PLEASE READ THIS
BEFORE WRITING TO HELP!
Regarding the 1/99
HELP! response of Mel Gerson about respooling 120 film onto 620 spools.
There is a way to do it that doesn't require a darkroom. It utilizes
a 1940s Rollex 20 folding camera which, interestingly, can use 620 or
120 film. A roll of unexposed 120 film is wound all the way through
onto a 120 take-up spool. The roll is then moved to the other compartment
and replaced by an empty 620 spool, to which the end of the roll is
attached. The camera back is closed and the film is wound all the way
through onto the 620 spool. This camera--which is a glorified "box
camera"--would probably sell at a swap meet for no more than a
few dollars (I paid $3 for mine). Thank you for your consideration in
for this very helpful tip on an easier method of winding today's
120 film onto an old 620 spool that is considerably easier than what
we recently mentioned in this column. Now, if I can just locate a Rollex
20 folding camera I can try this myself. Who knows, I might even be
tempted to run a roll or two through my old Kodak Medalist 1 that I
have had for 40 years and never used, even when 620 film was readily
available. I'll add the Rollex 20 camera to my want list for when
I next visit a swap meet. We appreciate your taking the time to provide
this informative data.
Re: January '99
issue. Clear flash bulb problem of Frank Guidaitis of Coram, New York.
Still found in some camera stores or photo departments is a sleeve that
fit over a reflector with a blue surface in the front. These were similar
to a toaster cover. If available, it's easy to make and to remove
when changing flash bulbs. The flash bulb problem of Erin Stoddard.
In my free-lance days, when I thought I had a troublesome case of flash
bulbs, I stuck the bulb socket into my mouth before inserting into the
flash gun. The saliva helped the contact--never had a problem. As you
mentioned, I used two or three extensions with 25' of wire and
again, no problems. I just made sure my three "D" cells
were fresh. Liquid Light is available from Adorama in their darkroom
vaguely recall the plastic slip over cover you described. If I remember
correctly they were three sided, flexible plastic for easy carrying,
with a blue filter side to daylight correction balance for clear flash
bulbs, frosted (for diffusion) and clear. Hopefully reader Guidaitis
will be able to locate one of these helpful items which should solve
his color balance problem. I remember seeing many old time newspaper
photographers using 4x5 Speed Graphics habitually lick the end of a
flash bulb before inserting it into the flash gun socket to promote
a better contact. However, I also remember that the tips of flash bulbs
were make of a lead-like material and heard of some photographers that
developed lead poisoning because of this habit. So I would not recommend
it. Besides, the moisture from the saliva would remain on the contact
inside the flash gun and this could result in corrosion which would
further hamper a good electrical contact. Many other readers have written
suggesting sources for the Liquid Light solution made by: Rockland Colloid
Corp., PO Box 376, Piermont, NY 10968; (914) 359-5559; web site at:
www.rock laloid.com I have been provided with a more up-to-date listing
of photographic-oriented firms addresses, so hopefully, I will not make
a mistake as I did last fall when I could not locate a current address
for this firm. Thanks for providing these updated tips for our readers.
web page is at: www.rockaloid.com and it lists several other dealers.
Some of them are also Shutterbug advertisers. Also, in the November
'98 issue, reader Chris Shockley (via the Internet) asks for a
source for a safelight filter for building his own safelight. Kodak
has offered such filters for years. I have a glass sandwich OC filter
that is 8x10" in size. One day I may get around to building the
frame for it and installing it into my darkroom. Once again, one of
your own advertisers (B&H) lists OC filters, manufactured by Kodak
and Premier, in sizes from 31/4x41/4 through 10x12". The Premier
filters are reasonably priced at $9 for the 5x7 and $20 for the 10x12,
making the construction of a very nice safelight quite affordable. At
the risk of overstepping courtesy, I would suggest that the needs of
your readers, and those of your own advertisers, would be better served
if you included the pages of your own magazine (or a quick Internet
search) in your research for HELP! questions. Please accept this as
I know Kodak has for years offered round and rectangular safelight filters
as replacements for faded safelight filters. If I remember correctly,
this writer was wanting to also make the filter, not just the box housing
the light and filter. Your idea about use of the pages as reference
to HELP! replies is good, but I'm afraid it would be impractical
to implement. We research and write these replies months before any
issue is assembled and since those of us who write the replies are not
based where the magazine is published, we don't have access to
the contents of the issue the reply will appear in. It would be nice
if this were possible as you suggest. Thanks for providing the data
about Rockland Colloid (the Liquid Light manufacturer) and the availability
of safelight filters.
