home - How-To & Why: Respooling 120 Film Onto A 620 Spool

How-To & Why:
Respooling 120 Film Onto A 620 Spool

Because 120 and 620 film is exactly the same size you can respool available 120 film onto a 620 spool and use your 620 camera without it jamming....and save yourself alot of money!

NOTE: You must have two 620 spools...one for the film and one for the take-up spool in the camera.

After you've done this a few times I think you'll find it a fairly easy technique to master.


Here are the 2 spools you'll be working with....notice the differences.

Although different, a 620 spool will accept 120 film exactly and without light leaks.

Start with a fresh roll of 120 film. I'm using color film here but you can use any type 120 film.

Tear and remove the paper ring holding the film tight on the 120 spool. Don't let it unroll.

LIGHTS OUT!. Start unrolling from the spool making a loose roll in your other hand.

This illustrates that the film is taped to the paper. This will be important later. Continue unrolling.

Towards the end of unrolling you'll feel the film end which is not taped. Continue unrolling.

You've reached the end of unrolling. Notice the tapered paper end. Discard the 120 spool. >>>>>

Pick up your 620 spool and thread the tapered paper thru the "wider" slot end.

Start rolling the paper on, and lined up, to the spool while keeping it as tight as possible.

The edges of the paper must roll on even with the spool ends. Roll the paper fairly tight.

Tuck the loose film end into the spool and continue rolling as tight as possible.

You'll notice as you roll the film and paper tightly on that the film will bulge. This is normal.

Keep rolling...keep rolling...keep rolling and stop when you reach the taped film end.

To get rid of the film bulge carefully pull up the tape while keeping it attached to the film. >>

Continue rolling until the bulge is gone and re-attach the tape to the paper.

Keep rolling...keep rolling...keep rolling and you'll soon be at the end of the paper.

LIGHTS ON! You now have a roll of 620 film but you're not quite done...it still can unravel!

Putting on a piece of tape to hold the end tight will prevent it from unraveling.

Now you can use any 620 camera without jamming!!!.

You'll find that when using this respooled film in any 620 camera, no matter what the negative size format is, the numbers will appear correctly thru the little red window on the back of your camera.

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