Loading JOBO 1500 series reels

Discussion in 'Darkroom Equipment' started by hal9000, Dec 26, 2007.

  1. hal9000

    hal9000 Member

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    I used to use Kindermann SS reels but I have recently switched to a JOBO CPP-2 since I use the expert drums for sheet film development (and am extremely pleased with it). I would also like to use the processor for 120 film, but I have been having trouble loading the 1500 series plastic reels and have ruined some negatives.
    A friend of mine suggested using AP reels instead, they supposedly fit in the JOBO 1500 series tanks but the center hole is somewhat larger, so the reel does not fit as tightly which doesn't seem like it would be a problem for rotation development. Maybe I just need to practice more with the JOBO reels? I know they have to be absolutely dry, I think I have been putting too much pressure on the film sides when rotating or maybe getting the initial loading wrong (at least this happened to me a couple of times when practicing in the light, one side of the film was in the correct slot but I had inserted the other side one ridge too far in.
    Does anyone have experience with using other reels in the JOBO 1500 tanks (I have heard there are also SS ones) or tricks to load the JOBO reels reliably?
     
  2. Nick Zentena

    Nick Zentena Member

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    Jobo sold/sells Hewes reels for the 1500 tanks.

    The main thing is to use your thumbs when loading the reels. The bigger 2500 reels are pretty simple once you break yourself of any habits from your older system. I haven't used the 1500 much but it's basically the same thing.
     
  3. Mick Fagan

    Mick Fagan Subscriber

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    If you are loading 135 film it is really easy with the 1500 reels, the 120 film is slightly harder.

    I think it is slightly harder because there is a slight wobble factor with the plastic reels compared to a SS reel, which has no wobble. Loading 135 film the reels are closer together, the wobble factor is less.

    That said, the 1500 reels using 120 film is really quite good, they do take a bit of practice and once you sort out your method you should be alright.

    To get 120 film into the film gate I use my right thumb and forefinger in the centre of the film. I draw the film towards the gate using my left thumb and index finger just over the film gates, which are either side. That way I can feel the film corners and they usually slide downwards slightly and into the reel.

    To get a mental picture of this:- the right hand is under the left hand and it is coming upwards towards the film gate.

    The film touches the undersides of my left index finger and thumb, that is how I locate the film gate.

    I hold the reel in my left hand and the film in my right hand.

    I'm right handed!

    The reels have an area just after the take up entrance on either side that is designed to take your first finger. This finger holds the film by lateral pressure as you move/twist that side. Once you have moved that side, apply pressure from the other finger on your other hand on the other side. Then you release the first finger from the film and twist the other side. Obviously repeat this one side at a time, until the film is loaded.

    I also keep my thumbs just above the entrance gate on either side. By doing this I ensure that the film doesn't curl up and out, which can happen.

    Running two 120 films on a single reel is really neat and the little red plastic tab is pushed in once the first film hits home, one then just loads the second roll of film and you are away.

    I agree that coming from SS reels to the Jobo 1500 system reels, is a bit of a difference. Once mastered though, it is an excellent system.

    Mick.
     
  4. tim_walls

    tim_walls Member

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    Personally, I've found the 'twisting the reel, one side then t'other' routine is unnecessary with Jobos. I load the film into the reel as you describe, and then I just pull the film onto the reel by grabbing it at the sides where the two indentations are.

    So, to try and explain it vaguely:

    Reel is 'straight' - i.e. the film gate and the two indentations are lined up with each other.

    Holding reel in right hand, pull the film leader into the gate with your fingers, past the two indentations. At the indentations, you can feel/touch the edge of the film.

    Arrange the right hand as follows:
    Thumb and forefinger holding the reel.
    Cup the film spool in the remaining fingers of the right hand - you're just preventing it from unravelling/falling to the ground, and keeping it lined up straight, rather than holding it as such.
    If it's 120, let the backing paper 'fall over' your hand to the right.

    Using thumb and forefinger of the left hand, you can now just pull the film onto the reel - gripping it at the sides where the two indentations are.

    Every so often - or immediately if you feel any resistance or other weirdness, check the film isn't curling and about pop out of the entrance channel using your left hand; because your right hand is cradling the film so it's inline with the reel though, I don't find this happens often. 120 is more of a PITA than 35mm though in this respect.



    That sounds more complicated than it is :smile:. That's just the way that feels natural to me - any way which gets the film onto the reel in the end is 'correct' as far as I'm concerned :smile:.

    Edit:
    Just to add - yes, this is indeed one of the coolest things about the Jobo reels! But, if you want to do this, you need to make sure that on the first roll you entirely remove the tape attaching the film to the backing paper, rather than just folding it over at the end. If you just fold it over, it'll inevitably cause problems - eg. it'll end up touching the second roll leading to marks on one of your negs, at worst it'll jam on something as you're winding it on.
     
  5. Lopaka

    Lopaka Member

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    I take a scissors and snip a tiny bit off each leading corner of the film. This seems to make it a bit easier for the film to slide through. Nothing else to add to the good advice already given. Sacrifice an old roll of expired film for loading practice - a little practice and it goes pretty smoothly.

    Bob
     
  6. hal9000

    hal9000 Member

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    You guys are great, thanks for the detailed tips. I know many people have no problem with these reels, so it must be a question of technique and practice. I'll try the Tim and Mick methods :smile: and see what I am most comfortable with. Thanks again, Hal
     
  7. rwyoung

    rwyoung Member

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    I second the snipped corner trick. But only with the Jobo plastic reels.