FCK127 is a complete kit that cuts 120 film and rolls it onto a 127 film spool. FCK127 is light-sealed, so you can (with some precautions) go through the entire process in ligth. As a result of cutting 120 to 127 format, you will also get a leftover film that is 16mm unperforated film.
This is a presale for the first batch of FCK127! I will produce 10 of them and they will be delivered after the 15th of june. Only one per customer can be ordered, no backorders allowed at the moment. Thank you for your patience!
- the container box
- a clip for the 120 roll (keeps the film wrapped while you prepare it and insert it in the box)
- the cutting module (which separates the film 120 into two strips, one of 127 and one of 110 *)
- the winding module (which wraps the two parts in two separate spools, the 127 and one of 16mm)
- 3 small 16mm spools (there are 2 spares, in case the first one breaks or is lost)
- A guide ruler to cut the initial part of the paper with the two ends that will hook the two spools
- 2 blades for cutting the film (one is a replacement)
cut, roll, and use 127 film
Cutting and loading the film with this kit a 3-phases process:
- Prepare the roll and insert the film for cutting
- Cut the film and remove the two parts from the box
- Finish, and load it into the camera
Any of these steps will be explained in details in the following section of the page. But if you prefer, you can watch the following video tutorial.
PHASE 1: Prepare and insert the film in the kit.
Connect the two spools (127 spool + 16mm spool), and insert them in the winding module: the 127 spool goes into the upper part, in correspondence with the winding knob. Check that the lower pin of the small spool is correctly inserted into its slot. You will have to press a little bit: the tension will keep the parts together. When done, put it aside for later use.
Take the 120 film roll that you want to cut: remove the adhesive from the 120 film and unroll the paper for about 10cm/3in (to prevent the film from unwinding, lock it with the clip included in the kit). Position the roll so that the film side is below, unroll from left to right. Use the shaped ruler to trace the outlines of the two film leaders that need to be cut in order to enter their respective spools’ slots. NOTE: The shaped ruler must be positioned on the backing paper, with the tail going left to right, and keeping the 127 film part up. Once the outlines have been marked, cut the paper paying attention that the film does not unroll.
Insert and wrap the two tails in the cutting module, making sure that the widest part of the film goes into the widest slot in the module. Pull them gently together through the cutter to start the cutting for 3-4 inches (7-12cm).
Insert the two film leaders into the two spools and start rolling until they are well engaged: make at least two turns, following the rotation indicated by the arrow marked on the knob.
At this point you have to insert vertically the three parts in their compartments: the roller 120, the cutting module, the winding module.
You should have this layout: on the left the roller, in the middle the cutting module, on the right the winder. The cutter and the winder have two arrows on the top that indicate the position and direction of the film. Keep some tension in the winding module to prevent the two parts of film from rolling out. Insert the three elements in the box, respecting the correct positions and joints. At this point remove the clip to let the roll and the rest of the components sit inside the box in their final positions. Close the box with the cover without releasing the tension.
PHASE 2: Cut the film and remove the two parts from the kit
Start turning the knob in the direction indicated by the upper arrow. At first, proceed slowly to make sure that the paper is still fixed and wound on the spools. You will feel that the paper is easily cut for a few turns, until the blade reaches the adhesive tape that sticks the film to the backing paper. At this point, winding becomes harder and you need to force a little to pass the adhesive tape. After the blade has cut the tape, you will feel that winding becomes easier: you are now cutting and rolling the paper and the film together. Continue with a smooth and continuous rotation until you feel the resistance becomes even lighter: now film is finished and you are cutting the tail of the paper. Go on until you hear that the 120 spools moves freely inside its slot, meaning that all the film and backing paper is cut and rolled on the two spools! It’s time to open the box.
PHASE 3: Finish, and upload it to the camera
At this point remove the winder, the cutter, the empty spool from the box. To remove the two film spools from the winder, pop it out pushing the small spool out of its slot at the winder’s bottom. You will need to use a certain pressure on the small spool, just be careful not to let it unroll in light. Now you can separate the two spools.
There is one last operation to do in the 127 film. Pull the backing paper until you feel the tail of the film: use a piece of tape to attach it to the paper, otherwise it may not advance correctly once mounted in the camera and cause a jam around the take-up spool (It would be better to perform this operation in a changing bag, otherwise it will be inevitable to burn the first centimeters of film). Cut the paper starter corners into tip shape so that it can be inserted into the take-up spool.
If you do not need to use the roller immediately, keep it closed with tape or a rubber band.
In the previous steps, the film got rolled over an empty 127 spool. As you can imagine, the film will go backwards into the camera (in the red window you will see bigger numbers first). Depending on the frame size of your 127 camera, you can adjust to the film winding using the numbers and signs printed on the backing paper.
Normally the 127 cameras frame formats can be square (4x4cm) or rectangular (4x6cm). This last format is more practical because the numbers visible in the red window are those that correspond to the 6×6 format, so if you respect this numbering you will shoot 6/7 photos per film, with a gap of 2,5cm (1 inch) between the shots. The number in the red window indicates how many photos are missing, so you can easily understand when the film is finished.
very important notes
SPOOLS The kit does not include any empty 127 spool. You need at least 2 spools to shoot in your camera: one that is going to be respooled with the FCK127, and one that functions as take-up spool. The FCK127 accepts only 127 spools that have the ridged slot on both sides (see image below). The spool that come with ReraPan films and some Kodak spools have a normal solid pin on one side, with no ridges: these spools will not work with FCK127.
BLADE Pay attention: the kit contains a very sharp blade. The blade used in the cutting module is a section of a normal 18mm cutter blade: it’ll be easy to find new spare blades when you’ll need. Those included in the kit are Tajima blades made in Japan: they’re known as the best and sharpest on the market. The blade is inserted into the cutter’s slot, which is a bit larger than the blade to permit an easy replacement. If the blade falls out of its slot, make sure it’s properly re-inserted. The only correct position is shown in the following picture. Be very careful not to cut yourself!
120 FILM TAPE Some rolls have a very tough tape fixing the film to the backing paper. In particular some difficulties was found with the Kodak Ektar film, which is hard to cut. A good workaround is to place the shaped ruler over that tape, so that you’ll preemptively cut it before inserting it in the kit. With this method some film will be exposed to light, but remeber that this will be the final part of the film when shooting… Check the following images for better information.
127 ROLL’S DIAMETER Another good reason for cutting the film’s tape as described above, is that you’ll get rid of some backing paper that makes the resulting 127 roll a little bit larger than the spool itself. This is critical in some cameras that have a very small film slot, like the Kodak Vest Pocket. In this camera the 127film cut from 120 film will not fit in its slot. See image below.