Do I have to use reels?

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by snaggs, Nov 22, 2012.

  1. snaggs

    snaggs Member

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    If I'm using Diafine, why can't I just stick it in a bucket? If I leave it in there long enough, will it just sort itself out? :smile:
     
  2. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Subscriber

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    In theory it would work but reels help to prevent scratching. e.g. the edges of the film rubbing the emulsion.


    Steve.
     
  3. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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    You could use a pipe long enough to hang the film vertically without folds or curls - a single roll dip and dunk approach.

    That would, however, take a lot of Diafine.
     
  4. snaggs

    snaggs Member

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    thats a good idea. Since diafine never runs out, theres no reason not to mix up two pipes full.

    What did people do with Dip & dunk with 15 foot of 70mm out of interest? Did they have 15 ft deep pits at the labs? :smile:

    Daniel.

    PS. What is the problem with the curls btw?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 22, 2012
  5. AgX

    AgX Member

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    Films were wound onto a frame.
     
  6. snaggs

    snaggs Member

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    Ok, so one to halve the length of a 15ft strip would be ok?

    This sounds like ideal lazy developing to me!
     
  7. AgX

    AgX Member

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    Lazy?

    We are not talking about stand-development. Are we? Processing film on frames hanging in bassins still needs agitation. Typically done by means of N2 bursts.
     
  8. Gerald C Koch

    Gerald C Koch Member

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    No, you don't have to use reels but they are a lot easier to use than any of the alternatives. Is there a particular reason why you don't want to use reels.
     
  9. snaggs

    snaggs Member

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    Im not very good at them. Ok on 35mm, but a bit daunted on what to do with 120 :smile: hands get sweaty in the change bag, so if you dont get it right it just gets more complicated!
     
  10. railwayman3

    railwayman3 Member

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    I had that problem at first....try practising with a scrap film, both in and out the changing bag, until you overcome the fear of messing up the film.

    Or see if you can thoroughly black out a room, maybe more comfortable than a changing bag. Keep a light-tight box available, to hold the film and reel, in case you get stuck or need a break.

    Reels and tanks do take a bit of patience at first, but are much more convenient for smallscale use, and less likely to damage the film than the options (IMHO).
     
  11. Alex Muir

    Alex Muir Member

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    There was a tip on another forum for loading 120 on reels. Bend the leading end back against the natural curl. About 4 or 5mm from the end. Bend it enough to make it stay that way and then load. I've tried it and it works for me. This is for loading plastic reels, not stainless steel. Alex
     
  12. MartinP

    MartinP Member

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    In pre-history rollfilm (meaning wide and not inconveniently long) would be see-sawed through trays containing a few inches of the chemicals.

    Dunk one end in the tray and lift while dropping the other hand with the other end of the film. If the hands going-down and lifting-up are at the same speed, then a part of the film should stay in the liquid. Repeat steadily for the appropriate time. The drips from the film mostly stay on the film if the speed is not too fast, but nevertheless don't put the dev-tray within splash range of the stop-bath if you want to re-use it!

    I have only ever tried it once, and that was for an ortho film so I could more or less see in the dim safelight. Far too messy for me, but I'm sure it would get easier after the first dozen rolls - it was common for half a century or so after all.
     
  13. LarryP

    LarryP Member

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    Are you using plastic or steel? I use generic steel for both 35mm and 120 and have less trouble loading 120 than 35mm. I'm at the point of considering the upgrade to hewes for 35mm at least because i just dread loading 35mm , but then i keep thinking I'd rather get the 150mm lens for my 645.:sad: Decisions , decisions.
     
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  15. Bill Burk

    Bill Burk Subscriber

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    See-saw is not a bad idea. I was considering it for 110 film which I don't have a reel for.

    I don't know if any old "aprons" would be brittle - but they are just rolls of plastic with wrinkly edges that you roll the film inside. Easy loading for sure.

    I saw a video showing a dip and dunk processor where they lay the film over something like a curtain rod. (Richard Photo Lab).

    Also encourage practice and learning to reel onto stainless steel. Practice is free and it will get easier. (People swear by "Hewes" brand but I don't have those and seem to do alright).

    The mystery to me is - with all this fumbling, sweating and handling... I rarely saw fingerprints or scratches on my finished film when I used changing bag. I have no idea how it survives the trauma. (Disclosure: Now I wear gloves to roll film and have a full darkroom and Infrared viewing device).
     
  16. pentaxuser

    pentaxuser Subscriber

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    Won't you need total darkness to develop the film in the ways you are thinking of? If so then you can load the reel in the same darkness without a changing bag.

    pentaxuser
     
  17. Gerald C Koch

    Gerald C Koch Member

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    There is a device to help loading film in SS reels. It consists of a small piece of SS which is slightly narrower than the film and about 2.5 inches long. Two edges are folded over to hold the film and it cups the film slightly. Very handy especially for beginners.
     
  18. StoneNYC

    StoneNYC Inactive

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    I always wear gloves, I wouldn't want my finger oils to mess up the film...

    Also, though I find JOBO TANKS to be leaky crap (Prefer Patterson super system 4) they have really great self feeding reels that are super easy (unlike the Patterson ones that are a PITA and I don't like) why can't one company have all good things... Lol


    ~Stone

    The Important Ones - Mamiya: 7 II, RZ67 Pro II / Canon: 1V, AE-1 / Kodak: No 1 Pocket Autographic, No 1A Pocket Autographic

    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
     
  19. nworth

    nworth Subscriber

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    The only problem with reels is getting the film onto the reel. You become more successful with constant practice, but these days many of us don't get that much practice. It's worth noting that there are reels (like the SS spiral reels) and reels (like the Ansco and Patterson autoload reels). Some people get along better with one kind or the other. For beginners or seldom users, the autoload reels are generally easier, but not for everyone. Film sometimes runs off track with any reel, and you have to take it off and start over. Very frustrating, especially after the third try.
     
  20. Mainecoonmaniac

    Mainecoonmaniac Subscriber

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    Really big photo labs in the old days would just put your film on clips then dunk it in deep tanks. I saw an article in a photo magazine where they would use golf tubes with plugs each end as a tank. You would leave an air bubble in the developer so you can agitate. Stainless steel reels have worked for decades for me.
     
  21. fotch

    fotch Member

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    Practice makes perfect.
     
  22. mrosenlof

    mrosenlof Member

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    with metal reels (spirals) at least, I've found 120 to be *easier* than 35mm. The wire and the spacing are much larger. 220 was hard, but I'll probably never develop another 220 film unless some b/w comes back on the market.
     
  23. polyglot

    polyglot Member

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    If you're struggling with plastic reels, blast them with a hairdryer for a minute immediately before loading, even if they were already "dry". They need to be incredibly dry.

    The other thing I found is that for Paterson reels at least, some films are more "papery" (most Ilfords) and some more "plasticky" (Acros, E6) and the papery ones load more-easily.
     
  24. derwent

    derwent Member

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    I got a scrap roll in each size and just practiced in daylight then with eyes shut then in a change bag.
    Soon get used to it.
     
  25. Stephanie Brim

    Stephanie Brim Member

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    My solution: don't use a change bag. I black out my bathroom with curtain fabric to load film holders and put film in tanks.
     
  26. bascom49

    bascom49 Member

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    My sixth grade teacher taught us black and white photography. We dropped the film in a gallon jug and shook it in the dark to process it. Worked great.