View Full Version : scratches and marks

24-Sep-2011, 07:14
it IS the film

I'm not the only one to notice this:

EVERY sheet of ilford I've ever developed has marks and scratches---EXCEPT if you take SPECIAL precautions to develop them...must be very gentle and take a lot of extra time.....

almost NO sheets of kodak have any such problems. Kodak can be developed quickly without special precautions with no muss and no fuss and no screw ups.

Kodak is more expensive, but my time is more valuable than any money.

my solution--use kodak--this is a better value for me--I "waste" more money, but I gain more time or waste less time.

other people, to whom their time is less valuable--use ilford--it's your time--to you, money is more valuable than time.

that's my conclusion.

(after another night of deveoping, hanging up to dry and a morning of waking up to marks and scratches on ilford...while waiting for my kodak shipment to arrive....waiting waiting waiting....)

24-Sep-2011, 07:37
If it IS the film, how come then that "special precautions to develop" it take the scratches and marks away? Isn't it then the development way that scratches the film? How come you don't see the contradiction in your reasoning?

Gem Singer
24-Sep-2011, 07:38
Both Ilford and Kodak utilize a scratch resistant hard gelatin emulsion.

For the past 31 years i have been using Ilford film, handling and developing it with reasonable care.

I have never experienced the problem you are describing.

Obviously, Ilford is not your friend. Stay with Kodak.

Please don't blame Ilford for your sloppy technique.

Greg Lockrey
24-Sep-2011, 09:50
Kodak does make a "scratch remover" liquid that you can bush on to minimize them. Diffusion light sources minimize them too.

24-Sep-2011, 14:41
OH...right..you people don't DO what I do...that's why...

FACT is: given the SAME handling, 8x10 and much more so for 11x14 sized kodak film vs 8x10 and 11x14 sized ilford film, REVERSAL processed in drums and trays shows that the kodak film in that size is for sure mucho more scratch resistant...ALSO..I'm talking about scratches NOT on the emulsion side---I pretty much guarantee that I'd find scratches on YOUR film too...my standards are much higher because I do NOT make prints...I make large transparencys...THAT's why you don't see them...LOOK at your film...I guarantee you got scratches if you use ilford large sizes...maybe not 4x5...but 8x10---almost guaranteed...the BASE side folks...the side that slides in the film holders....and the tubes and trays...look at it angled in the light...YOU GOT SCRATCHES...if you don't see them I bet I will.

SO--with them caveats---that's my FACTual observation---EXACT same handling with the film...I'm even gentler with the ilford I think....

long story short....ilford is very easy to damage if it doesn't COME damaged already---I've had some diagonal scratches...where the hell did THEM come from...the holders and trays load one way, the tube loads the other---all perpendicular from the edges....

just saying--if you do what I do and have standards like i have, you'll come to the same conclusion...I'm trying keep people from wasting their time....it's less time and GUARANTEED quality with kodak....more time and a crap shoot with ilford in my experience.

if you disagree, then you are not doing what I"m doing or your standards are lower.

and I'm as gentle as I can be....and that' spretty gentle.

Gem Singer
24-Sep-2011, 15:44
Just out of curiosity, I went into my files and randomly pulled out half a dozen 8x10 negatives that were shot on Ilford HP-5+ film and tray processed.

Could not find a scratch on either the emulsion or base side of any of them.

I doubt that Ilford (now, Harman Tech) could have remained in business as long as they have if they were producing film that had scratches right out of the box.

I'm not saying it's impossible for Ilford (or any manufacturer) to occasionally put out a defective box of film, only that it's highly improbable.

Greg Blank
24-Sep-2011, 16:21
I agree with Gem, I have literally shot thousands of Ilford sheets of film and processed them. I do and did film testing professionally. If there was a consistent issue with the Film, Ilford would pull it from their stock room. Makers do QC and film is QC'd more stringently than any other product. Not saying occasional boxes don't bear defects, just that it is a lot less likely than what the OP suggests. Both Ilford and Kodak make fine products and this sort of thread borders on a troll (IMOP). Getting a bad box of film/paper is annoying I am sure, however unless a defect is repeatable (at least in the same box) it is deemed user error.

