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Takita 16mm contact printer


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#1 Richard Tuohy

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Posted 19 January 2006 - 07:50 AM

I am intending to buy a Takita 16mm contact printer. Trouble is, I don't know anything much about printers. These things are old now (which makes them far more affordable than a few years ago). Does anyone know if the Takita company still exists? Or where or whether I might be able to get some operating instructions? This unit is not coming to me direct from a lab, so there is no one at the selling end who can talk to me about it.
I believe the unit will be 110volts. This means I need to use a transformer for our 240v supply. Do such machines use much current? And is it the sort of machine I can set up on its own, or does it need some other infrastructure for installation?
Anyone with any thoughts on the matter would be appreciated.
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#2 Michael Carter

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Posted 19 January 2006 - 09:06 AM

I am intending to buy a Takita 16mm contact printer. Trouble is, I don't know anything much about printers. These things are old now (which makes them far more affordable than a few years ago). Does anyone know if the Takita company still exists? Or where or whether I might be able to get some operating instructions? This unit is not coming to me direct from a lab, so there is no one at the selling end who can talk to me about it.
I believe the unit will be 110volts. This means I need to use a transformer for our 240v supply. Do such machines use much current? And is it the sort of machine I can set up on its own, or does it need some other infrastructure for installation?
Anyone with any thoughts on the matter would be appreciated.

If you're in the UK go to Machine Mart for a transformer. You will need a different plug on one end or an adaptor. The transformers are heavy and put out a steady power supply. I used mine for a workprinter. Worked great.
You will need a totally dark room.
The unit will most likely need a good clean and oil, perhaps a new bulb, note carefully how it is installed.
Martin Baumgarten would know something I bet. I have a Uhler Cine Printer.
Michael Carter
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#3 K Borowski

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Posted 19 January 2006 - 10:29 AM

As far as I know, the Takita company no longer exists, or at least no longer exists in the form that it did when it made these machines. Bell & Howell is still around, but they now make alarm clocks and disposable cameras. As far as this machine goes, if it is anything like mine it will have four reels, two for the negative film to be printed and two for the print film. You will have two sets of exposure controls, one for the ammount of light for printing the soundtrack, the other for the ammount of light necessary for printing the picture. It is likely that the machine is designed only for B&W printing, as this is the type of machine from the era. You COULD use it to print color, but it would be absolute bitch-work to do tests to determine the proper color filter pack, and you would have to do it with the additive process, which means you will have to add color filters in front of the light source during printing, and of course all in complete darkness. Black and white on the other hand, can be done under red safelight. I don't think that adapting it would be any trouble. A lot of these machines are so old that they have non-polarized power plugs, so you might have to find an older-model power adapter for this machine. Mine works on polarized 110 that is here in the States these days, but it might be different when you are adapting it to a different power load.

Regards.

Karl Borowski
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#4 Dominic Case

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Posted 19 January 2006 - 05:48 PM

Bell & Howell is still around, but they now make alarm clocks and disposable cameras.

However, since around 1980, their film division has been a separate company (management buy-out) known as BHP (for Bell & Howell Printers), now part of a group of companies making processing machines, film cleaners etc. BHP printers now, though, are large, high-speed professional machines, a far cry from the old Bell & Howell model D, J, E, C etc.

I think the machine you are looking at is probably similar to a Bell & Howell model J printer. If it IS, then you are in luck . . . Here's a site that includes a typed instruction manual for that machine.

Karl's description is pretty accurate except for

you would have to do it with the additive process, which means you will have to add color filters in front of the light source during printing

that's actually subtractive printing, and not practical with this type of printer. You could make up a colour filter pack for an overall balance, but there is no way of adjusting from scene to scene.
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#5 Richard Tuohy

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Posted 19 January 2006 - 06:30 PM

Many thanks everyone.
Thanks for pointing to the manual Dominic. Yes it looks to be exactly based on the Bell and Howell model D (or J) printer. So it is intended for B/W only (fine), is 110v (but perhaps un-polarised), and would be self contained. Unfortunately it is not currently installed so I can't examine its current set up for clues. But witht he manual I reckon I should be able to work out how to lubricate and set up the machine. I may need to get new belts and most certainly a bulb. I assume it would be a tungsten not a QI (hallogen) bulb. Hopefully available somewhere.
Thanks again.
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#6 K Borowski

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Posted 19 January 2006 - 06:41 PM

Thanks for catching me on that one Dominic. I still mix those two terms up for some reason. As for scene by scene color/exposure correction, some models of printer had a mechanism whereby a little punch you made into the side of the film would allow for a change in the exposure levels (and possibly color pack?), but I don't believe my Uhler or the Takita would have this ability. Your best bet is to separate color scenes by common filter packs. Frankly, all of your shots should be pretty consistant assuming they were lit consistantly with the same emulsion batch. If you group scenes together by common densities and packs, you can make for efficient use of this machine for printing color, but there will be some slight color and density shifts.

