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35mm Film Malarky for an out of touch gentleman!

Discussion in 'photo' started by Mr Perceptive, Oct 27, 2017.

  1. Mr Perceptive

    Mr Perceptive Perceptive Member

    OK, I've just been gifted a very minty Olympus OM-10 film camera with Zuiko 50mm F1.8lens. Came with a lightmeter too!

    I've not shot any film for nearly 20 years, but I thought that it might be fun to try again. Being a Fuji man (and an avid BW shooter)I thought I might get a roll of ACROS to start with, so film shooters of PFM

    1) Where are good places to buy film?

    2) When you have the film processed, do you receive back, prints and scans or both, and again where would be good place to start
  2. PaulMB

    PaulMB pfm Member

    I see you are in the UK. There are several mail-order firms that supply everything, one I know is called "Silverprint." But I'm sure there are others in the UK. In Italy there are also shops that do this, but I don't know about your area. The old standards like FP4+, HP5, Kodak Tri-X are still available.
    Labs that do processing are rare in Italy, so probably also in UK. But they do exists.

    Try Googling.
  3. gavreid

    gavreid pfm Member

    Great stuff. Do you have the little manual adaptor for the OM10? Essential imv.

    I use http://www.ag-photolab.co.uk/ for printing. You can get scans, prints or both. Film I just buy packs of five anywhere online. I like Porta for colour or Ektar for more saturated colour, Ilford HP5+ or Delta for B&W.
  4. Paulicus

    Paulicus pfm Member

    I used to have an OM10. Nice camera, but it was always in for repair as it had a faulty shutter sync.

    I use AG Photographic for developing only and scan the negs myself.

    There's Peak Imaging as well, which I've used and is very good.

    Asda or Tesco do develop only as well for £1.99 or thereabouts and it'll be done in-house. Which means you'll be given it back in a film canister, so you'll have to cut and put the negs in a film sleeve yourself.

    As for the film, if you've got a Poundland where you live? They sell rolls of film. I can confirm the current stuff is AgfaPhoto Vista Plus, which is ok.

    AG photographic sell film as do West Yorkshire Cameras, Silverprint, 7Day Shop and don't forget to try your local camera shop. Mine has started selling a fair bit as there appears to be a bit of a resurgence in Anolouge gear.
  5. winchman

    winchman pfm Member

    Not seen any Agfa in our local Poundland for the last few months?
    Its all down to what you are going to do with the images?
    Our Daughter is very much in to film, she uses a lot of out of date stuff when she can get it.
    She used Max Speilman for processing or if a top quality or rush job two very helpful ladies in Liverpool

    We do have a Dark room ( in the Kitchen!) but to be honest its so time consuming and expensive so only really useful if you want some high end stuff and have the skills / time to print it, Oh that appears to be my job!
    Its different and I do like film but not for everyday stuff she tends to take both on trips and has had excellent results form both, it makes you stop and think about what you are taking which for me is a very good thing.
  6. Lefty

    Lefty pfm Member

    Excellent - welcome back to The Dark Side! (insert evil laugh).

    BY all means have a go with Fuji Acros but be warned, it's expensive! My fave B&W film is good old Tri-X. Also, I highly recommend developing the film yourself and home scanning. For colour, I love slide film (Provia is my favourite), but it's very unforgiving in terms of exposure! If going for colour negative, Portra is great.
    I buy my film from Amazon or Wex.

    In terms of processing, I highly recommend Costco. Dev and scan in 1 hour for around £3.50 if memory serves. (Dev only is around £1.75!).

    Here's a shot from my very first roll of home developed and scanned Tri-X (something very satisfying about having done the whole process yourself)


    Take 5 by Amar Sood, on Flickr

    Nikon F80 / Nikkor 24-70mm f2.8 / Kodak Tri-X 400.
    Home dev: Ilfosol-3 / Ilfostop / Ilford rapid fixer
    Home scan: Reflecta Proscan 7200 / Vuescan / Colorperfect.

  7. Paulicus

    Paulicus pfm Member

    After reading Winchmans post regarding Poundland stocks of film being non existent. I've just read elsewhere that they stopped selling film in July 2017.
  8. Stunsworth

    Stunsworth pfm Member

    Tri-X is an iconic film and has a wonderful look and grain structure. FP4 was my slower alternative when I was shooting film (ISO 125 v 400).

    Remember that you won’t be able to take ‘real’ B&W film to a high street shop. However they will be able to process Ilford XP2 as that’s based on colour negative technology.

    Mathers in Bolton do mail order film...

  9. Cesare

    Cesare pfm Member

    Mr P,

    HP5 and Tri-X give a very similar result, and HP5 seems to be cheaper at the mo (it does seem to change around a fair bit!). I'd look into some of that if I were you.

    Had a quick look in my film draw:

    [​IMG]DSCF2565 by Cesare Ferrari, on Flickr

    Looks like i've got a few Rollei Retro 100 rolls in there which you are welcome to. I've not shot 35mm seriously for a while so you are welcome to some to play with. Drop me a PM with an address and i'll pop them in the post for you.