24-Sep-2011, 16:59
I can honestly say I scratch up Kodak film at least as much as I do Ilford. It must be your technique, as it is mine.

24-Sep-2011, 17:16
can anyone name a technique that scratches one film preferentially?

not a chance---how can I be preferentially ruining ilford (unconsciously) when I"m consciously TRYING to be gentle with it? not a chance.

of course, you all have SEEN my stuff....right.....

Bill Burk
24-Sep-2011, 17:48
Hi johnielvis,

Wilkinson's or Gillette?

24-Sep-2011, 17:51
shick....or what's that one..."I liked it so much I bought the company"......

REMINGTON....yeah...it's electrical like the roller base I use in the tubes.

24-Sep-2011, 18:08
In a similar vein:

G.E. ovens suck because I keep burning my hot pockets in them.

24-Sep-2011, 18:52
well....if GE ovens only burnt ONE kind of pizza puff...then I would NOT say that the ovens suk'd

only if they burnt them all....

Bill Burk
24-Sep-2011, 20:41
Hi johnielvis,

I work for Kodak and the opinions and positions I take are my own. I don't work in a film-related unit. My opinion is as an amateur.

I always believed, like you, that Kodak film was harder to scratch than other brands. Now that I only use Kodak 4x5 film, it is the only film I scratch.

After scratching two sheets out of six a few weeks back, I learned my lesson and took a lot more care last weekend.

With gloves and porcelain trays I leafed through the sheets. I deliberately separated the bottom sheet from the rest of the stack. I waved the sheet to make sure it was fully wet before starting the drag out from beneath and drop on top of the stack. I protected the stack with three or four fingers while dropping the bottom sheet on top. I did this action on each handling of every sheet from developer to stop to fix to wash.

Results: 20 sheets with zero scratches. Ironically, (or "of course") there are no clearly amazing negatives (pictorially challenged).

25-Sep-2011, 15:02
yeah---that's 4x5 film...4x5 and 11x14 are different animals loading, etc...there are much larger scratching forces on 11x14....trust me....the water pressure in tubes and trays is HUGE over such an area....so if you get a pressure differential when it's moving...SCRATCHEROO....

THAT's probably why everyone is so befuddled---you're not using the same size and judging the same quality standards....or not reading the other posts...everyone is just reading the first and jumping to the end....read them all and you'll see that i'm NOT getting scratches with the kodak...but I AM with the ilford....and this is no matter how I handle it....so there IS a difference...for sure for me. trust me. I'm not halucinating here...I can show you the differences on the film--you'll be able to see yourself...all with absolutely NO differences in processing / filmholder loading/unloading technique....hell...I think I even dropped a sheet of tmax on the floor once and it didn't get scratched...good stuff kodak.

Ivan J. Eberle
25-Sep-2011, 15:30
What little I know about one brand of emulsion being more susceptible to scratches is from once having had a camera from which--nearly every time I used Fuji films-- I got a longitudinal scratch on the non-emulsion side. Yet this never occurred with Kodak film in the same camera. Drove me nuts for awhile.

Films in question being Fujichrome, and Kodachrome.

Finally figured out that Kodachrome had the RemJet backing that was mechanically scrubbed off in processing; it took the brunt of the scratching in stride.
And it wasn't a scratch so much as a crease mark from the take-up "spool" of an auto rewinding 35mm camera.

What I do know is that this camera soon became a Kodachrome only camera.

Heck, maybe Johnielvis is onto something here. I'll take it at face value that Ilford is a little less scratch-resistant to his process, somehow. Stick with Kodak films if they're working for you... especially if you don't want to exhaustively hunt down the glitch or change your process.

Jim Jones
25-Sep-2011, 15:48
Kodak does make a "scratch remover" liquid that you can bush on to minimize them. Diffusion light sources minimize them too.

Messy stuff. By the time I've cleaned it off of the negative, I've done more damage than ever. If you don't have something like Edwal No Scratch, try turpentine or any other fluid with an index of refraction similar to the gelatine emulsion or film base.