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Author Topic: How to mitigate squeaking or other "film spooling" noises
Ben Zotto
Film Handler

Posts: 33
From: San Francisco, CA, USA
Registered: Sep 2018

 - posted November 23, 2018 01:01 PM      Profile for Ben Zotto   Email Ben Zotto   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I use a Bauer projector which is very quiet or at least consistent in its actual film path/shutter operation, but I've found that the noise of the actual film coming off and on the reels is a distraction during screenings.

It's fairly dependent on the reel and film, I think, but amounts to a periodic higher-pitched squeaking and/or a more hushed scrape sound. I think the former is caused by certain plastic take-up reels, and the scrape may be a subtle misalignment between film path and reel so I'm hearing the edge of the film come off or go on a reel. None of this is indicative of any actual functional problem, just seems like noise that could be avoidable.

Do people encounter this much? Are there certain kinds of reels that are better or worse for this, and/or are there adjustments that are known to help mitigate? Thanks for any thoughts.

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Will Trenfield
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 506
From: Shrewsbury, Shropshire, UK
Registered: Mar 2016

 - posted November 24, 2018 06:11 PM      Profile for Will Trenfield   Email Will Trenfield   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I have found that some Standard/Regular 8mm films I've acquired were mounted on audio tape reels. These seem to be slightly more narrower than cine reels and the film often rubs against the sides.

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Steve Klare
Film Guy

Posts: 7016
From: Long Island, NY, USA
Registered: Jun 2003

 - posted November 24, 2018 08:01 PM      Profile for Steve Klare   Email Steve Klare   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
You also run into reels that warp. The flanges won't be straight and will scrape against the edge of the film when they warp inward.

Some people here heat 'em up with hairdryers and straighten 'em out. I believe I've heard reports of other people boiling them like pasta!

All I ask is a wide screen and a projector to light her by...

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Janice Glesser
Film Goddess

Posts: 3468
From: Sunnyvale, CA USA
Registered: Sep 2011

 - posted November 24, 2018 08:10 PM      Profile for Janice Glesser     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
This thread has some ideas on widening reels/spools:



"I'm having a very good day!"
Richard Dreyfuss - Let It Ride (1989).

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Maurice Leakey
Film God

Posts: 5895
From: Bristol. United Kingdom
Registered: Oct 2007

 - posted November 25, 2018 02:18 AM      Profile for Maurice Leakey   Email Maurice Leakey   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Will has made an interesting comment about the quarter inch audio tape spools which will fit on standard 8 projectors.
As a quarter inch equates to 6.35mm, that explains the problem if used for film which is 8mm.


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Ben Zotto
Film Handler

Posts: 33
From: San Francisco, CA, USA
Registered: Sep 2018

 - posted November 25, 2018 10:43 AM      Profile for Ben Zotto   Email Ben Zotto   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Oh this is great, thank you all so much. Janice's hair dryer technique photo is both hilarious and helpful. I would not have figured that out, I'll give it a shot.

(I imagine that metal reels might (??) be less likely to have this kind of issue, but they seem quite scarce above 400'.)

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