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Thread: The Nitty Griity - Film holders, Quickloads, Oh My!

  1. #1
    lilmsmaggie
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    The Nitty Griity - Film holders, Quickloads, Oh My!

    Got so wrapped up in the details of cameras and lenses that I realized that I have paid scant attention to film!

    Ok - so do I:

    a. Buy sheet film and learn how to load it myself.
    b. Hunt down a few of the remaining Quick loads.
    c. Hunt down a few of the remaining Ready loads.
    d. All of the above

    I'd like to focus on B&W initially but would like to get some color film for later.

    ay dios mio! this is so un-35mm-like

  2. #2
    Senior Member bensonga's Avatar
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    Re: The Nitty Griity - Film holders, Quickloads, Oh My!

    I don't know if Kodak still makes Ready Load holders or film, but I never had good luck with them. Fuji Quickloads were much more reliable.

    If you want to shoot B&W film now, it's pretty much sheet film and load it yourself. No more Fuji Neopan Quickloads available in the US.....unless you're willing to order stock from Japan and pay about $110 for 20 sheets.

    Gary

  3. #3
    lilmsmaggie
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    Re: The Nitty Griity - Film holders, Quickloads, Oh My!

    Quote Originally Posted by bensonga View Post
    I don't know if Kodak still makes Ready Load holders or film, but I never had good luck with them. Fuji Quickloads were much more reliable.

    If you want to shoot B&W film now, it's pretty much sheet film and load it yourself. No more Fuji Neopan Quickloads available in the US.....unless you're willing to order stock from Japan and pay about $110 for 20 sheets.

    Gary
    ¡Ay, caramba -- That's almost $6 a sheet!

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    Senior Member bensonga's Avatar
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    Re: The Nitty Griity - Film holders, Quickloads, Oh My!

    If you want to shoot Quickloads at all (only color is available now).....better order soon. Fuji announced they were discontinuing ALL Quickload films by June 2010. I just ordered a couple boxes of color negative Quickloads (about $56 for 20 sheets) and will probably order some more in the next couple months.

    I really don't enjoy loading loose sheets into 4x5 holders....but that's going to be our only option in the future.

    Gary

  5. #5
    lilmsmaggie
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    Re: The Nitty Griity - Film holders, Quickloads, Oh My!

    Quote Originally Posted by bensonga View Post
    If you want to shoot Quickloads at all (only color is available now).....better order soon. Fuji announced they were discontinuing ALL Quickload films by June 2010. I just ordered a couple boxes of color negative Quickloads (about $56 for 20 sheets) and will probably order some more in the next couple months.

    I really don't enjoy loading loose sheets into 4x5 holders....but that's going to be our only option in the future.

    Gary
    Gary,

    Freestyle Photo in Los Angeles has Fuji Acros (non-quickload). On the off chance that I could find a Fuji quickload holder, do you think its worth getting? Oops! - where did you find your color film?

  6. #6
    Senior Member bensonga's Avatar
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    Re: The Nitty Griity - Film holders, Quickloads, Oh My!

    Quote Originally Posted by lilmsmaggie View Post
    Gary,

    Freestyle Photo in Los Angeles has Fuji Acros (non-quickload). On the off chance that I could find a Fuji quickload holder, do you think its worth getting? Oops! - where did you find your color film?
    No point buying a Fuji Quickload holder now unless you want to shoot color and buy alot of color Quickload film before it's no longer available. I bought my color Quickload film from B&H photo.

    Loose sheets of Neopan Acros and all other 4x5 films are still readily available....and they are alot cheaper than buying Quickload film. It's just a hassle to load the single sheets and you have increased issues with dust etc. But soon enough, that will be the only game in town.

    Gary

  7. #7
    lilmsmaggie
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    Re: The Nitty Griity - Film holders, Quickloads, Oh My!

    Quote Originally Posted by bensonga View Post
    No point buying a Fuji Quickload holder now unless you want to shoot color and buy alot of color Quickload film before it's no longer available. I bought my color Quickload film from B&H photo.
    Gary
    Well, as my Avatar would say:

    "you're damned if you do, and you're damned if you don't."

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    Re: The Nitty Griity - Film holders, Quickloads, Oh My!

    Pick up a Quickload holder, and learn how to load film into normal holders. The hope is that in the long run, someone comes up with a replacement for the Fuji Quickload film. There is a woman, I think in England, who has designed a new paper envelope which works with the Quickload folder. She has to get it produced and marketed though. There is a thread somewhere on LFP.eu.
    Carsten - Website

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    Re: The Nitty Griity - Film holders, Quickloads, Oh My!

    A bit late to this party, but...

    Learn to load ordinary holders. It's not hard - really. Sacrifice a sheet of film, practice in the light until you're comfortable, then practice in the dark until you're comfortable. It won't be long.

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    Re: The Nitty Griity - Film holders, Quickloads, Oh My!

    http://www.butzi.net/articles/filmload.htm

    Oren, it is not only about the loading, but also about the bulk of what you are carrying. I have no problems loading 4x5 holders, but am still considering the Fuji Quickload system.
    Carsten - Website

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    Re: The Nitty Griity - Film holders, Quickloads, Oh My!

