(EDITOR'S NOTE: Although this article is intended primarily for the beginning editing student, it can also be helpful for experienced people who want to improve their splicing techniques.)

  1. The first step in learning to splice is to learn to tell the emulsion side of film from the base side.

  2. Learning to handle the film by its only is the next important step toward splicing. Film is handled by its edges to avoid getting grease and dirt from your fingers on it. Never pick up film or handle it with your fingers flat on its surface. This rule applies even when you are wearing gloves. Placing your fingers flat on the film is a sure sign of an amateur.
    When you have learned to tell emulsion from base and have mastered the techniques of handling film by the edges only, you are ready to learn the mechaniques of splicing.
  3. Any discussion on how to splice must begin with the splicer itself. The tool may vary from a small table model with a single scraper and without heat to a complicated foot splicer with all the latest innovations. But the basic components are all the same.
    Since one of the the most widely used splicers today is Maier-Hancock 8mm-16mm portable hot splicer originally marketed by Bell and Howell, we will use this splicer as our demonstration model.