film looks like XP2 to me, which is almost always machine processed.

Also, who did the scanning? IF the lines are not on the negs, then it is the scanner. I've never seen lines from a film scanner, but I have seen this before from older flatbed scanners. Often it is not noticed unless you have a blank wall or empty sky, usually mid tone.

01-08-2018, 10:37 AM   #5
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My bad here!

No idea where FP4 came from as it has not been mentioned. I will have to put it down to another brain fart and the fact that this and Tri X my goto films in the day.

XP 2 may be a good call an roller transport film processing (spit!) and bad housekeeping a distinct possibility.

EDIT: Looked at original again this time measured values. There are very few neutrals in the image therefore it looks like it must be either XP2 or something very wrong with the acquisiton and or processing

Last edited by TonyW; 01-08-2018 at 11:45 AM.
01-08-2018, 10:47 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Alex645 Quote
Jim,
Are the lines visible on the negatives backlit under a loupe?
Was the film processed by a machine (not hand processed)?

If the answer is yes to both: The direction and uniformity of the lines suggests it is caused by the machine it was developed in.
...
My favorite lab in California is A&I:
Film - A&I: Quality Prints | Photo Books | Cards | Head Shots | Photo Gifts
I believe the film was machine processed. And I think the lines were visible on the negatives but I am not sure. I did have the owner of the shop look at it and they were going to wash and scan them again. I'll have to pick up the negatives to see for myself.

---------- Post added 01-08-18 at 10:00 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by TonyW Quote
My bad here!

No idea where FP4 came from as it has not been mentioned. I will have to put it down to another brain fart and the fact that this and Tri X my goto films in the day.

XP 2 may be a good call an roller transport film processing (spit!) and bad housekeeping a distinct possibility.

EDIT: Looked at original again this time measured values. There are very few neutrals in the image therefore it looks like it must be either XP2 or something very wrong with the acquisiton and or processing

The film is Ilford Delta 100 Professional Black and White film. I had mentioned to the owner of the shop that I'd love to see their complete developing process. My intent was to overcome my ignorance on the developing process. Now I am seeing how important that understanding actually is. The roll had a couple of shots that I'd love to have been able to work on in post.

Thanks Tony and Alex! I'll post an update once I learn anything more. And I'll try another lab just to eliminate the camera variable.
01-08-2018, 11:18 PM - 1 Like   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Jim P Quote
Iand they were going to wash and scan them again.
Thanks Tony and Alex! I'll post an update once I learn anything more. And I'll try another lab just to eliminate the camera variable.
If washing actually fixes the problem, then it could have been a really bad squeegee and lack of use of a wetting agent. California has very 'hard' water, full of minerals. In LA, our lab used a filter that turned BROWN weekly from all the sediments in the tap water.

Yes, please keep us posted what "develops".
01-09-2018, 04:53 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Jim P Quote
The film is Ilford Delta 100 Professional Black and White film. I had mentioned to the owner of the shop that I'd love to see their complete developing process. My intent was to overcome my ignorance on the developing process. Now I am seeing how important that understanding actually is. The roll had a couple of shots that I'd love to have been able to work on in post.
In this case being a black and white process there is something amiss with the image you linked to (not really streak related but...). When mousing over the area in PS there are distinct patches of red/magenta alongside other areas that should be neutral i.e equal RGB values. This may be simple to explain e.g. quick effort to emphasise streaks or conversion errors etc and not something on the original scan. On the other hand it could be a scan issue or even a processing issue (leaving pockets of anti halation dye behind?). In short I do not know if there is a real problem but suggest something you may want to look at
QuoteOriginally posted by Alex645 Quote
Yes, please keep us posted what "develops".
I wish you would just "Stop" posting this type of stuff. I am sure it will all come out in the "Wash" and Jim will have a "Fix" to share and it will be cut and "Dried"

01-09-2018, 08:47 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by TonyW Quote
I wish you would just "Stop" posting this type of stuff. I am sure it will all come out in the "Wash" and Jim will have a "Fix" to share and it will be cut and "Dried"
Wilco. I was just trying to have a little pun.
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