Is there an unused microfilm processor out there?

Discussion in 'Australia' started by Oxleyroad, Feb 25, 2010.

  1. Oxleyroad

    Oxleyroad Subscriber

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    I have become aware of the recent departure from Australia of the only B&W reversal processing lab in Australia when two weeks ago I went to get some film processed. Annually I was getting between 6 and a dozen 100ft 16mm rolls processed as I was not interested in processing these lengths of film myself as I had no way to dry it. I do play with M/F and sheet film reversal processing as this size is more manageable.

    When I was a lad, I used to work after school at my parents microfilming business in the country. They used a Kodak Prostar II processor, and it was this machine that I used to process the exposed film produced by the staff during the day.

    My thought is with two of these processors, I could have a bash at processing my B&W reversal film with some mods and running the machines in series. The first machine doing the first development, bleach and clearing. The film then comes out into room light for the second exposure and then runs though the second developer, and fix before being dried in the second machine.

    Right now all I miss is two of these machines. My father after keeping his processor idle for 6 years disposed of the unit 18months ago. He figured he'd never find a use for the machine and had a tidy up and so out it went.

    Is there anyone out there who might now where I could start looking for one or more of these machines, or something similar which does not require a large volume of chemistry, within Australia? I would be happy to pay something for these processors and most certainly the freight to Melbourne, but anything from outside of Australia is just going to cost me too much to get here.

    Any other thoughts?
     
  2. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    To dry long rolls of film, you can make a drum with a wheel at each end, an axle in the center, and dowels spaced around the perimeter between the wheels. Attach the film to one of the dowels and roll it onto the drum emulsion side out in a long spiral.
     
  3. Mike Wilde

    Mike Wilde Member

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    I have also heard of people making a 'pegboard' for home processing cine film. You put a bunch of stainless steel or the right type of plastic posts embedded/glued/epoxyed into the two opposite edges on the bottom a plastic backboard sized to fit into a tray or tank. Designs I hve seen have a handle on the'back' to ease manipulation and moving from tank to tank.

    For 100' I think a 11x14 tray would be the smallest I would consider. You clip the film on the post in one corner then zig zag the film onto all the posts until you get to the end, where you clip again, usually onto a rubber band or spring to maintain a bit if tension. Some designs have the posts tapered in the middle so that the film, even where the emulsion side is 'in', only touches the post on the edges when it is wound over them.

    If you go this DIY route I would consider hunting down an old Kodak publication that I think was called 'Photolab Design'. It gave a good overview of what materials were and were not suitable for contact with photographic chemistries. As I recall, E-6 bleach was very material specifc as to what it could contact, and I think it was limited to 'red brass', and not much else. Regretably, I no longer have a copy of this publication.