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New film enthusiast... Metal/Brass Film Cassette Options and Compatability???
Old 01-19-2018   #1
Alex1416
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New film enthusiast... Metal/Brass Film Cassette Options and Compatability???

Hello Everyone!
I am new to this forum. I don't know why i did not join earlier.

This past year has seen a huge growth in my dormant passion for film photography. I did film about 7 years ago for a little while, but being young and naive and impatient, i did not like waiting for film to develop, and opted to continue in digital only.
Back in April i took out my AE-1 out of the closet and dusted it off. Ran a roll and got it back, and i fell in love again!!!

Soon after i got my first Leica, an M3, and nothing was ever the same!!! haha


Now to my point, sorry for the delay.
I now own several film cameras: Canon AE-1, Leica M3, Konica Hexar RF, Canon VT, and just recently a Nikon S2.

After nearly a year of trying different film, i am trying to move ahead on my knowledge and develop my own film. Also, i would like to load my own film.
I have recently discovered that there were Metal/Brass reusable cassettes for film. I have been trying to research as much as i can, but there is not much i can find about compatibility on these cassettes. Most people only use a specific cassette with specific cameras.

So my questions are:
Are the cassetttes such as IXMOO, and early Nikon, only compatible with certain cameras?
I.E. the IXMOO will only work on the M3, and the Nikon will only work with the S2?
Or will the IXMOO work on both vintage cameras? Maybe even the Canon cameras?
Are these cassettes a problem to use with something more modern such as the Konica?
I'm assuming there is a problem with modern cameras since you probably need the key to open and close the gate of the cassette?
Would it be better to just get regular reusable modern cassetttes, maybe in metal? But I've read that even those can only be reused a few times. Is it because the felt deteriorates and can later scratch the film?
What can be a more long lasting tool for all the cameras?
Im not totally against the idea of getting one or 2 IXMOO for the M3, one or 2 for the Nikon, and others for the other cameras.

Thank you all in advance!
Sorry for the long post!
I just want to know what the options are before i invest in metal cassettes that are a little pricey. Also before i invest in a bulk loader and stick to one film or 2.
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Old 01-19-2018   #2
ChrisLivsey
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alex1416 View Post
Hello Everyone!

So my questions are:
Are the cassetttes such as IXMOO, and early Nikon, only compatible with certain cameras?
I.E. the IXMOO will only work on the M3, and the Nikon will only work with the S2?
Or will the IXMOO work on both vintage cameras? Maybe even the Canon cameras?
Are these cassettes a problem to use with something more modern such as the Konica?
I'm assuming there is a problem with modern cameras since you probably need the key to open and close the gate of the cassette?
Would it be better to just get regular reusable modern cassetttes, maybe in metal? But I've read that even those can only be reused a few times. Is it because the felt deteriorates and can later scratch the film?
What can be a more long lasting tool for all the cameras?

I just want to know what the options are before i invest in metal cassettes that are a little pricey. Also before i invest in a bulk loader and stick to one film or 2.
Very good questions, and welcome.

Are the cassetttes such as IXMOO, and early Nikon, only compatible with certain cameras?
Yes

The IXMOO will only work on the M3, and the Nikon will only work with the S2?
The IXMOO will work on all M series Leica up to and including the M6, later M6 had a non compatible base plate, no cassette release on the baseplate lock, but that can be swopped for one that has. The M7 and later MP/M-A cannot use the IXMOO because the body shell is not compatible.

The Nikon cassettes, rangefinder type will work in all Nikon rangefinder bodies and the first of the SLR series the F, there is a second cassette that will only work in the second SLR the F2, it is marked AM-1 and only fits that camera.

IXMOO will NOT work in Nikon, and Nikon not in Leica.

Are these cassettes a problem to use with something more modern such as the Konica?
I'm assuming there is a problem with modern cameras since you probably need the key to open and close the gate of the cassette?


