Troubleshooting New55 PN

Why is it that some users have significant difficulties — sometimes compounding difficulties — while others skate through the New55 PN learning curve smoothly?

Friends & users of the Customer Support line — — are familiar with my reply, “You’re facing a common issue that is easy to remedy once its source is understood.”

ISSUE #1 — “Sticky-Sleeve”

… in which the Sleeve-to-Clip attachment is over-tight, making Sleeve Withdrawal difficult. In some cases, the film packet’s stainless steel Clip “jumps the 545 holder’s Finger” during the Sleeve Withdrawal.

The Sleeve-to-Clip attachment is reasonably tight coming out of assembly; this was engineered into the film packet system in order to prevent accidental separation and therefore accidental exposure of the negative in casual handling such as during unboxing or during film transport in a camera case.  Some 545 holders prefer a looser attachment in order to function optimally.  [One possible remedy is to leave the Clip-ends UN-CRIMPED in assembly and add a piece of removable tape to hold the Clip and Sleeve together.] Here’s how to prepare for 100% success with the tight Sleeve-to-Clip bond.

REMEDY to ISSUE #1 –“New55 PN – The Clip Tip-Tap Tip”

VIDEO: New55 PN – The Clip Tip-Tap TIP

An additional note on the spirit of the Clip Tip-Tap process: Don’t wait for the issue to arise.  When I am shooting New55 PN on an important series or project, I use the Clip Tip-Tap exercise for all 5 film packets in a box when first opening the box at the outset of the shoot — very likely this takes place as a preparative step back at the studio over coffee, WELL BEFORE beginning the shoot and certainly WELL BEFORE arriving at a location.  My purpose is to get all my film stock in shooting fettle so as to maintain full concentration and not to be distracted from my subject in the midst of a shoot.  Film-packet hold-ups are infuriating and unnecessary when preparation is possible and, indeed, helpful.

There is also …

ISSUE #2 — “Sleeve-Hang”

… in which, during Sleeve Replacement, the Sleeve will only return about 3/4 back home. (This issue is more commonly experienced by users of the 545i [plastic] holders.)


All the Detail You Were Afraid to Ask

The New55 FILM system is a SYSTEM-OF-SYSTEMS: the New55 PN film packet has over 17 components that must work together in concerted tolerance within a holder with many many moving parts and three critical sub-systems — the Rollers, the Finger and the Gate — which can vary from 545 holder to 545 holder and across over 7 different vintages of 545, 545i and 545 Pro holders in the series since the 1960’s.  New55 PN’s variability in pod production and in its paper components reward alertness and sensitivity to the condition of the Systems in each mode or state of use.

Gaining a full understanding of the parts and functions of the 545 series holders, and of the parts and functions of the New55 PN film packet system, can yield a regular 4- or 5-out-of-5 success rate per box of New55 PN. Confidence in cleaning and diagnosing 545 holder issues is paramount, and preparing each film packet for shooting also remains key during this early hand-made phase of New55 PN’s production.

In the near future, as New55 FILM automates pod production and replaces paper and mechanical components with more apt, rugged and versatile materials, users are justified to expect a more fool-proof photography experience, an improving print quality and even more sublime negative.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *