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How to mark which camera has film in it?
Old 05-31-2013   #1
domagojs
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How to mark which camera has film in it?

Lately I've been noticing that since I regularly use three bodies, out of which two don't have that little window for the film in the back, I often don't know if I have a film inside a camera.Ah, where are the days I had only one camera and there were no such problems :-)

So my question to the RFF community is how do you know if you have a film inside a camera or not?
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Old 05-31-2013   #2
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As soon as the last roll is full, I put an empty one in.
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Old 05-31-2013   #3
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Put the film box paper in the shoe.
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Old 06-01-2013   #4
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Open the back.
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Old 06-01-2013   #5
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Write on masking tape, then put on the bottom of the camera.
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Old 06-01-2013   #6
roboflick
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I keep a word file on my computer that I keep updated with the film type in the camera. It's really the only thing I'm OCD about

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Old 06-01-2013   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by charjohncarter View Post
Write on masking tape, then put on the bottom of the camera.
That's how I do it. I have more than 3 camera bodies. I have to keep track some way. Of course, with auto exposure, sometimes looking at the ISO will help.
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Old 06-01-2013   #8
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Old 06-01-2013   #9
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thinking that if the frame indicator window is close to, at or above 1...there's prob film in there...
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Old 06-01-2013   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by charjohncarter View Post
Write on masking tape, then put on the bottom of the camera.
This ^. A roll of masking tape lasts a long time.
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Old 06-01-2013   #11
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I use a note on my iPhone called "Film Loaded".
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Old 06-01-2013   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flip View Post
Put the film box paper in the shoe.
I just cut the end of the box top off to fit the hot shoe. Color coded and ISO all at one glance.
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Old 06-01-2013   #13
taskoni
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Hot shoe paper is good. If you are Leica M user advance to next frame while looking at the rewind knob - the two red dots will turn if you have film in it

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Boris
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Old 06-01-2013   #14
sepiareverb
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I use the hot shoe also.
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Old 06-01-2013   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sreed2006 View Post

Keeping track by sreed2006, on Flickr

Anything worth doing is worth overdoing. I have two separate iPhone notes (the one sorted by cameras is shown here, the one sorted by film is similar), plus a spreadsheet on the computer, and if there's a place on the camera to put a box-end, I put the box-end there. It's too much, but I haven't messed up any film or forgotten what is where for a while.


The notes on iPhone is a great idea and faster than loading a document. I am going to start doing that
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Old 06-01-2013   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by charjohncarter View Post
Write on masking tape, then put on the bottom of the camera.
+1

Please lengthen your message to at least 10 characters
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Old 06-01-2013   #17
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I usually advance the film a bit, if the rewind crank moves, I know it's loaded..
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Old 06-01-2013   #18
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Thx guys, what a great community!

I like all the advices, but the idea with sticking a piece of paper into the hot shoe is brilliant! I like it's simplicity and how analogue it is! Also, the note on the mobile phone is very simple and practical.

Thank you all for your support!
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Old 06-01-2013   #19
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At one point over the last couple years I think I was up to 11 or 12 film cameras, all of which were on the go at the same time - so it wasn't a case of whether they contained film, but rather keeping track of what was in them. I tried using notes or Reminder.app on my iPhone, but it annoyed me to write stuff down, so I designed my own app and used it in developer mode (so no need to go through the Apple approval process). Just a simple menu-choice for each camera.

Below is a visualization I did while developing - the film list wasn't finalized at the time.

When I needed to change phone I'd let my Apple developer account lapse, meaning I could no longer upload the app to the phone, so this weekend I decided I'd make a web-app along the same lines. The advantage being I'll just update the camera or film list whenever I want, with no need to recompile the application. Pity there's not more film-users these days, otherwise the app could've made me a millionaire*.

