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» Film-Tech Forum   » Operations   » Film Handlers' Forum   » Booth Cleaning (Page 1)

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Author Topic: Booth Cleaning
Rhys M. Blavier
Film Handler

Posts: 13
From: Richardson, Texas, USA
Registered: Jul 2004

 - posted 07-25-2004 04:13 AM      Profile for Rhys M. Blavier   Email Rhys M. Blavier   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I want to thank everyone who responded to my first post about booth tools and equipment. I have another question now that I need some advice on. The booth I am taking over has apparently never been swept or had any kind of dust prevention / removal done at all. Aside from dirt inside of the projectors (of which there is plenty, I will be cleaning and working on them for quite awhile), how would any of you deal with cleaning an entire multi-screen booth (tile floor, no carpeting) other than just plain sweeping (which I am afraid will put alot of the dust back in the air) and mopping. Have any of you had to deal with something like this on a large scale? What have you found works best or is there a recommended service (like air vent cleaners) who do this sort of thing profesionally. I want what will do the best job while putting the least amount of dust and dirt back into the air.

Thank you.

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Antonio Marcheselli
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1260
From: Florence, Italy
Registered: Mar 2000

 - posted 07-25-2004 04:42 AM      Profile for Antonio Marcheselli   Author's Homepage   Email Antonio Marcheselli   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
First of all you must have filters on your Air system, dust filters, not just filters that prevent to big object to enter the projection.

Then try to use vacuum cleaner (with dust filter, we call "H.E.P.A" here) instead of other tools and mop the floor often.

Have a place free of dust is very important for proper projection!


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Andrew Shingleton
Film Handler

Posts: 63
From: Richmond, Victoria, Australia
Registered: Feb 2004

 - posted 07-25-2004 04:52 AM      Profile for Andrew Shingleton   Email Andrew Shingleton   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Sweeping moves the dust around, mopping wets the dust, and vacuuming removes the dust. A good combiniation of all three methods is essential. In some booths you can sweep, mop, and vacuum every spare minute you have and you'll still find some more dust somewhere else, so you've got to find the practical balance and focus your attention on the areas where it really matters. Concentrate around the projectors and the film handling bench(s), and work outwards from those parts so that even if you're moving the dust it's going away from the film. After you sweep, don't use a brush and shovel to pick up the pile of dirt - actually vacuum it up. The best thing about vacuuming is that you're removing all the dust and it can't get back out. When you empty the filter think about how that dust could have potentially found it's way onto the film had you not removed it before it had a chance!

If you have a really dirty booth then you'll be in an uphill battle for ages unless you break it's back early. Maybe organise a working bee where a bunch of people come in and have a day dedicated to cleaning. It's much easier to keep a booth clean once it's in good shape than it is to constantly fight a "sort-of" clean booth. [Smile]

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Gordon McLeod
Film God

Posts: 9418
From: Toronto Ontario Canada
Registered: Jun 99

 - posted 07-25-2004 09:09 AM      Profile for Gordon McLeod   Email Gordon McLeod   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Usually during and after construction I keep a thing of Dust Bain sweeping compound in the booth to sprinkle over the floor when sweeping to keep the dust down.
Then after it is all cleaned damp mopping is a good idea

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John Pytlak
Film God

Posts: 9987
From: Rochester, NY 14650-1922
Registered: Jan 2000

 - posted 07-25-2004 09:38 AM      Profile for John Pytlak   Author's Homepage   Email John Pytlak   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
If you don't have a central vacuum system or vacuum with HEPA filtration, using a shop vac with a long hose to duct the output outside will virtually eliminate recirculating small dirt particles. Likewise, wet-mopping and wiping surfaces with a damp sponge will avoid stirring up dirt.

Remember, images on the typical theatre screen are magnified several hundred times, so on-line film cleaning and maintaining a clean environment in the booth are very important. And a dirty environment certainly doesn't help electronic or optical components.

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Dominic Espinosa
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1172
From: Boulder Creek, CA.
Registered: Jan 2004

 - posted 07-25-2004 10:50 AM      Profile for Dominic Espinosa   Email Dominic Espinosa   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
How many screens is that thing anyway?
I just took over a 6 house booth back in February...It's been somewhat stable now for only a couple months. I know what you mean by filthy.

The first priority when I started on it was to get the projectors clean and the film off the floor. The old projectionists believed in pulling all the leader out onto the floor, throwing it over the projector threading it down and throwing the leader back to the platter. After threading THE RIGHT WAY your hands would have dust all over them from threading. They never mopped.

