Vinegar Syndrome health concerns

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EdibleCamphor

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Vinegar Syndrome health concerns

PostWed Feb 15, 2017 10:13 pm

I was wondering if anyone would know if when I buy old film that has some serious vinegar syndrome (I have found some in truly, awful, awful shape) when I unspool it if it could be a danger to my lungs? I have worn a mask before (just because of the putrid smell) but should I be doing that all the time?
Film Writer, Director, Actor, Historian, and Bespectacled Young Man.
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Hamilton's Grandson

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Re: Vinegar Syndrome health concerns

PostThu Feb 16, 2017 11:33 pm

I think if you wear a surgical mask each and every time you handle the film and non-powdered vinyl gloves with good ventilation in the room, you are probably much less at risk then if you don't take these precautions. I read that celluloid film is a combination of sulfuric acid and potassium nitrate, so that certainly can't be good to breath that in for long periods of time.

Last year, I was given 5 short reels from my mom that my grandfather appeared in and one of the 5 reels was a messy, sticky, stinky reel that was probably stage 4 decomposition. 4 of the reels were restored at 16 and 24 fps and are short resume reels that were in stage 1 decomposition and they turned out great. I tried to convince Debbenham to restore what was left the 5th reel, but they said don't bother as not much can be retrieved from the print.

Good luck,
Dana
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Jack Theakston

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Re: Vinegar Syndrome health concerns

PostTue Feb 21, 2017 11:03 pm

Vinegar syndrome is just that... vinegar. Acetic acid. Although, it can burn in strong concentrations. If it's particularly potent, a face mask will suffice.
J. Theakston
"You get more out of life when you go out to a movie!"

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