Help for loading 120 roll film onto spirals

Discussion in 'Darkroom Equipment' started by Tom Stanworth, Jul 2, 2004.

  1. Tom Stanworth

    Tom Stanworth Member

    Messages:
    2,027
    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2003
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    In case you are not already doing this...In the dark snip off the corners (roughly 45 degrees) from the film before it is loaded on. It makes it easier by far to get the 'leader' past the ball bearings in plastic spirals and prevents the leading corners getting mangled- esp with thin based films such as apx100 and acros. Will make a big difference....which I am reminded of whenever I forget to do it....

    Oh and avoid humid conditions and getting sweaty in changing bags as all help make the emulsion tacky and make it stick.


    Tom
     
  2. argentic

    argentic Member

    Messages:
    1,722
    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2002
    Location:
    Echandelys,
    Shooter:
    4x5 Format
    I do this with a nailclipper. Makes it a lot easier in the dark.

    Gilbert
     
  3. Dave Miller

    Dave Miller Member

    Messages:
    3,894
    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2003
    Location:
    Middle Engla
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Sometimes someone comes up with a real gem, and makes life so much easier. Those who have spilled blood in a changing bag will know what I mean!
     
  4. ThomHarrop

    ThomHarrop Member

    Messages:
    172
    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2003
    Location:
    Denver, CO
    Shooter:
    4x5 Format
    If you are using Patterson reels you will also find that if there is one drop of water anywhere on the reel the film will not go past it. Whenever I load anything on Patterson's I blow them with the hot setting on my hairdryer first to make sure they are bone dry.
     
  5. fingel

    fingel Member

    Messages:
    298
    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2003
    Location:
    San Francisc
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Something I do to keep my changing bag free from humidity is put a couple of those little bags of silica that you get with electronic equipment in it. That way when you start to sweat in those bags, it absorbs the moisture.
     
  6. Jon Shiu

    Jon Shiu Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,813
    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2003
    Location:
    Elk, Califor
    Shooter:
    Plastic Cameras
    Also, the two sides of the Patterson reel can get crooked to each other, making loading impossible. Just wiggle them a little and they become straight again.
     
  7. psvensson

    psvensson Member

    Messages:
    625
    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2004
    Location:
    Queens, NY
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    When I cut the corners off, it becomes harder to get the last part of the film onto the reel. I think this is because the leading end of the film is then free to curl inward, causing more friction against the groove.

    I have no problem getting the uncut end of the film past the little balls - I just grab it by the leading edge and drag it in. There's no exposure there to be ruined by handling or mangling anyway.
     
  8. dr bob

    dr bob Member

    Messages:
    871
    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2002
    Location:
    Annapolis, M
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    This is a personal thing, I know and preferences may differ, but I have a a collection of plastic reels, some Patterson, and ss reels. I much prefer the ss reels for both 35mm and 120 films. In either case, the reels must be dry. I have also had the best (easiest) results by clipping the leading edge corners.

    In loading a ss reel, I find that giving the film a gentle tug after a couple of rotations helps center the film width-wise, which aids in alignment. Good center alignment is quite necessary for a correct load. I believe most loading difficulties with ss reels occur due to poor centering of the film at the start. Practice will help in all cases, plastic or ss.
     
  9. Stan. L-B

    Stan. L-B Member

    Messages:
    342
    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2004
    Location:
    London & Fri
    Shooter:
    8x10 Format
    Now for the other side. I have never found it necessary to cut the corners off the edges of the lead-in of film. I do however bend back, against the curl, the leading 1/4 inch of film. I use Jobo, Rodinax and Patterson reels and all are trouble fee if - DRY!

    As stated, it pays to keep loading a dud film till you can do it, any which way, in the dark and standing on your head!
     
  10. Annemarieke

    Annemarieke Member

    Messages:
    747
    Joined:
    May 27, 2003
    Location:
    near Amsterd
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Has any of you guys (or girls) ever tried loading two rollfilms onto one Patterson reel; one behind the other? Somebody taught me that trick, and I am still thankful! It means that you only use 50% of the developer that you would use for two separate reels, and also the tank is a lot less heavy, which in my case is a huge bonus.