So, here's what you do. Get those clean, get the film off the floor, etc. Then I blew out all the sound racks and such with compressed air for cleaning electronics.
Finally I did a fair amount of sweeping, I'm not sure if the vacuum we have has a H.E.P.A filter. Next came the mop and bucket.

The booth now gets mopped bi-weekly and it works pretty well. Since the film never gets on the floor we're pretty good.

The next part after getting the real filth out of there was to clean all the optical componants. Lenses, sound readers, etc. Then the platter work. We have AW3's that were absolutely filthy. Over the course of the next couple months I took each deck apart on all the platter systems, degreased and cleaned the brains. Each deck got a thorough cleaning and fresh grease. (Not in the brains!!! DON'T GREASE BRAINS!)

The lamp houses are going to have to wait for the most part until their respective bulbs get changed out, I don't want to stir up all the sh*t in them right now. As long as the cooling isn't highly affected it'll wait. However cleaning the reflectors is a good plan if you've got a steady enough hand to work around the bulb. Hell, if you're really going for broke I guess you could take the bulbs out.

And finally keeping it clean...This is the hardest part of all.
I made up a spreadsheet in excel that has everything to be done and it's frequency, weekly, biweekly, monthly, etc. And a separate one which I post up in the booth every Thursday night that shows what needs to be done on what day.

Each house gets cleaned once a week and the port glass twice a week, etc. You get the idea. Frequency will vary depending on your booth but getting into the habit is all it takes.

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Darryl Spicer
Film God

Posts: 3250
From: Lexington, KY, USA
Registered: Dec 2000

 - posted 07-25-2004 12:20 PM      Profile for Darryl Spicer     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Rhys, I don't know if you have or not but if you do a search using the words booth cleaning you will find some other useful threads of information on the subject. I think one thing that will need to be done is the floor. If it is the type that needs to be waxed, I would see about getting it stripped and new wax put down. This will help keep things clean along with the other tasks at hand.

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Jason Burroughs
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 654
From: Allen, TX
Registered: Jun 99

 - posted 07-25-2004 01:43 PM      Profile for Jason Burroughs   Email Jason Burroughs   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Usually for tiled booths a 2 part method works best.

Use a dust mop regularly, treated with the proper dust collecting chemicals. This will take care of the periodic layer of dust, without stirring it up too much. You can get dust mops of varying sizes, from little 2' jobs but I would recommend a 3' - they're easily maneuverable and clean a wide area. Remember to clean and replace the dust mop regularly as well. Depending on the size of the booth, this can be done on a daily basis. Remember to take the dust mop outside when cleaning.

The 'ol Mop and bucket. Remember to use a clean mop (don't use on they used to mop the conessions area or an auditorium) and clean water with the right chemicals. I would belive that once a week would be sufficient intervals for wet mopping.

As previously suggested, you may also need to have the floor stripped and waxed (Insert Phil's perverted comment here [Wink] )

For other sufaces use a treated cloth or something like a Swiffer. Do NOT use anything that leaves ANY kind of residue.

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Randy Stankey
Film God

Posts: 6373
From: Erie, Pennsylvania
Registered: Jun 99

 - posted 07-25-2004 03:53 PM      Profile for Randy Stankey   Email Randy Stankey   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Also, I suggest you develop a pattern to your cleaning and sweeping practices. If you don't you'll end up pushing dirt around from one place to another without really cleaning it up.

For instance:

Dust the tops of projectors, shelves and window ledges first. Knock the dirt down from high places to the floor. Use a fuzzy duster, a Swiffer or a clean cloth sprayed lightly with some kind of dusting spray like Endust.

Use a small broom and/or a shop vac to clean under tables & equipment, get dirt out of corners and away from baseboards. Be sure to move objects like chairs and trash cans while you clean. Don't just sweep around them!

Use a push broom to clean up the coarse dirt particles and small bits of trash then use a dust mop to clean up the fine "gritty" dust. Start in one end of the room and work toward the other. Work from the interior of the room toward the doors to avoid pushing dirt farther into the room.

Use dusting spray or sweeping compound if you can. In some states the use of sweeping compound is illegal in public buildings because it can make the floors slippery. Check what kinds of chemicals are safe for use in your area/buildings.

Sweep SLOWLY to prevent the dirt from getting "puffed" up into the air, only to settle back in areas where you just cleaned. Don't beat the broom on the ground at the end of each stroke like I see some people do. It only puffs dust into the air.

Damp mop the areas you sweep with a clean mop using hot/warm water and a moderate amount of floor cleaner. (Mister Clean or whatever.) Don't use too much! Also, don't saturate too much water on the floors. Wring the mop out till it's almost dry. If too much water gets on the floors, it can ruin the tile. Also it takes longer to dry and it can create a slip and fall hazard.

