Tutorial - 70mm Film to 120/220/620: A Guide on Hand-Rolling Medium Format Film (with PICTURES!)

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xkaes

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Introduction

Hello everyone!

Once the film arrives, I would recommend slitting all of it down to 61mm. to do this, you do need to purchase a film slitter. Goat Hill Film Slitters makes lots of options, but the one we are looking for is the 70mm to 120 (61mm) slitter.

View attachment 327073

FYI, Goathill is at www.subclub.org/sponsors/goathil2.htm

Their slitters have firm foam on the top and slippery paper-backing on the bottom.
 
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MCB18

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This kind of pull-through slitters always looked barbarian for me. I've built a slitter that has pairs of foam covered reels inside to transport the film.
But whatever you use - your biggest enemy is dust.

Yeah, that was an issue. I clean everything prior to starting now, and haven’t had any issues with scratches or dust.
 

Kino

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I have a couple of 5 inch rolls of extremely out of date, thin Panatomic-X aerial film and about a hundred 120 spools with backing paper.

Sounds like a project...
 
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MCB18

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Thanks a lot for taking the time to write up this excellent tutorial.

A small caveat. Some adhesive tapes are tribo-electric, meaning, when pulled off, will generate static electricity, sparks, and therefore light. This used to be an issue when I started photography; nowadays, manufacturers seem to have addressed this by proper choice of tape/adhesive. Might come back in DIY film spools. When separating the exposed film, pull the tape slowly and be alert for light generated along the separation line. Or just cut the taped end, but for me I don't like having tape+adhesive in the developing tank.

I have tested this, and 3M masking tape does emit light when peeled off the roll, but thankfully doesn’t when peeled off film or paper.
 

Donald Qualls

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I've seen 120/620 head tape make light at the line where it's coming off the film in the darkroom -- but I've never see evidence of it fogging other than in the contact patch.
 
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MCB18

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I have a couple of 5 inch rolls of extremely out of date, thin Panatomic-X aerial film and about a hundred 120 spools with backing paper.

Sounds like a project...

That does! You probably need to build your own film slitter though, 5 inches is very wide. You thought about making sheet film instead?
 

Kino

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That does! You probably need to build your own film slitter though, 5 inches is very wide. You thought about making sheet film instead?

I could try that too, but it's so, so thin. Guess I'd have to load a clear processed sheet behind it to make sure it stayed flat...
 

blee1996

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I guess you all know, but just in case there is a long running 70mm thread on rangefinderforum. Add here for cross reference:

 
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MCB18

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I guess you all know, but just in case there is a long running 70mm thread on rangefinderforum. Add here for cross reference:


I didn’t know about this, but thanks!
 

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Not of IR, still waiting on the filter for my RB, it is backordered. But I do have images shot as regular film:

Apologies for the atrocious home scan quality, I do not have a dedicated scanning setup. The actual negatives look much better.


Walk me through what kind of IR filters to look for. I have a few R60 or red filters but I think I might need to go harder. What should I look for? I'd like to use on a TLR so I can at least see through the lens. I have some Mamiya C bodies. That should work.

Also, do I need to compensate focus for the AGFA film if shooting IR?
 
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MCB18

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Walk me through what kind of IR filters to look for. I have a few R60 or red filters but I think I might need to go harder. What should I look for? I'd like to use on a TLR so I can at least see through the lens. I have some Mamiya C bodies. That should work.

Also, do I need to compensate focus for the AGFA film if shooting IR?

i am getting a 720nm pass filter, as although some folks say a very deep red filter does work, and with a much lass heavy ISO penalty, to get the best possible results you want almost all the light from the filter to be IR.

As for focus compensation, I have heard both that you should, and shouldn’t, do it. Though the consensus on both sides seems to be that above F16 it doesn’t really matter.
 

Cholentpot

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i am getting a 720nm pass filter, as although some folks say a very deep red filter does work, and with a much lass heavy ISO penalty, to get the best possible results you want almost all the light from the filter to be IR.

As for focus compensation, I have heard both that you should, and shouldn’t, do it. Though the consensus on both sides seems to be that above F16 it doesn’t really matter.

