Rewinding Film Workflow Guide

Link to Video Guide: Daylight Spool to Core


When you get your developed film back it will be on a daylight spool. Your film must be transferred to a 2” or 3” core before you use it on a Steenbeck but it must, also, retain the proper orientation (in other words you don’t want your film to run backwards). This guide will show you how to accurately use the rewind table for this purpose.

Getting Started


When you are working with your film, from rewinding to working on the Steenbeck, you will always want to make sure that the sprocket holes are on the side closest to you. When you take your film to a Steenbeck, the sprockets should be facing down.

What You'll Need

You will need to check out a take up reel and split reel from the DFL office, in addition to bringing your own developed film and a 2" or 3" core. You may, also, want to consider bringing paper tape to secure your film to the reels. 

Rewind Table

Before taking your film to a Steenbeck you will need to rewind your film.

Check out a gray split reel and blue take up reel from the DFL and take these items to a rewind table inside the DFL office. Place your daylight spool on the left hand side of the rewind table. The emulsion of the film should be facing up and the sprocket holes should be on the side closest to you. Place the take up reel to the right hand side of the table. Attach your film over the top of take up reel.

Make sure that the take up reel and the handle are locked into position and begin winding onto the take up. Use your free hand to maintain tension on your original daylight spool. Making sure that the tension is tight will reduce the likelihood of your film breaking.

Remember, the sprockets should always be facing towards you.

Now that your film is completely on the take up reel, replace your daylight spool with a split reel with a 2” or 3” core inside it. Spool your film back onto the new core using the handle on the left and retain the tension with your spare hand.

After you rewind your film onto the new core, your film will be back in its original orientation as when you received it and is now Steenbeck ready!




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