*kidding
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File Type: jpg filmswitch_upd.jpg (33.8 KB, 19 views)
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Old 06-01-2013   #20
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It seems my world is easy. I only use Acros 100 and Neopan 400. I can see/feel IF a film is in the camera. When sensitivity is set to 400 I know exactly what film is inside.
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Old 06-01-2013   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tom.w.bn View Post
It seems my world is easy. I only use Acros 100 and Neopan 400. I can see/feel IF a film is in the camera. When sensitivity is set to 400 I know exactly what film is inside.
I also used to do it like that, but then I got meterless Hasselblad and sometimes used my 35mm cameras to meter. Needless to say, very soon I exposed half a roll of Acros at ISO 800 because that's what I had in Hassy... :-/ Though, I must admit that Across took 3-stops underexposure very well :-)
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Old 06-01-2013   #22
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I made this from a sheet of acrylic, where I use a Sharpie to note the different film types loaded. I carry different pieces, or just wipe them off with hand sanitizer if i am on the move.

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Old 06-01-2013   #23
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Because my film rolls usually lasts for weeks or months, spread over many film cameras, I keep track of the images taken on a small card per roll. This includes film type and loaded body. That is my solution.
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Old 06-02-2013   #24
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with a very sharp craft knife slice the box end window from a camera that is dead.Glue the window to a piece of self adhesive vinyl,matching colour of course. stick to the back of camera.
dead cameras are easy to find for nothing.
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Old 06-03-2013   #25
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Take your smart phone,
Snap a picture of the camera and the film when you're loading it.

Like so:


Two weeks and a couple of cameras later, you still can tell which film is in which one.
And if you see the picture of the same camera twice, you can rely on the dates.
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Old 06-03-2013   #26
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Ingenious use of technology.
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Old 06-03-2013   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by charjohncarter View Post
Write on masking tape, then put on the bottom of the camera.
I use blue painters tape w the speed noted and if it's special film (red scale, really old etc) also marked and stick it on the back. Peels off easily later and the blue tape lets me know there's film there at a quick glance. Just have to remember to pull it off later.
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Old 06-08-2013   #28
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Ingenious use of technology.
Thank you very much.
I help businesses visualize and track their data, so this is just one example of an application of available technology.
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Old 06-08-2013   #29
David Hughes
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Hi,

You can get key ring thingies that open out and have a piece of card in for notes like which car it's for and so on.

Replace the card with a blank and scribble what you like on it and then hang on the camera's strap lugs.

Or cheapo, luggage labels with "Battery in this" or whatever and hung on the lugs.

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Old 06-08-2013   #30
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Some great tips on this thread, definitely must incorporate them in my workflow.

If I leave a camera empty I will change the iso to either the lowest or highest setting.

I have a small notebook I sometimes record what film is loaded. I think I will be going with the iPhone snap from now on though
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Old 06-08-2013   #31
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If the camera has no film window or reminder (Barnack, say) I always leave the camera set to "sunny 16" for the film inside. i.e. - 1/100 @ f16 for 100 ISO film. I also keep a film log on my iPod....
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Old 06-08-2013   #32
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Place a paper sticky on the camera with any information as you deem necessary. Not every camera has a place for the top of the film box. Another way to tell is to advance the film/cock the shutter after each shot. Leave the camera with a cocked shutter when it has film in it. Then using both those methods together will insure that you will know that the camera has film in it.
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Old 06-08-2013   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Bellayr View Post
Leave the camera with a cocked shutter when it has film in it...
I never leave the shutter cocked in any of mine, except the Nikonos III. I read a tech description of the Nikonos's shutter and it is better left cocked.
I use the notepad on my Iphone to keep track of film/speed/camera etc.
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Old 06-08-2013   #34
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It's easiest never to leave film in any camera. Load, and shoot until you've used it up. Then take out the film. That way, you always know when you pick up a camera that you must load it before using it.

Saves a lot of mental energy.

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Old 06-08-2013   #35
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iphone apps.? Come on, guys. It's a film camera. Go masking tape and paper maps to find the location where you want to shoot today.
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Old 06-08-2013   #36
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Fascinated by all the answers to a question that I didn't realize was being asked as much as it is! We're a diverse bunch.
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Old 06-08-2013   #37
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More about masking tape: I wrap a couple feet of the stuff around a film canister. That way I always have some in my bag. I'm OCD enough to use my Swiss Army Knife scissors to do a neat job of cutting off a piece of tape.
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Old 06-09-2013   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dave lackey View Post
I just cut the end of the box top off to fit the hot shoe. Color coded and ISO all at one glance.
This is an idea, I never thought like this!
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Old 06-09-2013   #39
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You're not a real film photographer until you've taken a whole "roll" and discovered there's no film in the camera.
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