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reel for 70mm film

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Hewes in the uk say they make reels for 70mm:


Hewes stuff is all stainless steel.

It lists spirals for 3m or 5m length.

The only tanks they show are dip-and-dunk ones to be used in darkness, and I think you must load your reels into what they call a 'spiral cage', and have it on a rod to dip into the tank. They might well know if people are putting their spirals in a daylight tank though. It would be bigger in diameter than the familiar Paterson tanks, and I don't think it could have the funnel top because the wire spirals don't load onto a centre column (so the tank wouldn't be light-tight).

Good luck!

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Thanks for the information. My intention is to travel the world (retired and 78!) having a digital outfit for convenience (Sony A99II with 16,24,28,35,50,100 Minolta lenses) and also a film outfit using 70mm and 120/220 film ( Linhof Press 70 with 53,80,180 lenses). If I have the room I will also take a LF either 5x7 or 4x10 with various lenses tripod etc. I will be getting an Airstream Basecamp 16X and towing it with my 2021  Honda Ridgeline. I would like to load and process B/W and C41 film and do it on the road some of the time. My plans are to go from Florida to Singapore via Canada/Iceland/Europe and on to Perth and the rest of Australia before shipping back to the US. Should take 2-3 years if I can avoid Iran/Syria and Burma. It would be nice if the population has gotten rid of their autocrats by then. I had this dream in the 1960's but met my wife in London who Liked Canada over Australia and was a US citizen (she died after 54 years of marriage last June) so we spent the first 10 years in Montreal before moving to Florida. Just before she died she told me to live my dream of traveling the world (we did car/camp for 6 months in Europe in 1970 after saving money for a car and all expenses for the trip in 2 years - we did it for about C$6000 in 1970 dollars. They told me we should take these extended 6-month trips when we are retired, not when you are 25. Bad advice!

Edited by john_cooper9
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I have a Nebro tank and adjustable reel that does film sizes from 35mm through to 116 size (70mm). The reel will only take 1.4mts (220 film in length)

For 15 feet, you might be looking at some kind of movie film processing equipment, unless you can cut the film into 3 parts for easier handing and getting each part onto a reel.

I can't show the tank or reel right now, but this is the box it comes in, I got the image off the net.


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Condolences and sympathy on the loss of your wife. Happened to me nearly 9 years ago and I had a similar idea of just taking off on a road trip. That didn't happen, but I know how you must be feeling. 

Anyhow, the Jobo 2500 series tanks are large diameter and look as though that Hewes 70mm spiral might fit in one. Of course it wouldn't be light tight without its central tube, but cheaper and more convenient than a dip'n'dunk cage and 3 gallon tank(s). Jobo's plastic reel will only take two 120 films, which is about 1.5 metres (5ft) of film. 

I somehow acquired a weird close-spiral plastic reel that fits the Jobo tank and looks like it would take about 10 foot of film, but for the life of me I can't figure out how it's supposed to load. It has slotted teeth set out in a spiral and must be centre loading. However, even with a dry run in the light I couldn't get a film to lodge securely in the shallow grooves of the reel. Mysterious.

So good luck in your quest. 

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I have a Nikor 116 tank, which as noted is 70mm wide. 

Earlier, I had one of the plastic tank/reels for 116, but like the Nikor better.

But the length is nowhere near 15 feet, as it also isn't for 120. 

120 Nikor reels have a larger wire, so more space between turns for chemicals to move.

I suspect one has to try harder to agitate with 220 reels.


My earliest tank was a Yankee II, which I also have a (relatively) new one of.

The original Yankee goes up to 116/616 (70mm) but not down to 110/16mm.

The Yankee II goes down to 16mm, even though it is many years before 110.


The adjustable plastic reels are designed for up to 135-36, so maybe 6 feet.

Much less for the Nikor 116 reel.


Even harder to find are plastic or metal 122 reels.  I still don't have one of those.

-- glen

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  • 1 month later...

Nikor made the 3087 reel and 3054 developing tank and cover for 18 feet of 70mm film. But the tank doesn't have a fill spout, you remove the lid and move the reel from tank to tank -- so darkroom processing.

They did make a 3084 reel for 100 inches of 70mm film, with a matching daylight tank 3051. But that won't handle a full 15 foot roll. I have one, but because it also will hold some 3086 reels I have for 18 feet of 35mm film -- in case I ever try and use one of my 250 exposure backs. But even that would handle only about 140 exposures...

Edited by john_shriver
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1 hour ago, john_shriver said:

Corrected the typo, now says Nikor. Safari/macOS autocorrect.


It took me a while to figure this out, but yes, autocorrect is part of the browser,

and doesn't know anything about what you are doing. 


-- glen

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  • 2 weeks later...
4 hours ago, john_shriver said:

Well, here's a moderately long 70mm spool on eBay. https://www.ebay.com/itm/204204785382

Not something that shows up often. Then you "just" need a tank it fits in.

6 3/4" in diameter!! That's certainly a jumbo size reel, it might even take John's 15 feet of film. Bit pricey though, but with lots of use, the price could be justified. Fabricating a simple tank for it might be in order, and develop with the lights turned off.

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