Non-Perforated film in your Leica

Discussion in 'Rangefinder Forum' started by NB23, Jan 19, 2012.

  1. NB23

    NB23 Member

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    I noticed that Leicas can use Non-perforated film. You can bulk-load your films and punch a little hole right at the tip of the film on each canister, this way your Leica can grab the start of the film and move it all the way through.

    If you shoot and develop and print your own B&W film, you're good to use non-perforated films in your Leicas.

    Now my question: The labs that develop and scan 35mm film (Dwayne's comes to mind), do they absolutely need the film to be perforated? Is it a necessity for it to be transported through the C-41 machine and scanned?

    I am posting this in hopes to make you guys save some good money on films. Especially non-perforated Portra bulk films on Ebay that can be had for as low as 25$ the 100ft Roll! And there's plenty! You can also buy some AGFA APX100 non-perforated Bulk Rolls.

    Food for thought.
     
  2. tony lockerbie

    tony lockerbie Subscriber

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    Firstly, I didn't know that you could buy unperforated film, but there you go. Most C41 machines that I'm aware of don't require perforations for the processing cycle. The film is attached by tape to a plastic leader card and is dragged through by that card, which has perforations down the centre to engage the film processor drive. Same for dip and dunk processors (does anyone use those anymore?) which only attach at the ends. Can't see any problem with scanning either.
     
  3. Collas

    Collas Member

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    The M6 has a sturdy set of sprockets inside for dealing with perforated film. Would it not leave marks on the unperforated film as it travelled past the shutter aperture to the take-up reel? Would there be the potential for mis-alignment of the film, which the sprockets are there to prevent?

    Nick
     
  4. Steve Roberts

    Steve Roberts Member

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    I don't quite see how this would work (I'm not saying that it wouldn't, just that I don't see how!)
    Surely the unperforated film would just sit on top of the film sprocket's teeth. To roll the film tightly on the takeup spool, it normally rotates a little faster than the rate the film advances when driven by the sprocket, but has a slipping clutch (the friction between the removable takeup spool and its spindle, in the early Leicas). If using unperfed film the takeup spool would then be dragging the film over the teeth of the sprocket, with the likelihood of carving off small bits of emulsion and base material and cheerfully sending them into the works? Additionally, (forgetting that) if the film advance is determined by the takeup spool, as more film is wound on, its diameter will increase and the gaps between frames will get steadily greater through the roll. Perhaps not an issue if the non-perfed film is cheap enough!

    At that point I'll stand back and prepare to be corrected!

    Best wishes,

    Steve
     
  5. mdarnton

    mdarnton Member

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    This sounds a lot like a "tip" that someone has not tried.
     
  6. darkosaric

    darkosaric Subscriber

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    I could imagine usage of use non-perforated film in some situations like putting it in holga or some other medium format camera, home made pinhole camera... but in Leica - I don't think so.
     
  7. NB23

    NB23 Member

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    It was a thought I had at 3am. I'll revisit it this afternoon when I'm a bit more intelligent...
     
  8. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

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    Having a Leica and putting unperforated film in it is like having a Rolls Royce and putting diesel in it.
     
  9. NB23

    NB23 Member

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    I have no idea what you are talking about.
    There's an insane amount of great out of production film out there that I've almost cried over for not being able to use it simply because it was not peforated. Think of kodak IR, tech pan, konica IR and even APX100 that's getting hard to find these days.

    Leicas are cameras that I put through regular use. If I can use non-perforated film in it, it will then reveal itself as an even more capable tool.
     
  10. Rol_Lei Nut

    Rol_Lei Nut Member

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    Get a Soviet Leningrad camera: spring-motor driven and doesn't use sprockets...
    (Actually, not a bad camera, has framelines for various FLs in viewfinder and is generally better made than most Sovs.)

    Using sprocketless film on a camera which uses sprockets is simply asking for several types of trouble, as others have posted.
     
  11. cjbecker

    cjbecker Member

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    On my rolleicord it uses a sproket to run some of the operations in the camera like the counter and it works by the sprocket running against the film. It puts marks all the was down the side of the frame.

    The only problem that i see with running non perferation film through the leica is that the film will have to run on top of the sprockets instead of in the sprockets and will not allow the film completely flat over the film
    Plain because of the extra bend it has make.

    Even saying that i think it will work.
     