Yes they require a camera chamber size that will accommodate them and a release lock, in the correct place.
No for the Konica, there is no way to open the cassette when in the camera even if it fits the chamber.
On "modern" the M6 is pretty modern (For a Leica)
NOTE: There were "universal" Cassettes that could be changed around to fit a number of cameras Shirley Wellard is the best known, IMHO they are best left as a Christmas Cracker puzzle (not easy to configure but that may just be me)

Would it be better to just get regular reusable modern cassetttes, maybe in metal? But I've read that even those can only be reused a few times. Is it because the felt deteriorates and can later scratch the film?

Both plastic and metal standard cassettes for re-loading are made and yes they have felt that can trap dust and film shards and scratch the film. The advantage of the "old" IXMOO and others is the slot when open has no contact with the film.

Note that you require a specific model type of bulk loader, if using that to load IXMOO or Nikon cassettes as the loader must have a way to close the cassette in the loader to make it light tight, not all loaders can do that.

As to long lasting the earlier Leica type was FILCA (very similar to the IXMOO but made for the earlier "Barnack" type of screw mount Leica (for the pedants amongst us there are several FILCA sub-types) that was introduced in 1925 and are still perfectly functional in those cameras today.

The price of all these metal types has risen over recent years but they are a sound investment, take care buying there are also models for the Canon and Contax rangefinders and all look very similar to the untrained eye but are not interchangeable, in most cases.

Note that some re-loaders obtain used film cassettes from a mini-lab, they cut off the film and leave a "tongue" hanging out, you can tape (in the dark of course) a new length of film and wind that back into the cassette. The potential for dust scratches is therefore x3 of an IXMOO but some users find that works for them.

Note also the cost saving on "regular" film is now minimal the interest is in using film not otherwise available in cassettes although re-loading is done and can be purchased, at a cost, like Kodak 5222 movie film.
The attraction of loading short lengths for testing is also a consideration, finally of course it's just fun



The metal template is called an ABLON and allows an accurate cut of the film to fit the IXMOO spool and of the leader.
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Old 01-19-2018   #3
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Great you made it here and with film!

Earlier this week I let go to M3 I used just as any film camera I have. With same re-loadable cassettes as any other cameras I used.

I'm using old Kodak metal cassettes since 2012 and added some more metal ones of same kind in 2016.
No problem to use them at all, except M4-2 where for some reason some of those cassettes gives light leaks. But I'm not 100% sure if it is them or camera yet.

This is the link to the picture of this cassettes I have and used with many bulks of film.
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Old 01-19-2018   #4
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I only disagree with the claim of "minimal" cost savings. With a lot of films not named Tri-X, you can get 18 rolls for the cost of 10 commercially done, not taking into count the costs of loader or cassettes. At least that's the case with the films I use. As noted too, you can vary the frame length, and that is a surprisingly convenient option.

The cassettes are a fun idea, but the Leica ones seem expensive ($20 or more a pop on that auction site). I suspect a lot of them out there in the world have already been gobbled up. After all 18 or so are needed to use 100' of film, and some of these guys (and gals) are buying 400' rolls.

Some commercially rolled film is pretty affordable (e.g., Arista.edu, Kentmere), so that's an alternative too.

There's also plastic or metal generic reloadable cassettes available from photo stores, but these are cruder, more prone to scratching if they are not kept clean. They're pretty inexpensive, fit all your cameras, and they'll fit the film loaders too.
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Old 01-20-2018   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by steveyork View Post
I only disagree with the claim of "minimal" cost savings. With a lot of films not named Tri-X, you can get 18 rolls for the cost of 10 commercially done, not taking into count the costs of loader or cassettes. .
Cost is very country specific, I should have qualified that statement. I don't tend to load film that is otherwise available in cassettes, my reload capacity is limited and I like to reserve it for those that are not freely available ready loaded, in particular the ORWO movie stock so I may not be "spot on" with cost savings, certainly Tri-X in bulk is a running joke and does the company no favours in its core support group.
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Old 01-22-2018   #6
Alex1416
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Thank you guys so much for the help!
Im still on the fence of wether is should get a few Ixmoo and Nikon cassettes and some other reusables for my other 2 cameras.
The idea of not having to worry too much about felt and scratches and very long use-life if very tempting. Not to mention that after a few uses the expensive brass cassettes will pretty much pay for themselves in comparison and still keep on going.

