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  1. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by vedmak View Post
    I am puzzled now, how can the reels be too loose? Are you saying that your batch of Efke is not wide enough? How were you able to shoot if the width is not right?
    No sprocket holes in 120, so the width of the film isn't critical; as long as it's "about right" and no wider than the length of a spool, it'll work. I think it's supposed to be a nominal 60 mm, but from a quick google, it looks like people who have measured have found a millimetre or two of variance from brand to brand.

    -NT
    Nathan Tenny
    San Diego, CA, USA

    The lady of the house has to be a pretty swell sort of person to put up with the annoyance of a photographer.
    -The Little Technical Library, _Developing, Printing, And Enlarging_

  2. #22
    Perry Way's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ntenny View Post
    No sprocket holes in 120, so the width of the film isn't critical; as long as it's "about right" and no wider than the length of a spool, it'll work. I think it's supposed to be a nominal 60 mm, but from a quick google, it looks like people who have measured have found a millimetre or two of variance from brand to brand.

    -NT
    Well what I was talking about was different but this may also be an issue. What I was talking about is the Adox film is thinner, far more flexible. You can load the reel no problem, just like any film. Now add chemicals and a few inversions and now it comes right off the reel. I had begun to think that you can only do stand development with Adox in stainless reels/tanks. Lucky for me I have two other options, both plastic, and they work flawlessly every time, right out of the gate. Never had a problem with plastic reels except for the entanglement issue. Plus, always perfect development. Always.
    I love the wilderness and I love my trail cameras, all Fuji's! :) GA645, GW690 III, and the X100 which I think is the best trail camera ever invented (to date).

  3. #23
    xwhatsit's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the great replies everybody! Lots of ideas to try here. I always trim the leader so it's square and then give it rounded corners. I don't think it's the leader that's jamming, I think it's the edges of the film sticking to the grooves in the reel itself.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ian C View Post
    Loading roll films onto developing reels is much easier if the film and reels are perfectly dry. You can pack the film and reels into tightly sealed vapor-proof plastic bagging with a generous supply of freshly charged silica gel and leave them in this desiccated mini environment for 24 hours before loading the reels. The canisters should be kept sealed in several layers of closed plastic bagging to keep it dry when not in use.

    I use the 750-gram canisters. They can be recharged every year or two by baking in a 300F (149C) oven for an hour, shut off the heat, and remove and seal the canisters when sufficiently cool. When recharged, the silica gel fully regains its desiccating properties.

    http://www.sinclairintl.com/.aspx/ci...0_g_silica_gel
    I find this intriguing -- thanks for the PM! Now, I think that the 30.5m bulk roll that I'm loading off is too moist as well, at least the outer parts. I spent maybe half an hour with my arms inside that little nylon changing bag, it got humid there in a hurry. I remember when going to put the 30.5m roll back into its black bag and box that the black plastic bag felt slippery as well.

    Is there any reason why I can't put the 30.5m roll into a bag with some desiccant as described above? What I'm worried about is drying the film out too much and the emulsion cracking or something like that -- is this a silly notion?

    I'll definitely do that with the reels and individual cartridges though.
    Quote Originally Posted by R gould View Post
    An old trick with any plastic reel is to run a sharp pencil around the reels in the film groves, which leaves a film of graphite on them, does no harm to the film but makes loading film a doddle, it is something I have done for many years, and I have yet to have a stuck film,If the film does get stuck if you hav'nt pencilled the reels then try giving the reel a sharp tap, that sometimes that frees the film,
    Aha! That sounds like a great idea. I'll definitely try that next time.

    Thanks once again everybody! Love this forum.

    P.S. Must post up some photos of the film, it's really a very visually impressive cock-up. The few frames (and half-frames) that did turn out I'm excited about, I really, really like the way this film renders greyscales. Almost grainless as well. Seems more contrasty in D76 compared to Microphen but that's no surprise; it seems to be a contrasty slow film anyway.

  4. #24

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    First, if you're bulk loading your film in a changing bag without a bulk loader, you should definitely get yourself a bulk loader. You can find them used on eBay pretty inexpensively, and they'll help with the loading process immensely. Most or all of them "click" once per frame, so you know how many exposures you're loading, and you can work in daylight without sticking your hands into a sweat-inducing changing bag.

