Turning B&W Film into Slides

Discussion in 'Black and White' started by anne_deerness|1, Jun 9, 2016.

  1. Hello, I'm currently researching a way to turn my black and white film (both developed and undeveloped) into slides for use on a slide projector, but I am still unclear on a few things.
    I'll most likely be using the Leica Eldia for this process, some manuals and forum posts seem to indicate one has to use orthochromatic film. Is this completely necessary? Is there any disadvantage to usingregular b&w film, such as the ones I use for shooting in a regular 35mm camera?
    I understand the use of orthochromatic film might be of benefit for the process of advancing both the "print" film and the negative film, but is there any other reason as to why to use it?

    Also, do you have any suggestions for the set-up? Lamp distance/power, positioning, etc.

    Another question, is there a more appropriate way to doing this job? I'll probably be doing this quite frequently but not in an industrial way, it's just for my personal projects.
    I've also read an article on the Ilford site (http://www.ilfordphoto.com/Webfiles/20114271220441194.pdf) about reversal processing, do you guys have any thoughts on this?

    I understand this might be a very niche question but I'd appreciate any help I can get!

  2. Niche? If you have a Niche, scratch it, I always say!
    There used to be special films, some even reversal, for making black and white negatives into black and white transparencies.
    Pretty hard to find these days, though I haven't tried for years.
    One dirty way is to copy a b&w negative onto b&w negative film. The trouble is that exposure for transparencies is not the same. You need to make a pretty thin reversed negative for it to look anything like a B&W transparency done when that sort of thing was done.
    At Treetops in Kenya, long, long time ago, I shot some night pictures on underexposed Tri-X. When I got back, I copied these over on a Heiland Repronar copier to Plus-X, I think it was, with the Giant Forest Pig, Rhino, et al. results shown below:
  3. This, of course, is, as I said, not the finest way to get there but it works.
    The big processors like Kodak used to make transparencies and one of the services provided in his early years by Spira, was Spiratone reversal processing of B&W film. Perhaps some special services place still does it for substantial fees.
    Unless you are a "re-enactment" "stitch counter", the easiest and best way today is to scan in the negative, reverse in Photoshop, and touch up contrast, -- there are still places that you can send the negative, or the image file, and they will produce a slide for slide projector. But hurry, the breed is going extinct as I write.
  4. SCL


    If you can find some Besseler Slide-O-Film the process is easy. You sandwich a piece of SOF to the negative and either expose it to sunlight or other high intensity light. After exposure you drop the exposed SOF into a container of boiling water for a brief period. What you get is a positive image, but it is pale white against a clear base. When mounted as a slide and projected, the white base absorbs light and you get a B&W image. It sounds crazy, but it works fine. Bad news is that Besseler discontinued the materials many years ago...however occasionally they show up on Ebay.
  5. this doesn't necessarily help for some of your exposed film but please consider Fomapan-R. This is a film designed to make B/W slides from have used it a few times. It is excellent and the general appearance to the films are quite lovely. You can also use the developing chemicals to process your present negative film stock as a positive.
  6. AJG


    I did a few projects like this 25 years ago or so with Kodak 5302 Fine Grain Positive Release Film. I found it for sale now fairly quickly by googling it so it seems to still be available. This is a blue sensitive film that is the equivalent of ASA 5 or so, so exposure times are long. The good thing is that you can use a safelight to load cartridges and process it. I even selenium toned this back in the day, and the results were quite good.
  7. With conventional black & white films you will gain contrast when copying negatives. You will have to adjust developing times to get what you want so several tries might be needed. JDM's suggestion to scan the negative and reverse along with adjustments might make the most sense.
  8. I used to contact print B&W negs onto 8x10 ortho/litho film and develop it in Kodak Dektol 1:7 or 1:9. Cut into strips and mount. This process gave me usable slides that could be toned with sepia or selenium. I used to carry two bodies, one slides one B&W. The projected images worked for me.
  9. Any normal B&W film doesn't have a clear base, it's tinted grey to control halation. That's why a "print" film like Eastman 5302 is what you want, it has a completely clear base. Kodak doesn't put 5302 up in 100 foot rolls anymore, but Ultrafine.com does, buy it direct or via eBay.
    Eastman 5302 (acetate backing) and 7302 (Estar brand polyester backing) will be made as long as there's a market to make new projection prints of B&W movies. It's just that it's only sold in huge lots now.
    Develop the 5032 in Dektol. It will take a while to get the hang of exposure times.
  10. Thank you all very much for your responses. I am still a bit unclear about a few things: when using film like Eastman 5302, Kodak 5302, Fomapan-R, etc. Do you guys mean shooting with those films? Or do you mean shooting with normal b&w film and contact printing with those films? Also what would be the developing like in each case?

