>But when I do...
>tell application "Finder" to get exists "shotName_0001.tif" -- add an extra 0 to the capture number
>the result is also true. Even though the literal file name in the Finder only has two zeros in the capture number.
It's a bug. Likely an unintended side-effect of the recently added behaviour that enables Finder to ignore leading zeros when displaying numbered files in order. File a report on it.
>Anyone have any ideas how I can get an accurate result? I need to get a result of false for the second query.
tell application "Finder" to "shotName_0001.tif" is in name of every file
Bearing in mind, of course, that the containment test here is subject to AS's own considering/ignoring rules. Or use System Events, which still does it right (though it's not without other problems).