Outsourcing needed for some bulk film loading...

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by PKM-25, Aug 14, 2012.

  1. PKM-25

    PKM-25 Member

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    Hi,

    I have 4 150 bulk rolls of the last batch of 35mm Techpan that I want to have loaded into cassettes. Sure, I know I can do them my self and I did buy a brand new loader but I would hate to scratch them or any other damage, so I am willing to pay to have it done.

    I recall there was a service mentioned years ago who did re-spooling and they could do it, but I can not find the name...

    Any suggestions?
     
  2. EdSawyer

    EdSawyer Member

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    Have you ever bulk loaded? It is trivially easy, no chance of scratching, in my experience. You would need probably 120 cartridges to roll all that at once. I'd just get a dozen or so and use it as you need it, rolling it yourself.
     
  3. Roger Cole

    Roger Cole Member

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    True for normal rolls but do you mean these are 150 foot rolls? Not sure which loaders will take a roll that long, if any.
     
  4. SkipA

    SkipA Member

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  5. walbergb

    walbergb Subscriber

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    I second Ed's advice. I bulk load all my 35mm film. No scratches or wasted film to date. I do prefer the plastic cartridges over the metal. I've had the metal end caps pop off numerous times. Fortunately, I've only lost a couple of frames due to light leaks. I've never, and I mean never, had a plastic cap come off accidentally. Both ends of the metal cartridges are removable, which doubles the odds of having an accident. The plastic cartridges only have one removable end. I also store the cartridges, loaded or empty, in a plastic film canister. Film processors will give you all you want for free. They decrease the chances of dirt getting into the cloth in the slot (don't know the technical term) and scratching the film, and they decrease the chances of an end getting loose.

    I use an Alden 74 loader, and find the counter to be quite accurate. I also have a Lloyd's, but it is less accurate. I use electrical tape rather than Scotch tape or masking tape, to attach the film to the spool. I get 22 x 30 frames from a 100' roll. I like to use 30 frames because it fits in the PrintFile and still allows me to get the information from the top of the PrintFile onto the contact sheet. Extrapolating, I estimate you would get 33 frames (+/-) from a 150' roll, so you would need at least that many cartridges.

    That is a lot of "I's"! Sorry:whistling:
     
  6. PKM-25

    PKM-25 Member

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    So....

    What was that company that offers re-spooling and loading of bulk film services?
     
  7. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    will film for classics do it for you ?
    i am not sure if they use old stock, or respool new on old spools & in old cassettes.
    the only other place that i knew of that sold respooled film was j&c photo ( long gone )
    they respooled 12 flm on 620 rolls ...

    good luck finding someone who does that sort of thing.

    how about just respooling it yourself in a darkroom, without the bulk loader ..
    pull an arm's length out ( or whatever length you want as your standard )
    and wind it into your cassettes in the dark.

    john
     
  8. PKM-25

    PKM-25 Member

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    Jnanian, film for classics might have been it. I am not ruling out doing it my self, I just wanted to create options as this is essentially brand new film I bought new from B&H when they stocked it.

    It might actually be better if I do it on my own in the sense that it is being used strictly in an Xpan, odd frame count to begin with. I saw the film in my freezer yesterday when I was rearranging to make room for more and got to thinking about it, hence the question...
     
  9. Aristotle80

    Aristotle80 Member

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    You don't have to buy a single reloadable cassette if you have a source for empty factory cassettes. Scour your city's one hour labs and take the empty film cassettes after the color film has been cut off for processing. It's trash to the lab, so if you ask nicely they will happily give you all they have. Then pick over the empty cassettes, discarding any that have dirt, dents, or damaged felt light traps. Then, using your bulk loader, you can simply use masking tape to splice your fresh film onto the little stub of color film they leave sticking out the slot. You need to make the connection pretty flat so it slips in without jamming. I've been doing it this way for twelve years over hundreds of feet of film without any scratches.

