Film processing on a budget.


Benz3ne

Link Posted 02/07/2020 - 10:34
Probably a query you've all read before.
Looking to get into film developing (either B&W or colour, change of chemicals and use of a thermometer (which I have already) are the only real differences).
I already have access to/own graduated cylinders and 500mL or 1L screw-top glass bottles (which could be stored in a dark cupboard or covered in black electrical tape to reduce the light ingress to them).
I'm thinking the below are the only things required:
Dev tank w/spool.
Film changing bag.
Chemicals (incl. deionised water).
Squeegee maybe?

I think if that all goes well I'd probably look at a LED panel and photographing the resulting negatives, or a decent enough inexpensive scanner...

Thoughts? If my list is as concise as I think it is, I might well be looking out for some prospective bargains on them!

womble

Link Posted 02/07/2020 - 11:54
I always preferred using my fingers as a squeegee. It might have been the shared darkroom equipment but I found it less likely to scratch the negs.
Kris Lockyear
It is an illusion that photos are made with the camera… they are made with the eye, heart and head. Henri Cartier-Bresson
Lots of film bodies, a couple of digital ones, too many lenses (mainly older glass) and a Horseman LE 5x4.

My website

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Benz3ne

Link Posted 02/07/2020 - 12:18
womble wrote:
I always preferred using my fingers as a squeegee. It might have been the shared darkroom equipment but I found it less likely to scratch the negs.

Useful! Thank you Kris.
I think I'll try and hunt down a decent, used, inexpensive Paterson tank and a changing bag soon then!

johnha

Link Posted 02/07/2020 - 12:31
I'd agree fingers are fine, you may need clips & hooks to hang the film for drying (I have photo ones but anything suitable should work). You may also need a cartridge opener and or leader extractor (I prefer to leave the leader out and load the film back through the slot in the cartridge for 35mm). Funnels to pour the chemicals back into the bottle - not those from the kitchen...

Oh, and the obligatory 'dummy' roll to practice your loading technique, time, patience and swearing.
PPG Flickr

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Benz3ne

Link Posted 02/07/2020 - 12:35
johnha wrote:
I'd agree fingers are fine, you may need clips & hooks to hang the film for drying (I have photo ones but anything suitable should work). You may also need a cartridge opener and or leader extractor (I prefer to leave the leader out and load the film back through the slot in the cartridge for 35mm). Funnels to pour the chemicals back into the bottle - not those from the kitchen...

Oh, and the obligatory 'dummy' roll to practice your loading technique, time, patience and swearing.

Agreed - clips would be handy, I'd have thought they're inexpensive enough anyway.
Good idea about leaving the leader out and loading through there. Same for a cartridge opener!
Oh my yes, I would hate to have any cross-contamination. As I work in the chemical industry I wouldn't forgive myself if I didn't adhere to GLP.

doingthebobs

Link Posted 02/07/2020 - 22:09
Plastic clothes pegs work fine as film drying clips.
Really cheap as you can find them around the house if no one's looking!

I used to use a short bit of old film leader as a leader extractor. Push into the film cartridge slot and turn the rewind knob backwards to guide the film leader out of the slot. You could use the end of the 'dummy' roll.
Bob

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JAK

Link Posted 03/07/2020 - 00:02
Take it you're not thinking of getting an enlarger too to print the negs?
John K

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tigershoot

Link Posted 03/07/2020 - 07:51
Did anyone else do what I used to do? When you rewind the film on the camera back into the spool you could listen and feel the tension change when the leader pops off the spindle. Once it did open the back. Needed concentration of course as if you got it wrong - well it would be a disaster.
K3ii, K-5, K-x, DA150-450mm, DA16-85WR, DA16-45, DA18-55WR, DA18-135WR, DA35 F2.4, M100mm F4 Macro, DA55-300mm, FA50mm 1.4, AF360 Flash, AF540 Flash

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Benz3ne

Link Posted 03/07/2020 - 08:26
doingthebobs wrote:
Plastic clothes pegs work fine as film drying clips.
Really cheap as you can find them around the house if no one's looking!

I used to use a short bit of old film leader as a leader extractor. Push into the film cartridge slot and turn the rewind knob backwards to guide the film leader out of the slot. You could use the end of the 'dummy' roll.

Well fortunately SWMBO bought a box of pegs not too long ago and we ended up with too many! I'll nab a few, she will not notice, I'm sure!

