Is it possible to process Super8 film in one of those USSR Lomo tanks? I looked at one today that was apparently for 16mm, however the boxed also mentioned 8mm but I'm unsure how this is possible.
I'd be very curious to know the answer to this as well. It's a shame no one ever responded to your query.
So, there are a handful of tanks on eBay. It looks like there are different sizes, as in lengths, but both appear to be fine for super 8 & 16mm. Not sure how it works, but perhaps the reels can slide on the shaft, like some MF reels.
About $100+ however
The answer is that one side of the spiral can be reversed and has two gauges: on one side it is intended for 8mm; the other side has an extra spacer around the center hole that holds it at 16mm from the other half.
Thus, if the lenght of the super8 fits the lenght of the spiral (usually 10 metres), it should work with no problems at all.
The secret I found is to transfer the film from the cartridge to a spool and then load the spiral from the spool.
A Lomo tank will take two full super 8 films together. I have managed to load a tank just using a large dark bag on the kitchen table. This is a link to movie processing pages on my web site.
Oh hey I just bought one of these. Still waiting for it to arrive from Russia.
There's actually several varieties of Lomo tank available on eBay, and not all of them are useful for processing Super-8. The smaller (and cheaper) tanks only take one 30-foot roll of 8mm or 16mm, which is almost useless for Super-8 cartridges unless you want to try developing half of it at a time. The other variety can take two 8 or 16-mm 50-foot rolls or one 50-foot 35mm roll. There's a few other sizes but they're pretty rare and much more expensive.
There's a couple videos on Youtube illustrating different configurations of the reel, like this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gt1xCEc4O7M
If you're going to buy one, make sure you're not getting a 30-foot tank and that it has all the little parts (which you can see in the video).
Edit: I actually have it now so I'd be happy to answer questions if I don't forget about this thread.
The Russian Lomo spiral tank that I bought was referred to as UBP-1A. I got mine from Olexandr Kalynychenko, Ukraine, who used to operate a Russian Camera site. I can't find any of his sites anymore, so they may be gone. But the tanks are readily available on ebay. Just make sure you get the one that handles 1 16mm or 2 8mm 50 foot films.
I agree with siltec. The easiest way to load the tank is to first spool the film off the cartridge and onto a regular 50 foot reel. I built a little loading jig, patterned after others I saw on the net. I'd post a picture of it, but I don't remember how to do that.
I just happened to email Olexandr Kalynychenko after finding his name in one or two places. He no longer sell the tanks.
How much should I pay for aq UBP-1A? They seem to be quite expensive these days?
eBay is the only place you can find a regular supply of them. The price isn't too bad, I guess. You can expect to pay something like $150 with shipping, obviously with some variation depending on the condition and whether or not it's in the original box. You might get lucky and find one for sale in whatever country you live in, but most of them come from Russia and do that annoying thing where the tank's price is pretty low but the shipping is huge. Make sure the tank has all the little parts (black center column, black spacer, and two clear spacers) or it's not worth buying.
thanks for the buying tips.