steel reel question

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by bessa_L_R3a, Apr 10, 2008.

  1. bessa_L_R3a

    bessa_L_R3a Member

    Messages:
    105
    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2008
    Location:
    Jersey City,
    Shooter:
    35mm RF
    Hi,

    Can I use a leader retriever to slip out the leader in the light and load my steel reel in the light with a few inches of negative before hitting the changing bag? I just don't want to wrestle with the cheap clip.

    And how do I know if my negative is winding correctly without doubling up on the tracks? That is my biggest fear compared to using plastic reels ..
     
  2. Fred Aspen

    Fred Aspen Member

    Messages:
    715
    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2006
    Location:
    North-ish-western US
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I would think that would work okay. Most cameras wind about 3-3.5" before exposing the first frame.
     
  3. bessa_L_R3a

    bessa_L_R3a Member

    Messages:
    105
    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2008
    Location:
    Jersey City,
    Shooter:
    35mm RF
    yeah!!! thanks ... and how do I avoid the double tracking? i'm terrified of developer not making contact with all surfaces.
     
  4. Kevin Caulfield

    Kevin Caulfield Subscriber

    Messages:
    3,386
    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2004
    Location:
    Melbourne, A
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Yeah, you have a few inches or so. You should be able to feel if it is winding correctly. If it isn't winding evenly you can feel that the back of the film is kinked slightly, not flat. It may be worth practising in day light and deliberately twisting it in the tracks to see and feel what incorrect winding looks and more importantly feels like.
     
  5. bessa_L_R3a

    bessa_L_R3a Member

    Messages:
    105
    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2008
    Location:
    Jersey City,
    Shooter:
    35mm RF
    anyone know where i can see you tube video or similar of winding 35mm on a steel reel? i couldn't find any on you tube
     
  6. tiberiustibz

    tiberiustibz Member

    Messages:
    1,749
    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2007
    Location:
    Tufts Univer
    Shooter:
    35mm
    No amount of youtube videos can save you. learn by experience. If you're rolling in a dark bag give in.

    I started by not rolling the rolls into the canister all the way. I don't know that this helps you very much besides to confuse you as to which roll's you've shot (bad news bears).

    I pray for your sake that you're rolling in a dark closet, it's 50000000000000 times easier. I open the canister, cut the tab off, clip it in (in the dark, duh), and roll. To roll you have to make sure it is completely lined up, going straight in. Practice with scrap film. The tension must be even (pulling the same on both sides). Feel with your pointer finger on the hand that's holding the reel. Listen for the film crunching sound that it makes if you're screwing up. Remember how much space a roll takes up so that if you feel that your 36 exposure roll is only taking up half the reel you know there's something wrong. Keep the tension as low as possible and curve the film towards the emulsion so it slides into the track. Besides that find your youtube video or ask someone to show you.
     
  7. Christopher Walrath

    Christopher Walrath Member

    Messages:
    7,114
    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2005
    Location:
    In a darkroo
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    As to the clips, if you have the cheap steel wire bent around clips, take a micro pair of needle nose and bend them a little further around to allow the film to feed into the clip a little further. As to whether it's winding on correctly or not, about every half turn slide the film back and forth a wee bit. You should have about a quarter inch slack and should be able to feel it very easily. If the film is tight and doesn't slide at all, then go back, fix it and then continue. And TAKE YOUR TIME. If you're like me, loading film in a minute is abso-stinking-lutely out of the question. I take my time, about three to five minutes, unless I nail it. Haven't yet.
     
  8. Murray@uptowngallery

    Murray@uptowngallery Member

    Messages:
    1,041
    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2003
    Location:
    Holland, MI
    Shooter:
    Pinhole
    Someone was just telling me about loading two rolls back to back in one spool. That takes confidence, experience, maybe both.

    Not sure why you'd want to...save time and a little chemistry?
     
  9. fschifano

    fschifano Member

    Messages:
    3,216
    Joined:
    May 12, 2003
    Location:
    Valley Strea
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Sacrifice a cheap roll of film and practice, practice, practice. Before you know it, you'll be able to do it from scratch in the dark. If that doesn't work, consider a high quality reel like Hewes. These are almost foolproof because they are built to exacting standards and quality control. They are more expensive, but worth every penny.
     
