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The Long Black Line
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Old June 21st, 2009, 06:54 PM   #1
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Mini-DV in Washing machine for 3 minutes or less...

OK, just tell me that there is no chance this Wet Mini-DV is salvagable?
I assume it is a total loss?
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Old June 21st, 2009, 07:19 PM   #2
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I'd give it a quick rinse with clean water (to remove soapy stuff) and then towel it dry. After it is completely dry, pop it in your deck and see if it plays.

Why? The cassette mechanism of the DV tape closes pretty tightly due to the fine manufacturing tolerances. Whilst the fine gap between the plastic tape guard mechanism is visible, the effective surface tension there should be too much for the water to be able to penetrate.

A short trip in the washing machine should be quite survivable as water would not make through to the surface of the tape.

Deep sea diving (and increased water pressure at that depth) would be another matter. :-)

Please let us know how it works out for you.

Andrew
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Old June 22nd, 2009, 01:28 AM   #3
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And make sure it is COMPLETELY dry first. Not just "overnight dry", but like at least a few days dry. Small beads of moisture still remaining in the cassette could seep into inner reel of the tape if it is run too soon, and potentially result in warping or stretching of the tape over time.

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Old June 22nd, 2009, 03:10 AM   #4
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If there isn't a looming deadline, you could leave it for several days in an airtight case with a lot of dessicant, such as Drierite, and really make sure it's dry before putting it into any kind of player.

I suspect that damp tape would do some significant damage to the heads considering the drum is spinning at 7200 RPM. After all, just a little moisture is enough to make the "dew warning" go off in a camera.
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Old June 22nd, 2009, 03:11 AM   #5
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Ooops. Double post.
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Old June 22nd, 2009, 06:15 AM   #6
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There is no looming deadline for this one. But it is the championship game of my sons baseball season. I did a two camera shoot with my XL2 and A1 and the fisrt XL2 tape went in my pocket and my wife put them in the wash immediately.
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Old June 22nd, 2009, 02:09 PM   #7
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(After getting it thoroughly dry) I'd suggest trying to capture with a cheap consumer camcorder (not the XL2).
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Old June 24th, 2009, 08:37 AM   #8
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a you will be amazed how "bright" the pictures will look after that treatment...lol
and then sell the tale to the guys who manufactured that particular washing machine soap...

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Old June 25th, 2009, 09:51 PM   #9
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So far so good.
I just started the capture and it appears that nothing is wrong with it.

I did have something(Non moving image) on half of image of the horizontal zones (Every other one). I think some residue was left on the head or something. I cleaned it and all is well 50 minutes left.
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Old June 26th, 2009, 06:13 PM   #10
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Amazing. Glad it worked.
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Old June 26th, 2009, 09:52 PM   #11
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Maybe this experience is yet another reason to go tapeless. I once washed -- and DRIED -- a cf card, let it sit a couple of days and it booted up like nothing had ever happend. That, however, is really pushing one's luck. Glad you salvaged your tape! / Battle Vaughan/miamiherald.com video team
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Old July 1st, 2009, 11:20 AM   #12
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Apparently the colours were a little washed out but it saved time on the bleached by pass look..he hee
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Old July 2nd, 2009, 02:36 PM   #13
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I think this is a testament to the durability of tape.

The tape is dead, Long live tape.
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Old July 2nd, 2009, 02:39 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Battle Vaughan View Post
I once washed -- and DRIED -- a cf card, let it sit a couple of days and it booted up like nothing had ever happend.
A lot of photographers have done that. And just about all reported that it was OK afterward.
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Old July 2nd, 2009, 06:17 PM   #15
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Actually, there are stories of CF cards being mounted on recording equipment for the monitoring of controlled bridge demolition. Even after they dug 'em out of the river bank afterwards the CF storage read back the data perfectly fine.

Glad to see how well the tape worked after the washing machine incident.

Andrew
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