Cleaning black and white negatives

Discussion in 'Leica and Rangefinders' started by mf_zimicki, Mar 24, 2003.

  1. Help! I have recently found an old stash of B&W negs in my
    grandfathers basement. The condition ranges from mostly clean and
    flat to quite dirty and some are slightly stuck together. They at
    first glance have some great images on them. I would guess that they
    range in age from the 1920's to the 1940's. All kinds of sizes. Any
    suggestions on how to clean and flatten them to be able to get some
    prints? Are there any suggested reading materials? Thanks Mf Zimicki
  2. I'm not really sure about the age consideration here, but when I need to clean really dirty negatives, I usually hand-soak them in some Photo-Flo solution for about a minute and then hand-squeegee with my fingers. You can try flattening underneath a book, but negatives that old are unlikely to lose their curl.
  3. wash them for about an hour in 70 degree (F) water with a decent flow rate. then treat with photo flow and hang them to dry. weight the bottom and they should dry fairly flat. be very careful that there are np particulates in the water when you squeegee them. they will scratch very easily.
  4. Not that the answers are not good so far here but you might want to try asking the Black & White forum also on photonet.
  5. Wash them in running tap water, then final rinse in DISTILLED water with a dash of PHOTO FLOW.

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