    Yes, bulk and especially weight are issues if you need to carry a large amount of film.

    Just to be clear about my own biases, for me the Readyload and Quickload systems have/had four strikes against them:

    1. My LF work has been exclusively in B&W, and I don't especially care for the only two films that have been available in these formats - TMX and Acros 100.

    2. I tried Readyloads and found them fussy and inconvenient, both in the field and in the darkroom, compared to regular sheet film and holders. (But Quickloads might be easier.)

    3. For the number of sheets I use on a 4x5 outing - typically no more than 12, never more than 20 - the savings in bulk don't matter.

    4. Price per sheet.

    YMMV.

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    Senior Member Lars's Avatar
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    Re: The Nitty Griity - Film holders, Quickloads, Oh My!

    Yep you get used to it... especially if you have to.

    Something I think helps is to have a lot of holders, so you don't have to reload so often.

    With 8x10 I use a film change tent in the field, works great even in direct sunlight. It's important to keep it free from dust and sand though, from Australia I have some sheets that have scratch marks in the emulsion from sand grains. Not pretty.
    Monochrome: http://mochro.com

  13. #13
    lilmsmaggie
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    Re: The Nitty Griity - Film holders, Quickloads, Oh My!

    I did order 4 10-sheet boxes of Fujifilm Neopan Acros 100. I do confess that I prefer Ilford FP4 and HP5. Just thought I'd try the Acros for the heck of it. I'll have to get my hands on some film holders. Right now, I'd just like to get the other smallers accessories (loupe, cable releases, etc.) out of the way.

    Had some not so unexpected expenses recently, das auto needed to have the radiator replaced, along with the timing belt. That's always fun and expensive. And mi gato needed his teeth cleaned to the tune of $380 USD That's more than it costs me to have my teeth cleaned.

    So today, after paying for the cat and the car turned out to be a VERY expensive day.

    Think I'll give my wallet a rest for a few hours

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    Re: The Nitty Griity - Film holders, Quickloads, Oh My!

    As the others said, you are pretty much out of luck when it comes to "easy" to deal with 4x5 film. 4x5 has never been easy in general, so you need to do a bit more work to reap the benefits. Loose sheets are more prone to dust and more difficult to load, but with good technique, it is not a problem. As Oren suggested, sacrifice a sheet and practice practice practice. Then find yourself an anti-static brush and a rocket blower.
    There are at least two other options to standard holders though -- the grafmatic back, which is a metal holder that holds six sheets and switches between them rather quickly. They were last made a very long time ago...40 years ago maybe? I am not sure. The other is the Fuji Quickchange, which is like a grafmatic but has 8 sheets, was plastic and not meant to be reloaded (but can be). It was discontinued a few years ago. It was never quite popular, and now they sell for very large amounts.

    So all in all, either a grafmatic or regular holders are your best bet.
    My photos are here: http://www.stuartrichardson.com and more recent work here: http://stuartrichardson.tumblr.com/ Please have a look at my book!
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  15. #15
    lilmsmaggie
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    Re: The Nitty Griity - Film holders, Quickloads, Oh My!

    Quote Originally Posted by Stuart Richardson View Post
    As the others said, you are pretty much out of luck when it comes to "easy" to deal with 4x5 film. 4x5 has never been easy in general, so you need to do a bit more work to reap the benefits.
    Stuart,

    I don't think I was ever under the illusion that shooting 4x5 would be easy. Although, having access to Quick loads would have eased the transition from 35mm to 4x5, and given me some time to develop a technique and compentency with manual film loading.

    I did have a static master brush at one time. Not sure what happened to it.
    A recent google search has shown that they are still available, yet pricey. I'd rather use canned air. IMHO, you can direct the air much better with them and I'm comfortable with their application having used them with electronic gear.

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    Re: The Nitty Griity - Film holders, Quickloads, Oh My!

    The only reason I suggest a static brush is that the holders are usually plastic, and they build up a charge that attracts dust. The bulb blower or canned air will get rid of the dust, but it will come back quickly if you are not careful. The anti-static brushes help, but they are of course not necessary. You can also get an anti-static attachment for canned air, but that is probably even more expensive.
    My photos are here: http://www.stuartrichardson.com and more recent work here: http://stuartrichardson.tumblr.com/ Please have a look at my book!
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  17. #17
    lilmsmaggie
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    Re: The Nitty Griity - Film holders, Quickloads, Oh My!

    Quote Originally Posted by Stuart Richardson View Post
    The only reason I suggest a static brush is that the holders are usually plastic, and they build up a charge that attracts dust.
    Good point. BTW - I love your photographs. I especially liked the ones with the Auroras.

  18. #18
    Rick Moore
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    Re: The Nitty Griity - Film holders, Quickloads, Oh My!

    Grafmatics are readily available on the used market. They work very well and keep the bulk down quite a bit compared to sheet film holders. If you try one, make sure the plenums that hold the sheets of film are not bent or warped, and that the edges where the plenums rub together are smooth.

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