Nitrate will not not start chemical combustion until it gets quite warm.
I think well into or past 90 degrees. The biggest risk was to run it
through a projector with the hot lamp module starting the film on fire.
The big fire at Universal was supposedly started by nitrate film that
was improperly stored in outside metal storage bins that were not
climate controlled and were sitting in the hot sun.
From the best of my knowledge nitrate was mostly 35mm format. No
nitrate amateur gauge film (16mm/8mm) was made in the US. I have heard
of a small amount of amateur gauge film being made in Europe but it was
On 3/1/2015 2:12 PM, Tom Fine wrote:
> Hi Richard:
> Yes, I think the film research has concentrated on NITRATE, and I
> think the reason it's kept freezing is to keep it chemically stable so
> it doesn't combust, no?
> -- Tom Fine
> ----- Original Message ----- From: "Richard L. Hess"
> <[log in to unmask]>
> To: <[log in to unmask]>
> Sent: Sunday, March 01, 2015 11:50 AM
> Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] Distressing data point for upcoming ARSC tape
> playback workshop
>> Hi, Tom,
>> I think the research has been completed for FILMS and that
>> below-freezing is good with no side effects that you say tape is
>> suffering from.
>> You do raise the interesting question that what may be good for
>> cellulose NITRATE is not necessarily good for cellulose ACETATE.
>> The point I was trying to make was that slightly cold and dry might
>> be worse than very cold and dry.
>> On 2015-03-01 11:20 AM, Tom Fine wrote:
>>> Hi Richard:
>>> I worry that below-freezing storage of acetate media may freeze-dry it
>>> out and make it so brittle that eventually it has no plasticity. If
>>> super-cold/super-dry storage staves off severe sticky-shed and it
>>> can be
>>> proven to really do that over time, then I would say it's the way to go
>>> on that quantity of polyester-backed tape prone to sticky-shed (I've
>>> heard estimates of 25-33% of tapes in vaults; I'd say it's probably
>>> closer to 25% given the long history of tape recording before polyester
>>> back-coated tapes, the fact that not all polyester back-coated tapes
>>> develop sticky-shed, and the fact that there is no consistent data
>>> showing that "post-sticky-shed" formulations didn't solve the problem,
>>> and tape was used for quite a while after the problem was said to be
>>> It may well be that sticky-shed tapes need to be stored in a special
>>> way, by themselves. Much like nitrate films (maybe even in the same
>>> vaults, because I think they both need the same storage conditions).
>>> Everything else should probably be stored in somewhat warmer, somewhat
>>> wetter conditions. But, we're all just speculating until there's more
>>> reliable science on this. I do speak from decades of experience owning
>>> and using old acetate tapes, however.
>>> -- Tom Fine
>> Richard L. Hess email: [log in to unmask]
>> Aurora, Ontario, Canada 647 479 2800
>> Quality tape transfers -- even from hard-to-play tapes.
This email is free from viruses and malware because avast! Antivirus protection is active.