Recommendation for a film loader?

Discussion in '35mm Cameras and Accessories' started by Hamster, Sep 11, 2009.

  1. Hamster

    Hamster Member

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    I am in the market for a bulk film loader.

    The reason I wanted one is to reduce film cost and also I prefer 24 exposure rolls, which seems to have disappear from the market.

    I don't mind buying used, in fact I prefer the quality of things they used to built in the old days.
     
  2. DLawson

    DLawson Member

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    Since someone else has started a thread . . . . :smile:

    If anyone has useful feedback on the Arista loader that Freestyle sells, I'd appreciate hearing it.

    (Also a bulk loading newbie.)
     
  3. JohnRichard

    JohnRichard Member

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    I have no idea of such things, but I do know that if you prefer how things use to be built: buy Russian! I use a lot of Soviet era equipment, and it's built like a tank, can't tare it up, and relatively cheep.

    Sadly, it's equipment that is hard to come by. So it looks like the three that are available are plastic. Avista, which just looks cheap, but I have personally never used, the Lloyd's type, which can be found everywhere, and the old standard Watson. I have used a Watson type, and they are just fine. Nothing special.

    There are several on that big auction site (as J. puts it), that can be had for cheap. Check it out!

    -J. Richard
     
  4. cooltouch

    cooltouch Member

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  5. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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    I've always used the Watson type, and in fact just obtained a second of the same type, although it is an earlier version made by Alden.

    They work well.

    The other type might be slightly more efficient in terms of how much exposed film there is between the spool and your last usable negative.

    Matt
     
  6. Herzeleid

    Herzeleid Member

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    I bought one of Kaiser's bulk loaders months back, Arista and AP loaders seem identical to Kaiser's (Kaiser is hard plastic too).
    I am very happy with it actually no problems whatsoever. I am new to bulk loading myself too.
    I used the loader once but I used more than half of the loaded cartridges. No dust, scratch or any ill effect.
    Less than half of the last frame usually comes pre-exposed, it happens while loading, I don't know if there is a way to overcome it.
    AP and Arista's loaders look exact clones, so I would assume they are as good as kaiser's too.
     
  7. Anscojohn

    Anscojohn Subscriber

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    ******* If you have access to dark room, why not just load your cartridges in the dark? I do not use a machine to load my film on to developing reels; and I do not use a machine to bulk load the film I put in to my cartridges. But I sure do like bulk loading!
     
  8. Michael W

    Michael W Member

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    Hansa / Konica / AP
    All the same design under different brands, I have 4 of these & prefer them to the Dayroll design.
     
  9. mrred

    mrred Subscriber

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    I have one and I love it. It shows how much is left, which can be important. I have 2 other lloyds. They are functional, but I miss the ability to know when I run out....

    The arista has a quirk to load, as you need to trim the end like a neck tie to thread it. Everything else is positive.
     
  10. ChrisPlatt

    ChrisPlatt Member

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    I recommend the Alden 74.

    Chris
     
  11. dances_w_clouds

    dances_w_clouds Subscriber

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    My favorite is the Alden 74 (colourful) or the Burk & James
     
  12. JBrunner

    JBrunner Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Best film loader I know is Jason Zimmerman, but he worked up out of 2nd assistant a long time ago...
     
  13. sgpix

    sgpix Member

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    I have a Watson and a Lloyd loader, both bought from Freestyle (it looks like Freestyle don't sell the Watson type anymore, though).

    Both do the job, but I've found that the build quality of the Watson leaves a bit to be desired. The door on my Watson loader is hard to close, and I'm always afraid that it will pop open while I'm loading a roll. Apparently, the older Watson units have better build quality, but I haven't seen one in person so I can't confirm this.

    The Lloyd, unlike the Watson, doesn't have a frame counter, but I just count the number of cranks (besides, the counter on my Watson doesn't work anyway). The light trap in the Lloyd relies on a felt strip, which, if kept clean, you shouldn't have trouble with. As others have noted, the last few frames don't get fogged with this type of loader, too.
     
  14. cooltouch

    cooltouch Member

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    It's been bugging me ever since I came across this thread -- as I was recalling, I thought I still had a bulk loader around here somewhere. So, I looked today and found it. This one is a Watson-style, but made by Prinz (in Israel, interestingly enough). It's called a "Prinz 66". Build quality is what I would describe as "adequate." I would not expect to pay more than about $10 for something like this on eBay. It works just fine, though.

    Oh, and if you have a changing bag, you can bring the loader and film canister into the bag, load the film onto the reel and close up the loader, thus not exposing the last few frames.

    Michael
     
  15. railwayman3

    railwayman3 Member

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    It that's the "square" design, I have the Konica version and can highly recommend it, solid construction and I've never had any issues with film damage or scratching.
     
  16. Nicholas Lindan

    Nicholas Lindan Advertiser Advertiser

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    I use the Alden 74.

    Much better made than either the Watson or Lloyd. I haven't used the AP.

    The Alden is made from Bakelite and is quite sturdy. It has an elapsed film usage guage, but it only goes to 30 feet (? memory) before it goes around again. It has a knob on it for closing Nikon cassettes - may also work for the Leica cassettes.
     
  17. Ektagraphic

    Ektagraphic Member

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    24 exp rolls for black and white and for color (not any of the "professional" color films such as portra). Kodak Gold is available in 12, 24 and 36 exp. Tri-X, and Plus-X are available in 24 exp too.