Just finished a 16mm job in which we had a problem with what I guess must be cinch marks. Here's the info :
Arri SR3 advanced (my personal camera, never had a scratch problem of ANY kind)
(3) different 400' SR3 mags used
Shooting Super 16mm 1.66 aspect ration
(2) different stocks (Kodak 7218, 7205)
(2) different AC's loaded film over the 2 day shoot.
No higher frame rate than 30FPS
The marks appear on the left 1/4-1/3 of the image and are at a 45 degree angle.
They are blue, multiple, fine lines.
They are very obvious in black/dark image areas, but are gone in any bright areas.
They appear RANDOMLY throughout all four rolls. (i.e.: one roll the heads and tails have bad marks, but the center is fine, another roll the heads and tails are fine and the center has marks)---I'm talking the DARK areas are clean, so it's not that they are just burning out in a bright spot.
I haven't had a chance to do any kind of follow-up film test to see if the camera is the culprit, but being as it's over all 3 mags, and I've never had a problem with this camera, I don't think it's my camera.
Film stock problems are also out, as we shot from this batch a few weeks earlier, and had no problems what so ever. The lab is saying "it's not us" of course, so am wondering where to go from here to get some answers.
Anyone have any ideas?
President, North American Camera, LLC
>>being as it's over all 3 mags... I don't think it's my camera.
>>Film stock problems are also out, as we shot from this batch... earlier
If its all over 3 mags, 2 AC's, etc... that would seem to indicate camera, lab, or stock, and not the mags themselves.
From the sounds of diagonal artifacts I'd rule out your SR3 alone - cameras tend to scratch straight. Even the loop guides in the mags would be difficult to cause that type of damage - nor a loop bottoming out. And cinch marks here sound like extreme cinching (sounds like you saw all different depths of colour layers, right ?).
I would pursue the fimstock issue. I had a similar case a few years back, Producer wanted to fire Focus Puller (who brought it to our attention upon a gate check so we could shoot a safety ! Go figure). I knew it wasn't camera, and my Loader also figured out that the lot #, relative to batch made sense that it could have been the filmstock. She even had a diagram of the large drum rolls and how they're cut/divided into batches/lots and so on.
In the end, the film manufacturer researched it and immediately found a problem, pulled the remainder of that batch, and the problem was solved. They also offered us more than the usual replacement stock and to pay for the lab/re-telecine of any re-shoots that might be necessary. Very gracious considering that they technically only owe you a roll for each damaged roll.
So don't rule out the raw stock along damage that might've occurred at the lab.
LA based DP
If it's blue on the positive (tk) there is a chance it might be done at the lab.
Make a test and develop elsewhere
Oh, also: if you shot Kodak they have a great facility that will take your negative, analyse it and tell you exactly went wrong. The bad news is that a few frames will be destroyed during the process.
Check your local rep.
Bob Donnelly wrote:
>>The marks appear on the left 1/4-1/3 of the image and are at a 45 >>degree angle. They are blue, multiple, fine lines. They are very >>obvious in black/dark image areas, areas.
Bob, when you say in the image area do you mean only inside the frame lines? Or do these marks appear across the negative into the perfs or across the frame line?
I'm assuming the film was transferred to video rather than printed, but has anyone looked at the neg?
It doesn't sound like cinch marks, at least none that I'm familiar with.
>>They appear RANDOMLY throughout all four rolls. (i.e.: one roll the >>heads and tails have bad marks, but the center is fine, another roll the >>heads and tails are fine and the center has marks)---
Really doesn't sound like cinching.
>>Film stock problems are also out, as we shot from this batch a few >>weeks earlier, and had no problems what so ever.
I wouldn't rule out the stock until the neg has been examined.
>>The lab is saying "it's not us" of course, so am wondering where to go >>from here to get some answers. Anyone have any ideas?
Have the neg examined by Kodak.
IA 600 DP
A thought.... When the lab processed your film they will tie the rolls together to go through the processor. If the cinch marks continue from the first frame of "non-exposed" film from threading the film and continue through the run out of each roll then probably the labs fault.
Also Kodak can tell in their lab if the cinch marks were made before or after exposure.
Give the ends off each roll and they can tell when it happened.
As a general interest note on the subject here is a breakdown of indicative marking and its general prognosis.
When viewing a PRINT :
Brown, Orange or Blue indicate predevelopment emulsion Scratches, which are sealed when developed - corrected by TK (Paint Box)
A WHITE scratch indicates a Negative Cell scratch caused anytime, a very deep cut which a liquid gate print will remove.
A MAGENTA scratch indicates a pre dev print scratch on the positive (IP)
A BLACK scratch indicates a Positive Cell scratch.
BLUE spots or dots are the result of pressure marks.
SPARKLES are generally caused by dusty or dirty loading conditions (changing bag)
Intermittent scratches are sometimes the result of magazine loop problems.
Wavy line scratches are considered to be lab faults as the film will move left to right on the rollers.
Dean Slotar | One8Six Cape Town
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