Once done, take your mop to a seperate room to clean it out. Wash the dirt out of the bucket with a stream of water. Rinse ALL of the dirt out of the mop then hang it up to dry. If you leave the mop and bucket standing in a corner somewhere it will just turn into "Swamp Water". It won't be good for cleaning anything.

Take your push broom and dust mop(s) OUTSIDE and beat the dust out of them before hanging them up. Respray them with dusting spray before putting them away. (Unless the directions on the container say different.)

Repeat the cleaning OFTEN! A booth which has been kept clean will tend to stay cleaner over time. You can sweep/clean a room every day for a month then skip a day or two but the reverse is not true. If a room is extremely dirty you'll probably have to give it a good "going over" two or three times before you start to make a dent in it.

Even if you don't think my cleaning patterns will suit you, it's important that you do develop some kind of pattern. It's also important to write down a schedule for cleaning and stick to it. If you are supposed to clean the booth every Monday, Wednesday and Friday then be damn sure that it gets done on those days or your whole cleaning program will be for naught.

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Edward Jurich
Master Film Handler

Posts: 305
From: Las Vegas USA
Registered: Jul 2003

 - posted 07-25-2004 05:33 PM      Profile for Edward Jurich   Email Edward Jurich   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I like to pay special attention to the floor around the platter and makeup table. Film ends tend to wind up on the floor and a clean floor will prevent dust spots at reel changes.

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Andrew Shingleton
Film Handler

Posts: 63
From: Richmond, Victoria, Australia
Registered: Feb 2004

 - posted 07-25-2004 05:49 PM      Profile for Andrew Shingleton   Email Andrew Shingleton   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
In regards to scheduling, we actually use a spreadsheet that has a list of jobs along with the frequency that each job should be repeated. The spreadsheet calculates how many days it's been since the job was last done, and provides a countdown of days until the task is overdue. The aim is to make sure that nothing ever goes "overdue", by doing the task within it's time frame.

The advantage of this over a list of weekly tasks is that it's not as easy to ignore tasks that haven't been done. If mopping is designated to be done on mondays for example, but one particular monday is really busy, it might be put off until the following monday rather than being made up for sooner. With the "overdue" system, the mopping task is going to be highlighted red until it's done again, which is a lot harder to ignore. The other advantage is that it's a lot more flexible, and is a lot easier to track tasks that are done more often than weekly, but less often than daily. And it can be easily changed depending on results - if a 7 day mopping cycle isn't quite cutting it, we could simply change the 7 to a 5 to increase the frequency.

We use this system for almost all the tasks that need to be done except for the things that are hard to predict when they will happen, like filmwork, etc.

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Brad Miller

Posts: 17611
From: Plano, TX (36.2 miles NW of Rockwall)
Registered: May 99

 - posted 07-25-2004 07:08 PM      Profile for Brad Miller   Author's Homepage   Email Brad Miller       Edit/Delete Post 
Why would the film end up on the floor??? Even if the tip end of the tail of the reel tapped the floor during loading as it "tailed out" of the reel, that shouldn't matter...unless you are one of those evil theaters that cuts the leaders off when building to large reels before plattering.

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Andrew McCrea
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 645
From: Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
Registered: Nov 2000

 - posted 07-25-2004 08:21 PM      Profile for Andrew McCrea   Author's Homepage   Email Andrew McCrea   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I'm paying close attention to the ideas expressed in this thread, but is carpet or tile better in a booth?

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John Pytlak
Film God

Posts: 9987
From: Rochester, NY 14650-1922
Registered: Jan 2000

 - posted 07-25-2004 08:53 PM      Profile for John Pytlak   Author's Homepage   Email John Pytlak   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Both carpeting and bare floors are fine, if they are kept CLEAN. If carpeting is used, it should be a short nap or berber and made of fiber that will not shed or lint. Treatment with a conductive antistat will help reduce static generation, especially in the dry heating season. Vacuum frequently, ideally with a central vacuum system.

The worst floors are those that generate abrasive debris, such as bare concrete, or floors with chipped coatings or flaking old wax.

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Aaron Sisemore
Flaming Ribs beat Reeses Peanut Butter Cups any day!

Posts: 3061
From: Rockwall TX USA
Registered: Sep 1999

 - posted 07-25-2004 10:03 PM      Profile for Aaron Sisemore   Email Aaron Sisemore   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Tile or epoxied concrete is FAR easier to keep clean than carpet, the chance for dirt to become embedded just isnt there with tile.


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