How do you dry your film?

Discussion in 'Darkroom Equipment' started by David Hall, Mar 2, 2003.

  1. David Hall

    David Hall Member

    Messages:
    470
    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2003
    Location:
    South Pasade
    Howdy Wise Ones...

    I currently have one of those Jobo drying tents for rollfim, but it doesn't fit very many sheets. So I am looking for altervative ways to dry sheets in quantities of ten or so. 4x5 and 8x10. How do you do it? And do you do anything special to keep dust out of the mix?

    dgh
     
  2. Jim Chinn

    Jim Chinn Member

    Messages:
    2,512
    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2002
    Location:
    Omaha, Nebra
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I made a tent to dry 35mm out of a 5gl plastic pail, a clear shower current and some small air vents used on coputer cases.

    Use the lid from the bucket for the top. Cut out a couple of holes for two of the vents and glue in place. Use some stiff wire (even a coat hanger will work) and make 2 or 3 guides that you can hang film from. Cut out some holes in sides or bottom of the bucket for vents. Then use sticky back velcro to hold the shower curtain around the lid and bucket. Drill a hole and put a hook with a nut on the other side through the lid to hang it from the ceiling. You an hang as many a dozen rolls of film at one time.

    When I hang my film I open the flap enough to reach in with the film still rolled or on the reel in a container of photo-flo. I pull the film out or through the solution inside the tent and then hang with an alligator clip with some lead melted in the wire end from the bottom, held at the top with a clothes pin or alligator clip at the top.

    With the three guides you can also hang up to 9 4x5s at one time. Total cost about $6.
     
  3. David Hall

    David Hall Member

    Messages:
    470
    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2003
    Location:
    South Pasade
    Jim,

    What a great idea, but I am having a hard time envisioning it. Is there any way you could post or email a picture of it? I'm very interested.

    Thanks!

    dgh
     
  4. docholliday

    docholliday Member

    Messages:
    116
    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2003
    Location:
    Amongst the
    I use a contraption that is a large piece of pvc that the whole reel fits in. Underneath it is a piece of plexiglass that keeps the dripping water diverted into a pan and an infrared/red heat lamp underneath the whole mess shining the heat up into the tube. This allows a rising heat tunnel throughout the tube. I put the whole tube, plexi, tray and lamp assembly inside a large portable closet/clothes storage bag which I have cut out the bottom and sewed mess (tulle) into and has cheap, cut & fit air conditioner filters placed over the mess. This is repeated at the top of the bag. The heat from the lamp rises, through the tube and over the film and reels, drying the film and reels without forcing any air around the film. The bag keeps the dust out and the filters allow air movement without introducing dust into the mix.

    When I get done with my film (I shoot mostly 120 & 220), I'll run in my Jobo, dip in Photoflo for 30 secs or so, shake the excess off and drop the roll down into the PVC tube. I close the bag and turn on the lamp. In about 20 minutes, the film and reels are dry, no marks, no dust, no spots.

    Done this for over 300 some rolls and haven't had a single problem yet, no matter if it was C-41, E-6, or B&W...

    You could do the same, but without the tube structure and clip the film inside the top of the bag on lines that you've punched through the closet (it's the kind on a rack with a fiber and plastic bag that zips up) keep some plexi or glass at the bottom in a 45 degree angle and put the heat lamp underneath. The rising heat vortex does really well. I've done this for sheet films when I shoot them.
     
  5. Les McLean

    Les McLean Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,609
    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2002
    Location:
    Northern Eng
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I purchased an old engineers metal storage cupboard that is just about the same size as the very expensive professional film dryers. After washing it to remove the years of accumulated grime I lined it out with thin polystyrene and installed a small tube type 100watt greenhouse heater. I attached nylon cord similar to that used to start a chain saw, in rows along the top to hang the film. I can dry 12 rolls of film or 9 4 x 5 sheets. The total cost was 25 pounds sterling.
     
  6. Aggie

    Aggie Member

    Messages:
    4,925
    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2003
    Location:
    So. Utah
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    ..
     
  7. ann

    ann Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,919
    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2002
    Shooter:
    35mm
    We use a plastic clothing bag that can be purchased at many stores. Cost $25 can hang about 25 rolls of film in it. I ran some wire across the top of the bag, got some clothes pins and there we are.
     