    When you are in the darkroom to develop, use a beer bottle opener to pry open the bottom cover to remove the spool. Every cassette only gets reused once to ensure a fresh light trap.

    Using this method it's literally impossible for the end caps to pop off or come unscrewed, since it's factory crimped steel. There are only TWO caveats...
    1. You MUST mark the outside of the cassette so that you know the true loading is not the factory label. This includes masking over the DX markings if you have an automatic speed reading camera and the speed is not correct.
    2. Until you get good and confident about the strength of your splicing, you can't forget the length of your roll or wind-on too strongly at the end of the roll, or else you may tear your masking tape connection. Then you will simply have to have a changing bag and a light tight container with you to unload the film from the takeup spool. When I know I'm at the end of the roll from long experience I don't try to force another frame, I just rewind it.

    When I can't find any more empty factory cassettes, then I'll unwrap some Kalt reloadables I bought in the 90s and never used. If you think this sounds sketchy, imagine how many gun enthusiasts reload previously fired shell casings! After a few powerful reloadings the brass can break open in the worst kind of way! Reloading film cassettes is a safer proposition.
     
  10. Colin Corneau

    Colin Corneau Subscriber

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  11. Gerald C Koch

    Gerald C Koch Member

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    Since I often freeze my film I use freezer tape since it maintains its hold even at low temperatures. Another reason because it is intended for food storage I assume that there is nothing to affect the film.
     
  12. mikebarger

    mikebarger Subscriber

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    I remember when you got a free re-loadable cassette every time you bought a roll of Ilford 35mm B&W film. They came in re-loadable cassettes. Guess it's been awhile since I reloaded 35mm film. :smile:
     
  13. PKM-25

    PKM-25 Member

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    Interesting, is this a easy to get item or something I order from a specialty store?

    I think I am just going to load it my self, I am pretty sure I have two loaders already.
     
  14. canuhead

    canuhead Member

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    Indeed, bulk loading yourself for Xpan use will let you crank a few extra frames so you can get 21 shots vs 20. I've never gotten 20 out of factory loaded Kodak.
     
  15. PKM-25

    PKM-25 Member

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    It has varied for me, 20-21. I just found my loader, it is a brand new Watson with 50 new metal Kalt cans.
     
  16. Patrick Robert James

    Patrick Robert James Subscriber

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    I think the Watson is the best. It doesn't touch the film unless the gate is closed. I second the used cassettes from the minilab idea. It is the easiest and fastest way to go. I have been hording them because you never know. I use Scotch tape these days and it works fine, no overlap. I just butt the film against the small tongue left over coming out of the cartridge. Six clicks past one full revolution on the Watson is what I do which gives me 38-40ish frames. The last frame is usually semi fogged. Do some trials and you will know where it lies for you in the count. Until then assume your last frame is no good.

    The last thing to do is put on a good movie and go........ Beer helps too.
     
  17. Roger Hicks

    Roger Hicks Member

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  18. limnidytis

    limnidytis Subscriber

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    I've used film bulk loaded (by someone else) into previously used cassettes, and while generally it works well, there are a few issues which I believe are related to the splice between the bulk film and the left over film in the cassette. I believe the splice must occupy some of the space in the cassette - enough so that the person that loaded the film says he can't get a full 36 exp into a standard cassette. When I've used the film in an auto wind camera (EOS 1v - no manual wind), the film will sometimes stop advancing after a few frames - I've never had this happen with a standard bulk cassette. Again, I think that the splice takes up space in the cassette and puts extra tension on the film so the camera thinks it's at the end of the roll. Once I had the film jam at the end of the roll in my 1v because the splice was pulled out of the light trap and the camera would not rewind the film. I had to put the camera in a changing bag to take the film out. Also, at least with the film I used, more film is pulled out of the bulk loader to make the splice - so there's more exposed film at the end of the roll which can overlap the last frame. All of these problems are likely related to how the splice is made. Your results may vary, but it's a few things to consider.