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Thread: Cleaning old slides

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    Ausphotography Regular Boo53's Avatar
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    Cleaning old slides

    I have a friend who has started scanning some old slides, some of them will be quite historic I'm sure, but he has lived in the tropics for a long time and some have mildew and other gunge on them.

    He's wondering how to clean them before scanning, without damaging them.

    We live in central Vic where mildew is not a problem, so I don't have a clue how he could do it.

    Any advice please

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    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular ameerat42's Avatar
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    Mildew, not if it's now part of the substrate, else light mechanical pressure and a neutral fluid, but I don't think water.
    Other gunge, depending on nature of gunge, as above, but lightly.

    I cleaned silt from a flood off some once. The flood cleaned the emulsion off the slides, mostly.

    Maybe talk to some film restorers (archives??).
    Am.
    Last edited by ameerat42; 10-09-2013 at 1:35pm.
    CC, Image editing OK.

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    I like my computer more than my camera farmmax's Avatar
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    I asked the National Film and Sound Archive that question many years ago , when I had the same problem. They kindly wrote me a detailed reply. Unfortunately that reply is not on this computer. Have a look around their website and see if the information is now published on there. If not, drop them an email and hopefully they will tell you what to do.

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    Thanks guys, I've suggested a call to the NFSA to the slides owner.

    Some of the shots of his that I've seen go well back to the 1950's in central Australia where his family has held a number of large pastoral leases, so some of them could be regarded as being of national significance. Scenes of the operation of the stations, down range preparations for woomera launches, etc:

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    A. P's Culinary Indiscriminant mongo's Avatar
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    mongo has cleaned this sort of slide problem before. Depending on the severity , sometimes it is best not to use a fluid at all. Try an experiment on a non critical slide by cleaning it with a thick household micro fibre cloth. Mongo is talking about the ones that almost look like terry towelling and not those useless thin things we use on our reading glasses. By all means, consult the NFSA.

    Last point - and Mongo has said this a dozen times now for sure, no one Mongo knows "scans" slides any longer and haven't for years. The only quick and best way to do this is to photograph them straight into a digital camera. If you search this site you will find stuff on this including photographs of the set up to do so. Good luck
    Nikon and Pentax user



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