Cracked Patterson Tank

Discussion in 'Darkroom Equipment' started by David Ruby, Nov 30, 2004.

  1. David Ruby

    David Ruby Member

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    I was recently developing some 35mm in my 3 reel tank, and I accidentaly cracked the side of the tank by tapping it on the side of my sink. I accidentaly hit the side on the edge of my sink and a small hairline crack appeared. I isn't even really visible until you see liquid beading out of it. Before I toss it, I thought I'd check to see if anyone has had any luck glueing or resealing cracked Paterson tanks. My thought is that any fix, say silicone sealant, would have to be done on the outside of the tank, and it probably wouldn't work anyway. Thanks.
     
  2. argentic

    argentic Member

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    I tried hard PVC glue. It worked for some time. But after a while the tank began to leak again. So hard PVC glue is not what you are looking for.
     
  3. Bob F.

    Bob F. Member

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    Try thin superglue - it may be drawn into the crack by capillary action - if you are lucky.

    Cheers, Bob.
     
  4. Robert Brummitt

    Robert Brummitt Member

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    It's a goner unless you want to save it for a holding tank or clearing tank. I had the same happen to me. Another photographer told me to wrap duct tap around the tank for better grip and as a bumper for dropping. It seems to work.
    Robert8x10
     
  5. Lee Shively

    Lee Shively Member

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    I used a cracked Paterson tank as a film washer for a number of years. The water flows over the top and out the bottom at the same time doing away with the need to occasionally dump the tank.
     
  6. DanG

    DanG Member

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    It won't be pretty but you can take an electric soldering iron to the crack on the outside of the tank - a little melting should seal the crack; follow with a wrap of duct tape.
    Cheers! Happy processing.
    DanG
     
  7. Dean Williams

    Dean Williams Member

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    I have an old Paterson tank that has had more than it's fair share of hard knocks. It used to leak from the side and the bottom, until I slathered JB Weld all over the leaky points. Been leak free for over three years now.

    I have other tanks, but this is the only one I have in this size, and the first Paterson I bought, many years ago. I just couldn't toss it out. Still use it most every day.

    You can get JB Weld at most any hardware and auto parts stores. 'Bout 5 bux. Clean the tank well with soapy water and rinse. Let it dry, then follow the instructions on the JB package.
     
  8. Loose Gravel

    Loose Gravel Member

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    I repaired one with ABS pipe cement. Clean first with the purple stuff. It still works.
     
  9. Konical

    Konical Subscriber

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    Good Evening, David,

    I have exactly the same tank and, back in the seventies, did exactly the same thing to mine. The crack was relatively small, and I managed to hold the tank together to prevent leakage and complete the processing. Fortunately there wasn't even any film fogging.

    For the repair, I used Testors model cement, which, I suppose, is basically acetone. It was just as simple as putting two model airplane parts together. I applied it liberally on both sides and, to the extent possible, between the sides of the crack, clamped with a couple of strong rubber bands, and let it harden. I subsequently used the tank without problems.

    As I recall, this incident was one of the factors which prodded me in the direction of stainless steel developing equipment, a step which I have never regretted, but the Patterson still sits in the cabinet and would, I assume, work fine today--as long as some restraint is used when rapping it on the counter!

    Konical
     
  10. ann

    ann Subscriber

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    unless something has changed these tanks have a life time warranty Just get in touch with them and they will replace the item.
    I haven't had to do this in some time, but they were always very responsive when i did have an issue. The address i have on hand is Tiffen Group 31 Jet view Dr. Rochester ny. It has been several years since i talked with them so i am hesitate to give you a phone number.
     
  11. titrisol

    titrisol Member

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    5 minute epoxy or JB Weld should do the trick
    After you put glue on it I'd wrap some duck tape as well (better safe)!
     
  12. Blighty

    Blighty Subscriber

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    My Paterson tank developed a crack right on the shoulder. I repaired it with superglue. It hasn't (yet) leaked. Regards, BLIGHTY
     
  13. dr bob

    dr bob Member

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    Well, I guess I have to be the negative this time :smile:. I my experience, once a non-metallic container is damaged, it is not prudent to continue its use. Any fix one might apply will certainly be temporary at best, and according to Murphy’s Law, it will fail at the least appropriate moment. Please do yourself a favor and replace the tank (maybe with a steel one). After all they aren’t that expensive and considering some possible consequences, a good investment. Look at it as insurance.
     
  14. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    I repaired a couple of tanks Paterson & Jobo with a couple of 120 film spools and some acetone. I placed the spools and a little acetone in a metal 100ft 35mm Ilford Bulk film cannister (an old metal one) and sealed up leaving overnight, the next day I had a solution of the same plastic as the tank which I used to seal the crack, once dry I built up over the crack with thin layers, inside and out.

    The Jobo repair was over 20 years ago and I still use the tank for my 5"x4" negatives.
     
  15. blansky

    blansky Subscriber

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    Certainly not wanting to be the nay sayer here but this again strikes me as a false economy.

    Any attempt to jerry rig something as important as a developing tank seems to me not a great idea.

    I think there are many ways to save money but this I don't believe is one of them.


    Michael
     
  16. David Ruby

    David Ruby Member

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    To go further with my saga, I actaully did already replace the tank, but I still have this one and hate to throw anything away. You've all given me some great suggestions, any number that would probalby work fine. I'd love to get it replaced, so I'll see where that takes me.

    The crack is so minute that i can't image hardly any substantial liquid would leak out in 10 minutes. It just barely beads up when full. Anywhooooo, thanks all.
     
  17. Woolliscroft

    Woolliscroft Member

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    It sounds the best policy. They don't cost much and however it was fixed it would have been weakened and might have split next time, possibly ruining a film. If you want to still make use of it, keep the central pillar and lid as spares, then drill a hole in the bottom of the tank and use it as a plant pot.

    David.
     
  18. donna-marie

    donna-marie Member

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    Oh I had a tank once that had a crack like you described. Oh I glued and taped and was proud of my frugility. Then the crack grew without my permission, and I ruined a couple of rolls of film.

    Never Again. :wink: