Instant cameras can be used for photographing indications. There are a few guidelines to be followed:
a. The camera should not be hand held due to the long exposures. A steady support, such as a tripod or a
camera stand, must be available. Some of the instant cameras do not have a tripod socket and a special
mounting clamp or fixture must be used.
b. Close-up lens plus a mounting ring or adapter to hold them on the camera lens must be available. The
lenses must be capable of providing a focus with camera-to-subject distances of 5 to 24 inches.
c. The same filters that are used with conventional films must be used, namely the Wratten 2B or 2E for
fluorescent indications and the No. 66 filter for visible dye indications. It is also necessary to place an
identical filter over the camera electric eye or exposure meter, when the camera contains an automatic
d. The lens opening on instant cameras is not usually controllable by the photographer. They are usually
small enough to produce a usable area of sharp focus even when using color film.
e. Shutter speeds on instant cameras are usually controlled by the electric eye. The shutter will stay open
until enough light has entered the camera to make the picture. This feature is very useful in indication
photography, since it largely automates the exposure. For fluorescent photography, the "lighten-
darken" control should be set one or two marks toward darken. This will produce a picture where the
part is apparently dark, but still has a visible outline and the indications are bright. This produces a
picture of what is visually seen in the darkened inspection booth.
f. Instant color film requires a slightly different technique than other films. When photographing
fluorescent indications with 2B and 2E filters, set the built-in meter to one mark lighter than normally
recommended. Less exposure will not make the part visible. When developing color pictures of
fluorescent indications, develop for two-thirds to three-fourths of the recommended time. Over-
developing will result in a general blue background; under developing will produce a reddish-brown
Tubular (fluorescent) black light sources give less satisfactory instant pictures than high pressure,
Use as much light as possible. Automatic shutters are not as reliable under low light as in
Exposure times of 10 seconds to 3 minutes can be considered normal.
Other Methods for Developing and Recording Indications.
a. Video Camera Systems. Readily available hand-held video camera systems with very low light
capability are extremely useful for showing penetrant indications. The low light sensitivity allows
records of indications to be made without the high light levels and extreme exposure times often
required with conventional photographic film methods. Many of the video camera systems are
equipped with automatic focusing, exposure, and zoom control. The camera can be hand held or
positioned on a tripod. With a hand-held camera, the indication and part can be viewed from a variety
of angles. The video tape record is easily viewed on a monitor and can be copied for distribution.