So I should be looking for a 46mm 720nm pass filter for the Mamiya C 80mm 2.8 lens. I just ordered two rolls of the Agfa off the Indian Ebay fella. Do you need to develop IR exposed differently? I have HC110. D-76 and Rodinal.
 
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MCB18

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So I should be looking for a 46mm 720nm pass filter for the Mamiya C 80mm 2.8 lens. I just ordered two rolls of the Agfa off the Indian Ebay fella. Do you need to develop IR exposed differently? I have HC110. D-76 and Rodinal.

Nope! No need to dev differently. It’s just B&W film. It just happens to see a bit more than we can.
 

Cholentpot

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Nope! No need to dev differently. It’s just B&W film. It just happens to see a bit more than we can.

Well, with 90m of the stuff on the way I'll have enough to play with I think.

The last roll I shot of IR film years back I used a standard red filter on it.
 

didordure

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This is very interesting. Thank you.
I was wondering, if you don't have a paper from a developed roll, what would you use instead?
 
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MCB18

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This is very interesting. Thank you.
I was wondering, if you don't have a paper from a developed roll, what would you use instead?

Sadly. You need to source some used backing paper, and there isn’t a good alternative. Maybe there is a paper supplier that could cut thick craft paper to ≈61.5mm width, but I wouldn’t count on that. Unless you are willing to fulfill a massive MOQ. Also, I would be extremely carful with it. And load it in extremely dim light, not just subdued, as it may not be light tight. And the paper may react with the film over time.
 
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xkaes

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Normal paper -- even thick stuff won't cut it for paper-backing. It has to be impervious to light AND VERY smooth -- to avoid scratching.

One approach is to get some old expired spools with the paper -- WITHOUT the film (if you can) -- on EBAY, etc. There is tons of the stuff.
 

MattKing

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Normal paper -- even thick stuff won't cut it for paper-backing. It has to be impervious to light AND VERY smooth -- to avoid scratching.

It also needs to be very precisely cut, and thicker in the middle than at the edges, in order to ensure that it doesn't leak light at the edges.
Backing paper or 220 leaders and trailers are not as simple as people think.
 
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MCB18

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It also needs to be very precisely cut, and thicker in the middle than at the edges, in order to ensure that it doesn't leak light at the edges.
Backing paper or 220 leaders and trailers are not as simple as people think.

Yeah, sadly. Supposedly Ilford sells it in bulk during the ULF sale. However, again, like I said in the beginning, lots and lots gets thrown out or hoarded. @didordure if you want to roll your own film, and don’t have backing paper, ask a lab you know if they have any, or ask someone you know in person who shoots MF if they can give you any. Hell, I’m actually putting an ad in the Clasifides for it. I can never have too much of it.
 

didordure

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Ok, understood. I didn't think there were so many specification, lightproofness aside. Good to know before ruining a film. And yes I don't have anything at the moment. It's only the beginning for me 😅. Thanks
 

svetoklik

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Could some one explain all the reasons for having back paper on roll film instead for possibility to load roll in to the camera on the light?
Assuming that emulsion and film base in most cases are similar on the rolls and 35 mm film, so does it without back paper makes problems in film transport in the camera or it is connected with reflection of back light from the door and other parts in the camera?
I have seen examples of Agfa aviphot PE 200 and to me it promises a lot, but it looks to me like it was shoot on the moon, more like film for astronauts, astrophot.
What we can do instead using filters to avoid unnatural tonality or it is inherent for IR emulsions?
 

didordure

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Hello, I am fairly new to 70mm :smile: but there are different paper roll formats. This is the first commercial system that appeared around 1900 to compete with the dry/wet plates etc... and keep on outliving other formats (at least 120). The 35mm has an aluminium box instead of paper (first it was steel). The sensitive film is exactly the same. As you can see there are no red windows on the back of a 35mm camera because there is no paper to protect the film.
I don't know (yet 🤓) the aviphot so I can't say from what I see on interweb.
You should test with filters.
 

svetoklik

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I was shooting 35mm films from bulks directly from spools. High school days, shooting weddings on the country side by raiding small postman's motorcycle thru rain and mud loaded with UPA 5 and chemicals. What a days and happy people on depresive ORWO negatives, competitive drinking 30 years old cherry from barrel with music orchestras and defending wet negatives from flying insects.
Give us silver again!


 
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