rolling your own film?

Discussion in 'Film Discussion and Q & A' started by mattvillano, May 3, 2004.

  1. mattvillano

    mattvillano TPF Noob!

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    I've never really done this before and just want to get more info on it. . Do you find rolling your own film more efficient and economical? Is it hard? What type of equipment do you need?

    thanks.
     
  2. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

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    It's pretty easy with a little practice. For BW film it's usually 1/2 price or less after the initial investment in a bulk loader and some film casettes.
     
  3. Bob_McBob

    Bob_McBob TPF Noob!

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    Also, you can use rolls of whatever length you want. That makes a big difference for me when I'm experimenting.
     
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  4. GerryDavid

    GerryDavid No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I didnt even know you could do this. :0)

    What would the equipment you need be for this and how much would it cost?
     
  5. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

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    You need a bulk loader ($40 new at the most)
    reusable film cannisters (cheap)
    100' of film
    and some place completely dark to get the 100' roll of film into the bulk loader

    Also if you have a camera that doesn't allow you to adjust ISO manually (thanks, Nikon), then you'll need either DX coded cannisters or DX labels to let your camera know what ISO the film is.
     
  6. GerryDavid

    GerryDavid No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I thought it would be much more expensive. How much would a used bulk loader be? And about how big are they? And just to make sure, is bulk loader the proper name for it? Just wondering so I could do a search on ebay and the local camera store.

    The Reusable film canisters, you mean use the canisters left over from old b&w rolls, or can you buy them fresh? The only problem I see with reusing the canisters is the bottom piece always gets bent when I use the canopener to take it off.

    Also how much does the 100' of film cost? With rough math, I assume thats like 800 exposures? Do each film brand offer this bulk? Like Ilford, Kodak, etc?

    Sorry for all the questioins, this is very interseting, since I dont like to pay $6 cdn for every roll of Illford DX 125 B&W. And I just discovered the developing tank is only like $17 cdn and I thought it would be 2 or 3 times more expensive than that. :0)
     
  7. oriecat

    oriecat work in progress

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    You buy special reuseable canisters, you can't reuse the other kind. They make the reuseable ones so the bottom pops off easily and doesn't get bent, they also make plastic ones where the top just screws on. I have a couple of those, but haven't tried them yet. The canisters I got were like 2 for a buck or something like that.

    Most major brands sell the b/w film in the 100' rolls. I just started bulk loading myself and I started out with a roll of Ilford HP5. It was 25 dollars? 20 dollars? Around there anyway. How many rolls/usable exposures you get will depend upon how large you roll your rolls. If you do a lot of small rolls, then you will lost more frames to leaders etc. But it is still definitely worth it.

    Here's an example of a bulk loader:
    http://www.freestylephoto.biz/sc_prod.php?cat_id=&pid=4667
     
  8. GerryDavid

    GerryDavid No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Thanks for the info and link. It also reminded me of another question, I wonder how many exposures you can put in a canister before it gets jammed. I know you can buy 36 exposure rolls, so I would assume you can do 40 or so in one. I dont like changing rolls between shots, and this way you got more per roll so you can probably develop more pictures iwth less developer solution since you can only put so much developer in those tubs. :0). Just randomly thinking.
     
  9. GerryDavid

    GerryDavid No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Oh ya, and just thinking, on negatives now, theres the 00, 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, etc, how would that work on this? 00, 0, 1, 2, ...... 795, 796, 797, 798, 799, 800? hehe.
     
  10. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

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    You probably can load your own 40+ exposure roll, but don't do it, and here's why:

    1) You will max out the space in the cassette, possibly scratching or tearing the film.

    2) Film developing reels are designed to handle a 37 to 40 exposure length of film. If you over load you will have some of the film hanging off the dev reel, and it will be damaged in processing.

    3) Your camera is only designed to handle a maximum roll length of 37 to 40 exp. There isn't room for much more (see #1), and if you read the small print in your instruction manual you'll find that most manufacturers recommend 24 exp rolls over 36 exp rolls as the longer the roll the more strain on the motor winder.

    4) When you are reading about the developing capacity of your developer, when it says 1 roll, they mean 80 square inches of film (35 35mm exposures = 80 square inches). As you add more film you will deplete the defveloper more quickly.

    If you really want really long rolls of film, with some 35mm SLRs you can get a bulk film back installed that will allow you to load a 100' roll into your camera.
     
  11. CDToole

    CDToole TPF Noob!

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    One other thing you may not know is that some discontinued films in 35mm format are still available as movie stock. For example, you can still buy Ektachrome 100D in 30 meter (400') rolls.
     
  12. tirediron

    tirediron Watch the Birdy! Staff Member Supporting Member

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    You did notice that this is an eight-year old topic, right?
     

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