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.

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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.
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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.
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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.
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