How To Get Your Local Lab to X-pro Slides For Free!


If you are tired of sending your 35mm E6 film off to be cross processed by some expensive lab, here is a (nearly) free way off getting your local developer to do it for you!

Nearly everyone knows that most places won’t cross process slide film because they simply don’t understand how it works, and I had heard about people making their own labels for film canisters .Combining these two thoughts led to this sneaky solution that nearly always works!

All you need is:

  • Paper (preferably glossy).
  • Double-sided tape.
  • A Printer.

I measured the size of the label on the canister, and then using these measaurements, opened a new file in photoshop and attempted to make a label that looks not all that different from that of the FUJI brand (making sure to state that it was made for C-41 chemicals and not E6). Then I printed the new label out on glossy paper, but before trimming to size, I covered the entire back of the the label with double sided tape. This is handy way of making your own sticky back paper for a fraction of the cost! Now all that was left to do was to line it up and smooth it down. I think it’s pretty convincing!

Here is a link to the label if you want to use mine:

If the lab ask questions, just say a friend loaded up some film in a home-made canister for you…and there you go, cross processing on a budget!

Go nuts!

written by minty on 2009-12-26 #gear #tutorials #slide #35mm #slide-film #e6 #tipster #xpro #cross-process #crossprocess #quickie-tipster

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  1. paper_doll
    paper_doll ·

    we don't have to pay extra for that in portugal :)

  2. ethermoon
    ethermoon ·

    yeah, here in PH too. Merry christmas!!!

  3. breakphreak
    breakphreak ·

    huh :) there are lots of things to cheat about that - for example you can tell that you've bought a big roll of film and loaded it into the canister by yourself

    but, frankly, the "clean" x-pro is when the C41 film is not mixed with E6 (even when processing both with same C41 process chemicals). that's why labs charge more for x-pro. they also cheat a bit, since in minilabs the chemicals are reused again and again so that you really need two separate machines for that :)

    however, noone knows how important is not to mix slide and negative films when developing them together. one of my best films had been developed in a simplest minilabs as x-pro and 4 frames of it contributed to my first exhibition.

    personally, "to be on a safe side" (you can call it "marketing victim") now I prefer one lab that has a JOBO - where chemicals are used only once per amount of loaded films, so that it's kinda clearest x-pro ever.

  4. ululchen
    ululchen ·

    My solution: develop the film myself, that's more fun anyway. =)

  5. kylethefrench
    kylethefrench ·

    I celebrate this trick

  6. takezzo
    takezzo ·

    we also can fake it to 24 or even 12 exposure film (LOL). one of my friends actually did the same thing. but i'm just worried that when they find out the trick, you may get in trouble. they may charge you extra money or refuse to give it back to you if they get really pissed off...

  7. mandashitley
    mandashitley ·

    I just get my film done at Walgreens and the people there know me so when I tell them "it's ok it will process fine" they believe me. Wooo.

  8. minty
    minty ·

    thank you all for the input! using this trick it's possible to get slide film cross processed for 97per roll in certain ASDA and Tesco stores throughout the U.K. I know most of the smaller labs (especially in my area) will charge slightly extra for xpro.

  9. eva_eva
    eva_eva ·


  10. pauladavies
    pauladavies ·

    here in são paulo they charge 3 times more expensive to develop x pro.

    another tip is find some small laboratory near you home, talk directly to the dude that develops and really explain what do you want to do and why. i did this, got friends with the dude on the laboratory and develop my films much cheaper.

  11. ipdegirl
    ipdegirl ·

    that's wickedly clever!!

  12. ilovemydiana
    ilovemydiana ·

    so.... lie? really? haha no im kidding. i didnt know they charge more for x-pro in some labs... i go to target and the people who work there get reayy excited when i bring in slide. but, they are the ONLY one who will even do it, unless i want to drive a half hour away to get it done in a pro lab. this will come in handy for the labs that wont do it for me, thanx dood.

  13. kyliekin3
    kyliekin3 ·

    I am pretty lucky in Melbourne , I just go to my local lab and they do it no problem :)

  14. maicul
    maicul ·

    I think it'd be easier if you transfer the exposed slide film into an empty negative film canister in a darkroom or a changing bag. That's what I have been doing and it works all the time..

  15. minty
    minty ·

    How is that easier? This method doesn't need a darkroom or a changing bag, just a printer and some tape. ;)

  16. copefan
    copefan ·

    i went into my local Kick store and just asked them to process my E6 on their mini lab! They said it would damage the film..... but I said it didn't matter as i'd found the film..... When it came out OK they were amazed and now they don't mind and they don't charge me extra....... but I do most of my processing at home its only when i'm too busy that i take them in......

  17. sibu_sen
    sibu_sen ·

    Great idea! I tried to convince the person in my local supermarket to x pro for me but they were really suspicious and refused to do it… Haha! I will get my revenge now! :) Thanks for the tip1

  18. tringer
    tringer ·

    I work for Jessops and i/we have no problem cross processing anything in our lab and don't charge anything extra.bThere is an issue with cross processing alot of film as the chemicals on the film react with the C41 chemicals, but only effects the processor if large amounts go through.

    For supermarkets etc where they might not know much about film, then its best this way :D But for high street/semi pro labs, just ask...

  19. xypex982
    xypex982 ·

    This is exactly what I have been looking for! Would you mind making some more that are for 200 and 100 iso since I never shoot 400 iso slide, and for 24 exposure rolls?

  20. minty
    minty ·

    to be honest i don't think it really matters what iso the label says, isn't all c-41 processing the same regardless of film speed?

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