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04-16-2016, 08:11 AM   #1
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Slide film disaster - the lab developed it negative!!!

The lab apparently did not know the difference between the slide and negative films...
What should I do? I seriously want to sue the lab for the damages if I can.

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04-16-2016, 08:17 AM   #2
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In the UK, Labs take business on on the basis that their liability is limited to the costs of the materials - so here the most you would get would be a new roll of film. Not all Labs can do reversal processing (it is now rather rare, to be honest) - did you check they could first. The lab I use for colour only do C41 processing so E6 film would be cross processed - they are open about it but you need to check first.
04-16-2016, 08:18 AM   #3
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Depending on your instructions they may have thought you wanted it cross-processed.

What is Cross-Processing? Lomography

I wonder if you can recover a lot of the colors by custom post processing. People use cross process digital effects to make shots look that way - it may be possible to reverse a bit of the damage by going the other way.
04-16-2016, 08:18 AM   #4
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That happened to me once, I got multiple rolls of free film. Not much you can do, other than switching labs. It was an accident, leave it at that.

Phil.

04-16-2016, 08:19 AM   #5
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Lab Screw-Up

I had the same thing happen many years ago; the lab didn't notice a cassette of E 6 in with 4 or 5 C 41. The pathetic excuse for a lab was unhelpful, and expressed the hope that my film hadn't ruined their soup. Since the lab was run by the family of the local Media King, and they were total jerks and I was Director of the Library System and didn't want to get them on my back, I let it go, but never worked with that lab again! Fuji, the film maker, was sympathetic but couldn't suggest any cure.

I'd suggest that you scan the "negatives" and see if there is any way to adjust the color, etc.

---------- Post added 04-16-16 at 11:21 AM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by gofour3 Quote
That happened to me once, I got multiple rolls of free film. Not much you can do, other than switching labs. It was an accident, leave it at that.

Phil.
The Total Jerks at the lab I described didn't seem sorry and certainly didn't give me even ONE roll of film.

---------- Post added 04-16-16 at 11:21 AM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by gofour3 Quote
That happened to me once, I got multiple rolls of free film. Not much you can do, other than switching labs. It was an accident, leave it at that.

Phil.
The Total Jerks at the lab I described didn't seem sorry and certainly didn't give me even ONE roll of film.
04-16-2016, 08:23 AM   #6
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Thank you for the replies. I didn't mention about the cross-processing; I simply assumed that they would apply the correct process for the slide film. I live in U.S. by the way.

Does the "custom post processing" mean applying digital enhancements? Is there a lab you would recommend?
04-16-2016, 08:25 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by luftfaust Quote
Thank you for the replies. I didn't mention about the cross-processing; I simply assumed that they would apply the correct process for the slide film. I live in U.S. by the way.

Does the "custom post processing" mean applying digital enhancements? Is there a lab you would recommend?
Does the lab you took the film to even process E6? If not and they only process C41, then I can see this happening.

Phil.
04-16-2016, 08:26 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by gofour3 Quote
That happened to me once, I got multiple rolls of free film. Not much you can do, other than switching labs. It was an accident, leave it at that.

Phil.
A costly "accident" at that, I suppose. I will go back to the lab tomorrow and see what they would do.

---------- Post added 04-16-16 at 10:27 AM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by gofour3 Quote
Does the lab you took the film to even process E6? If not and they only process C41, then I can see this happening.

Phil.
I never asked them about it, just assumed that every lab could process positive films. Now I see that it's not the default situation in many places...

04-16-2016, 08:28 AM   #9
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E-6 is limited to just a few labs these days.
04-16-2016, 08:29 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by grhazelton Quote
I had the same thing happen many years ago; the lab didn't notice a cassette of E 6 in with 4 or 5 C 41. The pathetic excuse for a lab was unhelpful, and expressed the hope that my film hadn't ruined their soup. Since the lab was run by the family of the local Media King, and they were total jerks and I was Director of the Library System and didn't want to get them on my back, I let it go, but never worked with that lab again! Fuji, the film maker, was sympathetic but couldn't suggest any cure.

I'd suggest that you scan the "negatives" and see if there is any way to adjust the color, etc.

---------- Post added 04-16-16 at 11:21 AM ----------



The Total Jerks at the lab I described didn't seem sorry and certainly didn't give me even ONE roll of film.

