Drying Clips For 5x4 Film

Ian-Barber

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I am looking for reccommendations for some good clips to attach to the film when drying.

I have been using these but twice now, I have opened the wardrobe door to find that the film had slipped from the clip and was just sitting on the floor. At first I was thinking maybe I was using a bit to much much PhotoFlo but its happened again today and I only used a tiny tiny drop of it.

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David M

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For roll film, I find the Paterson hangers and weights work well, as they should for something established for so long.
For sheet film, I modified ordinary clothes pegs, by cutting off the tapered tips of the jaws so that the end was flat and made slots in the squeezing end to hook over a taut horizontal wire with a tray underneath. I find this works well as the texture of the wood holds the film firmly. It will leave a mark, so you have to be careful to clip only the film's margin. I've recently used it for 10x8 and it seems to work if I am gentle. I hope the picture is clear.

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Ian-Barber

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Seems like a good idea David, just been and looked in the clothes peg basket and they are all plastic. Will pop into the shops tomorrow and investigate
 

Alan9940

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I use bamboo clothes pins for both roll and sheet film. Rolls have one clip at top to hold film and one on bottom for a bit of tension while drying.
 

Stephen Batey

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I use Paterson film clips being careful to only use one spike and keep it in the margin of the sheet. I have never understood how to make a peg or clip work without intruding into the film area.
 

Ian-Barber

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I use Paterson film clips being careful to only use one spike and keep it in the margin of the sheet. I have never understood how to make a peg or clip work without intruding into the film area.
Gosh, cheapest I have seen these for is £14 a pair. I think I will have a go with some wooden clothes pegs
 

Stephen Batey

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I suspect that they may have increased in price since I switched to them from bulldog clips in the 1960s...

I am genuinely surprised if that's how much they cost now as I think the last ones I bought were about half that. I have a drawer with lots of them in just to make sure that no matter how many films I process, I have enough. I stocked up in the days when I was using one of the largest Paterson tanks for 35mm for processing my holiday photos when I would typically come back with lots of exposed cassettes (I thought small (format) in those days :D).

I don't think I've ever developed more than 12 or 16 5x4s in one session (I know I have done that many because I can remember juggling the CombiPlan tanks) and I certainly have enough clips for that number - but that's only 8 35mm or roll films, with a clip at each end.
 

Stephen Batey

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They worked well enough to weight the end of the film; the problem with the ones we had (and I was only about 11 at the time) was that they were well used and no longer stainless. Hence they could leave streaks. At the bottom it didn't matter, and at the top it was possible to get away with it because of the length of the leader with 35mm film. I'll be honest - they had a few rust spots before I started using them:D but needs must when you can't afford or know of alternatives. Off topic as 35mm, but I have tried paper clips through the sprocket holes to suspend 35mm film.

I suspect that if stainless steel bulldog clips are made, they might well work but I'd test any first with spare film before risking it.
 

Alan9940

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Stephen, funny, I used the Paterson clips many years ago, but didn't like having holes in my film. FWIW, the way I use clothes pins is I push a corner of the sheet film into the closed clip until it stops, then I gently open the clothes pin just slightly and push just a bit of the corner in, and let it close. I hold my hand under the film until I see that it's holding because I use whatever the least amount of the corner to hold. Harder to describe, than to do. I've been hanging sheet film like this for nearly 40 years and I've never had a sheet fall out of a clip or mark the image area.
 

Neil t3

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I tend to process most of my 5x4 in a HP CombiPlan tank , when done and washed I usually leave them in the film holder to dry just slackening off the top retainer .
I've never had any marks left on the film , though you do have to wait a while for the bottom to dry out fully where it sits on the base bar as the draining water pools there a little .
 

alexmuir

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I use plastic clothes pegs. You can find ones with a soft jaw. I tend to clip one corner only, and hang from an extendible clothes line in the Darkroom. Water tends to run off to the diagonally opposite corner. They leave a slight mark in the margin. MOD 54 make a hanger for drying film. I don’t know what it costs, but the pegs are very cheap. They’re also handy for prints.
Alex


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Graham Patterson

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I use some small steel clips with a hook for going on a line or rail. They were not cheap from B&H, but a bag of 20 does all I need.

You can take wooden clothes pins apart and insert the wood into the spring the other way around. That gives finer tips for holding film. I still have some Paterson clips but after several decades (!) the pins start to work lose and won't puncture film.
 
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