I don't care about the last frame. I've gotten so used to it, it's instinctive to re-shoot. It's more important to only roll what I need/want. If I only want to shoot 5 frames, that's all I roll.
My F6 can automatically rewind after a set number of frames, if it were to really bug me. I haven't checked, but the F100 might too.
One of the reasons I hand load is to save money, much the same as a lot of people I imagine. But, just as important I wanted to be able to custom load specific lengths as needed.
If I intend to travel I usually load 36 exposure rolls. Likewise if I am shooting for a specific project.
The rest of the time I load a lot of 12 exposure rolls because I find that length very comfortable for my day-to-day work.
If I am working from 400 foot rolls I load in the dark for obvious reasons. But if I am working with 100 footers I typically load out of a bulk loader and work in the light.
I now load to the Leica cassettes or the Contax cassettes because they are much nicer to work with (and will almost certainly outlast me.) The Leica LTM cassettes (FILCA I believe) seem to fit and load beautifully in my Prinz 66 loader with the Contax cassettes work best in my Watson.
For my Contaflex and Contarex backs I use regular, metal re-loadable cassettes. After about 5 reloads (I make a mark with some white-out on the cassette) I tend to toss these out. I have never had any scratches from dirt in the felt but I have had a couple fall apart on me after passing the 5 load mark. It is one of the reasons I much prefer the Leica or Contax cassettes. I am sure they can probably be worn out but it isn't likely that I'll be doing it in my lifetime at only 3 to 4 hundred rolls of film a year.
Seems like the obvious best practice.
Originally Posted by Jim Jones
I've been known to roll a few more frames than I should, then it doesn't fit on a standard stainless-steel reel.
It's a bear when you don't expect it. I keep a 72-exposure reel for this contingency.
I've been thinking about starting to do this as well, do you use a bulk loader in the darkness or you do it manually?
Originally Posted by Jim Jones
Techniques, Advice ?
Total darkness is bot an option for me at the moment since I'm currently reusing canisters. I might try to find dedicated reusable ones, then.
I bulk load inside a changing bag while watching television. I always load the entire 100 foot roll and I'm normaly done during a single sitcom (not including laying it all out beforehand). Normally, roll about 36 frames, but rolling fewer is not hard. Trust me, if a clutz like me can do it, you can too.
I was thinking bulk loader in the darkness.
Originally Posted by Felinik
Hmm, just thinking about how it will be to fit the "jacket" of the film roll over the film and on the spool in darkness, already in daylight it can be a bit tricky... Though maybe it's just a matter of practice.
Originally Posted by Bill Burk
I sit in the darkroom, and flip off the lights when I change cassettes in the bulk loader. After the new cassette is in, I turn on the lights and label the Just loaded Cassette, get the parts ready for the next one, then spool the film and flip out the lights to change the cassette.
I also pull a little out of the new cassette beofre I cut the film, so that I am not pulling any film thorough the light trap of the laoder while the light trap is closed.
I use an ALDEN 200, so the number of frames that would be fogged if it worked completly in the light is larger tahn with some of the smaller loader.s
When I load bulk 35 onto cassettes, I always load 36 plus a couple frames.
Load the camera normally and shoot however many frames I want that day.
If I want to change to B&W mid-roll, I wind my color film back into the cassette but try to leave the leader out for easy reloading.
I mark how many exposures I took on the removed roll onto a piece of masking tape to stick to that roll.
If I happen to wind the leader into the cassette, I use a film leader retriever tool to get it back again.
When I want to use more of the same color roll again, I load my roll into the camera, set my shutter to its fastest speed and keep my lens cover on the camera until I advance the number of exposures already used plus one frame to insure against double exposure.