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Emergency Preparedness and Response

Collection Recovery Methods: Microform

Microform includes microfilm and microfiche.

Recovery Priority during the first 24-48 hours

  • Rewash and dry films within 48 hours.
  • Microforms will fuse together permanently if allowed to dry in contact with each other. Cover them with plastic to prevent partial drying until they can be frozen or salvaged. Image surfaces are susceptible to mold and physical damage, especially at high temperatures.
  • Local commercial photo labs that offer traditional photographic processing may be used to rewash and dry films. (Certain filmmakers will only reprocess, dry, and box their brand motion picture film.)

Freezing Procedures

  • Keep films wet. Do not remove wet films from boxes; hold carton together with rubber bands or tape.
  • Pack in plastic containers, resealable plastic bags, or cardboard cartons lined with garbage bags, in order to prevent drying prior to freezing.

Air Drying Procedures

  • Damp microfilm on rolls:
    • Place the roll on a rewind station. Unroll the film one section at a time onto a new core and dry by using a handheld blow dryer on cool temperature.
    • To prevent drying and fusing or any moist sections on the remaining rolled portion, cover with plastic while working on the unrolled sections.
  • Damp microfiche:
    • Place face-up on an absorbent material to air dry the front.
    • Dry by using a clothes line and clips at one or two corners. (Wick water from an edge with absorbent paper to speed drying.)
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