How to Clean Negatives


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Removing Dust, Watermarks, and Fingerprints

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    Wear clean cotton or nylon gloves. Gloves will keep additional fingerprints off your negatives. Make sure the gloves are free of lint and dust. This will prevent your negatives from getting scratched during the cleaning process. You can buy these gloves in your local photography supply store.[1]

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    Use a dry antistatic cloth. Static attracts dust, so it’s important to avoid other kinds of cloths. The cloth should be soft and clean. Softness and cleanliness will protect your negatives from scratches. Anti-static cloths are available at photography supply stores.[2]
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    Clean the negatives. Take the cloth in your dominant hand. Drape it over your palm and fingers. Partially close your hand to form a C. Hold each negative in your non-dominant hand. Gently rub the negative over the cloth until it’s free of dust.[3]
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    Spray the negatives with antistatic film cleaner. If the cloth didn’t do the trick, spray one squirt of cleaner onto a nonabrasive antistatic cloth. Gently move the cloth over the surface of the negative. Use light back-and-forth strokes until all dust, watermarks, and/or fingerprints are gone. The cleaner will dry immediately. You can buy it at your local photography supply store.[4]

    • Antistatic film cleaner emits potent, potentially toxic, fumes. Make sure your workspace is well ventilated. Wear a mask for extra protection.[5]

 

Source: wikihow. com


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