I have some information
for one of the people who wrote to "Help." In the February
'99 Shutterbug on page 290, Paul G. Hoffman of Berkeley, California
asked about ways to use filters on point-and-shoot cameras. I have successfully
used Cokin A series filters on my Olympus XA and Stylus utilizing a
compact camera adapter made by Cokin. It attaches to the camera's
tripod socket, and provides some adjustability for different socket
locations and camera thicknesses. The filter can be quickly flipped
90° downward, and when up in shooting position, it can cover the
light metering cell as well as the lens. A polarizer's effect
can even be previewed in the viewfinder at the same rotation it will
present to the lens. Of course, an active autofocus camera might have
to be used with infinity lock, since an infrared beam would (possibly)
be reflected by the filter. I got my adapter free with the purchase
of a few filters, but I would imagine that they are sold for a modest
price by any Cokin dealer. I hope this is helpful.
Thanks very much for providing this data. I knew Cokin offered some
kits of filters for use with compact cameras, but was not aware of the
adapter that attaches via the tripod socket to hold them in front of
the lens. This definitely is an excellent solution for reader Hoffman
and I will pass it on to him. On behalf of the readers attempting to
use filters with compact cameras, we thank you for sending this possible
I have accumulated
about 40 issues of Shutterbug, Pop Photo, and Petersen's PhotoGraphic
magazines. I would like to give them to someone who could use them.
Last time I was fortunate that an instructor from Rutger's University
came to pick them up. I was in on Shutterbug from issue No. 1. Thank
you for making this offer. We will break from the norm and publish your
address and phone number so interested parties can contact you directly.
I'm sure you will hear from some of our readers who will want
to take these past issues of major photographic publications off your
hands and reimburse you at the minimum for the shipping costs. It's
the least we can do for a longtime reader such as yourself.
Q. I am a college
photographer working with liquid photo emulsion but cannot figure out
the proper developing times to produce a useable image or to even keep
an image outside the darkroom. I read the article you featured in Shutterbug
many months ago but it did not help. Is there anyone I could contact
for specific chemical and time use?
If the liquid emulsion you have is the brand called Liquid Light, the
firm's current address is: Rockland Colloid Corp., PO Box 376,
Piermont, NY 10968; (914) 359-5559; web site at: www.rockaloid.com Hopefully
they should be able to answer your questions about this product.
Q. I used to be self-employed
as a commercial photographer, but just like many others who gave it
a try, I found that I just couldn't earn enough to justify remaining
in photography as a professional. So, I sold my large and medium format
camera gear and all of my lighting equipment and went back to school
to get my master's degree and subsequently, regular employment.
A few years have passed since I "retired" and gave up all
but my 35mm system and a few accessories. Now I would like to add two
or three self-contained flashes to my system to facilitate some simple
portraiture at home. In my initial survey of the market I discovered
that there are so many units from which to choose that it's difficult
to select contenders, let alone a clear winner. I am curious to know
if you have done, or anticipate doing, a comparison review of the many
offerings from companies that make self-contained flashes. If it's
not something you've considered, I'd like to suggest it.
a comparison article should be of considerable interest to many readers,
so I will pass on your suggestion to the "powers-that-be"
who make editorial decisions. You can obtain a general idea of what
the features of the currently offered models of AC-powered, self-contained,
electronic flash units are by buying a copy of the Shutterbug Photography
Buyer's Guide, a special issue that went on sale in October '98.