JAK wrote:
Take it you're not thinking of getting an enlarger too to print the negs?

Sure, I mean I'm considering what's required - a scanner would be easiest, I have an SMC-A 50mm f/2.8 which I'm sure would be up to the job with an extension tube, but an enlarger would be the 'better' option from a photographing-negatives standpoint.

tigershoot wrote:
Did anyone else do what I used to do? When you rewind the film on the camera back into the spool you could listen and feel the tension change when the leader pops off the spindle. Once it did open the back. Needed concentration of course as if you got it wrong - well it would be a disaster.

I'm sure they did! I'm also sure I'll look to do that when I get around to taking my first load of photos and rewinding said film. Would certainly make things easier for loading a developing tank spool.

laurencea

Link Posted 24/12/2020 - 14:03
i have a film puller which works (almost) every time... made by Hama. it is very good.

not sure if you have a processing tank, but i recently bought some extra kit for colour processing and got an AP tank, instead of the Paterson... MISTAKE!!!! it is a real faff. the spools work well, but the rest of the tank is just over-engineered. when pouring out the chemicals it goes everywhere! Also the twiddling knob is too low (the middle of the tank "funnel" is narrow) so it's hard to agitate properly. you also need more liquid compared to the Paterson. simple is best, methinks.

for cheap thermometers, you can try aquarium ones. not so easy to use, but a fraction of the cost. if you are measuring the temp of a bowl of water (for heating or cooling the chems and tank) then they are ideal, just pop the sensor in the water.

if you use the stand method (for B&W) go to a chemist and get a child's medicine syringe to measure the small amount of chems (usually Rodinal) needed.

i have recently tried colour processing using the FPP kit and it is fairly easy, but stressful getting the chems up (or even down) to temp, especially in the cold weather. messed up a couple of rolls of film, but i had expected to do worse. next up is the Cinestill kit, which allows lower temps to be used!
Pentax k100d, k30d 18-55, Tamron 70-300, Tamron 500 mirror, pentax 10-17, 50 1:4, a manual 28, some extension tubes and a bagful of memory cards. That's all i need... and a load of film cameras too... that's it, honest.

michaelblue

Link Posted 24/12/2020 - 15:09
Benz3ne wrote:
johnha wrote:
I'd agree fingers are fine, you may need clips & hooks to hang the film for drying (I have photo ones but anything suitable should work). You may also need a cartridge opener and or leader extractor (I prefer to leave the leader out and load the film back through the slot in the cartridge for 35mm). Funnels to pour the chemicals back into the bottle - not those from the kitchen...

Oh, and the obligatory 'dummy' roll to practice your loading technique, time, patience and swearing.

Agreed - clips would be handy, I'd have thought they're inexpensive enough anyway.
Good idea about leaving the leader out and loading through there. Same for a cartridge opener!
Oh my yes, I would hate to have any cross-contamination. As I work in the chemical industry I wouldn't forgive myself if I didn't adhere to GLP.

I worked in a processing lab and learnt some tips: Bottle openers will open the film cartridge. Leaving the leader out and pulling the film back out can cause scratches if some grit has got trapped so it's always better to open the cassette.
Regards,
Michael
My new website:link
Last Edited by michaelblue on 24/12/2020 - 15:10

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Benz3ne

Link Posted 03/02/2021 - 14:09
Right - after what was a very successful bout of sales I thought I'd rekindle this and force myself to shoot some of the film I currently have sat in the drawer.
I know it's a bit of a cop-out, but does anyone either have basic dev kit they're thinking of offloading or could help me out with what I really need to get going? Links for items would be even better!
Cheers one and all and hope you're safe and well.

womble

Link Posted 03/02/2021 - 15:20
Check out Analogue Wonderland, they have beginners kits made by Ilford. K.
Kris Lockyear
It is an illusion that photos are made with the camera… they are made with the eye, heart and head. Henri Cartier-Bresson
Lots of film bodies, a couple of digital ones, too many lenses (mainly older glass) and a Horseman LE 5x4.

My website

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Benz3ne

Link Posted 03/02/2021 - 16:13
womble wrote:
Check out Analogue Wonderland, they have beginners kits made by Ilford. K.

Parfait, merçi!
Perfect, thanks!
Perffaith, diolch!
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