Regards.

KArl
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#7 Richard Tuohy

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Posted 19 January 2006 - 07:13 PM

Karl,
the Uhler machine you have, is it a faily simple looking machine with a meter at the top and two dials just below and with an overal size of a 16mm projector but with a pair of arms on each side? If so, how do you find this unit to use? It is much simpler looking than the Takita I am contemplating and perhaps it is more appropriate for my needs. I take it it has a 400 foot capacity. As I can only process 100' in my Lomo tank, that is fine.
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#8 John Pytlak RIP

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Posted 19 January 2006 - 10:43 PM

The Kodak website has a nice tutorial about printing:

http://www.kodak.com...printingP.shtml
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#9 K Borowski

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Posted 20 January 2006 - 02:29 PM

Karl,
the Uhler machine you have, is it a faily simple looking machine with a meter at the top and two dials just below and with an overal size of a 16mm projector but with a pair of arms on each side? If so, how do you find this unit to use? It is much simpler looking than the Takita I am contemplating and perhaps it is more appropriate for my needs. I take it it has a 400 foot capacity. As I can only process 100' in my Lomo tank, that is fine.


Hey Rich, let me send you a picture of the machine I have. It is dissassembled right now, as I am working on the circuitry, but I'll pile it all together so you can see what it looks like put together. PM me your picture and I'll send you a scan.

Regards.

Karl Borowski
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#10 Richard Tuohy

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Posted 20 January 2006 - 06:49 PM

Hey Rich, let me send you a picture of the machine I have. It is dissassembled right now, as I am working on the circuitry, but I'll pile it all together so you can see what it looks like put together. PM me your picture and I'll send you a scan.

Regards.

Karl Borowski

Karl, I think your mail box must be full (you can only fit five)...and I can't get 'insert image' to work here (it wants an HTTP address). if you pm me your email I can send you a pic of the Takita I am contemplating, etc..
Cheers
Richard Tuohy
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#11 Clive Tobin

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Posted 21 January 2006 - 10:00 PM

However, since around 1980, their film division has been a separate company... known as BHP (for Bell & Howell Printers), ...


Actually, the division was known as Bell & Howell Professional. They mostly made printers though.

Sadly, the once proud B&H brand name was bought by a company that mostly makes things like nose hair trimmers.

Cheers, Nitpickers R Us.
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#12 K Borowski

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Posted 21 January 2006 - 11:01 PM

Karl, I think your mail box must be full (you can only fit five)...and I can't get 'insert image' to work here (it wants an HTTP address). if you pm me your email I can send you a pic of the Takita I am contemplating, etc..
Cheers
Richard Tuohy


Sorry, I typed "picture" instead of email. I do need to take care of that full mailbox, and a picture would be helpful on your part. Please send me your contact info as well so I can email you the scan. My box is now clear.

Regards.

Karl Borowski
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#13 Dominic Case

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Posted 22 January 2006 - 06:00 PM

Actually, the division was known as Bell & Howell Professional. They mostly made printers though.

Sadly, the once proud B&H brand name was bought by a company that mostly makes things like nose hair trimmers.

Yes, my mistake. Professional, meaning motion picture.

Donald Bell and Arthur Howell's names (or at least their initials) live on in the perforations though: the standard 35mm camera negative perf is known as the BH perf.
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#14 John Pytlak RIP

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Posted 23 January 2006 - 04:43 PM

Actually, the division was known as Bell & Howell Professional. They mostly made printers though.

Sadly, the once proud B&H brand name was bought by a company that mostly makes things like nose hair trimmers.

Cheers, Nitpickers R Us.


They also market "10-megapixel" digital cameras:

http://www.thpsales....campaign=google

Amazingly, they can fit 141 of these photos on a 16MB card! :rolleyes:


Yes, my mistake. Professional, meaning motion picture.

Donald Bell and Arthur Howell's names (or at least their initials) live on in the perforations though: the standard 35mm camera negative perf is known as the BH perf.


I have the original publication of Donald J. Bell's article "Motion Picture Film Perforation", published in the October 1916 Transactions of the Society of Motion Picture Engineers. :)

It has the original discussion of why a 64-tooth printing sprocket was chosen for continuous contact printing, based on the measured shrinkage of cellulose nitrate film. A nice piece of motion picture film history.
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