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Orwochrom UT18 (35mm, 50 iso) User-Review

Anyone who knows me, knows I love strange film - the older and stranger the better! And this one is definitely strange: Expired in May 1992, this East German slide film was made to be developed in ORWO process 9165, chemicals which have long since been discontinued.

Anyone who knows me, knows I love strange film – the older and stranger the better! And this one is definitely strange: Expired in May 1992, this East German slide film was made to be developed in ORWO process 9165, chemicals which have long since been discontinued.

I found these rolls on eBay (where else?!), the seller let me know that it was possible to develop them in regular c41 or e6 chemicals as long as the temperature was kept at a low 25C. As I didn’t have access to a darkroom at the time, I thought I’d just try to send it to my regular lab to be processed in c41 at normal temperature and see what would happen. And the film came back very strange, and by strange I mean totally, completely, off the wall weird! I unwound the strip at the lab, everybody was looking at it and at first we thought it hadn’t been processed at all – it was almost completely opaque. Then I started noticing that the edges of the frames were visible, albeit very faint, and I thought I’d probably be able to get an image out of it. Of course, everybody else thought I was a complete lunatic for even trying!

The adventure continued at home by my scanner. Getting the scanner to acknowledge that there was indeed film in it, was pretty difficult, but once I found the right spot on the strip to calibrate on I got an image! And what an image… it was strange and trashy, but very, very cool. Probably among the coolest results I’ve had. I promptly went back on eBay and got lots more old ORWO film!

Later on I tried another roll in e6, and even though the first lab I tried refused to develop it, insisting it was black and white film, it turned out disappointingly normal – except for a bit of a blue shift. So the rest of these rolls are definitely going in c41!

written by eggzakly

10 comments

  1. stouf

    stouf

    I love the way the sprockets are affecting the frame ! A very interesting film indeed !

    almost 5 years ago · report as spam
  2. cyan-shine

    cyan-shine

    Oooh, great review ! I also love rare films and especially discontinued jewels such as the OWO/ALFO films :D Alas, I haven't yet been able to get hold of the Orwochrome ! So kudos to you eggzakly :)

    almost 5 years ago · report as spam
  3. gvelasco

    gvelasco

    Ooh nice.

    almost 5 years ago · report as spam
  4. anarchy

    anarchy

    Coooool =)

    almost 5 years ago · report as spam
  5. eggzakly

    eggzakly

    thanks guys ;)

    almost 5 years ago · report as spam
  6. mcrstar

    mcrstar

    Orwo... Previously, in Russia it was popular, but now, I think, remained quite a few films. I once went to one such film, just slide UT18 chrom, and I shot her on diana mini. A standard for orwo film process, in Moscow, often only in one place, and I passed the film there. After film development, I was surprised, since the film has already been photographed by someone (probably my dad) in the 80's! Greetings from the past!

    over 4 years ago · report as spam
  7. enthusiast

    Hey! Nice article! I'm wondering how the C41 process produced positives (slides) out of this film, whereas usually the "normal" C41 makes negatives of the images ;O BTW, I found about 10 new rolls of this film, all expired in 80's and early 90's, and I am soooo eager to try this stuff out!
    over 4 years ago · report as spam
  8. eggzakly

    eggzakly

    @enthusiast: The positives were developed in e6 :)

    over 4 years ago · report as spam
  9. shoujoai

    shoujoai

    I also ordered myself a bunch of this films - looking forward to see the results!

    almost 4 years ago · report as spam
  10. adash

    adash

    Cool. I tried a roll today, I souped it in diluted C-41 chemistry (1+10 like all slide xpro that I do at home), for 1 hour at room temp, but got no recognizable image on it. Not even the edges of the frames, just an uniform brown color cast. I had exposed it as 12ASA, but something went terribly wrong...

    about 2 years ago · report as spam