    Ideally I'd like to use the photos I've already taken with normal b&w film and find a way to turn them into slides, plus I like the idea of having both the negative and "positive" versions of my photos. That's why I was looking into the Eldia. I'm guessing the last resort would be to shoot directly on reversal film, but I still need clarification if that's what you guys mean.
    Thanks for all your help so far!
  11. AJG


    Kodak 5302 is a print film--it is designed to make prints from camera original movie film for release in theaters. This would allow you to continue to shoot regular negative film in your camera, select the images you wanted to make slides of and still have the original negative to scan or make regular darkroom prints from. I have used this film to make slides from 4x5 and 35 mm B&W negatives, using it in a regular 35 mm SLR with macro lens and bellows/slide copier for 35 mm originals and on a copy stand over a daylight equivalent light box for 4x5. I then loaded it into a regular stainless steel film developing tank and developed it in Dektol, fixed and washed, and in some cases, selenium toned it. You would have to buy it in bulk (100 feet) and load it into your own cartridges. This would be advantageous for testing, since you could load short lengths instead of a whole room of 36. I you're going to do a lot of this, it would be worth getting a small flash and testing exposure with it instead of using continuous light which will require long (several seconds, depending) exposures.
  12. Would something like shooting on regular ilford film, contact printing with the Eldia on Lucky SHD100 (no anti-halation layer) or Ilford PAN F (clears after developing) and developing normally work?
  13. AJG


    I just looked at the manual for the Leica Eldia, and I would skip this if I were you. It looks as if you can only use it with non-panchromatic film under a safelight, so that rules out the two films you have listed in your last post. You are also on your own for timing exposures, although an enlarger with a good electronic timer might work as a light source. If you already have a 35 SLR, I would find a bellows attachment and a good macro lens along with the film strip attachment that most camera manufacturers made. This shouldn't run you too much money on eBay or Craig's List and it would be much more convenient and give better, more predictable results.
  14. Used to do this all the time in photography
    classes many years ago. Simplest way is to
    make a B&w print. Set up a simple copy stand
    and re photograph it on color slide film. Make
    your prints to 1:1.5 proportions so you can fill
    the frame.

    If you want go to straight film to film get a slide
    copying attachment and mount it on your
    camera. Load camera with slow B&w like pan
    f or tmax 100. Copy negs and develop
  15. you cab make slides very easily from most B&W films. I have had the best luck with traditional grained films, like FP4 and Rollei retro 80/400s. you can search for processes on how to do it here, on APUG and Flickr. you have to mix your own stuff but its very easy and the results are great.
    Here is a link for the process I use
  16. All B&W films can be reversed processed but some are much better than others, all you need is film reversal processing developer kit and away you go, it can be tricky to get right and as I said some films are better than others.
    There are a few reversal developing kits around, a google search will find them for you.
    I have done it with Rollei Retro 80s just fine and Rollei Ortho 25 that is excellent for this. That is about all I have done because I really see very little point in doing it, they sure do project very well but being negative film it just does not have the durability of true slide films and are very easy to damage.
    You can not reverse film that is already processed as far s I know.
    If it is only for projection uses I would personally find it easier and better to just scan the negative and use a digital projector. Depending on the amount of film it could also be a lot cheaper as reverse processing of B&W films is not exactly cheap to do.
  17. For Eastman 5302, you would contact print it in the ELIDA under a safelight, it's only sensitive to blue light. You get to do exposure control in printing, so you have more flexibility than reversal processing of camera film.
    Eastman 5302 is so slow it's not practical as a camera film, also the lack of anti-halation treatment would result in odd halation effects.
  18. AJG


    Actually, if you would like to simulate a 19th century look with a late 20th century camera then 5302 is a good way to go. It is slow, necessitating a tripod, and being blue sensitive will yield near white skies like 19th century landscape photographs if used in a camera.
  19. About 45 years ago, I had some film from Freestyle that came in 8x10 sheets that was supposed to be for contact prints from black and white negatives to make slides.
    It never worked quite as well as I hoped, likely because I didn't do it quite right.
    Contact prints come out backwards, so when you project them the emulsion is on the wrong side.
    Most often, that isn't so bad. It used to be common for store-bought slides, such as at tourist attractions. (Color, but still contact prints for mass duplication.)
    As noted above, you need a lower contrast than usual film.
  20. If you want the best results, go with 5302. This is a very stable emulsion; I have used Fine Grain Release Positive that had expired 20 years earlier with very good results. It's one of the few "vintage' films available on eBay that I would consider buying. If Ultrafine is supplying 100 foot rolls of fresh film, invest in one. You will be astonished at how much more there is in a well produced B&W transparency than on a reflection print from the same negative. A contact print made with an Eldia will give sharper results than any lens system. Just make sure that you have clean and scratch-free glass on your Eldia.

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