Rewinding 120 film for reuse

Discussion in 'Medium Format Cameras and Accessories' started by BetterSense, Aug 3, 2009.

  1. BetterSense

    BetterSense Member

    Messages:
    3,126
    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2008
    Location:
    North Caroli
    Shooter:
    35mm
    I've been known to rewind 35mm halfway through a roll and change to a different film. I just mark the frame number on the leader with a marker.

    I've tried to run 120 all the way through the camera and then wind it back onto another spool for reuse. When I tried it with once with Neopan 400 it actually worked. In false confidence I tried the same thing later and epic failed. Has anyone ever successfully done this or am I just being too big of a cheapskate?
     
  2. 2F/2F

    2F/2F Member

    Messages:
    8,003
    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2008
    Location:
    Los Angeles,
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I've done it a few times to respool film that I shot with a lens cap on for testing a camera or a back, and several times to load 620 reels. I've never done it in order to change films mid roll.

    It works fine. When you get back to the beginning, the film will bunch up right before it is taped to the backing paper. Just untape the film from the backing paper, and then finish rolling it. When you roll the backing paper over the tape, press down and rub back and forth a few times to restick the film to the backing paper. The only problem is that the start arrows will be slightly off when you go to load the film again, so adjust for the distance you moved the tape (perhaps 1-2 cm). Doing it to a roll that was unloaded midway through, the small distance might actually provide a slight safety buffer after the last frame you shot so you don't have to waste a safety shot after it upon reloading the film. I have not tested it myself, though.
     
  3. Anastigmatic

    Anastigmatic Member

    Messages:
    78
    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2008
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    cheapskate...well maybe, it would depend for what purpose you were inclined to do it.

    If its because you want to swap between different types of film in normal day to day photography, it can be more trouble than it is worth, I wouldn't bother. It also depends on what camera you are using, thats what is nice about Blads and cameras with changeable backs, you can keep different film in separate backs and swap at will, some other cameras are cheap enough that you can afford (or its worth trying to invest in more than one, if you like to regularly use different film) to buy more than one camera so you can carry different film.

    On the other hand I have done so when wanting to test or compare results from multiple cameras and fixed lens (that dont have changeable backs) without spending the separate cost of a roll and developments costs for each camera, which can add up to huge amount. I dont wind the film all the way through though, and then respool. I have just taken it into the darkroom and wound it back on to the original reel by hand, and then loaded into the next camera, I avoid rewinding if I am nearing the last frames on roll though
     
  4. David R Munson

    David R Munson Member

    Messages:
    425
    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2003
    Location:
    Tokyo, Japan
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    What camera are you using? One of the beauties of a lot of MF cameras is interchangeable film backs.
     
  5. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member

    Messages:
    6,737
    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2005
    Location:
    Los Angeles,
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I would have thought that you'd ahve "BetterSense" than to give this as an option! :D

    I've done it to xfer 120 to 620 and, like other postings have mentioned, respooling/re-rolling works if done carefully.

    I was faced with similar option a while ago - a desire to shoot both B+W and color, yet only one TLR. Buy another TLR? Buy a Hassy-and-two-backs? I chose the Hassy and now feel burdened by weight and bulk on occasion. It's a trade-off... choose your poison!
     
  6. naeroscatu

    naeroscatu Subscriber

    Messages:
    887
    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2004
    Location:
    Newmarket On
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    If we are talking about a TLR or another MF without interchangeable back the only way to do it safe is to use a changing bag or a darkroom to re-spool the film.
     
  7. pentaxuser

    pentaxuser Subscriber

    Messages:
    8,254
    Joined:
    May 9, 2005
    Location:
    Daventry, No
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Unfortunately no interchangeable backs with darkslides is one of the drawbacks with the Pentax 645N and its a great pity. Pentax missed a trick there, I fear. Yes you can change films midway by winding on but there's no practical way back with the wound-on film. Two P645s might be a solution but a costly one compared with carrying another back or two.


    pentaxuser