Newbie: Getting the film out without rewinding??
I'm really a newbie to analogue photography and never developed my film on my own. Two weeks ago I started shooting with b/w film but I didn't develop it, now I want to try it...
I bought a book for this, which answers the most questions but there are still a few questions left... The most important: How to get the film out of the camera without rewinding the film completely?
Ok, I could just open the camera in the darkroom after the shooting but I don't want to have the whole film hanging in the air while spooling it in the spiral, so I achieve to have the film rewinded, but not completely. (there should be a short end left to pull the film out piece by piece as I spool it in the spiral)
My Camera is very old: A Minolta 7000 (It's from my father)
Any suggestions? Please help!
thanks in advance, Andy
PS: I know, my english is not the very best...
There's a little tool you can buy that looks something like a tin opener. It allows you to take the ends off a 35mm cartridge so you can get at the film once you've wound it back. You can avoid that if you rewind very carefully as you can tell when the film disengages from the right hand end - you'll know because you suddenly don't feel any resistance.
PS Welcome to the world of film photography!
The usual method is to rewind completely, then take the end off the cassette with either a special tool, a bottle opener, or your fingers if it is a reusable cassette. If you really want to start the film onto the reel in the light, either follow Euan's suggestion about rewinding carefully, or pick up a film leader retriever from your local shop.
Be careful, if you are pulling film off of the take up reel in the 7000 you can damage the clutch in the take up system of the 7000, I know, I have shot Minolta for over 25 years now and have done it...normally most of us, just rewind the film and use a church key/can opener to open the roll and then you can put on the spool for developing, if your using commercial film it is difficult to reuse those canisters, so I normally just open and then go from there.
Just rewind the film completely then get a leader retriever to extract the leader out. You can also have a photo lab do this for you. They won't charge you anything.
I would just pop the whole cassette open in the dark like most posters here suggested.
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Whenever possible, want to roll the film back into the metal cassette that it came in. The only time you would ever take the film into a darkroom to unload it is if you are using infrared film or in the unlikely event that the film is pulled completely off the takeup spool (in the cassette) as you are winding it forward.
If you have an older camera that doesn't have an automatic rewind feature, you can easily stop winding as soon as the leading end of the film comes off of the take-up spool inside the camera - just listed for the sound to change as you are rewinding, and stop rewinding.
This will leave a pigtail about 5" long hanging outside the metal cassette. You then cut off the shaped end of the pigtail, and clip off the corners so that it will load more easily into the processing spiral.
How you load it into the spiral depends on the kind of reel you are using - some spirals (the traditional stainless steel variety and a very small minority of plastic reels) load from the center. Most of the plastic reels "walk" the film in by alternately twisting either side of the reel. You must load the reel in total darkness - loading is tricky, and you have to be able to sense what is happening by feel. It really pays to sacrifice a roll of film to practice a few times with the lights on so that you train your hands to recognize what is happening.
If you have one of the newer cameras that automatically reverses and rewinds the film for you when it reaches the end of the roll, you generally have no choice but to allow it to completely reroll the film into the cassette. In that case,you have several choices.
One option is to remove the film from the cassette in total darkness, clip off the end of the strip, trim the corners, and then load the reel. While it can be done, my experience is that it is better to be able to see what you are doing when you clip off the end of the film and trim the corners.
The alternative is to fish the end of the film out of the cassette. There are two ways to do this. One is to remove the end of the cassette, pull out the spool of film and then reinsert it with the pigtail left out, and then put the end back on the cassette. Commercially packaged film usually has the end caps crimped onto the cassette, and removing them usually involves a sheet metal rearrangement that makes reattachment all but impossible. If you are using bulk-loaded film (that you spool yourself), the cassette either has an end cap that is not crimped on and that therefore will pop off with just a little finger pressure, or you may be using plastic cassettes in which the end cap screws on.
Alternatively, you can purchase a little gadget that you slip through the felt light trap of the cassette, grasp the end of the film strip, and pull it back out. These devices are simple in concept, but they take a little practice to master.
Hey, thanks for the answers!
Ok, I think I'll just try to take off the ends with a bottle opener though it sounds a bit difficult to do that in complete darkness :-) Maybe I should practise that beforehand...
It's actually quite easy. I recommend going after the end that the spool does not stick out of, and then pushing on the other end to cause the whole roll of film and spool to come out of the cassette. You can then feel the end to find the leader and cut it off. I find it easiest to leave the film on the spool as you load the reel, it seems to make loading easier.
Originally Posted by theandy
Since when has the Minolta 7000 been "very old"? It was introduced in 1985.
...It's even two years older than me, therefore I guess I can call it "old" ;-)
Originally Posted by Dan Fromm