Home made film dryers

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CPorter

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Hi all,

I was hoping that someone could direct me to a site for specs or perhaps they are knowledgeable themselves on how to build a homemade film dryer that won't cost an arm and/or a leg.

Thanks for any info.

Chuck
 

kwmullet

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I made mine for about 20-30 dollars. Basically, got the poorest quality/cheapest materials I could find, had some white paint sitting around the house, and made a tall, narrow box with a door, hinges and magnetic catch with some weather stripping to makie it relatively air tight. No heated air, no circulation. I just shut the film up in there for a few hours and it dries slowly and well. I also had som "weed wacker" line , so I used that inside as the line to hang things on.

Took quite a while to build, because of poor time management skills and the fact that someone stole my circular saw from our porch just before I started the project, so I had to use manual tools.

-KwM-
 

donna-marie

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ooh ooh I know . . .

I got a hepa-filter air purifier for my darkroom for xmas and it blows out the clean purified air upwards. I had previously been just hanging my film from a coat hanger hung on the ceiling in my darkroom. Well now I still do that but I put the hepa filter under the film and it dries in about 20 min (vs. overnight). Plus I still get cleaner air (as was intended).

I have not seen so much as a speck of dust using this method. so far.
 

kwmullet

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kaiyen said:
I just put together a version of the senrac, as highlighted in shutterbug. The link is at http://www.shutterbug.net/features/0902sb_how/

I spent about $10 total, and it's dry in 10 minutes. No dust.

allan

now THAT'S cool, and written by a fellow ex-Navy photo, even. I'm not sure if I remember that kind of film dryer from any of the commands at which I was sationed -- long ago, in a galaxy far, far away.

Definately queued into the design for My Next Darkroom. I'll just downsize the one I have now for drying sheetfilm, or maybe design a modified one using a box and a lid with a tube for the dryer for sheetfilm.

-KwM-
 

tbm

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After too many months (years) of dust on my negatives, I, too, quickly constructed Joe Farace's drain pipe film dryer and have not had any more dust problems since!!!!!

Terry
 

eheldreth

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I use a version of the senrac myself. Simple to construct I used a 3 foot length of pipe on one end I fasened a cap with a hole big enough to hold a hair drier and on the other end one of the vented caps you can get from lowes with a two nails(Driven from the inside so they stick out from the cap) through it. I cut two J shaped groves on the bottom of the pipe to accept the nails from the vented cap and I put a vent filter under the top cap between the hair drier and the film. I always run the drier on cool and it takes about 8 - 12 for one roll and about 15 for 2. I dry them write on my reals(Plastic and SS).
 

TPPhotog

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Looks like the time has come the walrus said to build myself a drain pipe film dryer :smile:
 

johnnywalker

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Brilliant. I can even find room for that in my miniature darkroom. Never occurred to me that you could dry film on the reels.
 
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I prefer my film to hang straight without curl. So I purchased a small narrow towel closet taller then a 36 35mm roll.Next I added a clear plastic door. I also added rods to hang the film from. Then I went to the local goodwill store and looked for those old style hair dryers. The kind that had a hose and cap. They're about 3-6 dollars. This I connected to the box at the bottom of the box and there you have it a heated dryer for film. If you really want to go crazy add a filter.
My film drys about 20 minutes instead of 60.
 

kaiyen

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The film does come out with a pretty viscous curl. Thin films, like Forte, are so curly that after sleeving I can barely write out the info on the sleeve header.

However, with just a few hours under heavy books the negs are flat. I guess that a dryer that lets the film hang down would be better, but I don't have the room, plain and simple, and hang drying in a shower (or something similar) leaves me with too much dust.

allan
 

kwmullet

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kaiyen said:
The film does come out with a pretty viscous curl. Thin films, like Forte, are so curly that after sleeving I can barely write out the info on the sleeve header. [...]

does it make any difference if, before drying on the reels, you re-load the film on the reels with the emulsion side out?

-KwM-
 

Monophoto

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I built a film dryer as a woodworking project last winter. Used MDF to construct a tall "box". Made a door with plexiglass "glazing" so that I could see what was happening inside without opening the door.

Film hangs from a rack that started out as a piece of Closet Maid shelving. Above the rack is a 200w light bulb that privides light inside the box, and also is a source of heat. Above that is an air filter. Finally, the top of the box is a chamber with a small muffin fan to bring in air from the darkroom that flows down through the filter, past the bulb, and across the film. There are holes at the bottom of the cabinet for air to exit.

Fun project that allowed me to practice some woodworking techniques. And it dries film in about an hour with no dust.
 

jp80874

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Call this home assembled rather than home made. We use a garment bag on a vertical frame with rolling casters on the bottom. The one I bought from Bed Bath & Beyond a couple of years ago has a canvas bag. The air and moisture pass through, but the dust stops at the canvas. There is a coat rod at the top inside. I use wire hangers with 3/8” “binder clips” from an office supply store to hold the film. Sheet film hangs straight down with one clip. For roll film I add a second clip at the bottom end of the roll as a weight so the roll will hang without curl.

We keep the garment bag out of the way in the guest room. When guests arrive we roll it into my wife’s painting studio or my darkroom. It can also collapse with a little effort.

Bed Bath & Beyond currently shows an all vinyl bag. http://www.bedbathandbeyond.com/product.asp?order_num=-1&SKU=11192114&RN=303 I prefer canvas to let the moisture out. Perhaps another vendor is offering canvas now.

John Powers
 

Andy K

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The wall mounted 'tube dryer' is a great idea, but what about water marks? I mean if the film is still on the reels then it hasn't been 'squeegeed'. Even though I use wetting agent in my final rinses I also gently squeegee the film before hanging it to dry.
 

tbm

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I douse all my films in Photo Flo before setting my stainless steel reels in the drain pipe/hair dryer assembly and always, yes ALWAYS, get totally clean negatives without dust or water marks.
 

eheldreth

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The film is only a little more curly. I have read that some people cut the film, put it in 3 ring binder pages and lay a book on top to flaten it. I have never had a problem with the film being two curly.
 

Will S

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zenrhino said:
Gah! That's brilliant. That'd not only dry the film, but the reels as well.


With the photoFlo on them still. You would need to wash them afterwards.

Will
 

John Koehrer

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And if you've got an old, unused 11x14 print drum around, you can use that for the tube.
 

Jim Chinn

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Go to a hardware store that carries the 5 gallon plastic buckets with lids.

Get some velcro strips and a clear sower curtain.

Cut the shower curtain to size so the top edge will just wrap around the lid.

Drll two holes in the lid just large enough for a metal coat hanger or similar wire.

Put the wire through the holes so you have a piece of wire that runds the length of the lid and is about 4" from the top of the lid. Use other wire or loop of hanger to hang lid from rafter or ceiling hook.

Attach velcro to curtain and lid and length of curtain so you have a cylinder of material hanging down. You should have cut it so you have about 3" of overlap. use some velcro to secure the ends of the curtain. This is the door.

Put the bottom of the curtain in the bucket. If you want airflow, cut a round hole in the lid and one in the side of the bucket and use some small 3" vents with some filter material.

Use alligator clips or clothes pins to hang you film. I ran clothes pins down the wire before putting it together.

Nice thing about this is if you have limited space like I had, you can take it down, move it, even fold it up when not in use.
 

kaiyen

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Will S said:
With the photoFlo on them still. You would need to wash them afterwards.

Will

Will,
actually, since there is so much air being forced through, the photoflo is pushed off the reels as well. At least, for me, I've put maybe 50-75 reels through the dryer and I've not had any ill-effects that would indicate residual photo-flo.

allan
 
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