A-Roll Compatibility

With Kevin Keymer's help, I modified my roll scanner to accept 65n and 58n rolls, both of which are perforated at 6 per inch. A-Roll nickelodeon rolls are also perforated at 6 per inch. It seemed quite natural to puzzle out a way to use my scanner for A-Roll nickelodeon rolls. Kevin kindly made me a pair of chucks out of 1/2" aluminum, 3 3/8" in diameter. First attempt had drive and idler cut-outs in the aluminum. Second attempt simply had 3/4" holes drilled into the chucks for insertion of conventional 88n spool ends. That made for success.

65n rolls (6/inch) do not ordinarily have perforations for sustain or soft, but A-Roll nickelodeon rolls (6/inch) do provide for both. So Kevin once again worked his magic and modified the 65n midi software to recognize and provide for sustain and soft, just for A-Rolls. The results are quite satisfying. Click on 1476A.ZIP to download a small zip file containing all 10 tunes on Columbia A-Roll #1476, in midi type 1 format. For those inclined to have a look at the same files in e-roll format, click on 1476E.ZIP.

You will note skimpy tune identification data, as the roll leader only displays tune title only. A 'net search provided some of the missing data. However, a single word tune title, such as "Baby" generates several hundred thousand hits, making it virtually impossible to acquire needed data.


This is my scanner with an A-Roll loaded. Note that the CIS is centered over the roll,
an accidental benefit of my scanner than allows the CIS to be easily repositioned for centering.


These are the 2 chucks. Nickelodeons drive their rolls from the left side, opposite to 88n rolls.
So the left chuck needs a key slot cut into it. The white flanges are conventional electrical face plates
commonly available at Home Depot, just happen to be the right size.
Note both chucks have been drilled 3/4" to accept common 88n spool ends.


Here is an A-Roll loaded with the chucks, nicely enclosed within the flanges.


This is the right side drive chuck, loaded and operating no different than a conventional 88n roll.


This is the left side idler chuck. Note that the spring loaded idler takes up the slack,


By sheer chance and good luck, the paper passes past the CIS near vertical at beginning of scan,
with normal angular flow thereafter.
Otherwise, I would have had to reconstruct my scanner to move the roll further back.
Rewind by hand is quite normal as there is enough friction in the chucks to overcome the take-up spool resistance.
The core's drive key on the left side never enters into the process.


Again, by sheer chance and good luck, the flanges clear the roll frame by about 1/8", just enough.
The optical encoder rides on the roll normally throughout the scan.


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