U of S | Mailing List Archive | alt-photo-process-l | Re: Kodachrome/mold

Re: Kodachrome/mold

----- Original Message ----- From: "Christina Z. Anderson" <zphoto@montana.net>
To: <alt-photo-process-l@usask.ca>
Sent: Monday, July 14, 2008 3:57 PM
Subject: Re: Kodachrome/mold

Kodak's recommendation for mold removal is to use dry isopropyl alcohol but only on the emulsion side. There are better solvents for dirt, if you can find them, such as 1,1,1,trichlorethane, now hard to find because it is an envrionmental hazard.
Is this the same as trichlorethylene? If so, Home Depot or hardware stores sells it under the brand name of Sunnyvale or Sunnyside or whatnot, only about $23 a gallon.

I use it for hand coloring BW prints--it is the same as Marlene solution sold in Marshall's kits, but a heck of a lot less expensive. David Lewis uses it to clean his bromoil brushes because it leaves no residue. Outside, of course. But don't store in styrofoam--it'll eat right through the bottom. It is apparently the same stuff used in dry cleaning or some such thing.

Its not the same but I'm not a good enough chemist to explain the difference in practical use, if any. Other chemicals have been used as film cleaners in the past but the ones that worked best all seem to be either serious environmental poluters or quite toxic, maybe both. Mold is a special case because its very hard to get rid of. There is some literature on concervation sites like the Concervation On Line site, but if you have much material, or if what you have is of significant value, I think you need to talk to a professional conservator for advice. Whatever technique is used must not do further damage to either the emulsion or support. Molds exude chemicals as part of their metabolism which are capaple of damaging whatever the mold is living on and that damage may not be recoverable.

Richard Knoppow
Los Angeles, CA, USA