Very old Verichrome Pan film in the Kodak Duo Six-20Posted: June 11, 2017
I received my Kodak Duo Six-20 many years ago from a relative, and put it on a shelf for a while, then later got curious about shooting with it. I don’t really remember doing this, but apparently I noticed that it had film in it, so I probably wound it forward a frame, then took a test shot out my office window before winding the rest of the way and removing the film. For many years this roll of film sat around, and now I decided to finally develop it. Maybe this film would hold the lost images that would solve the mystery of the JFK assassination, or at least hold some interesting snapshots.
I developed in HC110 at higher than normal concentration for four minutes based on a test strip using a method described here. To summarize, I cut a small strip off the end of the film while spooling it in my dark bag. That strip was then exposed in the light, and dipped in developer in one-minute increments. I then used a developing time at the point where extra minutes didn’t add any more density.
Well, after developing, fixing, washing, etc, I was a bit disappointed to see what looked like just two images on the film. And after scanning I discovered that one of those images was the one I had shot out my office window years earlier. The other frame that was exposed contained no discernible image, just some odd cloudiness. The rest of the roll appears to have been very underexposed or not exposed at all.
Here’s the one image:
It looks like it could have been shot fifty years ago, but no, it was just shot on very old film. I can’t find info on when they stopped making Verichrome Pan in 620 format. It began production in 1956, and I found one site that said 120 format Verichrome Pan was discontinued in the 1970’s. I would guess that 620 was discontinued earlier than 120 was, and certainly no later. So this film was probably 40 to 60 years past it’s expiration date when I developed it. And who knows what kind of heat it endured over those years, sitting in an attic or something.
Here’s the roll before I unspooled it:
Here’s the camera: