[rollei_list] Re: OT Contact Printing ... contact proof printers

  • From: "Richard Knoppow" <dickburk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <rollei_list@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Mon, 21 Aug 2006 22:38:23 -0700

----- Original Message ----- From: "Don Williams" <dwilli10@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
To: <rollei_list@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Sent: Monday, August 21, 2006 7:37 PM
Subject: [rollei_list] Re: OT Contact Printing ... contact proof printers

At 07:17 PM 8/21/2006 -0700, you wrote, in part:
It had three little trays, a couple of Tri-Chem-Paks a ruby lamp and
a couple of film clips.

Wow, you had film clips and a real safelight?

I don't think I had any film clips until much later when I was able
to develop film in a tank and use film clips to dry it. (Sometimes
it dried nicely, other times it just curled in a nasty way. Adding
weight helped, and one could do that because the clips punched
through the film, holding it with a nice grip. Those punch areas had
to be cut off before the film was rolled-up or cut for printing.

All this evolved, for me, over a 10-20 year span. I still have some
of the film tanks, but the trays are long gone.

There was once, on this forum, a discussion about tank brands. I
liked the Nikor (not sure about spelling) best but as I recall most
of the comments about that brand said they leaked. Never had that
problem, and I enjoyed the capability of putting the tank into a
water bath (between flips or agitation, whatever was popular any
given week) to hold the temperature.

I finally developed the dexterity to load two rolls into the tank at
once, back to back, and it worked for me.

Don Williams
La Jolla, CA

I also like Nikor tanks and use them. The problem is that the lids and caps are hand fitted to the individual tank. If you get them mixed they will leak or not even fit. One must be very careful of used tanks for this reason. I was lucky enough to find a Nikor sheet film tank. This has an adjustable cage for film up to 4x5. I prefer it to some of the newer stuff. I do larger film in either trays or a print drum.
I don't remember everything in the darkroom kit. I've had a couple of others, one at least from FR and don't remember the details exactly. It seems to me that first kit contained three trays of about 4x5 inches, the chemical packs, a ruby lamp, two film clips, a package of about 3x5 Velox, a small printing frame. There may have been a small measuring cup. The FR kits were more extensive and I think for film only, They contained bottles of concentrate for developer, stop bath, and fixer, an FR tank and some other stuff. The FR tank was of plastic and the kind where you wiggle the top of the reel to load the film, quite easy. My first real darkroom was constructed of stuff mostly from garage sales (yes they had them in the dinosaur days). I used to get supplies at a place called Sid Klein Camera. They also had a good business in mail order pinup pictures. I didn't learn about that until later. Sid came from Philladelphia, I think, and looked and sounded like Groucho Marx. I had two mentors there, one later became head engineer of Capitol Records classical music department and the other was a blacklisted film writer named Val Burton. I knew very little about either of them at the time but my mom probably knew more. Both were experienced photographers and gave me a pretty good start. My first enlarger was a 5x7 Solar with 4x5 condensers in it and a Steinheil Cassar (triplet) enlarging lens. Not a bad lens from the few prints I have left from those days. I fell away from photography when I started college and took it up again sporadically until about twenty years ago when I just had to begin again seriously. I discovered some of the things I had learned years ago were just not true and, belatedly, the cause of some of the troubles I had then making good prints. I should just have followed the instructions in the Kodak publications. I started with a very used Ciro-Flex and after a while got a new Rolleicord IV (discounted when they were discontinued). The Rolleicord made all the difference in the world. My original as stolen many years ago but I found another. Its still a favorite camera.
Currently, I have an Omega D2V enlarger and a set of Schneider Componon lenses, plus a couple of old Kodak Enlarging Ektars and cameras from 35mm (a Nikon F is the best of them) to 8x10 (have two) and several 4x5 cameras. I still like the Rolleis and use them. My eyes are now fixed focus which makes TLR's difficult at times.
I've done a lot of portrait work with Rolleis. The negative is large enough to allow cropping if you are far enough away to eliminate facial distortion. The Rolleicord especially is light, quick, and silent and I've been using one for so long that its become automatic.
I like working in the darkroom and have no desire to switch to digital although I am quite aware of its advantages. Sometimes it nice to do something that doesn't need batteries or even electricity (if you have a lantern type safelight).

Richard Knoppow
Los Angeles, CA, USA

Rollei List

- Post to rollei_list@xxxxxxxxxxxxx

- Subscribe at rollei_list-request@xxxxxxxxxxxxx with 'subscribe' in the subject field OR by logging into www.freelists.org

- Unsubscribe at rollei_list-request@xxxxxxxxxxxxx with 'unsubscribe' in the subject field OR by logging into www.freelists.org

- Online, searchable archives are available at

Other related posts: