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C'mon guys, I was kidding about the video camera.

 

I don't have a video camera as a matter of fact. I have 2 8mm cameras and one super 8. I have lots of rolls of film, almost all Kodachrome, but I have not shot motion picture for years.

 

I do agree with a lot of your comments, but regarding Kodachrome, there were a lot of marketing efforts to sell it, and no one would buy it. EK knows there is a loyal core market for it, but the big problem is quality processing.

 

No one wants to do it, and even EK has trouble keeping the process in control. The pH is high and the solutions are unstable and prone to decompose. It simply costs a processor too much money for the amount of film coming in. The film processors cannot make a profit even if EK could make a profit making the film.

 

If the consent decree had never been made, and EK was allowed to sell film with processing included (other companies can still do this BTW) then this all would be a moot point and Kodachrome would probably still be going strong.

 

If you remember the Pavelle and Ansco cases I mentioned above, they alone devastated a decade of plans by Kodak WRT processing chemistry. EK was essentially fined for introducing the C41, E6 or E4 (I can't remember which), and Ektaprint 3 processes and told not to do it again unless certain conditions were met, and therefore RA procssing was delayed and several other process changes never came about. (this is a gross over simplification of the actual cases)

 

As one example, EK had a rapid access color paper with virtually zero pollution undergoing research but decided not to introduce it due to the court decision. This was in about 1975, over 15 years before RA chemistry. Among other things, this process used CD6 instead of CD3. The actual histories of many of these things will never be written but would open your eyes and perhaps shock you into better understanding or maybe sympathy for the 'hands tied' position that EK was often forced to adopt.

 

I could say more, but I would probably get in a lot of trouble. Oh well. I've probably said too much already.

 

Ron Mowrey

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Perhaps the current house cleaning of deadwood product line is compensation for the approach Kodak took in the past. In my long-ago youth I was a fan of the 110 Pocket Instamatic system. I was one of the "serious" users who shot almost entirely Kodachrome slides with the very nice Pocket Instamatic 60 (you can see 50 or so painstakingly-scanned examples <a href="http://www.tedsimages.com/text/eurfd.htm">here</a>). Although the market for 110 was very clearly the snapshooter who made 3.5x5-inch prints from grainy negatives, someone at Kodak was clearly a visionary who had a well-conceived concept of a "system" that included slide projectors. And those slides looked very nice indeed with those projectors.

 

<p>Even more visionary was the fact that they kept Kodachrome (and Ektachrome) slide film in production for ten years, despite the fact that the 110 slide proved economically stillborn from the outset. Today's MBA Suits would probably have pulled it after a month of non-spectacular sales. When they discontinued 110 Kodachrome in 1982, I felt as many people here do now about the demise of their favorite niche product. But I really wasn't surprised.

 

<p>I don't think any company in today's competitive environment (made more competitive by the need of executives to view Wall Street analysts as their primary "customers") could keep a money-losing product like 110-format slide film on the market for ten months, let alone ten years. But somewhere, I think, there needs to be some happy medium that encourages visionaries to dream while keeping the results grounded in reality.

 

<p>Now that I've grown up (physically if not mentally), ISO 400 color negative film has replaced my former 110 Kodachrome. For the moment, Kodak has the best such product in Portra 400UC/Ultra Color 400. I am not exactly happy that over the last four years I have had to switch from Supra 400 to Portra 400UC to Ultra Color 400 (with a detour to High Definition 400). Yes, I'm told that Portra 400UC and Ultra Color 400 are the same film, but that information did not come from any official Kodak representative (indeed, the Kodak representative I e-mailed told me that High Definition 400 was the same as Portra 400UC). No matter how good the product is, I'm not happy that its manufacturer jerks us around so much-- will they replace Ultra Color 400UC with another film (or another name) just as we've figured out how to scan it properly? That's not to bash Kodak per se, but it seems their management is now 180 degrees away from their predecessors who gave us 110 Kodachrome and let it lose money for a decade. Neither extreme is good.

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The Dynachrome story is interesting if it came about because Kodak's patents had expired. Doesn't this mean that anybody who thought it economically viable could still produce a Kodachrome clone? Maybe some devoted group of Kodachrome fanciers should float a new company.

 

I shot some 3M Dynachrome back in the 60's, and thought it stank. Maybe the processing was bad, or the film was old, but it had poor, unsaturated color, and faded fast. The one virtue I remember was that, like Kodachrome, it had juicy greens. Oh, and it was very cheap.

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Ted;

 

Very nice pictures.

 

I was once told that in the USA, a company was required by law to support a proprietary product for a given number of years? That is why you can buy parts for a 20 year old Chevy or Ford. They must make parts in support of a product for a fixed number of years, so that that product can be kept operational for an expected 'lifetime'.

 

I got that from a car dealer when I was thinking of buying an old car.

 

Well anyhow, IDK if it is true. Never looked into it, but maybe EK is just obeying the law.

 

I prefer to think of them as being altruistic as you feel, but maybe they are just toeing the line for the Feds.

 

Thanks for sharing your pictures.

 

Ron Mowrey

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Matthew;

 

AFAIK, Dynachrome was identical to Kodachrome as was Sakura color.

 

When a patent expires, anyone is free to use the technology.

 

This is my understanding of what took place. A group of engineers from EK left and formed Dyanchrome and made film using the EK formulas when the patents expired.

 

When the market began declining, they went bankrupt, even though they had been bought by 3M. The decline affected them as well as EK when Kodachrome began dying. It also affected Sakura. (Konishiroku or Konica).

 

So, right now, anyone can manufacture Kodachrome like films, including Fuji. Free and clear. But, no one wants to. Doesn't that tell you something?

 

Ron Mowrey

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Ron,

 

I sure do hope your joking about Super 8. Love the stuff. Anyway since Kodachrome will go out with a year, how long will labs support processing this stuff before they shut down? 1 year? 5 years? I'm asking because it will depend on how much I stock up on 35mm and Super 8mm film to put in the freezer. I don't want to go overboard since I have 120 PKR in my freezer that I can't do a thing with now because of processing. Any ideas?

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16mm. Blaa. 70mm is the stuff man. :) Top that one. :P I used to shoot on 16mm, but it became too expensive to shoot with Kodachrome not being offered anymore in that, and then having to do positives from negs. I just like to shoot and watch what went through the camera. My old Bolex barely got any use. Just for fun I priced out a rental on the Panavision 70mm system for a day. It didn't cost much more then the Panavision Platinum Panaflex system per day. Now IMAX- now we're talking!

 

Seriously I think Kodachrome will be sorely missed once it goes and can't be processed anymore. I can just see Ebay and its Kodachrome auctions now. Some poor guy a year ago bought 83 rolls of PKR 120. I really wonder what he ended up doing with it all.

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I still think everyone is premature in this discussion...Kodak has made no announcement as of yet about stopping Kodachrome production...they are reducing their costs by not processing it themselves in the U.S. anymore, so one would think it would be around, at least a little while longer...if they do discontinue it, there will be a fair number of Super 8 users angry as well. As far as Kodak keeping it's word about supporting old formats, I was just informed by my Camera Shop dealer that Kodak told him they would no longer be able to supply Carousel trays ....Kodak had previously told the camera store that they would supply ancillary projector supplies for at least 2 years after this July, then abruptly stopped everything...just an FYI.
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Better get over to www.bhphoto.com quick! They still have approximately 30 of each type in stock!

 

I thought Kodak sold the rights for the carousel projectors to a German company. There was a press release on that, but I can't find it at the moment - the Kodak search engine is DOWN!

 

Robert Johnson

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AFAIK, EK has no plans to drop Kodachrome.

 

If it were to be dropped, the process lines would be continued until at least the expiration date of the last batch of film produced had passed plus some extra time for insurance to catch late submissions to labs.

 

I worked with the guys who did research on Kodachrome. They were very enthusiastic about it, kind of like all of you. They loved it, but they were disappointed when the product came out and was not recieved with enthusiasm by the customers.

 

I remember how much the public complained about how bad Kodachrome 25 was over the old classic Kodachrome 10 (those are ASA ratings) and then they complained at how bad the Kodachrome 64 was vs the 'classic' 25 speed. No one was ever happy. I guess now the 64 is 'classic' Kodachrome.

 

Ron Mowrey

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The flap I got into was over the transistion from Kodachrome II (asa25 old K-12 process) to Kodachrome 25 (asa 25 K-14 process) in the early 1970's. Alot of us horded bricks of Kodachrome II; of the same emulsion number. <BR><BR>The initial Kodachrome 25 I shot was ALOT worse in color accuracy in the greens; when it first came out. We used the older film; kept frozen; until the color weirdness was worked out. At a Nikon School then; one instructor worked for National Geographic; they were hording known bricks of Kodachrome II also.( abit funny; since that is what me and my friends were doing on a smaller basis; to regain color control). It took awhile for some of us to gain confidence; in Kodachrome 25; that was abit bad when it first came out.
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<i>If it were to be dropped, the process lines would be continued until at least the expiration date of the last batch of film produced had passed plus some extra time for insurance to catch late submissions to labs. </i>

<p>

Guess what?