  10. tiberiustibz

    tiberiustibz Member

    Messages:
    1,749
    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2007
    Location:
    Tufts Univer
    Shooter:
    35mm
    I rolled 24 exposure rolls in 60 seconds each. Around 40 of them in my photo class. No stickies. Just keep it lined up with even pressure. That doesn't work in a dark bag mind you. After completing the photo class with no stickies I got home and rolled a color roll in an 11x17 dark bag and it was one giant sticky.

    Rolling back to back? you'd need 12 exposure rolls to fit on a 36 unless you're using the ilford 72 frame ones. The advantage being you can now fit 16 rolls of film in an 8 roll can.
     
  11. k_jupiter

    k_jupiter Member

    Messages:
    2,578
    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2004
    Location:
    san jose, ca
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I don't think you understand the concept.
    The films roll into the same spiral, just back to back.

    Why bother?

    tim in san jose
     
  12. Pinholemaster

    Pinholemaster Member

    Messages:
    1,504
    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2005
    Location:
    Westminster,
    Shooter:
    8x10 Format
    Practice on a dummy roll over and over again.

    There should be no tension on the film once loaded. The roll should end about where the reel ends, and the film should feel like it is loosely fitting on the reel.
     
  13. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

    Messages:
    19,990
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2003
    Location:
    local
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    when the cut end of the film is in the clip feel the edges with your fingers
    ( with your dummy roll and the lights you can see this how the film looks
    when it is clipped straight vs. crooked ) it is easy to notice when the film
    isn't clipped straight. when you hold the film tight, and slightly curved
    it will easily slide on the reel as it is supposed to, you can push the film
    back/ towards the center, and feel it move back and forth freely, you haven't made
    any mistakes. once you practice a few times, and see what you are doing
    right / wrong it is easy to understand how to do it. i wouldn't bother leaving the
    tongue out of your film spool. it isn't worth the trouble and is much easier to
    pop the top off of the cartridge pull the film out, trim the end off and feed it into
    the reel ...

    videos, and threads ( here ) aren't going to help you as much
    as sacrificing a roll of film and just doing it ...

    good luck!

    john
     
  14. Mike Richards

    Mike Richards Member

    Messages:
    101
    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2005
    Location:
    Preveza, Gre
    Shooter:
    35mm RF
    Very important: Don't squeeze the film as you're loading. Just hold the edges loosely and guide the film onto the reel.
     
  15. timeUnit

    timeUnit Member

    Messages:
    558
    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2005
    Location:
    Göteborg, Sw
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Loading steel reels is 100 times easier than plastic, IMO. The 120-format rolls can be a bit of a challenge. That said, I roll both 120-film and 135-film back to back on Hewes steel reels. I've had a few mess-ups with 120-film, but never with 135-film.

    Practice in the light. I a few tries you'll be the master. :smile:
     
  16. CBG

    CBG Member

    Messages:
    894
    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2004
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    The above is the best advise you'll ever get. Waste one roll to practice. Use it till you could load film in a shoebox. Practice in the light first, then in the light with your eyes closed, and only then in a changing bag.

    Get the feel of it down cold before you start to adapt your skill to working a changing bag. There's a "feel" to loading that you'll never forget.

    I'm one more who says stainless is best. You're not dependant upon film slithering all the way friction free.


    Back to back is just an old time saving "trick". Sometimes the time saved is vital. I'm not sure I'd want to load back to back in a changing bag without sacrificing two rolls and a bit of practice....

    Best,

    C
     
  17. Paul Verizzo

    Paul Verizzo Member

    Messages:
    1,261
    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2008
    Location:
    Sarasota, FL
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Or, just use a high quality plastic system.

    In terms of ease of use, SS reels make zero sense. I know there are many who say that plastic doesn't work for them, but that's like saying it's harder to use an automatic transmission than a stick shift. I chose the latter for my Jeep, but that doesn't mean I would claim it to be easier. The only failure ever possible with a plastic ratchet reel system is easily avoided: if it stops going in easily, something is wrong. A reel with a bit of moisture can do that. But you know this before it ever goes into the soup, unlike a SS reel where you discover the error after fixing.