There you will find the pertinent data (modeling lamp wattage, output
power, slave, recycle time, size, weight, and price) for 50 units that
were available as of last June. In recent years I have personally tested
a few different brands of this type of flash unit including models from
Calumet, JTL, Medalight, Morris, Rokunar, and SP Excalibur, but I don't
believe we have done any comparison testing of this category of flash.
It is increasingly difficult to make educated decisions on just what
photo equipment to purchase with the proliferation of different models
offered. For instance, in the portions of the Buyer's Guide I
worked on, there were no less than 160 different models of autofocusing
compact 35mm cameras and 105 shoe mount electronic flash units. This
makes deciding just what item has the features you might need quite
difficult. Then when you do decide, you have to locate a store or mail-order
firm that handles that particular item. Such is life in the '90s
I guess. I hope referring to our Buyer's Guide will at least get
you pointed in the right direction in your quest. That's why we
Q. Is there any way
to make prints from black and white slides other than using color paper?
With color paper they come out sort of lifeless and dull. If I shot
daylight film in tungsten light, is there anyway to correct the color
when I print? How about using tungsten film with daylight? I would certainly
appreciate an answer.
you been using color reversal paper that prints positive to positive?
This is the paper normally used for making color prints from color transparencies
(or slides). Not many people use black and white slides, so I don't
believe you will find any paper that is more suited to this rather specialized
type of printing. I called Kodak's hotline, (800 242-2424) and
posed your problem to them. There is a Direct Positive Paper (Kodagraph
TPP 5) in their Graphic Arts product line, but it's high contrast
and thus not suitable for printing from continuous tone slides. But,
if your black and white slides are high contrast this might be just
what you seek. They also suggested you might want to make an internegative
on T-Max film which could then be printed normally (negative/positive).
You can obtain more information on the Kodagraph TPP 5 paper on the
Kodak web site at: www.kodak.com then use Find to locate TPP 5. I hope
this helps on your project. It is best to use the proper filter on your
camera to convert daylight film to tungsten lighting and/or tungsten
film to daylight at exposure rather later in printing. To convert daylight
color negative film to 3200 K light you need a blue 80A filter, but
for 3400 K photolamps the filter is an 80B. For tungsten-balanced film
the filter is an orange 85B. You have to increase the exposure by about
1.5 f/stops when using either of these filters. You can make corrections
when printing color negatives or slides made with mis-matched light/film
combinations, but the final print results are usually not as good as
using the proper filter when the film is first exposed.
Q. I bought a Beseler
Dichro 67 S2 enlarger from a friend. This enlarger only has the 35mm
mixing chamber assembly. I have called many companies, some from your
magazine, and also the Beseler Corporation. No help. I am trying desperately
to find a 6x7 mixing chamber assembly. Can you help?
could not find any source for older Beseler enlarger parts in my files
other than the firm itself. I assume you contacted them directly at:
Charles Beseler Co., 1600 Lower Rd., Linden, NJ 07036; (800) 237-3537;
(908) 862-7999 when you inquired. Of course, I don't know which
of our advertiser firms you contacted. However, a friend who only repairs
Omega enlargers suggested you might find the 6x7 mixing chamber assembly
at the Columbus Camera Group Inc., 55 E Blake Ave., Columbus, OH 43202;
(614) 267-0686 or Midwest Photo Exchange, 3313 N High St., Columbus,
OH 43202; (614) 261-1264. I have visited both of these stores and they
have an amazing array of older photo equipment of all types on hand.
I sincerely hope one of them has the part you need or can direct you
to another source. Just in case an alert reader has the part you need,
or can suggest a source for it, we will include your complete mailing