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Re: Eclair Cameras: rewind vs spiral

Many people swear by these 100 foot tanks. I've had problems getting great results with either, but then I never tried hard enough to "perfect" my technique, as others probably have. With the Morse tank I found that the things to watch for are: 1) consistency - it is hard to crank your hand at the same pace time after time; it also stops being fun after a while. Plus, if the cranking is too fast it will create a vortex as developer rushes through the sprocket holes and this can affect local development areas 2) even development --- maybe there is a great prewash that can help prep the emulsion (maybe a pre-hardener + photo-flo??????). Also, as I recall there may be a different developer used with this kind of tank --- for most of the processing any area of the film is actually not in contact with fresh bath, but is wound onto a reel.

With the Russian tank I found that it is also a question of 100% even developing --- especially near the edges where the film contacts the reel. And certainly without modification, it will not develop the S-16 edge. Again, I think that a pre-bath may be the key. I never really tried to solve the problem, but I know others have used these tanks and been happy with the results.

I liked the Russian tank for overall ease of use, though threading the reel is more demanding (in the Morse tank the film stays on a spool). I have wondered if processing in the Russian tank at a somewhat lower temperature and increasing the development time might help with the evenness issue? Also, I think that fooling around with agitation techniques is probably the key --- maybe sending nitrogen bubbles into the base of the tank would help. There are probably lots of folks on this list with more experience than me.

Mark. PS - I still plan to put my 400' continuous newsfilm processor up on eBay .. I'll keep folks posted. But, alas, it isn't inexpensive.

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