  8. Jim Chinn

    Jim Chinn Member

    Messages:
    2,512
    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2002
    Location:
    Omaha, Nebra
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Dave,
    Just think of a cylinder with the lid on top, the drum on the bottom and the plastic in between.

    It is basically a round lid from a 5gal drum at the top. The top of the plastic shower curtain hangs from the lid, held on with velcro.

    The bottom of the shower curtain wraps around the bucket, also held on by velcro. You cut the curtain so you have just enough material to go around and have a 2or 3" overlap with a couple of velcro tabs to close it up after the film is hung. Use anything you want for a system to hang the film from.

    If the place you hang it is fairly isolated without any foot traffic, you can skip the drum at the bottom and let the plastic just hang from the lid. I used the bucket because dust would get kicked up from people walking buy and the shower curtain material was not long enough to reach the floor when hanging from the ceiling.

    You also don't need to have any vents, but it does speed up the process.

    Hope this clears it up a little. If I can figure out how to use my Wife's new digital camera I will take a picture and then try to figure out how to post it.
     
  9. David Hall

    David Hall Member

    Messages:
    470
    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2003
    Location:
    South Pasade
    Doc,

    Very intriguing. You sound very inventive...from walloping someone with the monopod to figuring out a heat vortex.

    So the heat lamp does nothing to the plexiglass thing? No melting?

    I'm going to try this. I'll probably come back and bug you with more questions.

    Thanks!

    dgh
     
  10. docholliday

    docholliday Member

    Messages:
    116
    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2003
    Location:
    Amongst the
    Just keep the lamp a good 1-2 feet away and use a dimmer on it to control the "heat". You could also use a couple of 100 watt lightbulbs to do the same, but I'd rather not have a softbox in the corner.
     
  11. David Vickery

    David Vickery Member

    Messages:
    67
    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2002
    Location:
    Central Texa
    Shooter:
    ULarge Format
    I just used some thin nylon rope strung across my sinks and hang the film with clothspins. As I leave the darkroom I ask the Gods of Dust and Grim not to stir up a ruckus while I am away. So far, they haven't--but I have never forgotten to ask either. The film dries fine and I have never noticed any dust attachments.
     
  12. fingel

    fingel Member

    Messages:
    298
    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2003
    Location:
    San Francisc
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I hang mine from a wire coathanger clipped on to the blades of my cealing fan in my bedroom. Works great. If I want to hurry it along a little, I just turn it on low and let is spin. I am just tempting dust to come and get it, arn't I :wink:
     
  13. Silverpixels5

    Silverpixels5 Member

    Messages:
    594
    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2003
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I dry mine in the bathroom from the shower rod. Its so humid here in the summer that there's no need to run the shower to settle the dust. I've never had a problem with dust on my negatives, even with all the dust my 4 birds manage to kick up.
     
  14. Donald Miller

    Donald Miller Member

    Messages:
    6,242
    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2002
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    I hang all of my sheet film using binder clips available from any office supply store. These grasp the film more positively then clothspins. (Two of the smaller clips hold a sheet of 12X20). I have no need to speed drying along with heat since a busy day shooting will be from 6-12 sheets of film.

    By the way I found the way to slow down...shoot bigger negatives.
     
  15. Annemarieke

    Annemarieke Member

    Messages:
    747
    Joined:
    May 27, 2003
    Location:
    near Amsterd
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    My rollfilms dry in a high bathroom-type cupboard. I've taken all the shelves out of it and sealed all the joins and holes. Before hanging my films to dry inside it, I wipe the inside down with a moist cloth. The film doesn't dry any faster, but I (almost) never have any dust problems.
     
  16. brimc76

    brimc76 Member

    Messages:
    414
    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2003
    Location:
    Uxbridge On.
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I hang my film from clips I have installed on the drop ceiling brackets in my darkroom. There is very little air movement in there with the door closed and no one in there. It has worked fine for me so far.
     
  17. Jim Chinn

    Jim Chinn Member

    Messages:
    2,512
    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2002
    Location:
    Omaha, Nebra
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I use a homemade drying tent that has various hangers for different formats.
     
  18. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Messages:
    9,281
    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2002
    Location:
    Bergen, Norw
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    I have a number of clips mounted on a wire coathanger. The whole thing is then hung up wherever I fancy: Sometimes in the darkroom, sometimes in the bathroom, sometimes even outdoors. This time of year it's generally indoors, to avoid embedded dandelion seeds...