Well I don't. Not for loading reels. The minute amount
Originally Posted by MattKing
of dark space needed for loading must surely be close
by or easily improvised. Dan
You might find a changing 'tent' easier to work in than a changing 'bag'.
Sacrifice a roll of film for practice - after you think you have it in the light, go into the bag or tent and practice lots more. Once you get the hang of it, it goes pretty fast, but it does take a little while to get there.
I saved the first roll I ever developed as a reminder that one needs to be a little patient with learning curves. It was perfectly developed - but not one printable neg. Full of kinks from fighting it onto the reel, and undeveloped spots where the layers were in contact. All in all, pretty ugly. It's part of the learning process.
"I always take a camera, That way I never have to say 'Gee, look at that - I wish I had a camera'" -Joe Clark, H.B.S.S.
I agree with previous posters on the changing bag being a pita. Also I agree on keeping the reels clean and dry.
I just developed 5 35mm Neopan 400 at the same time in a Paterson drum and the loading was a bit nervewrecking. I noticed that I unintentionally turned som of the reels a bit so the inlet on them didn't align with the film I was loading thus creating trouble. I also found that when problems with jam started I could continue after "bending " the reel a bit as if I would to break it. I could feel how the films setled on the reels when doing it.
The development was sucessfull apart from bending marks on 2 or 3frames on one film
Surprisingly not the best frames though. I don't know what went wrong
Another reel caveat
This one applies to both steel and plastic reels . I learned this the hard way, early on.
Go easy on amount of wetting agent if you use it, and remove the film from the reels before you dunk the film into the wetting agent solution.
I had a case of well, if a little photo-flo is good, a bit more won't hurt. I now find that my final rinse goes well with reverse osmosis fitered water ( yes, a luxury - I tapped off the drinking water tap at the kitchen sink, and ran it to a valved line above the darkroom sink) and half the called for amount of wetting agent.
The early dried excess photo flow residue would gum up the plastic reels, making them hard to load without the film binding. Even with steel it resulted in the developer foaming, and resulting foam after effects on the developed image at the top edge of the top roll in a multi roll tank.
Gunk on reels can be cleaned with toothpate and brush, as previously suggested, or in an automatic dishwasher on the top rack. Wait until the dishwashers' own wetting agent reservoir (if fitted) is empty first.
Here's my reel loading method which works 100% of the time now for me. I prefer Jobo reels to Paterson as the rings are wider and less prone to sticking but this method also works for dry Paterson reels in good condition.
1. Always in the dark (never use bag anymore)
2. Cut off leader and round corners of leading edge of roll (see photo)
3. With lights on insert enough film so it is firmly engaged in the reel (see photo)
4. Turn off lights
5. Stick reel between lips so film canister opening and reel take up are in the same plane reducing tension on the film to a minimum. Gently pull the reel away from the lips about one foot(30cm) at a time and rotate the reel taking up the film. Always keep just enough tension between between canister and reel so the film does not kink or bend. (See photo)
6. When film is fully loaded remove canister from lips, take scissors and cut of leader
Proceed in good temper from there having avoided profanities and taking the lord's name in vain!!
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I haven't used my AP (similar to Paterson) plastic tank in months -- maybe over a year. There were a couple of times when it jammed so badly that I couldn't think of a better solution than cutting the film and loading the second half onto a second reel. After this happened a couple of times, I converted to stainless steel, but with one additional comment: I use Hewes reels. I've got some non-Hewes reels, but the Hewes reels are much better. The Hewes reels are made of thicker steel, so they're less likely to get bent out of shape. The 35mm reels also have two small spokes that fit into a couple of early sprocket holes in the film. This is a much easier and more effective way of centering the film on the reel than the clip that other stainless steel reels use.
FWIW, I also picked up, on a lark, a Russian plastic tank. It feels a bit cheap, but I actually prefer it to my AP tank. Film can jam during loading, but the design of the reels and spool (they're one unit in this design) is such that there are several ways to unjam the film. Note there are at least two different Russian developing tank designs. This one's a two-roll design that loads film emulsion side in and uses inversion agitation. The other design loads film emulsion side out and uses rotation agitation (the top, I'm told, isn't secure enough to support inversion).
Pardon my asking but who is "Photo whore" ? Is this site appropriate for such a photographer with Marko lurking around?
Claire (Ms Anne Thrope is in the darkroom)
Dude, after this experience I may try a double whiskey and coke before I do it again.
Originally Posted by Ed Sukach