    SS reels are expensive and are easily bent. (Oops!) 120 film is hard to do, I even have a 120 film loader device. Even such a thing as the brand of film and its backing can change the degree of diffiulty.

    I keep my SS reels and tanks to look at. They look very professional and are very pretty.

    I use my Yankee reel and tank for the "reel" world.
     
  18. CBG

    CBG Member

    Messages:
    894
    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2004
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I guess the plastic reels make sense for some, but metal reels are practically free nowadays, easy not to bend with minimal care and easy to use for most folks. I'm a terminal clutz and used the old reels without clips or hooks with no trouble and did back to back etc with little fuss.

    If you're dropping and bending reels, you're going to smash the plastic reels sometime.

    C
     
  19. Konical

    Konical Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,703
    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2003
    "120 film is hard to do, I even have a 120 film loader device. Even such a thing as the brand of film and its backing can change the degree of diffiulty."

    Good Morning,

    Agree and disagree. In my opinion, loading 120 film onto a SS reel is generally the dead simplest darkroom procedure going (220 is another story). I do agree, however, that some films are somewhat easier to load than others. I've never had trouble with Kodak or Ilford, but the very flexible, thin-base Foma 200 does require a bit more care. The most important thing is to use reels with a positive locking mechanism in the center, such as the Kinderman-type puncturing pin instead of the Nikor-type springy-thingy.

    Konical
     
  20. ntenny

    ntenny Member

    Messages:
    2,283
    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2008
    Location:
    San Diego, C
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I agree with the second sentence, but the first one astonishes me. Maybe I've just been lucky in my choice of 120 reels, or something, but based on my own experience I can't imagine finding it harder to load than 35mm. The space between "tracks" of the reel is so generous that it's hard to get misaligned, and if it does happen, I can feel it immediately.

    What do you find goes wrong? The film "derails" and you get two layers stuck together?

    -NT
     
  21. Nigel

    Nigel Member

    Messages:
    148
    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2006
    Location:
    Toronto, Can
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    I find the exact opposite. 120 is a walk in the park but 35mm is tougher. I attribute it to length. 120 is short so being a degree or two off square translates to a couple of millimeters by the end of the film. With 35mm being more than a meter long, a degree or two off square is a long way off at the end of the film.

    In my experience, loading metal reels is easy if you get the film square to the reel, otherwise it is difficult.

    Plastic reels are relatively easy to feed correctly, but take much longer to load.

    In my mind, the reel debate is a matter of preference. Slow and sure vs. fast but requiring some skill/practice.
     
  22. PhotoJim

    PhotoJim Member

    Messages:
    2,223
    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2005
    Location:
    Regina, SK,
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I wouldn't even say that plastic reels are slow to load. I've loaded film onto plastic reels thousands of times. I'm very fast at it.

    Conversely, I am much slower at loading metal reels. Perhaps it's because I have only done it a few times, but I find that it takes a lot of fussing to get the film started. Once started I'm usually good. I don't find it so much more difficult that it's a big deal, but I do find it to be more difficult.

    I prefer plastic reels and find that they are much easier to learn how to use, but metal reels have their place. I use metal occasionally primarily because if I'm doing a lot of film and I don't have any dry plastic reels, I still have a few metal reels I can use. I don't disdain so much that I won't use them, but I use them as my last choice, generally.
     
  23. Anscojohn

    Anscojohn Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,727
    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2006
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    ******
    Once again, you should practice with a junk roll with your eyes closed. You will feel the film double loading if you handle it correctly. It really is a matter of "feel." There are little devices available which go go into the core of the reel, and then you slip the film into a kind of curved metal sleeve to give your film the correct "bowing" of the film. I always found them more trouble than they are worth. Someone might have an extra one they would send you. My gut tells me that with the film still in the cannister, you won't get too much of the slight bowing needed. Sometimes, also, you can hear the film make a slight "clicking" sound if it double loads.
    Trust us, if you practice enough with junk film, and you get the "hang' of it, it will be a no brainer. You can then begin to give knowing, smirking smug looks to those people who still use plastic because "it's im--poss--ible to load ss reels." Stick with the practice. And like whistling, it will come to you and you shall be ok with loading them. We've all been there.

    John, Mount Vernon, Virginia USA