Hewes long-roll 35mm reels and loader

Discussion in 'Darkroom Equipment' started by frobozz, Feb 6, 2011.

  1. frobozz

    frobozz Subscriber

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    Since I've got the Canon 100-exposure back for my F-1, I'm always looking for better equipment to process the film. Recently I've been using the Jobo tank and reel and just doing it by hand since I don't have a processor. But lo and behold, Hewes makes a giant stainless 35mm reel, and a loader for it! I still need to come up with a tank for it, but I'm really excited to be able to use a glorious Hewes reel (complete with their little sprocket tabs) for my long film. How come nobody knows this exists?

    I couldn't find anyone who sells it so I emailed Hewes and they worked with me to procure one.

    Pics below...

    Duncan


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  2. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Nice! What's the diameter of the reel? Nikor used to make a 220 reel with the same wire as a 120 reel that fit in a larger tank, and I'm fairly sure the Nikor 4x5" sheet film tank is the same size as the 220, so it's possible that it could fit that tank. Otherwise, it might be best to use something like a set of 5-quart rectangular tanks for 5x7" sheet film and a lift rod, or I suppose you could even use print trays.
     
  3. frobozz

    frobozz Subscriber

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    The Hewes reel is just a hair under 7" diameter. The Nikor large tank (for 4x5 and giant-size 35mm, 120 and 220) is 4.5" diameter.

    I've got a Nikor 70mm tank coming that I think it will fit in nicely (supposedly about 7.5" diameter) but sadly it's not a daylight tank - just the old style tank and lid setup.

    Duncan
     
  4. frobozz

    frobozz Subscriber

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    Oh yeah, I forgot to mention in my first post - this can take 25 feet of film. That's more than enough for my 100-exposure back, but not quite enough for the 33-ish feet of the older 250-exposure backs.

    Duncan
     
  5. chriscrawfordphoto

    chriscrawfordphoto Member

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    Where will you hang the film to dry?? :tongue:
     
  6. frobozz

    frobozz Subscriber

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    That's actually an issue! Since my long rolls are still photos instead of, say, 100 ft movie loads, I just cut them up as I'm pulling them out of the photo flo and hanging them up in the drying cabinet. It's a pain trying to count off multiples of 6 frames as I do that, so sometimes I miss by one or two either way.

    Duncan
     
  7. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    That's probably the best way to do it, or to let it dry on the reel, maybe with some kind of forced air going through it to reduce the problem of droplets caught between two pieces of film. If you look at the DIY movie film processing sites, one approach is to make a kind of open drying drum with, say 5-8 dowels attached to a wooden disk at either end and with an axle through the middle and a stand to support it horizontally, and then you attach the film at one end, emulsion side out, and then roll it up in a spiral along the outside of the drum to dry.
     
  8. frobozz

    frobozz Subscriber

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    I used to get my 250-exposure E6 stuff developed by a place that did it (amazingly!) with a dip-n-dunk machine, using a similar strategy with whatever stainless thing they used to wrap it on. The big problem comes with those frames at the dowels - they are unavoidably bent weirdly, making it much harder to get them flat (even in slide mounts). Well, unless you had a few dozen dowels I suppose! But any reasonable number is going to have this issue.

    When cutting it down for the drying cabinet, the only problem I face is how to hang it and weight it. I use those Paterson film clips with the little spikes, and if I make sure to cut the film to leave full sprockets on both ends I can just float the spike through the sprocket hole and not damage the end frames. I have to be careful when hanging the end and spooling out more before cutting again, that I don't pull down on it so hard I break through the sprocket edge. And of course the film hangs at a very slight angle, because the clips are on opposite sides of the strip, but so far I've not had any problems with it drying with a twist or curl or anything.

    Duncan
     
  9. gordrob

    gordrob Subscriber

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    I use a set of three Nikor tanks for processing the long rolls of 35mm film from my Canon 100 frame back. The inside diameter of the Nikor tanks I have are 6 7/8 inches. I dry the film on the roll in a small film drying cabinet with air blowing gently through the bottom of the reel. Some of the Nikor reels have an agitator that goes in the center of the reel to allow the film to be moved up and down in the solution for agitation. Nikor did not recommend rotating the reel very much as it would cause the outer edge of the film to develop at a different rate than at the center.
    Nikor also made larger reels for 28', 50' and 100' of film that were 10" to 17" in diameter.
    The Hewes reels and loader both look like quality products. I don't have a a loader but don't have a problem spooling the 100 frame length without one.
    Gord
     
  10. 2F/2F

    2F/2F Member

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    Sounds like a good solution for my 250 shot back if I load only 25 feet of film instead of 33. Thanks for sharing. I did not know that existed.
     
  11. frobozz

    frobozz Subscriber

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    Drat - the small 70mm Nikor tank just misses being big enough for the Hewes reel (see pic). The search for a tank continues.

    I do also have the massive Nikor 3-nesting-tanks-with agitator-lid set but haven't picked up a 35mm reel for it yet. Just have the 16mm and what was purported to be 70mm but measures more like 120 (which would be weird to have that much length of 120 width film!) plus the loader.

    Duncan

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  12. frobozz

    frobozz Subscriber

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    When you said you had a set of 3 tanks, I was picturing the standard Nikor long-roll nesting tanks with one lid - they aren't daylight tanks, in that you need the lights off when you transfer the lid/reel from one tank to the next. But now I've come across this Nikor rig and wonder if that's what you meant instead. It's a hair under 7", and 100 exposures fits perfectly on the reel. I got two of these tanks and just one lid, and sadly the lid fits neither tank :-(

    Duncan

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