But thanks to you guys i now know that the cassettes are specific to certain cameras. So i won't be trying to jam an IXMOO in the Nikon and vice-versa haha

Another question is for the other brands out there? Ive seen a few Asahi cassettes and Zeiss. Will these also only work on specific cameras? Maybe on my M3 or Nikon S2?
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Old 01-22-2018   #7
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The Pentax cassette is a different design as the cameras had no base closing mechanism, it is conventional with a felt trap,as such it may fit other cameras but given the age and the felt a collector's item only I feel. The Contax/Zeiss is again brand specific as are Robot,Agfa Karat, Kiev may be interchangeable with the Contax, not an expert there, the Agfa Karat was used in a few none Agfa cameras, Exacta has velvet light trap and I must mention the tiny Tessina cassette I tracked some of those down for TomA. Some cameras run own brand cassette at both sides so no rewinding.
Remember all film was home loaded until 1934 when Kodak introduced the "standard" single use cassette for their Retina camera, it was designed to fit both the Leica and the Contax which as we discussed until then required their own none brand swappable cassette. The disadvantage was it was slightly smaller in height than the Contax and the Leica (before the M series) and unless adjusted it dropped drown in the chamber and the image was expose partially on the sprocket holes, you can see this in contact sheets of Capa who used a Contax for many of his famous pictures and is visible on his D-day exposures.
As I stated previously only the Shirley Wellard is a "universal" none felt cassette, there are usually some to be found but you can't just swop camera type to camera type they need to be adjusted individually which rather negates their usefulness I think for you.
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Old 01-22-2018   #8
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I was looking in one of my old catalogs, and the Leica IXMOO cassettes listed for $13.50 back in '69. Time/inflation adjusted, that's equivalent to $91 today. Guess they always were expensive.
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Old 01-22-2018   #9
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I just received several 35mm rolls of CMS 20 II PRO from B&H. I purchased the duel packs and they were all in plastic re-loadable cartridged My last purchase of the CMS was in the crimped metal cartridges.
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Old 01-23-2018   #10
Alex1416
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Hi guys!
Thanks again for everything.

One last question...

Ive been looking around for Nikon cassettes, and it seems they made many different versions.
From what I've read here on the forum, the ones i should definitly avoid are the F2-AM1. Those are specifically for the F2 SLR.

Ive been looking on eBay, and there are a few that are much older and have Nikon stamped on the side, and i think the bottom only indicates up to ISO/ASA 200. Im assuming those will work fine on my S2? But there are several more versions that only have the Nikon stamp on top. And those have indicators on the bottom of 400 and some up to 1600. And i see maybe 2 different tabs on the side. Some with a thick solid tab, and some with a thin tab and white dots. Will these all still work on my S2?

Its confusing because some listings will have them listed as F cassettes, which from what I've learned, will still work on my S2, but the listing title will also have AM-1.

If you guys have any sample images or title indicators of what i should get for my S2 that would be a great help! Maybe some are more reliable or durable than others?
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Old 01-23-2018   #11
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Also i forgot to ask what Bulk Loaders work best with these older metal cassettes for Nikon and Leica IXMOO?
I think the Watson is a good option?
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Old 01-23-2018   #12
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I believe the old, no longer made Watson is the only bulk loader that can load the Nikon and Leica metal cassettes. You can also load by hand, in a dark room. Outstretched arms from side to side is approximately 36 frames. Verify this info. It's just what I remember reading; not from experience.
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Old 01-23-2018   #13
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Thanks Steve.
I see that there are some model 66 and model 100 Watson loaders. Just need to figure out which one will work best?
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