Unicolor drum info needed

Discussion in 'Darkroom Equipment' started by altview, Apr 7, 2008.

  1. altview

    altview Member

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    I have a unicolor print drum that I have not used before, and the drum has been sealed for some time, and the lids appear stuck to the cylinder. How do these lids come off?
     
  2. dmax

    dmax Member

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    The end with an intake spout rotates clockwise to tighten, and counter-clockwise to open. The fit is snug because the lid has tabs that lock onto corresponding lugs in the processor tube, and also because there are two gaskets that provide a tight seal around the lip of the tube. To install the lid/cover (or to detach it ) from the tube, I hold the tube against the side of my waist and then turn the cover. I find that I need the large contact surface of my body to provide the traction needed, particularly when using the 11x14 and 16x20 tubes.

    I hope this helps.
     
  3. altview

    altview Member

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    Yes, that helped, thanks! is the other flat lid removable from the drum also?
     
  4. Phillip P. Dimor

    Phillip P. Dimor Member

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    I don't think the other lid is removable. I've never been able to get it off at least. I like unicolor unidrums for 4x5 development, except that my very worn tank has a very worn gasket (the grey plastic disc inside the lid..). It leaks a lot. I've tried everything except cut a new gasket. Silicone sealant (don't try it), lightly heating it with a heat gun and stretching it (don't try it) etc. I just need to get a new drum. A good thing to do if you have some silicone lubricant spray, is to spray the outside top of the drum, inside of the lid and gasket. Makes getting the top on and off a lot easier. Also, two of the widest rubber bands that you can find will keep the drum from walking off the roller base. Lobster bands from the grocery store would probably do it. Hope that helps somewhat. I'm trying to remind myself that posting to APUG helps people. Otherwise i'd probably give it up.
     
  5. mark

    mark Member

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    Both my unicolor drums are a bear to get the top lid off.
     
  6. Deckled Edge

    Deckled Edge Member

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    I have various sized drums from Beseler, Unicolor and Chromega. I vastly prefer the Chromega drums for processing film. Stay away from the Beseler. I don't know a source for new gaskets for the Unicolor drums, but they are so cheap on fee-Bay, that you might fetch as drum with a better gasket for what you would be willing to pay for the gasket alone.
     
  7. Konical

    Konical Subscriber

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    Good Afternoon,

    Deckled Edge is exactly right. The Chromega drum, assuming it has the necessary rods and spacer, can't be beat. No leaky gaskets to worry about; never a leak after using mine hundreds, if not thousands, of times over several decades.

    Konical
     
  8. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    when you use the drum, smear some vasoline on the gasket
    and receiving end of the drum. this will give you a seal and your drum
    should leak less than now ( or not at all ).
    mine leaked like mad ( both a roll film drum with a "plunger" and a paper / sheet film )
    and with vasoline they don't leak at all - sort of ...

    good luck

    john
     
  9. Phillip P. Dimor

    Phillip P. Dimor Member

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    I just cut out a new plastic gasket out of a plastic coffee can lid. It solved most of the leakage issues I had. Apparently there is a soft rubber gasket underneath this gasket that can also become compressed over time. I pulled it out and applied silicone sealant and then reapplied the soft rubber ring. In retrospect I should have applied a very thin layer of sealant and let it dry first before attaching the rubber ring on. I'll let you all know how it goes. If it doesn't work, I can always pull the silicone sealant up and try again.

    Thanks to curuxa for the heads up, I really appreciate it!
     
  10. StephenT

    StephenT Subscriber

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    Gasket leaking solution

    I just received a Unicolor drum that leaked like a sieve with the grey poly gasket. It's actually a couple of mm too large in diameter. Rather than trim the factory one, I followed another poster's method and cut one from a coffee can plastic top. Works great.

    I'll update the post if I find that the yellow plastic coffee can top is affected by chemicals.
     
  11. darkroommike

    darkroommike Subscriber

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    Years ago I contacted Unicolor and got what the nice lady on the phone said were the very last gaskets available for the 8x10 Print Drum and some for the Film Drum. They didn't charge me for them and I suspect they were happy to get them out of there . Nice people to do business with.
     
  12. Kilgallb

    Kilgallb Subscriber

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    If you can find a unicolor daylight tank for 35mm on ebay, the gaskets in these work on the roller tanks. I did that a few years ago and it worked well.