    Really, there is plenty of room on a reel to do that. Try it.

    Anne Marieke
     
  11. Dave Miller

    Dave Miller Member

    Messages:
    3,894
    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2003
    Location:
    Middle Engla
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Another wonderful idea. I shall try it this weekend, just as soon as I've brought a pair of nail-clippers.
     
  12. Annemarieke

    Annemarieke Member

    Messages:
    747
    Joined:
    May 27, 2003
    Location:
    near Amsterd
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Dave, no need to clip the corners. I never do, and still manage to get two on one Patterson reel. Like Stan, I bend back the leading few centimeters (sorry guys, we are metric in our country) of film, and then it feeds onto the reel without any problems.

    A problem you might come across, is that the first film has to go all the way into the centre of the reel, and obviously will not be fed in anymore by the 'little balls', for want of a better word. You will have to push the first film along, till it stops going any further, and then feed in the second film.

    It is a bit fiddly at first, but when you get the hang of it, it works just fine!
     
  13. David Ruby

    David Ruby Member

    Messages:
    203
    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2003
    Location:
    Boise, Idaho
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Ann-hey i like the sound of that. are you talking about 120 size film only? i guess i'm assuming that a 36ish exposure roll of 35mm would fill the roll.

    Is there a trick to doing this besides being careful? I would think that the second roll could start to overlap the first if you aren't very careful. hmmmm.
     
  14. Annemarieke

    Annemarieke Member

    Messages:
    747
    Joined:
    May 27, 2003
    Location:
    near Amsterd
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    As far as I know you can only do it with a 120 roll, because they are a lot shorter than a 35mm roll.

    Yes, you do have to be a bit careful, and have to make sure that the first roll is really totally in the centre of the reel, i.e. that it will not go in any further (you have to push it along, because it has gone past the feed-in system).

    I have never had overlapping rolls (knock wood!) and all my films have come out perfectly OK.
     
  15. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Messages:
    9,281
    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2002
    Location:
    Bergen, Norw
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    I load two 120's on one reel by using the sticky tape thingy to tape the second to the first. That way they go in one after the other, with no danger of overlap or slipping.
     
  16. Annemarieke

    Annemarieke Member

    Messages:
    747
    Joined:
    May 27, 2003
    Location:
    near Amsterd
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Ole, do you mean that sticky tape thingy that sticks the film onto the filmreel? Wouldn't that dissolve somehow in developer or fixer and cause damage to the film?

    I do it without tape and have never had problems, but I do agree with you that there could be a risk of overlap.

    It is a bit fiddly, but when you get the hang of it it is actually very easy and convenient because you can develop two rolls in the amount of developer for one roll.

    Anne Marieke
     
  17. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Messages:
    9,281
    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2002
    Location:
    Bergen, Norw
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    Yes, that's what I mean. It's always handy, and I can't find the other tape in the dark :wink:

    No - or at least, that's never happened to me. In several hundred rolls in just about any chemistry conceivable, and then some, I have never seen any problems.
     
  18. Annemarieke

    Annemarieke Member

    Messages:
    747
    Joined:
    May 27, 2003
    Location:
    near Amsterd
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Wow, do you live 'in' APUG? That's a very quick answer.

    So the tape is a real option. I had never thought it wouldn't harm the film but you seem to have done a fair amount of testing to prove it doesn't.

    Thanks.
    Anne Marieke
     
  19. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Messages:
    9,281
    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2002
    Location:
    Bergen, Norw
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    Who's talking? :tongue:

    I work nightshift, and have two days (nights) of waiting to look forward to...
     
  20. Annemarieke

    Annemarieke Member

    Messages:
    747
    Joined:
    May 27, 2003
    Location:
    near Amsterd
    Shooter:
    Medium Format