convert 116 to accept 120

Discussion in 'Camera Building, Repairs & Modification' started by Larry1948, Apr 21, 2005.

  1. Larry1948

    Larry1948 Member

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    I recently came into possession of an old Kodak No.2 folding Camera. Research has told me this camera used 116 mm film no longer available.
    My question, Can this camera be converted in any way to use 120 film in use today?
    would dearly like to use this interesting old folding camera.
    any thoughts ideas would be greatly appreciated.
    thanking you in advance for any suggestion.
    Larry B.
     
  2. Canuck

    Canuck Member

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    If you had a spindle for it, you maybe able to respool it onto it. I used to do it for 620 and it worked!
     
  3. Nick Zentena

    Nick Zentena Member

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    116/616 is bigger then 120 so you can't just respool. Somebody was selling an "adapter" that fit underneat the 120 spool and above it. That let you use 120 film in 116 cameras. I don't think it was very complicated.

    OTOH you had some 116 spools and some backing paper you could buy 70mm film and respool that. You'll need to look for an old film tank that handles 116.
     
  4. atenlaugh

    atenlaugh Member

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  5. 127

    127 Member

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    You can get 116 from:
    https://www.central-camera.com/films4classics.asp

    The bad news is the price - probably more than the camera cost you! You could maybe pick up a roll for the spool, but it's probably cheaper to buy another camera.

    I found it looking for 122 - not THERE's a format...

    Ian
     
  6. colrehogan

    colrehogan Member

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    It may be expensive, but it's fun to put one roll of film through any camera, especially if the camera has sentimental value.

    I've shot some 122 in a Folding Pocket Kodak 3A and it's interesting. Even if I don't put many rolls through that camera, I had some interesting comments while I had it on a tripod in public. These bigger/older cameras are attention getters to some extent.
     
  7. Donald Qualls

    Donald Qualls Member

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    There are several methods of converting 116 cameras to use 120 film. The simplest is to put spacers at one end of the 120 spools (so you're shooting off center in the original frame mask), to put the 6x4.5 framing track under the red window and the camera's film advance key operating directly on the 120 spool; you can temporarily mask off the original frame with gaffer tape, or use a piece of opaque plastic for a more durable mask, to provide a support for the otherwise free-hanging edge of the film. You'll have to use about 2.5 frames on the 6x4.5 track to cover the 11 cm frame of the 116 camera, and you'll then get 6 images on a roll.

    Alternately, if you have a couple 116 spools, you could buy some 70 mm bulk film, cut it to the appropriate length, make up backing paper from two strips of 120 backing (putting the 6x6 framing track under the red window), and use every other number, again getting six frames on a roll the same length as 120. You'd need a 70 mm reel, of course (most older plastic tanks accepted 116, though eBay sellers aren't likely to know it), and the emulsion choices in 70 mm are somewhat limited, but it would let you shoot in the original format (with only a small intrusion of the sprocket holes in the extreme edges of the image).

    I've seen web pages that outlined both of these methods; you can easily find them if you google on "116 120 (convert, conversion)" (without the quotes , of course).
     
  8. jandc

    jandc Member

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    We will have unperforated Efke R100 on 70mm bulk rolls in a few weeks.
     
  9. Donald Qualls

    Donald Qualls Member

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    Excellent, for those interested in reviving 116/616 cameras (and there were some good ones, like the Kodak Monitor 616). I got rid of my only developing tank that would accept 70 mm, unfortunately, but I also don't have any cameras in that size.
     
  10. Nick Zentena

    Nick Zentena Member

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    116 tanks are usually pretty cheap. I picked up two for $1. I think I over paid considering how hard they are to use in comparison to modern tanks.

    OTOH a few companies sell 70mm reels intended for medical lab use. The reels are MUCH cheaper then any 70mm reel labeled for photograpic use. The only problem is no daylight tank I know of will handle them. So it's a dark only thing.
     
  11. Dean Williams

    Dean Williams Member

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    I have an old Ansco Antar made for 116 film. I modified it a bit to use 120 film. Now it makes kind of semi pano negs, over 4" long and 2 1/4" wide. I have a page up for it, and you may find some ideas for your own camera there.
    Ansco Antar (116 film)
     
  12. Soeren

    Soeren Member

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    Hey, don't you guys read Black & White photography ? :smile:
    In the april issue theres an article about converting those old Kodak folders into 6X12 panoramics. Wery inspiring indeed.
    Regards Søren
     
  13. Donald Qualls

    Donald Qualls Member

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    Hmmm. I have one of the large Nikor 4x5 size tanks (without the 4x5 cage, unfortunately, but with a pair of 220 reels that have the heavier wire and wider space between turns common on standard 120 reels); it's tall enough for four long-roll 35 mm reels, and about 50% larger diameter than a standard stainless tank. Are these 70 mm reels too tall (they should fit in most 2x135 tanks), or too large in diameter (if so, they'd probably fit the Nikor and might fit some plastic tanks as well)?
     
  14. Nick Zentena

    Nick Zentena Member

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    The small ones take 13 feet of film. 220 is I think 5 feet? It's not the height it's the length of film they hold.
     
  15. Donald Qualls

    Donald Qualls Member

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    Yes, 220 is five feet, same as 35 mm.

    Hmmm. If those are close spaced, like the 220 stainless reels that fit a standard tank or like a 35 mm reel, they probably would (or at least could) fit thirteen feet in the larger Nikor tank. I've seen Nikor tanks sized for a single reel the size of my wide-space 220 reels, too -- I wonder if those weren't originally made for this 70 mm x 13 foot roll? Of course, I'd be looking at 24 ounces of developer to soup a single roll of 116 at that point; I'd save the junk store price of an old plastic adjustable tank just in developer concentrate in 2-3 rolls (not even considering the price of the 70 mm reels).
     
  16. titrisol

    titrisol Member

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    When I was in college we had to develop some 70mm film, no tank no reels for it.
    We took some corrugated plastic and used it as the old kodak aprons....
    After 1 or 2 experiments it was ka-ching! right on the money!

     
  17. Nick Zentena

    Nick Zentena Member

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    I think the reels are around 8+".

    At about $8 for the reels I'm not sure I want to deal with aprons-) How do you agiate?
     
  18. Donald Qualls

    Donald Qualls Member

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    Hmm. For that price, if the core isn't huge and you need 70 mm, it'd be tempting to cut them down with a Dremel to fit your tanks. A little attention with the grinding wheel, and some sandpaper, will ensure the cut end of the spiral doesn't scratch the film (not a huge issue anyway, since you'd load from center out like any other stainless reel).

    And if you hadn't thought of that, I accept Paypal as long as it's from a checking account or Paypal balance... :wink:
     
  19. Nick Zentena

    Nick Zentena Member

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    Cutting them down would negate one of the big advantages of 70mm. Lots and lots of exposures without changing rolls. Even at 13 feet the reel is too short for a full 70mm can. But it's close enough that I can load 13 feet into the canister instead of 15 and be happy.
     
  20. Donald Qualls

    Donald Qualls Member

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    Well, depends on what you're doing with 70 mm. The original thread was about 116, which is 6 exposures (or 8, for the last 30 years it was made), unperforated, about three and a half feet of film in the newer length. Cutting the reel to take what's likely to still be five feet shouldn't be a problem for that application.

    If you're shooting real 70 mm (perforated, from cassettes that look like a 35 mm cassette on steroids), then 13 feet instead of 15 will require giving up some exposures (what, not quite a dozen in 6x7?), but you're still stuck standing in the dark to develop.