Developer tank woes.

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by wogster, Jul 29, 2009.

  1. wogster

    wogster Member

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    I have a plastic GAF developing tank, has an adjustable plastic reel. The problem is that film is starting to stick in the reel about half way along, I think the springs behind the ball bearings are starting to go. I bought this tank new in 1980, so after 29 years, I would expect it to need replacing.

    I have noticed the clear side of the reel is sort of brownish now, it's always been cleaned well, I think perhaps it's discoloured from use over the years or the plastic is starting to decay.

    I don't think GAF is around anymore, or at least isn't in the photographic business anymore. I either need to find new reels that will fit this tank or replace the tank with something else. The one aspect I have never liked about it, is that you can't do inversion agitation with it. I noticed a couple of different tanks that are available.

    There is the Paterson System 4, and the AP Universal tanks, I believe that these can be used with a single reel or 2 reels at a time. Anyone know which is the better tank or reel. Wondering about stainless steel, but don't know if I could figure out how to load the reels.
     
  2. trexx

    trexx Member

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    I am a big fan of the AP tanks. The reels have a flange where the film is loaded and really helps with 120. I use them as inversion tanks and have little leakage. Less of a fan of the Paterson, but I am sure you'll find lots who are.

    My favorite plastic tank is the JOBO the reels load without ball bearings. But are hard to find.
     
  3. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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    The AP reels also fit the Paterson tanks (and vice versa). I too prefer the AP reels for 120, because of the flanges. I've never seen an AP tank that will take more than one 120 roll at a time though.

    For 35mm, I prefer and use the stainless steel reels. I keep trying the stainless steel reels for 120, but am only slowly getting to the point where I can rely on my ability to load them.

    I too used to use the GAF tank - about 1970 or so I guess :smile:. I think it was only last year that I discarded the combination agitator and thermometer that came with it.

    If you decide to go the stainless steel route I would recommend you keep the GAF, if only for it's 127 film capability.

    Matt
     
  4. Sirius Glass

    Sirius Glass Subscriber

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    I use the FreeStyle home brand of stainless steel tanks with Hewes stainless steel reels for 35mm and 120. Once I learned to load the reels correctly, I have had not problems with them. I would recommend stainless steel tanks and reels.

    Steve
     
  5. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    Give your reels a soak in biological washing powder, and scrub the grooves with an old toothbrush, then soak them in strong household bleach (sodium hypochlorite), then another good clean with the toothbrush and wash well.

    That removes the general build up of crud that forms on the spirals over the years, I'm using tanks bought in the late 60's early 70's and they all load easily.

    Ian
     
  6. Nick Zentena

    Nick Zentena Member

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    You don't say what format/formats etc you need. Or volume.

    I like the Jobo tanks because they are so flexible OTOH I never had a problem with the latest Patersons.
     
  7. Herzeleid

    Herzeleid Member

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    I use both paterson system 4 and AP, but I only use AP reels at the moments. They are fool proof for loading and far easier to load than paterson reels especially for 120. I saw very fine hama and jobo reels on the market but I haven't tried them yet.
    I prefer to use paterson tank with AP reels (500 cc per 120) My AP tank needs more solution per film (590 cc per 120) that is the only think I don't like about AP tanks.
     
  8. wogster

    wogster Member

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    Sorry, only using 35mm at the moment..... Wondering about the SS route, I would hate to buy it though and find I have too much trouble with getting the reels to work. I am a low volume shooter, so the chances of me doing more then 1 rolls at a time is remote, would like the ability to do 2 rolls at a time though.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 30, 2009
  9. Anscojohn

    Anscojohn Subscriber

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    Ian is right. That should work. On the off chance it does not, the same tank was sold after Ansco/Gaf as a Star-D.
    I have both original Ansco and the StarD
     
  10. wogster

    wogster Member

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    Washing powder? You mean the stuff used to do laundry, dishes, something else?
     
  11. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    Yes, it's far better than liquid detergents used for dishes. and will remove photo-flo build up at well.

    Ian
     
  12. Anscojohn

    Anscojohn Subscriber

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    *******
    I use a product call Bar-Keeper's Friend; have also used a product called ZUD. And, of course, Bon Ami.
     
  13. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    Bar's in England used to hang a bar of soap under the hot water tap, that became illegal a few years ago, but soaps (which is what washing powder is) rinses off completely with warm water.

    Ian