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Old July 4th, 2004, 01:58 PM   #1
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Delicate Tape Issue

Here's a problem that I need some advice on: I'm currently in the middle of shooting a short film (on the XL-1s) using Panasonic DVC pro tapes. Well, I shot a lot of footage on one particular tape, but didn't roll out. So, I decided to pop it back in on the next shoot (which was about five days later), so I could finish out the tape. Well, as I insert the tape, the camera begins to load it automatically (as the XL-1s does) when all of a sudden it stops, like it's having trouble. I look down into the camera and I can tell that a portion of the tape has come out of the cassette. Naturally, you can understand my immediate fears. I was able to eject the tape and inspect it. A portion of the tape had been pulled from the cassette, but the length of it was only the distance from spool to spool. There was no tangle or tearing of the tape itself. I was able to wind the tape back into the cassette and put it back in the case (I used a brand new tape for the day's shooting). Anyway, I have yet to try and rewind the tape to the beginning to view the footage to see if it's okay. Frankly, I'm scared to. I hate the thought of having to schedule reshoots when I have little to no budget on this project. Does anyone have any thoughts about what I should do before loading and trying to view the tape? Should I even bother? Should I just go ahead and try to schedule reshoots? If I can view this tape without causing more serious damage, that would be great. Thanks.
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Old July 4th, 2004, 02:13 PM   #2
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This means that the tape has been "taken up"(sticking) by the drum and stopped. Has the cam been in humid (condensing humidity) ambients just before restarting?
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Old July 4th, 2004, 02:30 PM   #3
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We were shooting outdoors, yes. When I pulled the camera out of my car and out of the case, I was expecting the lens to fog and it did. So, I left the lens cap off, opened the cassette bay, and let sit for about half an hour until it evaporated. Once the tape was pulled, I put in a brand new tape and had no problem. Perhaps there was a little moisture in the tape as well. My concern is how to view and capture the footage without any problems.
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Old July 4th, 2004, 02:45 PM   #4
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Allways let yr gear (also tapes...they don't have a dew detector !) acclimatize if you change from cold (airco) to warm. The reverse is never a problem. Put yr gear in the trunk. If you see yr lens fogging wait until it's clear again, and then put in yr tape which is supposed to be acclimatized at that time too.
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Old July 4th, 2004, 04:34 PM   #5
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Any advice on what to do with the tape?
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Old July 12th, 2004, 02:29 AM   #6
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This is one of the times that a tape rewinder comes in handy. If the tape is tucked back in the cassette, a rewinder might be able to roll it back to the beginning without endangering the camcorder.

The Sima SRW-62 is the one I and some other contributors to this forum use.
It's battery-powered and very small. It
can be taken into the field and help solve some tape problems like you described. If you could get the tape to rewind without difficulty in a rewinder, I'd risk playing it from the start, up to a point shortly before where the problem occurred, but not rolling it any farther.
I wouldn't try recording any more on the tape, so the section where it came out of the cassette would never pass over any video heads.

If the footage on the tape is important, I'd re-record it on a fresh tape, so there'd be no chance of running the possibly damaged section through a recorder in the future.

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Old July 12th, 2004, 04:30 AM   #7
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Slightly on a tangent: This is the second time this has ever happened to me.

I have an XL1s.
I was shooting the other day. Before I started, I spooled the tape (fast forward all the way, rewind all the way), then recorded 30 secs of bars, then began rolling in earnest. Used about 33 minutes of the tape, apparently did not rewind it right after I was done.

Today, when I put the tape back in my camera to rewind it to begin capture, I immediately got an "eject tape" message. The tape ejects, and of course, part of it is caught on the whoozit, and I had to extricate it, and wind it back in. The rest of the tape is fine, and plays fine, though the last several takes I did of what i was shooting are ruined.

I ran the head cleaner right after this incident. I'm shooting again, more than likely, in a few days.

Any chance this is a one time only occurance? Do I need to get the camera checked out? I don't really have time to leave it with anyone. . .but I don't want the next tape to screw up too.

I hadn't cleaned the heads in a long time, so there's that, and in addition, it was pretty hot inside the location due to the fact that I had a 500w tota light on, and no AC. . .but the camera should have had adequate time to recover from any temperature/humidity related issues (I shot yesterday, wrapping about 5pm, and didn't turn the camera on again until tonight).
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