View Full Version : Problems with Beseler drum
Just when I thought my technique was down pat, I encountered multiple problems. First, I somehow managed to insert a sheet of film in a filmholder incorrectly despite my standard checks. Then after developing four sheets of film in a Beseler drum, I found I had somehow fogged two of them at one end of the drum. After some experimentation, I tracked this down to the baffle at the spout where chemicals are poured in and out at one end. The is a small opening there to allow air out as you pour chemical in. Apparently, if the light hits it just right, you light up one end of the inside of the drum like a Christmas tree. For some reason I had never encountered this before. I've now fashioned a cap to put over the end of the spout, and I think that will deal with that problem.
Be that as it may, I am getting tired of fiddling with drums which seem to constantly need attention of one sort or another. Two that I've had have developed fine cracks which I've had to cover with tape. Also, checking at e-bay I found few Beseler or Unicolor drums on sale. So I am looking at alternatives. The obvious solution is a Jobo CPE processing system, but that is pretty expensive. It would be worth it if I intended to do my own color processing, but right now I would rather have a lab do that. I could just get an appropriate Jobo drum---which one?---and perhaps I could use it with my old Beseler motorized base.
Any advice about any of this?
I think that if you get a jobo 5 reel drum (2553) and the 2509n 4x5 reels, you can still use your uniroller if that is what you use. You will then be able to do 12 sheets of 4x5 (or less) in about 600 cc of juice. Although I have a CPA-2 I also have a uniroller and have used the 2553 drum to process film with my unirollers. Many on this forum swear by the Jobo expert drums, but you can get a 2553 and two 2509n reels for about half of an expert drum and there is a question about using the expert drum with the uniroller without some modifications of the uniroller. A word of caution on the 2509n reels. The n reels have plastic caps that fit width wise, hold the sheets on the reel and promote more even agitation. I have experienced no uneveness of developement either with standard B&W developers or C-41, even Pyrocat HD.
Leonard, I agonized over spending the money for a Jobo Expert drum, but every time I develop I am thankful that I did. I have a Jobo 3010, up to 10 4x5 sheets. Since I use D76 1:1, the most I can do at one time is 7 sheets. The Jobo is economical on the chemistry.
The Jobo 3006 will take six 4x5 or six 5x7 sheets. (I also do 5x7 in my 3010, with the same results as with 4x5.)
I hand roll the 3010 on the $20 Jobo roller base. 50 RPM, reverse direction every two turns. It fills in 7 seconds and drains in 10. I don't do a prewet and have never had any unever development. It is a breeze to load. It has made developing a pleasure for me insted of the chore that it used to be.
Which format? If you're doing 4x5 or smaller then do what Robert said except get the 2551 drum. It'll save you a couple of dollars and the rubber lid is better for use on the roller base.
If you're doing bigger then 4x5 then the 2830 print drum I guess is the best choice.
Not sure what format you are working in but if it is 4x5 or 5x7 I would recommend a Jobo 3010 or 3006. They are easy to use and reliable. Also, they can be used on a Beseler / Unicolor roller base or even on the Jobo hand roller base. The drums can be found on the auction sites constantly it seems these days.
I should have said that I do 4 x 5.
Presently, in my Beseler drum, I get by with 6-8 oz of solution. I'm not sure I understand the specifications, but the 3006 seems to say it uses between 210 and 342 ml. The 2500 series seems to require 9 oz. Are those accurate?
Robert A. Zeichner
I've been using a JOBO 3006 for several months now and am very pleased with my results with both 4x5 and 5x7. The 3006 holds 6 sheets and 12 oz. of developer is all I use for 4x5, a couple of ounces more for 5x7. At first, I was using a Unicolor motor base and had problems. It was too slow and revolved the same amount in each direction. Then I got a Beseler motor base. The Beseler spins further in one direction than the other and also spins faster. The result is that some more random sloshing takes place in the tank and all the sheets get processed identically. The drum is not cheap, but now processing problems are a thing of the past and it was worth every penny. I did save a few bucks on the pump (which you must have in order "blow" the top off) by getting a Sevylor sports foot pump and a rubber stopper in which I drilled a 1/4" hole. Works perfectly. I also invested in a motor oil dispensing funnel which I got at Murrays for a few bucks. I built a wooden block around which the handle fits so I can suspend it over my sink. I pour in the chemistry, stick the hose into the end of the JOBO and while the base is turning, release the valve on the funnel to let the chemistry flow. Works great.
Printed on my Jobo 3010 is 210ml, specified as the minimum fluid volume. But I saw an update on the Jobo website which modified that to 310ml. They also specify an additonal 50ml per sheet above that minimum. Doing D76 1:1 I can only do 7 sheets, so I use 875ml developer and 350ml of all other chemicals.
950ml is equal to one quart or 32 ounces.
For the 2551 it's 560ml with 4x5 sheets. It's more with 35mm. Can be less with 120. That's from memory but it's around 560ml. Up to 12 sheets. More is fine.
BTW I mean more chemicals are fine.
part number "6142K58" around $40. Make an enclosure for the motor. and you can even make a tempering bath like an original Jobo from pvc sheet stock. Just put a round, roughly 2" diameter piece of magnetic steel to the motor shaft and the jobo magnet will connect directly to the shaft. I would be happy to turn a piece of steel for you with a bored hole for the shaft. Email me if you are interested.
I have a different motor and made it variable speed with a potentiometer. I also got fancy and made a reversing relay circuit that reverses every 25 seconds. my bath is heated with a digital readout thermocouple.
Cost was Zero, everything was scrapped from people I know. The only cost was for the pvc sheet stock and some caulking along with the jobo tank and 2509n reel, and four of there plastic chemical jars, to sit in the tempering bath that the reel turns in. "Works great, cost is better".
If you take a look at the jobo processors they are really pretty simple. Other than the modeled plastic bodies and the more expensive programmable ones for doing color.
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