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Repair or copying of standard 8mm kodak film with damaged sprocket holes

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  • Repair or copying of standard 8mm kodak film with damaged sprocket holes

    Is anyone aware of a company that copies or repairs standard 8mm kodak colour film? I have about 150' of film that has damaged sprocket holes which causes the film to track up and done on frames when projected forwards. Reverse projection is fine as the sprocket hole damage is only on one side of the sprocket hole. Thus it could be copied by running the film backwards but I do not think that there are any companies around that duplicate cine film. There used to be some but now everone just copies onto digital format. Thanks

  • #2
    For the sake of redundancy, if that film is of particular importance to you then get it digitally scanned first. At least you'll have a "copy" of it regardless the format.

    If it's 16mm gauge it should be still very possible to find a facility capable of contact-print it. That was quite a standard practice back then and virtually all labs around the world can do that.

    Unfortunately this is another story for super8 however. I didn't say impossible/totally unavailable but it had already been a rare to find service back then, and probably even rarer these days.

    But if you ever managed to find that service, I'm quite certain that all members of this forum would like to know about that as well.


    • #3
      As Nantawat speculates, this is a huge challenge. I'd do careful repair if it was a few frames, but 150' would be a nightmare! I got a Super 8 film copied in the 1980s, and Std 8 may have been possible then, but the damage may have made it impossible. If you could get a good digital copy that can be run forwards, an affordable option would be to get this printed on 16mm by Marco in Italy. That would cost you far less than an 8mm copy, even if someone could provide that service.


      • #4
        Many thanks for your replies. I will see if I can repair the sprocket holes but am not sure how to achieve this. There is a lttle nick taken ot of the sprocket hole on one side and not sure how to recover it.


        • #5
          From that description it sound as if it would run OK in an editor/viewer as they are sprocket driven as the sprocket would fill the whole perforation, not by a claw which would find that nick. Have you tried watching on one?


          • #6
            I once received a brittle 35mm celluloid print needed to be scanned. The "forward" side of sprocket already had cracks in virtually ALL of them. Running it in forward direction will undoubtedly shred through them like slicing a bar of butter.😨

            So yes, I run that print BACKWARDS, as the "reverse" side of the sprocket is still very intact. It went through without a glitch.😉 After that it's a matter of reversing the clip to convert it back to FORWARD run and that's it.

            Better yet, since today's scanner are all sprocket-less, that wouldn't cause any issue at all. I believe most of scanning service would have no problem scanning your film (unless they use sprocket-based Wolverine Scanner!).


            • #7
              Tim - in a way, I'd say small nicks can be even more of a pain to repair than larger ones! There's a technique I've used that I could outline but it's so time-consuming that no one would want to do it throughout 150' foot of film as it might take months!

              One point is that if the small nicks correspond (as likely) to where the claw hit the film, and the rest of the same side of the sprocket hole is OK, it's conceivable that it might run OK on a different projector, as some claws would make contact in a slightly different place.


              • #8
                Many thanks for all your replies. Adrian. If you had the time to outline the technique that you used. I might only preserve a few scenes and that would be very helpful. Thanks Tim