How to use the Ensign Popular Film Splicer, for 8 mm., 9.5 mm., or 16 mm.
To make a durable splice, it is essential for the ends of the films which are being joined to be free from oil or grease, which may prevent the cement from penetrating to the base. The principle involved in splicing film is to remove the emulsion from one side of the film base, apply film cement and to bring the back of the piece of film to be joined in contact with the prepared surface.
Preparations for use
First raise the cutter “A” and the pressure pad “B” to a vertical position and draw the knurled knob “C” to the left in the direction indicated by the arrow for “prepare”. Place one end of the film to be joined emulsion side (dull side) up, and with the perforations over the left-hand row of pins, letting sufficient film overlap the slot in the base for trimming purposes. Next bring the pressure pad “B” down on the base to hold the film in position. Trim the film by bringing the cutter “A” down sharply into the slot and then, without raising the cutter again, grip the two ends of the cutter between the thumb and forefinger and work the cutter backwards and forwards, using a fairly strong downward pressure until all the emulsion has been removed from the base of the film.
It is important to stop scraping as soon as all the emulsion has been removed, or the base of the film will be weakened. After the scraping has been completed, lift the cutter “A” into the vertical position again.
The length of film to be joined to the prepared piece must now be suitably trimmed. Place the end on the right-hand row of pins, emulsion side up, leaving just sufficient film to overlap the slot for trimming purposes. Trim the film as previously described and then raise the cutter and pressure pad and push knob “C” to the right as far as it will go in the direction indicated by the arrow for “join”.
Making the splice
First brush away the particles of emulsion from the slicer and then lift the left-hand piece of film so that the prepared portion is clear of the metal base, but still remains on the pins. Apply Ross Ensign film cement evenly over the portion of the film, taking particular care not to allow it to overrun. Do not charge the brush fully.
Lower the film into position again and move the film on the right-hand side of the pins to the left so that the trimmed end overlaps the cemented portion. With 16 mm. and 9.5 mm. films one perforation should be moved across and with 8 mm. film, two perforations. Without further hesitation snap the pressure pad “B” into position and leave the join for approximately 30 seconds to set.
Oil or grease on the film will prevent the making of a good splice and if the ends of the film appear to be soiled, it is a good plan to clean the film with a rag moistened in either benzine or methylated spirit. (Note: the world is a much more safety-conscious place than it was when these instructions were written, so take expert advice before using anything on your films).
It takes several minutes for the chemically-softened pieces of film which have been joined to harden, and for this reason care should be taken to avoid putting too much stress on a newly-made join.
Most film cements contain acid and for this reason it is important to clean the metal parts of the splicer with a piece of rag after use, in order to prevent corrosion of the unplated steel trimming knives and adjacent parts.