<P>

The last Kodak process line in the USA will be closing down this month. Fair Lawn New Jersey. It may already be shut down.

<p>

That leaves exactly ONE Kodak process line for K14 in the world, in Switzerland.

<p>

With the one private lab in Japan, and the one private lab in Kansas, that will mean that there are only three K14 labs in existence, and only one of them will be run by Kodak, and that will be in Switzerland.

<p>

They have already sent out written notice that they will no longer sell or process Kodachrome in Australia. They shut the Australian lab down a couple of months ago, and last month they announced that they are no longer selling the film on that continent.

<p>

So for all intents and purposes, they <i>have</I> shut down the last process line (their own) in North America.

<p>

Duanes in Kansas is "it" for everyone in the USA, Canada, Mexico, South America, etc.

<p>

If their machine goes down for repair, well... I don't want to think about what happens.

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<i>The flap I got into was over the transistion from Kodachrome II (asa25 old K-12 process) to Kodachrome 25 (asa 25 K-14 process) in the early 1970's. Alot of us horded bricks of Kodachrome II; of the same emulsion number. </i>

<p>

I remember that period, but I was among the ones who liked KII better than "Kodachrome" (ASA 10).

<p>

I do find it humorous that people complain that ASA 25 is "too slow" to use, especially for handheld use. I used ASA 10, handheld, and got razor sharp results. People have gotten spoiled, and the easier the tools get to use, the worse the results that are turned out.

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Reuben;

 

I know that there is only one lab in the USA. I also know that, as Kelly seconded, law requires that a lab remain open to service all film processing requests for a suitable length of time. EK will see to it somehow.

 

As a matter of fact, EK does have a Kodachrome processing line at Kodak Park for process QC on the chemistry and film still being made. And if that fails, there is the Research Lab Dip-N-Dunk Kodachrome processor that can revived in a pinch.

 

I guess you are not reading the posts. :-(

 

Hmmm, come to think of it, I know that you aren't, or you would be able to spell my name. See your posts on the other Kodachrome thread.

 

Ron Mowrey (if you wish to be formal Reuben its Rowland)

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Ron,

 

I know this has been bantered around a lot, but I thought I'd ask. A seller on Ebay is selling off 35 rolls of PKR 120. When I emailed him saying he should put a disclaimer in his auction that the film can no longer be developed in color, he came back stating he's been told some lab in Massachusetts does a run every quarter or so to do this stuff. Is there any validity or confirmation on this? I have 4 rolls of this I'd like to use up if this is the case, but I find what he says hard to believe given no one else seems to know about it. He said they keep saying they've done a final run, but end up doing another one every so often due to demand. Any ideas on this one?

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Also Ron- what would happen to PKR if it was put through C-41? I heard there may be a Remjet type layer or so that is a problem. Others state its a B&W film technically and can be treated as such with special treatment.
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<blockquote><i>I know that there is only one lab in the USA. I also know that, as Kelly seconded, law requires that a lab remain open to service all film processing requests for a suitable length of time. EK will see to it somehow.

<p>

As a matter of fact, EK does have a Kodachrome processing line at Kodak Park for process QC on the chemistry and film still being made. And if that fails, there is the Research Lab Dip-N-Dunk Kodachrome processor that can revived in a pinch.

<p>

I guess you are not reading the posts. :-(

<p>

Hmmm, come to think of it, I know that you aren't, or you would be able to spell my name. See your posts on the other Kodachrome thread.

<p>

Ron Mowrey (if you wish to be formal Reuben its Rowland)</i></blockquote>

<p>

Wowie. Didn't mean to piss in your wheaties. Didn't think I <i>did</I> piss in your wheaties!

<P>

I guess all I'll say is "pardon the typo", and "go look up what they say about people who engage in Internet spelling flames", and then I'll get to what's left of my point ;) and say that I am unaware of any law requiring film manufacturers to supply ANY photofinishing services at all!

<p>

If you know of anything to the contrary, please give me the contact information for the company owned labs for EFKE, ORWO, AGFA, Ilford, and for good measure, Smena.

