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Retrieving film from canister to develop.

Discussion in 'Everything Film' started by Bone_Idle, Nov 27, 2008.

  1. Bone_Idle

    Bone_Idle Well-Known Member

    What's the best way to get at the film? Do I need a special tool or is there an easy way to prise the canister open and get the film?
  2. josie

    josie Well-Known Member

    You can purchase and use a leader retriever, You can check your camera manual to see if you can set it so it doesn't fully retract the leader, you can attach some double~sided tape to some thin card (about an inch wide ~ poke it in the light trap and try to catch the end of the film on the exposed sticky surface) OR..................
    you can (only in the dark!!) either remove the end of the canister with a bottle opener or similar tool, or you can (carefully) stick a screwdriver into the light trap and rip it open
  3. beejaybee

    beejaybee Marvin

    That's what I do (in the changing bag, pre-loaded with the disassembled dev tank & spiral).

    They used to sell a special tool for levering off the end caps of the cassette, but I found it was just as easy to use a medium size flat blade screwdriver. Squeeze the light trap and there is a gap into which it is easy to slip the blade, one quick twist & the end cap is off. Then pull the spool & film out of the open can, cut off the half width leader (it's a nuisance with Paterson spirals) & load the spiral. Tear off the inside end of the film from the spool when you come to it, but SLOWLY as rapid tearing of glue can cause phosphoresence which can fog the film! Spiral onto centre, into tank (the right way up), lid on, job done.
  4. Intermanaut

    Intermanaut Well-Known Member

  5. Wheelu

    Wheelu Well-Known Member

    The Ilford cassette opener is still available for sale. Google for it. It's a bit like a bottle opener. I used to prise the cassettes open using a knife, but the cassette opener is a tad safer and easier ;)
  6. zx9

    zx9 Well-Known Member

    And I have / had the first one takes a bit of getting used to. I bought mine after watching a mini-lab operator use one to recover leaders before tapeing them to the plastic card that used to pull film through the processor. With practice it can be used in a split second.
  7. Benchista

    Benchista Which Tyler

    I've got one of those, but what I use is a Swiss Army knife - the bottle opener works perfectly, and I then trim the leader with the scissors.
  8. Intermanaut

    Intermanaut Well-Known Member

    Any bottle opener would do, wouldn't it? The benefit of the leader retriever is that you don't have to do it in the dark, though.
  9. Benchista

    Benchista Which Tyler

    No, but you run an increased risk of scratching the film by pulling it through the light trap (grit gatherer) again.
  10. Intermanaut

    Intermanaut Well-Known Member

    Grit gatherer? I don't let grit anywhere near the canister in the first place, and have never scratched a film in the three years I've been processing my own. I'm reasonably confident that Ilford doesn't put grit in the canister on my behalf.

    Is the risk the same as that of having someone's eye out with a stick, or an angry swan breaking your arm?
  11. taxor

    taxor Well-Known Member

    I prefer loading the spiral direct from the casette. I've never had a problem with scratching yet.
  12. Gordon_McGeachie

    Gordon_McGeachie In the Stop Bath

    As I always used a proper darkroom,I tapped the cassette on a work surface to open it, or sometimes squeezed the sides of the cassette to realease one end plate.
  13. Damien_Demolder

    Damien_Demolder Well-Known Member

    I agree that opening the cassette with a bottle opener is the cleanest and quickest option. If, though, you want to retrieve a leader rip a 1in strip off an old glossy print and give the glossy side a good licking so it is properly damp. Feed it gloss side down (facing the core) into the cassette and wind it in by turning the spool. Once it is being pulled in you've 'hooked' the film, so just pull it out again to see the leader wiggling like a trout on the end of it.

    It can take a couple of goes, but its cheaper and more sporting than buying a proper leader retriever.
  14. Benchista

    Benchista Which Tyler

    Yes, I've done that, but it never worked on those Kodak cassettes with crimped ends.
  15. Benchista

    Benchista Which Tyler

    It's risk enough, and in my mind, a completely pointless risk - perhaps over only three years you've not seen it, but believe me, it can happen. I've never seen the logic of doing it that way, given that if you leave the leader out you've got another set of controls to follow to ensure you don't reload a used film into the camera... that's two potential risks against none doing it the other way, so for me it's a no-brainer. YMMV.
  16. Gordon_McGeachie

    Gordon_McGeachie In the Stop Bath

    I only used Ilford FP4 and HP5..................... :D
  17. Wheelu

    Wheelu Well-Known Member

    I seem to recall that Ilford cassettes used to be much easier to open and indeed to re-use, but maybe that's just me looking at the past through rose tinted specs!
  18. spinno

    spinno Well-Known Member

    I used to use the back end of a spoon...
  19. Benchista

    Benchista Which Tyler

    It was colour slide I used Kodak for - after they discontinued Verichrome Pan in 620, anyway... ;)
  20. Gordon_McGeachie

    Gordon_McGeachie In the Stop Bath

    Ah , right, with you now.........I always sent my slides away, but did dabble in cibachrome prints though when i got them back...........but thats another story :D

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