There are many devices for taking care of film negatives to keep from curling and in a place easily accessible. Herewith is illustrated a method by which anyone can make a place for the negatives produced by his or her special film camera. The device is made up similar to a post card album with places cut through each leaf to admit each corner of the negatives. The leaves are made from white paper and when the negatives are in place the pictures made on them can easily be seen through to the white paper background. These leaves can be made up in regular book form, or tied together similar to a loose-leaf book, thus adding only such pages as the negatives on hand will require. --Contributed by H. D. Harkins, St. Louis, Mo.
Illustration: Negatives on White Paper Background
When making photographic prints from a negative, sometimes a drop of moisture will cause the print to stick to the gelatine film on the glass. Remove as much of the paper as can be readily torn off and soak the negative in a fresh hypo bath of 3 or 4 oz. hypo to 1 pt. of water for an hour or two. Then a little gentle rubbing with the finger-not the finger nail will remove anything adhering to the film. It may be found that the negative is not colored. If it is spotted at all, the negative must be washed for a few minutes and placed in a combined toning and fixing bath, which will remove the spots in a couple of hours. The negative must be well washed after going through the solutions to take away any trace of hypo.
The sketch herewith shows a washing box for negatives made from an ordinary wooden box. As can be seen, the grooved partition, A, is removable, and as several places are provided for its insertion, the tank can be made to accommodate anyone of several sizes of plates, says Camera Craft. The other stationary partition, B, which does not reach quite to the bottom of the tank, is placed immediately next to the end of the tank, leaving a channel between the two for the inflow of the wash water. A narrow, thin strip, C, is fastened to the bottom of the tank to keep the plates slightly raised, at the same time allowing a clearer flow of the water from the bottom upwards to the discharge.
Illustration: Washing Box
The water enters the narrow partition at the end, flows under the partitions B and A, then upward between and parallel to the surface of the plates, escaping at the opposite end over the top of the tank end, in which the upper part has been cut away for that purpose. The depth of this cut, in the upper part of the tank end, should allow the overflow to be a trifle higher than the width of the largest size plate for which the tank is fitted. Partition B being stationary, can be nailed in position permanently, allowing the bottom edge to clear the bottom of the tank the desired distance. Partition A being movable should have attached to its bottom edge a couple of nails, D, or better still, wooden pegs, which will keep it also above the bottom of the tank at the desired height.
A coat of paraffin paint should be applied, and, just before it sets perfectly hard, any rough spots trimmed down with a knife or chisel and a second lighter coat applied. If the wood is very dry and porous a preliminary coat of the paint should be applied and allowed to soak into the pores. It is also well to apply a coat of the paint to the joints at the corners and around the edge of the bottom before nailing together.
Whoever has the misfortune to break a valuable negative need not despair, for the damage can be repaired most effectively. In case the negative be broken into many pieces, take a clean glass, the same size as the broken negative, and put upon this the pieces, joining accurately, says Camera Craft. Put another clean glass on top of this and bind the three together with passe-partout binding or gummed strips of ordinary paper, as one would a lantern slide, and cover the glass edges.
Next make a transparency of this--in the camera, of course--and if it is done right, the positive will only show the cracks as dark and light lines. The dark lines are removed with the etching knife and the light ones with the retouching pencil. From this transparency another negative can be made, or as many negatives as necessary, by either contact or in the camera, and if the work on the glass positive was done carefully, no trace of the break should be seen on the finished negative. If the negative is broken in two or three larger pieces only, a contact positive may be made in the printing frame without binding, by using a clean glass in the latter, upon which the pieces are put together, face up, and a dry plate exposed in contact with in the dark room. The accompanying engravings show a print before and after repairing a broken negative in this manner.
Illustration: Before and After Mending