  12. NB23

    NB23 Member

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    I was sure Leicas didn't have the teethed reel (how do you call this?). Anyhow, I checked my Leicas and I see no real problems except a possible spacing issue.
    One day I'll try it and let you guys know...

    Thanks for the conversation.
     
  13. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

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    What don't you understand "Rolls Royce" or "Diesel" ?.
     
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  15. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    I think I understand your confusion, you don't actually mean unperforated at all. You mean unspooled ie not in a film cassette and available in bulk loads.

    All those films you list were available as perforated 35mm film in cassettes, but what you mean is the ability to put bulk film into a cassette and cut a leader. That can be done with any 35mm camera.

    Ian
     
  16. Steve Roberts

    Steve Roberts Member

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    I have the contact details of a good Leica repair man.......

    Only kidding!

    Steve
     
  17. NB23

    NB23 Member

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    You plan on filling your Rolls with Diesel? Now that would be a ridiculous thing to do.
    In hopes to divert you from this ridiculous idea, I suggest that you use some exotic films that are nowadays only available in the unperfored version and shoot them in a camera that will allow you to do so: a Leica.

    But do you own one?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 20, 2012
  18. NB23

    NB23 Member

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    This is a good reply.
    I believe the film should be absolutely flat because it runs under the plate against the flat rails, regardless of the drivetrain.
     
  19. bwfans

    bwfans Member

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    A camera can use non-perforated film if the teeth mechanism does not connected with shutter, and film feed mechanism does not rely on the teeth. This probably gets rid of 99.99% 35mm cameras ever manufactured.

    Some medium format camera, with custom made 35mm adapter, can use non-perforated film. I have a Pentax 6x7 camera that is perfect for this purpose. It produces great 35mm panoramic images.

    I think Kodak EIR film is no longer available in 100' perforated bulk rolls but is available in a wide sized rolls. It can be sliced to fit into 35mm film cartridges. Past few years people has been sliced it to fit medium format cameras but not 35mm cameras due to perforation requirements of most 35mm cameras.

    Some older film (828?) does not have perforations but 1) may need backing paper; 2) may need to use an old camera not quite capable.

    Leica is a great photographic tool, not just a decorative piece. If Leica can (safely) use non-perforated 35mm film, I would like to try it out. I have some 35mm non-perforated film sitting idle in the storage. But I need to check if 35mm non-perforated color film can be processed through the machine.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 20, 2012
  20. rick oleson

    rick oleson Member

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    Why is all that unperforated 35mm film out there? What is it made/used for?
     
  21. bwfans

    bwfans Member

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    Many 35mm, 46mm, and 70mm non-perforated film were made for special long roll cameras, like those used in school portrait business. Hundreds exposures can be shot in one roll before sending 100ft rolls to some specialty portrait lab to process.
     
  22. rick oleson

    rick oleson Member

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    I've bought a fair amount of 100-ft bulk film, but it's never been unperforated. Guess I haven't been paying attention... I would have thought that demand for something that only fits in long-roll cameras would have been blown away by digital many years before it overtook the regular 35mm market.
     
  23. brucemuir

    brucemuir Member

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    It did.
    There is a fair amount of post dated non perfed in Kodak 160NC on eBay but I don't know if anyone else is still making it.
     
  24. bwfans

    bwfans Member

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    There are a lot of long roll cameras with good zoom lenses available. I would guess the film will be harder and harder to get with time passes.
     
  25. NB23

    NB23 Member

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    Yes, I guess we're seeing the last ones on the market. This is why I posted this...
     
  26. Newt_on_Swings

    Newt_on_Swings Member

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    hush hush secret... A few Canon Eos bodies have sprocketless film advance, you can basically bulk load whatever unperforated film and shoot away.

    p.s. If you dont mind shooting very slow speed film (think kodalith 6-12 iso), microfilms are available in 35mm format most commonly unperforated, which you can develop for continuous tone. It is probably the cheapest unexpired film you can buy, but you usually have to buy a case. These pop up randomly on ebay as well in 100ft to 1000ft cans. And if its expired, its even cheaper. Since the speed is so slow, there is less of a chance of fog as well.

    2 recently completed microfilm auctions:

    1200ft for $90
    http://www.ebay.com/itm/Expired-9-2...6271189?pt=US_Camera_Film&hash=item19cc9184d5

    3000ft for $70
    http://www.ebay.com/itm/expired-08-...6275218?pt=US_Camera_Film&hash=item19cc919492