View Full Version : Rewind & Unloading film
Forgive the extreme novice nature of this question but I've been left a collection of cameras (including an M3 and M6) and being previously a totally digital user am completely lost.
I've started with the M6 and all seemed fine until I decided to try and rewind and unload the film that had been in the camera. I followed the instructions on page 10 (setting the little front switch to 'R' and turning the rewind handle until overly excessive resistance is felt) but when opening the back of the camera the film is still firmly lodged in the take-up reel?
I appreciate this may be completely correct but I am lost what to do next and don't want to break it Could someone explain the rewind and unloading process for me?
Was there still film wrapped around the takup spool? Or just the end adhering? It should come free easily, and some users are sensitive to that happening and then stop rewinding at that point so that they can later spool the film in the dark onto a developing apparatus. I would typically tear off half the narrow leader as a signal to self that this roll had been exposed!
Some cameras require you to hold the rewind release (usually a button) continually during the rewinding, otherwise it will by itself revert to the non-released position. This could very likely have been your experience. My Leica M2 is an old "button rewind" model that does require constant application of pressure on the button. I don't know about these new-fangled lever-rewind models!
What the button or lever does is simply disengage the drive gearing for the sprocket that engages the holes along each side of the film to pull it along appropriately.
Was there still film wrapped around the takup spool? Or just the end adhering? It should come free easily, and some users are sensitive to that happening and then stop rewinding at that point so that they can later spool the film in the dark onto a developing apparatus.
The film still is wrapped a around the takup spool a little although it obviously has rewound a certain amount. When turning the rewind lever I get to a point where the film isn't turning and upon hitting firm resistance it spools back almost in a 'spring' type fashion; I actually believe this is the film doing this and not the Leica mechanism.
The takup spool on this camera doesn't seem to come out, or at least if it does it's not easy as the end has cogs that fit into the base when closed. I suppose with the rewind level set I could pull the film out myself but am deathly scared on damaging the camera :(
On the M6, just keep rewinding until the resistence is over and then some. The film will be rewound back into the film canister completely.
P.S. That is what I do, someone please tell me if this is bad for the body.
That is the normal procedure. If you want a little bit of the leader left out, you need to learn the feel of the camera. It's not a black art, but for a first time M user the easiest way might be to sacrifice an outdated roll for experimental purposes (trial and error). Basically, you rewind until you go past maximum tension (as the leader is withdrawn from the takeup spool) -- the tension will then reduce significantly -- you should now be able to open the back and find all but a bit of the leader rewound into the cartridge.
On my M6-ttl it is the same,
turn the little lever to the R-position.
Winding will go easy and smooth at first.
Then there is a point where resistance goes up rapidly (feels like a blockage).
this is where the end of the film needs to smap out of the winding spool.
With a SOME force, you should overcome the resistance, and winding will be even
smoother than before. this is where you can open the camera.
But, there may be an error with your camera as well.
First check if the little lever is still on the R position. If not than that is the problem.
If it is, open the camera .you have done it already so e film that is not in the cassette is overexposed anyway.
Remove the bottom and open the back-flap. carefully lift the film up (towards the back of the camera, away from the lens. This should be easey since there is film in the cassette to give some length. Now cut the film with siscor and remove the cassette.
Then with the tension of the film try to get the remainder from the winding spool.
This will leave you with an empy camera. Cock and 'fire' a few times to check if all is working. If so, load a new roll of film in the correct way. wind and shoot (with the lens-cap on and at 1000 /f22 not to expose the film untill you reach the end.
Then try the rewinding again. if it jams again, (and not at the end of the film) it probably needs repair).
If you are carefull and stop rewinding just after the resistance is overcome, you can re-load the same film (since it was not exposed) and have fun making pictures.
The film still is wrapped a around the takup spool a little although it obviously has rewound a certain amount.Hi Ian... How much is "a little"? Is it only the narrow first part of the leader on the takeup spool -- that would signal you've rewound to the point of additional slight resistance as the leader pulls free of the spool, and is completely normal. More force is called for!
Or is it the full-width film that's still around the takeup spool? That would be more mysterious, with the most likely answer that the rewind lever has moved back to the non-rewind position and has re-engaged the drive sproket. In this condition, the film cannot be rewound further until the rewind lever is activated again.
I've been left a collection of cameras (including an M3 and M6)
Wow Ian, how did yoou do that? rewinding film is easier than 'being left a collection of cameras'!
Welcome to the forum and make good use of the cameras!
More force is called for!
You were right - more force was required and all is ok now; well except that I have an over-exposed film which is rather gutting as it's the one my father had in there and not sure if anything will have survived with my tinkering :(
Ah well - can but give these things a go. Many thanks all for your help, at least I can start using it now :)
vBulletin® v3.6.8, Copyright ©2000-2013, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.