<p>

Thanks! ;)

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<i>what would happen to PKR if it was put through C-41?</I>

<p>

I'll jump in here while (I won't type his name, lest I make another typo and send him into orbit again ;) his blood pressure cools off. ;)

<p>

If you run Kodachrome through any chromogenic process (E6/C41/etc) you will get a clear film base.

<p>

No dye couplers = no dye image, and bleach/fix = no silver image. The combination = no image.

<p>

You can run Kodachrome through a B&W reversal process and get nice B&W slides, or, you can run it through a B&W negative process, and get B&W negatives with a yellow tint, due to the colloidal silver yellow filter layer (removed in the reversal process's silver bleach stage).

<p>

You can try running it through a light bleach (farmer's reducer, maybe diluted) and cross your fingers. If you leave it in too long, you'll bleach out your shadow detail along with the yellow filter layer.

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Reuben;

 

I don't like wheaties. Geez man, don't you have a sense of humor?

 

Ah well, as for the 'law', it only requires support for a given length of time, not forever, and it is a US law. IDK whether it is a law anywhere else in the world. This reasonable length of time for automobiles would be the expected lifetime of the car, and for film it would be the time to expiration of the last roll of film manufactured plus a shipping margin for delivery to the lab. That is my guess anyhow. I did qualify that statement in that I have no factual proof, but it was verified by at least one other post.

 

But you missed the point that EK still has a processing facility right now today to test their own production of Kodachrome film and Kodachrome chemistry. That will run until the last roll of Kodachrome rolls off the production line. Having said that, I would add that EK would probably make arrangements to process any late arrivals.

 

As far as PKR, I didn't know you could no longer get it processed. As part of the Kodachrome family, it should be processable somewhere AFAIK.

 

In any event, if Kodachrome production stops, I'll give you the formulas so you can mix your own. I'll even give you sources for the couplers and the CD6. Ok? Then you can run your own to your hearts content. You do know that you can make 3 separation exposures on Tri X or other film, and then process in a Kodachrome type process in your own darkroom and then by registering the individual color separations, you create your own Kodachrome.. Right?

 

BTW, an answer to another post somewhere. Kodachrome is not a hard film to manufacture when compared to Ektachrome or the negative color films. It is essentially a B&W film with many layers and thats about it. It is the process that is hard.

 

Running any Kodachrome family of film through any other color process will result in clear support with patches of rem-jet clinging to the back, if it had rem-jet. The rem-jet will also mess up any other color film in the same process, so if you send Kodachrome to your favorite photofinisher, and he accidentally processes it in C-41 or E6, you will no longer be his favorite customer.

 

One of the known defects of a bad Kodachrome process are black dots on the transparencies due to improper removal of rem-jet and the suspension of the black material in processing solutions. It then adheres to the film and dries there.

 

Don't worry Reuben, I'm not mad nor do I want to 'flame' you or anyone else. I was just amused that you claimed I had not read your post, but you misspelled my name in several of your posts. I was just sitting here laughing as I typed because of the irony.

 

Best wishes to you, and I did like your comment about me, and thank you for it. I also agree with a good bit of what you have said.

 

Ron Mowrey

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I just e-mailed Kodak asking them about the fate of Kodachrome and Techincal Pan. They did, in fact, give me the straight answer that Technical Pan is going to the chopping block, but as to my question about Kodachrome, they gave me a very ambiguous answer. Read it for youself.

 

 

 

Greetings Andrew,

 

We received your e-mail regarding KODACHROME Film and appreciate the

opportunity to comment.

 

We can neither confirm nor deny rumors relating to new product

development or potential changes to current products. Eastman Kodak

Company is constantly researching and developing many new items. If a

new product were to be made available, or an existing one changed or

discontinued, it would be formally announced and distributed to dealers

just as other new products are.

 

Qualex, Inc has announced plans to close its film processing lab in Fair

Lawn, NJ in September, 2004. As a result of this decision, all Kodak

mailers will be sent to District Photo in Beltsville, Maryland for

processing. District Photo will process all mailer orders, except those

for KODACHROME Film, in their Beltsville facility. KODACHROME Film will

be forwarded to Dwayne's Photo in Parsons, Kansas for processing, where

orders will now be mounted in cardboard mounts only. Service times for

mailers will not be impacted by this change.

 

If you need to reply to this e-mail, please reply 'with history'

(include any previous e-mail) so we can expedite our service to you. If

you should have future questions on Kodak products or services, please

be sure to revisit our Web site as we are continually adding information

to enhance our service.

 

Sincerely,

 

Dale P.

