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Thread: Air travel with sheet film loaded vs. in boxes

  1. #1

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    Air travel with sheet film loaded vs. in boxes

    Hi,

    I have some unused sheets of film in a couple of holders and go on air travel tomorrow. Is it safer to unload the holders and put the sheets pack in the original cardboard box? Or doesn't it matter, which material is above/below the film while going through carry on x-ray? Cardboard boxes are safe for the 160ISO I figured out already.

    thomas.

  2. #2

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    Re: Air travel with sheet film loaded vs. in boxes

    just leave them in the holders. the more you handle the film the higher the risk of scratching it.
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  3. #3

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    Re: Air travel with sheet film loaded vs. in boxes

    Either way, with LF equipment calculate extra time for security at check-in. They can be VERY suspicious of your strange apparatus.

  4. #4

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    Re: Air travel with sheet film loaded vs. in boxes

    I don't worry about the check-in xray any more but back when I did I used to put a couple boxes of 4x5 film in my back pockets and walk them through the metal detector. If you remove the aluminum foil, cardboard, and any other stuff that's included in the original packaging you can about double the capacity of a 25 sheet box of 4x5 film. So if you put one box in each back pocket you can carry almost 100 sheets on board without ever going through any xray and without dealing with security. And the film holders can then go in your suitcase, leaving more room in your carry-on luggage for cameras, lenses, etc. to eliminate the risk of loss.
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  5. #5
    おせわに なります! Andrew O'Neill's Avatar
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    Re: Air travel with sheet film loaded vs. in boxes

    Why handle them more than need be? Leave them in the holders. Lay them side-by-side on the conveyer belt and then stick them back in your carry on and Bob's your uncle.

  6. #6

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    Re: Air travel with sheet film loaded vs. in boxes

    Leave them in the holders. About 5 film holder fit in a 1 gallon ziplock bag. I have never had any problems with this and I leave the holders inside my photo backpack.

    If you take a lot of film, then you can have both the film boxes and holders go through x-ray at the walk-through but the x-ray in checked baggage can fog the film.

    When I travel with a lot of film, I take some empty film boxes in which I put 9 4x5 pieces or mat board (or the cardboard that is packed in film boxes). When I unload my film holders, I put the first exposed sheet in first, emulsion side up. That way, I end up processing in exact reverse order and I can keep track of where I am. Also, I insert a sheet of the cardboard every 6th sheet (I process 6 sheets at a time in BTZS tubes). That gives me a double check on where I am in a large run. Because I process each sheet for a unique development time, I need to keep track of which sheet is which and this way I am able to do so. A 50 sheet box of TMY-2 will hold 9 sets of 6 sheets or 54 sheets.

  7. #7
    David Gainer
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    Re: Air travel with sheet film loaded vs. in boxes

    Haven't had a problem. Either in film boxes or holders the film won't fog, and they are just as likely to ask to open the box as the holder (which isn't very likely). As long as it goes through the X-Ray and doesn't look suspicious they're likely to just ignore it.

  8. #8
    multi format
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    Re: Air travel with sheet film loaded vs. in boxes

    i have had tons of film in bag-mags, roll film backs and in boxes go through carry-on/xrays.
    the only thing that gave me trouble was a graflex slr. because each shutter
    openings are edged with metal they had no idea what it was when it went through
    the xray scan / belt. they asked me to open my case, they did their swabby-thingy
    and asked me what the heck it was. i opened the camera, demonstrated it, and then they all giggled.
    in the end, it wasn't a problem at all, but entertainment ...

  9. #9

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    Re: Air travel with sheet film loaded vs. in boxes

    I asked for hand-check in the last two years, and they seemed to be ok and nice enough to do it. The only problem I encountered was a recent trip. When the inspector who was hand checking my two boxes of 8x10 color films opened the partially used box with 26 sheets of film! I should have taped it up beforehand!

  10. #10

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    Re: Air travel with sheet film loaded vs. in boxes

    For many years the only thing I could count on with U.S. Customs was inconsistency. I'm afraid the same is true of the airport inspectors.

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