    I'll add my voice to those singing the praises of SS reels, and particularly Hewes reels. These are by far the easiest reels to load in my opinion. I am, however, very aware that this is just that: my opinion. Reel preference is very much a personal thing. Also, generic SS reels are much harder to load than are Hewes reels, and Hewes reels are sadly rather expensive. You might be able to find a bargain on eBay, though.

    For plastic, IMHO the easiest type to load is a weird Russian tank, described here. This one loads inside-out, like an SS tank, and with the emulsion side out. My tank doesn't take nearly as long to fill or drain as the one described on the Web page. Unfortunately, it's got a very serious flaw: The tank only supports agitation by rotation, which I've never mastered; I tend to get streaky, uneven development. I prefer inversion rotation, which you can use with most modern plastic tanks and (AFAIK) all SS tanks. Some people prefer agitation by rotation, though, and if you're one of them, you could go looking for one of these oddball Russian tanks on eBay. (Check the seller's other items, too; you might be able to pick up some filters or lens caps or whatever and bring the per-item shipping charge down.) It's also conceivable you could get one of these reels to work in some other tank, but be careful; some tanks' light-proofing depends on a post that's integral to the reel, so swapping reels, even if the replacement fits, might result in light leaks.

  5. #25
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    I have a bulk loader -- bought one for $1.50 on a local auction site, mainly just to get the nice 20-30 reloadable cartridges that were bundled along with it. Not so keen on using it if I can avoid it, mostly just because of the fogging of the last few frames and the danger of scratching (not so much from the loader itself, it's a Watson-type without rollers, but from putting the film through yet one more trip of the felt light-trap of the cartridge).

    Next time I either bulk load or load film onto the reel I'll do it in the closet.

    I like the look of the reel on that Russian tank. I like the concept of loading a stainless steel -- it seems a dicey practice to try and push a metre or two of thin flexible film through a tightly-coiled reel from the outside in. Anybody ever tried to load a plastic reel stainless-steel-style? I might give it a go with a scrap roll of film when I get home. I'll keep my eyes open for a stainless steel tank and reels -- are there any reels out there which fit onto the spindle of a Paterson tank? I rather like mine.

  6. #26

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    To avoid fogging the last frames with a bulk loader, you can turn out the lights when you attach the film to the central spool, then seal it up, turn on the lights if you like, crank on, turn the lights off again, open it up to cut the film, and repeat. Of course, this means you've got to do it in a darkroom, not watching TV or something, but it does work. As to scratching, just try it for a roll or two and see what you get.

    I seem to recall there are Hewes reels made to fit Jobo tanks, but I don't know if these would fit a Paterson tank. Note that one of the advantages of SS reels and tanks is that they require less solution volume. A typical 35mm SS tank takes 250ml to cover a single reel, whereas most plastic tanks take 300ml or more. There are also fewer parts to wash. Thus, I personally don't see much advantage to a plastic tank per se; most of the difference is in the reels. (Although the two materials do have different thermal properties, which can sometimes be important.)

  7. #27
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    I have been using SS reels for close to fifty years. I still have my Nikor 120 reels which I purchased in 1962. They still are in fine shape. The biggest enemy to a stainless reel is dropping it. Mine are in fine shape. My biggest problem with Efke film is the curl. Love the film, hate the curl.
    Michael Cienfuegos


    If you don't want to stand behind our troops, please feel free to stand in front of them.

  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by mhcfires View Post
    My biggest problem with Efke film is the curl. Love the film, hate the curl.
    I see this written a lot -- I haven't found it to curl very much at all in the two rolls I've shot (and mostly ruined). Seems to dry really flat. Maybe that's because I'm using a bulk roll where it's not wound very tight -- but there's next to no lateral curl either.

    I wonder if there's a lot of variability between batches...? Lots of the posts I see across different forums have people saying very different contradictory things about KB(25,50,100).

    The flatness and thin, clear base seems to me like it is perfectly suited for that devil's technology, sc*nning! I haven't tried optically printing it yet.

  9. #29
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    I had the same problem with plastic reels. Using stainless steel I have no problems.

  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by Krzys View Post
    I had the same problem with plastic reels. Using stainless steel I have no problems.
    ************
    To OP. Recap--the reel must be very clean and very dry. I used to keep a short length of properly-cut width of blotter paper and would feed it in to ensure reliability.
    I also scrubbed my reels after use with a small "vegetable" brush and Bon Ami and rinsed them very thoroughy.
    And ditch the changing bag.
    John, Mount Vernon, Virginia USA

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