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Continuous processing machines for 16mm


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#1 Richardson Leao

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Posted 31 May 2007 - 03:15 AM

Dunno if i was using wrong terms but there's not much info on continuous processing machines (not moore ir lomo tanks). Are there junior versions (only for 120m for example) or old BW only machines for 120m, any info? many thanks!
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#2 Brian Pritchard

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Posted 01 June 2007 - 08:14 AM

Dunno if i was using wrong terms but there's not much info on continuous processing machines (not moore ir lomo tanks). Are there junior versions (only for 120m for example) or old BW only machines for 120m, any info? many thanks!

Over the years there have been many processing machine manufacturers, most have ceased business. Two of the major manufacturers from the UK are Calder Equipment and Photomec. Because machines are quite expensive £50,000 and upwards they are usually made to order and the customer's specification. The size of the machine depends on the process but mainly on the running speed. If you are running B/W Negative with a development time of 4 mins, a 1min rinse, a 6 min fix and a 6 min wash the wet area of the machine must hold 17mins of film. At 100 ft a min, an average sort of speed for a small lab machine, that is 1700 ft of film. So the size is determined by width of tanks and the required number of racks. A machine of this spec would be about 20 ft long by 8ft wide. Drying cabinets are usually quite big in order to dry the film at the right rate.

Small machines are made. Both Calder and Photomec have made rewash machines which are about 10ft long by 6 ft wide. These can be modified to process B/W. I have seen machines as small as 6ft by 2ft wide using a mixture of water and methylated spirits in the final rinse to speed drying. I have also seen table top processors about 2 ft square. As I mentioned above these must run very slowly in order to get the correct development times. Quality is affected by using small machines because the quantity of chemicals, particularly the developer, is small and it gets exhausted quickly and it is difficult to get sufficient agitation to have even development.


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#3 Charles MacDonald

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Posted 01 June 2007 - 09:15 PM

Many of the samller machines were make for B&W microfilm, like the Kodak "Prostar". Folks have tweeked them for movie film on occasion.
http://wwwdb.oscars....5:03:5946870291
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#4 James Steven Beverly

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Posted 02 June 2007 - 04:47 AM

I'm assuming you're wanting to process 16 or 35mm stock. I know Brey makes a desktop version of the one I have, it's not specifically for B&W but that's just more a matter of what chemicals you put in it and what tanks you run the film through, but they're not cheap and for B&W only unless you're gonna process a BUNCH, you'll probably do better to send it off to a lab. That's what I'd be doing if I hadn't got a "give-away" deal on mine, that or just stick with the Moore. B)
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#5 david west

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Posted 07 December 2007 - 07:38 PM

Was the Kodak "Prostar" just used for high contrast films for titles? or could it be used to process any of the B&W cinema stock? anyone?
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#6 David Venhaus

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Posted 07 December 2007 - 09:27 PM

There is a Russian made "desktop" continuous processing machine, the MPM-16-3M. Here is a link to some photos and the details of it- http://www.geocities...ing/machine.htm
I have also seen one or two American made machines which are similar in size and function, though I don't remember the names of them right now.
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