  10. topoxforddoc

    topoxforddoc pfm Member


    Lots of good suggestions for film. However, if you are planning to shoot B&W, then process it at home. It's not difficult and it's cheap (less than £1 per roll in consumables). Also you get back control about whether to push or pull the developing times. Different developers give you a different look as well.

    Personally I use Kodak XTOL 1:1 as per the Kodak website instructions, as this gives me fine grain, even when pushing film e.g. for concert photography.

    The cost of setting up a film developer darkroom only is less than £50, if you buy second hand - lots around. You can scan your film on a dedicated film scanner (that's a completely different thread).

    You'll need the following:

    Daylight changing bag (or a light proof room
    Daylight processing tank with reels
    some empty mineral water bottles (to store the fixer, stop and stock developer solutions)
    can opener (to open the film cassette)
    some bulldog clips to hang the film up (e.g. from a shower rail)
    stopwatch app on your phone

    Film developer

    (any brand of stop or fixer will do)

  11. winchman

    winchman pfm Member

    Thats good point, when I did my City & Guilds many years ago I used to from memory use 100ASA but expose at 50asa then alter the processing to give a very fine grain structure it was a massive improvement ( will have to get the notes out and check what I did.)
    If you hunt around a good dark room will turn up I found ours own here!
    I also have a professional quality film scanner that we saved from the skip, just wish we had more space so they could be left set up all the time as its a chore setting up and packing away.
    I feel its a good start to process and scan and see how you get on.
  12. Paulicus

    Paulicus pfm Member

    David, If you go this route, you'll also need an understanding wife! :)
  13. topoxforddoc

    topoxforddoc pfm Member

    Not really. Space is an issue, if you go the whole hog and wet print as well. But film developing can be done on the worktop next to the kitchen sink. It takes 5 mins to set up and 5 mins to clear away. Film is done in 30 mins tops.

  14. gavreid

    gavreid pfm Member

    The OM10 gets a fair bit of bad press because it's a bit plasticy, and built to a price for the 'amateur' market, but a working one should be just fine. Check the light seals on the back, the rubber tends to turn to goo over time - these are pretty simple to replace yourself. You can test the shutter speeds with a phone app, the mic pics up the noises, before wasting a roll of film.
  15. Stunsworth

    Stunsworth pfm Member

    If you do decide to go down the home development route my advice would be to not use a squeegee to get the film to dry more quickly. You run the risk of getting scratches down the length of the film.

    There’s nothing like pulling a roll of wet glossy film out of a developing tank, it looks wonderful.

    I used to use Xtol diluted 1:3, for the films that didn’t like this dilution I’d drop to 1:2. Professing film probably requires a thread of its own.
  16. PaulMB

    PaulMB pfm Member

    No squeegee! But a few drops of wetting agent to help the water drip off, and I usually wet my first two fingers in the water+wetting agent and run them over the film to get most of the water off. Developing yourself is very simple in principle, but has to be done carefully (temperature, agitation, life-span of chemicals, avoiding contamination, etc) to be satisfactory and consistent.
  17. Stunsworth

    Stunsworth pfm Member

    I used 4-5 drops of water per film using an eye dropper - and used deionised water for the final rinse.
  18. Mr Perceptive

    Mr Perceptive Perceptive Member

    Thanks all, some great help here, and thanks Cesare for your very generous offer, PM inbound

    I think initially, I'll send the film away, but may well look at home developing as I develop (every pun intended!). I have an understanding wife, so no issues there!!!

    I'll let you know how I get on!
  19. topoxforddoc

    topoxforddoc pfm Member


    Store your film in the freezer or fridge. It will keep for years that way.

  20. Cesare

    Cesare pfm Member

    Home film developing is easy and fun - if the point is to regain the feeling of control of the process then there's nothing like developing your own film, and ideally, taking it through to a print too!

    I got quite involved in scanning film when I returned to it from digital, but over the years i've scanned less and less and now I tend to keep the two apart, so if anything, I post photos of prints rather than scans of negatives.

    Tomorrow i'm helping some friends build a new community darkroom here in Brighton, and there is still a fairly active group of people interested in this sort of thing. If you put the word out you often find a space you can rent at very reasonable rates fully equipped for you to go and have a play with your negatives.

    I'm fortunate to have a film processing machine which can process B&W and colour film, so i'm able to play with all processes. I've tried some colour printing, but really, B&W is what I do and enjoy.

    As for storing film, I think actually it's more robust than people give it credit for, especially if it's B&W. I routinely expose film that's out of date, and tend to push it half a stop and it still gives very robust negatives with little sign of degradation. If you are doing commercial work with particular colour requirements, then it's very relevant, but for the sort of stuff I do, where i'm exposing to the nearest stop, other factors tend to swamp the reduction in quality of older film.

    Saying that, I do store film in a freezer, but that's because I buy in bulk, and tend to retrieve a bit to my film draw to work through. I went through a phase of buying more than I was shooting to build up stock, so have plenty of various types to hand which is always nice.

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