A new way to process film without a darkroom!

Discussion in 'Film and Processing' started by sandyv, Aug 10, 2016.

  1. Sandy Vongries

    Sandy Vongries Administrator Staff Member

    A friend who knows I'm a photo enthusiast sent me this. May be a problem solver for some!
  2. Interesting, but only a pipe dream at present.
  3. Looks like it's essentially a Jobo for people who can't load a film reel. Wonder how they're going to react when the reel doesn't load properly and their film is ruined.
  4. Lots of marketing blabla.....
    Developing film at home is time consuming, and the outcome is highly unreliable. You need a dark place, a developing tank and several chemicals that you have to heat in your sink or on a stove—both highly unreliable and inconvenient. After everything is set, the tank has to be continually agitated in order to get good results.​
    None of which is all that much true. Unless I am doing something terribly wrong - could be since my outcomes so far haven't been highly unreliable :).
    Frankly, looks like a solution in search of a problem to me.
  5. How can loading 120 in broad daylight work? - I own old Agfa Rondinax tanks but these are 35mm only...
    But yeah it is a site presenting design studies and the thing looks better than my dirty old Jobo.
  6. Jochen, Agfa also made and sold a Rondinax for 120 film. I have one, and use it often. An odd contraption - I still cannot quite work out the somewhat mysterious processes by which it so deftly manages to unwind the film from the paper backing, and then wind it onto the reel, by way of two fully manual actions which, I always think, would fog the film. But no.
    The big downside to any Rondinax, I think, is having to constantly rotate the inner reel during the entire processing sequence. Can get very boring if one uses diluted developers requiring extra long process times.
    For a 1930s solution to film processing, the Rondinax tanks works well - which may explain why they can be so expensive to buy when they (occasionally) turn up on web sites like Ebay, or in secondhand photo shops.
    Then there are film changing bags, made in many varied sizes (I have and often use an 8x10 film loading bag), which when used with a small processing tank like my metal Nikors from the 1970s (light weight, easily loaded, and if used with care, often as not still as good as new after decades of regular use), provide an easy way to load film for processing without having to resort to any such Rube Goldberg inventions.
    As for the topic of this thread, well,the web site (link) left me entirely unimpressed. As someone write, so much marketing blabla, copy written in a way that talks down to the viewer, like so many adults lecturing children. Not for me, thanks.
    JDW in Indonesia
  7. I have seen pictures of the Kodak wooden box film processors from the 1930's or so, but never was quite sure how they work. Does the paper stay in, and get wet?
    I presume the Rondinax spools the film without the backing paper.
  8. I use the Jobo 2400 tank that is loaded in daylight.They are a bit hard to find now.
  9. You can use a changing bag, better yet a changing tent, to load reels in lieu of a darkroom. Loading a reel by winding the film from a cartridge onto a reel is unreliable. You are likely to kink or double-wind the film. Winding is easy to do by hand, with a little practice. Processing machines can be loaded in daylight, but they pull the film through a labyrinth of rollers, not on spools. (In any case, once started, the winding process is conducted in darkness, maintained throughout the development process.)
    I have a JOBO tank, but it is not my favorite. It's too large and plastic reels are awkward to load. I prefer stainless steel tanks and reels. I can develop 1, 2 or 4 35 mm reels at once. The canisters are sealed, and agitated by inverting once every 15 seconds.
    After practicing a few times with exposed film in the light, I could load stainless steel reels blindfolded - but it helped to turn out the lights too.
  10. http://www.cameramanuals.org/kodak_pdf/kodak_brownie_2a_3.pdf
    has the description of the Kodak film loading box and development tank.
    It seems that the film, backing paper, and light proof apron are wound onto a reel.
    The the reel is taken out of the box and put into a development tank with developer. Then you agitate (raise and lower the reel) a few times before putting the lid on.
    I don't know that current backing paper is designed to get wet, and might stick to the back of the film or some such.
    Then they rinse the film/paper/apron a few times, unwind it, and fix in (dim) light.
    Interesting, the instructions indicate that the film should be taped to the backing paper at both ends, but that it doesn't come from the factory that way. The instructions for fixing this aren't given, but presumably it is done in the dark. (Well, red light for orthochromatic film.)
  11. You definitely don't need a darkroom for processing film. I have processed 35mm film and 4x5 sheet film both color and B&W without using the darkroom. Just load the reel and put it in the tank or load the drum using a changing bag. I had a darkroom to make print not for developing film. Of course when I worked for a 1 hr. photo lab I processed, print and enlarge up to 11x17 without any darkroom. Commercial processing equipment allows you to do the complete photo finishing without any darkroom.
  12. If it worked reliably and was in current production the whole thing would probably be priced north of $800, perhaps a lot more. That would limit potential buyers I think. I have not done home C-41 but as Costco has stopped and everyone else sends out their C-41 (and you might not even get your negatives back if your not careful) I now think I'll order a couple of Tetenal kits from B&H and give it a go. From reading others experiences it seems doable for a reasonably careful person and I've done B&W now for the last 45 years.
    Oh, and I have an interior bathroom that is totally blacked out, that is where I load film now.
  13. Look like a gimmick aimed at people with very little knowledge and experience in film developing to me.
    Gimmick = " junk item that cost way more than what it should and does way less than what is says it will "
    TIP #1 .. you do not need a dark room to develop film.
    TIP #2 .. C41 colour film is just as easy to process as B&W films.
    TIP #3 .. Unless you want to spend $20K a machine will not make the job any better or easier.
    TIP #4 .. Do not take my word for anything, find out for your self if you feel you must.
  14. For those who are curious about the rondinax 60 daylight tank, here is a quick video of it in use....

    The paper backing is deftly removed from the 120 film before the film is immersed in chemicals.

    I use these tanks exclusively for my B/W 35mm and 120 format film. I find they work extremely well. Good ones come up now and again on places like
    eBay, but can be pricey.


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