 

Kodak Information and Technical Support

 

 

 

Such a nice, diplomatic answer, don't you think? At least they answered my question about Qualex closing down it's New Jersey facility. Wonder why they're not up front with me. Rowland, can you shed some light on this?

 

On another note...

 

In my un-professional opinion, I do think that it is the K-14 processing that keeps Kodachrome from being used more widely. I believe that many people who have tried it may like its color palatte, but just can't stand the inconvienience of processing. Kodachrome used to have a huge hold on the color slide market (indeed, the color film market in general). What happened? E-3 is what happened. With it's MUCH easier processing, the market for Kodachrome slowly began to decrease. As we all know, E-3 was followed by E-4, and E-4 by E-6, the current standard in slide processing. So, if Kodak were to do some R&D and come up with and E-6 process film with the same color palatte as Kodachrome (Maybe call it "Ektachrome-K"), would you use it? I would. It would become so much more compatable with today's photography. We could get it processed along with all of our other slide films, and scan it with digital-ICE, just to name a few. All while maintaining that distinct color. Just a thought. What do you all think?

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I did a Google search and I could only find this remark from Kodak in 2001 concerning Kodachrome 120 processing:

 

From: william.lane@kodak.com

To: kodachrome@kjsl.com

Subject: [Kodachrome] Re: Kodachrome 120 processing

Send reply to: kodachrome@kjsl.com

Date sent: Tue, 21 Aug 2001 09:49:57 -0400

 

 

 

 

From: William S. Lane

A short time ago, Dennis Schulmerich, Kodak's Kodachrome film Product

Manager began participating in the Kodachrome@kjsl.com chat room. One

additional Kodak person may participate in the discussion. Bill Lane is member

of Kodak's Marketing Technical Support (MTS) organization. Bill is responsible

for Kodachrome film processing and film issues on a world-wide basis. Bill has

spent a significant portion of his Kodak career in activities related to

Kodachrome film and processing and is a very good resource on technical issues.

The chat room contains many knowledgeable individuals and most issues are

resolved without outside intervention. We may address issues which do not

appear to be resolved within the group which deal with the Kodachrome film

products and processing. We will steer clear of discussions involving

techniques and equipment.

The Wimbledon laboratory still has the machine which they used to process the

120 format Kodachrome film. They are storing the 120 format film and will

recharge the machine with chemistry for one last processing run on October 1,

2001.

The other format Kodachrome films submitted for processing in the UK are

transshipped to the laboratory in Lausanne, Switzerland. The Lausanne

laboratory does not have the capability to process the 120 format films. These

must go to Wimbledon.

The Wimbledon site was the last location equipped to process the 120 format

film. There is no location in the US that has the capability to process this

film and produce color transparencies.

 

 

 

 

 

Ron Schwarz <hacksaw-1tooth@killtrees.com> on 08/06/2001 06:12:19 PM

 

Please respond to kodachrome@kjsl.com

 

To: kodachrome@kjsl.com

cc: (bcc: William S. Lane/563370/EKC)

Subject: [Kodachrome] Re: Kodachrome 120 processing

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Scott;

 

Sorry, I missed that 120 in the post. Of course, you are right.

 

Andrew;

 

EK, like any company probably cannot or has not made a definite decision. For legal reasons, they cannot make a statement about what might be, and they don't want to come right out and say anything that would damage the product line before a decision is made.

 

You are correct about the E6 process. And, an Ektachrome that was like Kodachrome would scan as poorly. You see, the "unit neutral" has a strong cyan bias in Kodachrome (go look on the EK web site for dye curves). This cyan bias means that neutrals are bluish, and it also means that greens are 'juicy', but the film scans poorly. It is one of the tradeoffs of making a reversal film. OTOH, the factors which made the unit neutral the way it is also contribute to the superb dye stability of the film. So there you are. Win some, lose some. Oh, and that factor that does this probably cannot be pulled off in Ektachrome type films due to the chemistry involved.

 

Dyes in conventional films are not crystalline, but Kodachrome dyes are crystalline due to the way they form. The dye forms and precipitates out in the film as a dye crystal. Something that cannot be achieved in any other color process.

 

It would be more possible to achieve this type of color rendition using a specialized neg-pos system through manipulation of curve shapes, interimage, and masking, but Eric and Scott won't allow EK to do that with a neg-pos system. ;-D (that was a joke that I hope Eric and Scott appreciate, but no offense was intended.) Anyhow, that would be moot as the market would be so small.

 

Ron Mowrey

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