---------- Post added 04-16-16 at 11:21 AM ----------



The Total Jerks at the lab I described didn't seem sorry and certainly didn't give me even ONE roll of film.

Sorry to hear that you had a bad experience too. I'm definitely considering leaving an online review depending on how they treat this matter.
04-16-2016, 08:34 AM   #11
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I meant using digital color substituion. Since different films react oddly you may need to experiment.

---------- Post added 04-16-16 at 11:41 AM ----------

This may help.
https://www.flickr.com/groups/977912@N23/discuss/72157663028700941/

Last edited by UncleVanya; 04-16-2016 at 08:45 AM.
04-16-2016, 09:13 AM   #12
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Maybe in post processing you can at least get a good enough monochrome (b&w) result. I would assume that would be less involved than trying to correct the colors. Also, a quick googling (of process slide film in c-41) turned up a comment by someone that his photo service was reasonably successful undoing this kind of mistake by shooting copy slides of the erroneously processed film, and then developing the copy slides in C-41 again (I guess that makes it cross-cross-processing). Apparently this undid some of the damage and led to a usable result. (Warning: I've no idea if this is correct, or the theory behind it, though you'd only risk another role of film and the time/money involved.) You can find that post by googling "what are the results of developing slide film (E-6 process) with c41" and looking for the stackexchange search result.

In the future, I'd also suggest using only a lab that regularly does transparency film processing. As noted by others, there aren't that many anymore. I've used Dwayne's Photo in Kansas (by mail from the east coast) with good results; some say Dwayne's is among the highest volume E-6 processors, but I don't know whether that's accurate. You can search the forum and elsewhere for other references to reliable processors.

Last edited by Lititz; 04-16-2016 at 09:17 AM. Reason: correction
04-16-2016, 09:14 AM   #13
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It depends on how things went down. The vast majority of film these days is print, rather than slide. If you just handed your film in and said nothing, there's a high likelihood of things going accidentally bad. If you handed your film in and specifically told them it was slide film, that's much more like negligence. If you sent your film in in a bag and the E6 box was checked (which is an option with the service I use), and they still processed it as negatives, that is gross negligence (the instructions were in black and white) and you have a case for action. But unless the roll had pictures you were taking for professional services, don't expect anything more than a free film with processing.

If they give a damn, you should get at least a free roll and a voucher to have it processed gratis - and properly. But be polite.

grhazelton, putting a roll of slide film in with a bunch of C41 films instead of holding it out and submitting it as a separate job seems to me like a GREAT way to increase the chances of something going wrong, especially if the slide cassette didn't look radically different from its print-film companions. I'm not sure all the blame lies with the lab in this case. Things like this may be why my local mail-out processing service insists on ONE FILM PER BAG, on each of which the processing method must be individually ticked and on each of which there is a space to write notes or special instructions.
04-16-2016, 09:20 AM   #14
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Likely the same in the US as well - check their film pouches/receipt for their business terms.

Even if you do sue, this would strictly be a small claims case, and unless you took them for business purposes or for a paid shoot, you are going to have a hard time convincing a judge that their sentimental value is worth any kind of meaningful payout. I'd expect the filing fee alone would cost more than any damages you'd receive.

QuoteOriginally posted by john.margetts Quote
In the UK, Labs take business on on the basis that their liability is limited to the costs of the materials - so here the most you would get would be a new roll of film.
04-16-2016, 09:52 AM   #15
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I have not had any cross processed slides and wonder if the results would be similar to what you would get from Rollei ScanFilm CN400 Pro which is a color negative without the orange mask - only in terms of colors as it was extremely grainy film. Scanning it required some adjustments as the default color negative scan setting had to account for the mask. Have you tried scanning it yet?


QuoteOriginally posted by Lititz Quote
Also, a quick googling (of process slide film in c-41) turned up a comment by someone that his photo service was reasonably successful undoing this kind of mistake by shooting copy slides of the erroneously processed film, and then developing the copy slides in C-41 again (I guess that makes it cross-cross-processing). Apparently this undid some of the damage and led to a usable result.
The link you provided stated, "While it wasn't perfect the customer felt we had done our best." They did not show what the results look like so I would not consider this to be the same as undoing the damage and getting usable results.
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