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8mm Reel Conversion Project

Organized by: Breanna Johnson

Breanna's Photo


I have discovered that my grandparents (James Lay & Barbara Bennett) have a small collection of twelve 8mm film reels that contain home videos from 1959-1961 of the Bennett-Westerfield family

Reel labels read:

  • 1959 X-mas (6")
  • 1960 (april) Maxson’s visit and Jim & Barbara (6")
  • 1960 (may 22) Nancy Bennett’s 24th birthday (6")
  • 1960 Thanksgiving 1 (6")
  • 1960 Thanksgiving 2 (6")
  • 1961 (march) rock island, IL; Judy & dales baby; Jim & ruby's kids, Jim's shop and office. (6")
  • 1961 Barbara Bennett and family 1 (3")
  • 1961 Barbara Bennett and family 2 (3")
  • 1961 Barbara Bennett and family 3 (3")
  • Unknown date - J. ran & Billy  (bad reel, date unknown)  (3")
  • Unknown date - Johnny and daughter (bad reel, date unknown) (3")
  • Unknown date - Wood family J.R. Sr and Millie (3")

After an attempt to do a digital conversion on our own we have decided to seek a professional for the conversion process based of the following reasons:

  1. Our projector attempted to eat one of the films.
  2. Some of the films contain mold. They cannot be ran through a projector until they are professionally cleaned.
  3. Due to shutter speeds between the projector and digital camera, an at-home conversion will create a lot of film flicker when recording.
  4. Conversion quality will be poor at best.

Converting 8mm reels is not a cheap process, most places charge by reel length, plus a DVD transfer fee, and shipping. Assuming that all 12 reels are 100% full and can be converted, the project could cost over $600 to complete.

It's hard to determine an exact price because we won't know how full the large reels really are until they are reviewed. Since the project attempted to eat the first reel we tried, we have no idea what exactly is on each reel or the quality.

I am asking for donations from any family members (or friends) who would like to see these films preserved and converted over. Once the films have been converted and placed onto a DVD, I can create DVD copies and digital files of the footage to share with everyone at no additional cost (unless you want like 100 copies, then we need to talk).

Any amount donated is greatly appreciated. I will convert what seems like the most important films first with the money donated if not all films are covered. If you would like to "sponsor" and have a specific filmed converted please let me know and donate at least $50=3" / $90=6" to cover the film cost in full.


In addition, to any friends that donate, if you donate $50 or more, I will do a basic geneology search of your family tree as a thank you. Please contact me if you want to do this.


Any funds that are raised and not used for the conversion project will go to supplies to make copies of the footage, then to help with any misc geneology reaserch needs.



8% Raised of $600 Goal

  • Breanna Johnson


Organized by

Breanna Johnson

This is a direct to organizer fundraiser.

Donor Comments

Breanna Johnson

Breanna Johnson


2 years ago

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