unevern clear edges on 120 negs

Discussion in 'Medium Format' started by PaulWhiting, Dec 27, 2017.

  1. I'm using a Rolleicord V, recently serviced so I don't think the problem is the camera. The film is Ilford HP5+, and I'm using Nikkor tanks. But one clear edge is narrower than the other - not a serious problem, it just makes it difficult to read the frame numbers on the narrow clear edge side. And I have to confess to a little streak of OCD!

    It could be that I didn't get the paper leader centered properly on the take-up spool.

    Any thoughts?

    PS I did do a search before posting this.
  2. paul ron

    paul ron NYC

    got pix?

    lets see the problem?
  3. Don't think it's related to development or processing. It seems like it is due to how the film tracks or is guided through the camera. The film is shifted slightly off center as it advances through the camera.
  4. This happened to me several times and is most likely the cause of your problem. Better luck with your next film.
    Best regards,
  5. Paul Ron: Attached (I hope!) is a photo of my negative strip, which should make clear my "problem". I put problem in quotes since this isn't really a big deal. Ferdi's message was reassuring, maybe it's just a matter of inserting the paper leader into the take-up spool more carefully. Also, I see a little light leakage on the wider margin side, which adds to the possibility of the film not being centered properly.

    Thanks everyone!

  6. It doesn't look TOO bad to me, but at the same time the leader should self-center on the spool as you're winding it up to align with the dots. If the film was off center, you should see the edge of the backing paper "ruffled."

    I've spent the past few days going through probably 100 rolls of Provia and Velvia that I shot in either my Rolleicord Va or Rolleiflex Automat III that were developed over a few years and I'd never looked at or cut. A few were off center like you've shown, but most were fine.
  7. Thanks Ben - sheesh, did you dig through those 100 rolls just for my question?!! If so, many thanks!

    I agree that it should self-center... I've never really had to pay attention to how the film was behaving.

    And I know what you mean by "ruffling". I think I used to get that on old box cameras. I dug in my wastebasket to rescue the backing and there was not a trace of ruffling.

    Well, I'll just have to be more careful.
  8. Paul,

    It's more like you happened to catch me when I was taking care of some LONG overdue cataloging.

    I have boxes of uncut film-both in 35mm and 120-and kept putting it off. Dwayne's and Wal-Mart would only cut relatively short lengths, and I prefer 5 or 6 frames for 35mm and 4 frames for 6x6. I bought a nice multi-format cutter a few months ago and stocked up on print-file pages, and have been spending some time while I'm off for Christmas to get caught up.

    I'm also cutting film as soon as I develop it or get it back from the lab now rather than letting it sit. When it comes to 6x7 especially, "2 strips of 3 frames and 2 of 2 frames" gets you funny looks and I'm also switching up both my 6x6s and 645s to use up some pages horizontal four-row pages I had backlogged.

    I will say, though-don't leave film rolled up for 10 years :) . Wal-Mart use to return my 35mm to me inside a film can, and I have to physically fight it. The 120 from Dwayne's came sleeved and rolled inside a larger cardboard tube, but it still puts up a good fight. I will say that it's been a fun trip down memory lane. I know that I looked at a lot of the 120 and then re-rolled it pending taking the time to cut it.
  9. I'm mainly concerned there might be something awry in my Rolleicord V. I got it at the auction site, and it has a recent CLA (4 yrs ago) by Harry Fleenor, who also installed a Maxwell screen. I paid $260, I thought that was a pretty good price. The seller gave me 14 days to try it out and my time is up tomorrow. He has a 100% rating and so do I.

    I don't think this film alignment is bad enough to warrant a return... thanks to this thread I think I can deal with it. I tested the shutter with the PhotoPlug, all speeds tested within 1/3 stop. And that Maxwell screen is very nice, all right.

    One side benefit to going digital is that for 120 film I can easily fit 3 strips at 4 frames/strip on a standard sheet of paper, "standard" in digital being 8 1/2 x 11. Likewise for a 36 exp roll of 35mm. Was always a tight squeeze on a "standard" sheet of darkroom paper, ie 8x10. And most notebooks are designed for 8 1/2 x 11.

    I'll quit my thread drift before I get kicked off!
  10. paul ron

    paul ron NYC

    Ah thats nothing to worry about Paul. It just may be the leader started off askew. Have you shot any other rolls since?

    How do you like your camera so far?
    Just curious..... Have you ever owned a yashicamat? How does this new camera stand against the yashi?

    now lets see some master pieces!
  11. "Ah thats nothing to worry about Paul."

    - I beg to differ. It shows that the film didn't track squarely across the camera gate, and one side of the film may have buckled into the frame aperture.

    There are guide rails either side of the gate, and the film should ride evenly on them. If that doesn't happen, one side of the film can drop into the frame opening and distort the focus plane. The guide rails and pressure plate are the only things keeping the film flat during exposure.

    Check that the focus is OK toward the narrow margin side of the film.

    I'd take better care to centre the backing paper next time, and hope it doesn't happen again. If it's a frequent occurrence despite centring the leader, then there may be a problem with extra drag on one side of the film. Maybe a weakened pressure plate spring or an uneven tracking roller.
  12. paul ron

    paul ron NYC

    hahahaha isnt that what i just said?

  13. It is hard to see that the film would be off track through the whole roll, and not cause any effect on the backing paper.

    You should be able to tell looking from the back, where the film edge is supposed to track, and how big each margin should be.
  14. Paul Ron: No, unfortunately I haven't shot any more rolls. I should, I know, but I'm running low on D-76 (in this digital age!).

    As for the Yashica, a classmate had one way back, he liked it very much, but I can't speak from ever having owned one. One thing I've noticed is that every Yashica I've seen has a built-in light meter. It might be hard to find cells if needed, and personally I don't like having any equipment around that I can't get parts for. You can shoot without the built-in meter of course... this is just a quirk of mine.

    Rodeo Joe: Good tip to check the focus on the edges... so I did that, and the edges look as much in focus as the rest of the image, ie good.

    Glen: As I look at the track the film rides on, and if it's the one you mentioned, I can see what the width of clear margin should be.

    Thanks all, and to the few I have not mentioned, I found your thoughts useful as well.
  15. Some folks have suggested a second roll. This time I was very careful to get the tab centered on the take-up spool. What I noticed this time is that the first frame's edges were narrow on one edge and wider on the other, but at the 12th frame they were close to normal. I placed the first couple of frames in my scanner's film holder and I lose just a sliver of the image on the narrow edge side - no surprise there. The paper backing was smooth, no ruffles.

    Guess I can live with that.
  16. Check position of the film spools in the respective compartments. You can see correct position of the back paper if the right (left) edge of back paper is not folding by the spool disk when begin to winding the paper end. If correct position of spools does not solve problem, you can cut washers from thick paper to correct position of spooler(s)
  17. I think you're on to something, pavel, thank you. However, I wonder if you could clarify this part for me:

    "...if the right (left) edge of back paper is not folding by the spool disk when begin to winding the paper end."

    How about "You can see if the backing paper is winding correctly if the edge of the paper is smooth where it touches the take-up spool flange, not wrinkled." That's how I interpret it anyway... please let me know if I get it!

    Your message helped me by making me look more carefully at how the take-up spool sits in the compartment. I've discovered a slight variation in spool lengths as I try different spools.

    Thanks again!
  18. Paul, you got my idea 100% right. Hopefully that help.

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