83 votes

Is it worth trying to process film shot in 1989? (Fall of the Berlin Wall)

In 1924, 29 years before Tenzing Norgay and Edmund Hillary summited Mount Everest, George Mallory and Andrew Irvine made an attempt to climb the mountain. They were last seen high on Everest making ...
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  • 9,192
68 votes
Accepted

Why is a dark-room safelight safe?

Photo films and papers are made from salts of silver that naturally only darken when exposed to violet or blue light. In the early days of photography, this was all that was available. Therefore these ...
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  • 36.3k
32 votes

How do I safety check that there is no light in Darkroom / Darkbag?

In the darkroom, place a piece of the material you will be developing, flat, face up, on the work space. Place a handful of coins on this material. Using a timer, remove a coin every 5 minutes. 12 ...
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  • 36.3k
26 votes

Can 35 mm film which went through a washing machine still be developed?

Contrary to some comments here, a 135 film cartridge is very open to water intrusion. The film slot and both spindle holes are designed only to keep out light. The cartridge filled with water in just ...
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25 votes

Do defunct films formats really mean the pictures can never be seen?

It is highly unlikely for a format to be lost in a way you describe. All the standard processes were thoroughly documented, and good documentation will keep for longer than unprocessed film. But home ...
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  • 5,900
21 votes

What should I look for in a respirator for chemical processing of photographic materials

Except for the smell of acetic acid, an ingredient in both the fixer and the stop bath, photo chemicals are relativity benign. Some rare cases of contact dermatitis which goes away if usage is stopped....
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  • 36.3k
20 votes

Can I develop my b&w film a year after shooting it?

Ilford Delta is a pretty common film. I am certain you will be able to find a reputable lab to develop it somewhere around (you do not mention where exactly in Germany are you spending your year). On ...
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  • 5,900
20 votes
Accepted

How do I safety check that there is no light in Darkroom / Darkbag?

If you are talking about locating a light leak in a changing bag for loading film into magazines and cameras without a darkroom available… Periodically, to check the condition of your changing bag, ...
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  • 5,423
19 votes

Do defunct films formats really mean the pictures can never be seen?

It is indeed true, that unknown masterpieces can be lost because they are only kept on an undeveloped roll of film, but not likely because it is impossible to develop the film. Exposures on ...
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  • 2,816
18 votes

Why did my developed photos come back blue outdoors (and fine indoors)?

It looks like the laboratory messed things up: the film you used is a daylight color negative film. Which means that basically, without (extra*) correction, the daylight images should have been ok, ...
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  • 3,113
16 votes
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Is stop bath necessary for black and white prints?

Conventional wisdom says yes, you should use a stop bath. The stop bath is a very weak acid (similar to white (distilled) vinegar) and is used to neutralise the developing agent. This guarantees two ...
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16 votes

Why is a dark-room safelight safe?

it seems a little odd that there is a type of light that doesn't affect film or developing paper etc. There are types of light that don't affect the rods and cones in your retina, too. You can't see ...
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  • 31.2k
16 votes
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What causes these lines / scratches to appear on my developed film?

Typically this C-41 35mm film is developed in an automatic film processing machine. Likely your film was developed in in a "roller transport" type machine. These machines transport the film from ...
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  • 36.3k
16 votes

Why must unexposed and undeveloped film be handled in total darkness?

The light sensitive goodies that comprise film are the metal, silver, and one or more members of the halogen family of elements (Swedish for salt maker these are -- chlorine, bromine, and iodine). ...
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  • 36.3k
15 votes

Can 35 mm film which went through a washing machine still be developed?

Generally if film gets wet and then dries, the film will stick to itself. Sometimes it can be saved by pre=soaking in water and separated (difficulty). Prognosis is not good. Some labs may attempt -- ...
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  • 36.3k
15 votes

First film roll just got developed and all my pictures have a white fog on them?

The orange veil to the right of the last image is a common effect of light fogging. In fact, I've seen that many times on the first frame of 35mm when I started exposing without winding enough frames ...
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  • 6,158
15 votes
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Developed film has dark/bright wavy line spanning across entire film

My presumption is that you developed this film yourself. The dark (on the negatives) area and slightly wavy edge are due to the film being incompletely submerged in the chemicals. Either you didn't ...
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  • 6,158
15 votes

Film lab not printing all photos

This answer is pure speculation: The reason probably is because of automatic system for print which check if the photo is with good exposure and only then print it on paper. And maybe you should ask ...
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  • 9,475
13 votes

Is it worth trying to process film shot in 1989? (Fall of the Berlin Wall)

Back in the early 1990s I purchased an antique camera (folding type, similar to a Kodak 1a) that I discovered had film in it. The film could have been in the camera for 20 to 50 years (based on type ...
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  • 3,896
13 votes

What should I look for in a respirator for chemical processing of photographic materials

In general, don't. It's far better to ventilate the darkroom than to wear a respirator. Easier on you (respirators are stressful to wear, as everyone ought to know after more than a year of COVID-19),...
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  • 6,158
13 votes
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Home B&W developing - very dark areas gone white

For me this looks like pseudo-solarisation. Also known as Sabattier effect. This can happen when film or photo paper are exposed to light after the start of development. It can be counted as artistic ...
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  • 9,475
12 votes

Can 35 mm film which went through a washing machine still be developed?

The film is probably fine, but definitely heed rackandboneman's comment about informing a lab about what happened. They may not take your film if it's contaminated. Water is certainly not going to ...
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  • 5,412
11 votes

How can I salvage a roll of water-damaged film?

As a veteran of the photofinishing industry, receiving wet film or film that had been wet was not uncommon. Usually rolls in clothing that went through the washing machine and/or boat or swimming ...
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  • 36.3k
11 votes
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What caused these strange patches on developed film negatives?

When we develop film, we must take care that the film is properly wound on the developing spool. This is an example of improper loading of the spool. On the reel, the film is coiled so that it can be ...
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  • 36.3k
11 votes

My negative is completely black and opaque — is this a camera problem, my mistake, or the lab's?

what if it's the store's mistake? With regard to this specific question, you will almost certainly find in the terms & conditions of the film developing service that in the case of error on their ...
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  • 9,192
10 votes
Accepted

What is this old film and how do I handle it?

Roll film of this size and type is suppled on a spool. The film is wound on a spool and protected from light exposure by an opaque paper over-rap call a backing paper. The roll, film and backing is ...
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  • 36.3k
10 votes

50+ year old ilford film

The image captured on photographic film is called a latent image. Translated, this means an image invisible unless somehow treated to cause a visible image to appear. The latent image is best when the ...
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  • 36.3k
10 votes
Accepted

Can 35mm film be developed if it's been ripped out of canister?

Film works by changing when exposed to light. If you have exposed the film to light, then any information it captured will be lost as the film will have been completely over-exposed and washed out. ...
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  • 34.4k
10 votes

Can I develop my b&w film a year after shooting it?

Last I checked Germany was rather up there in the photography world. But anyway, I would be more concerned about carrying undeveloped film back through air travel. X-rays and film do not mix. You ...
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