Monday, 31 May 2010

Reel Reality

Looking back towards Cromer from the pier

The final films shot in Norfolk last year were developed this week. Yes, not before time i imagine you'll say and it's true, those films should have been processed ages ago. So why weren't they? I don't have any great excuses, but i will admit that processing large amounts of film can be problematic for me. I'm just not geared up to develop more that ten 35mm rolls at any one time. For 120 film that figure drops to four.

The problem is drying developing tanks and reels so that they can be loaded again. I have no way of speeding up the process because i don't have a drying cabinet, so i rely on natural drying which can take forever. If you try to dry tanks/reels with a cloth then you often get an increase of dust and hair fibre marks on the negatives. My solution has been to buy more tanks and i'm going to buy some more this year.

I currently use four, however, i want to raise that to six or seven. I could get a really big developing tank that processes five, six or even ten films at a time, but i prefer working with the smaller (approx 700ml) 35mm reel tanks. They are far easier to handle and the quantities of chemical needed to fill the tank are also much smaller. I prefer to process two films at a time anyway - it's the way i've always done it.

Two more developing tanks will make all the difference. It will increase my workflow and the number of films i can process in a session. So it's off to eBay to try and find a few bargains. If i can find some tanks at the right price i may even splash out and buy three or four.

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