Anybody use one of these?

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by Peter Black, Nov 17, 2007.

  1. Peter Black

    Peter Black Subscriber

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    I guess I'm always a bit suspicious of folks who say LOL all the time in their forum posts, but I've just had a genuine LOL moment when I came across this guy http://www.rhdesigns.co.uk/darkroom/html/tas_film_processor.html

    I can see the attraction, but the price seems a bit scary. Maybe it's time for the offspring of an unholy alliance between the distinctly rotary Jobo CPE2 and the somewhat eccentric Paterson Orbital, but is the world ready??? :tongue:
     
  2. ann

    ann Subscriber

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    I wouldn't use one as i like the process of doing it by hand; however, perhaps the gentlemen who owns RHdisigns and is a business advertister here at APUG will be glad to give you a reason for the invention and price point.
     
  3. Anscojohn

    Anscojohn Subscriber

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    The concept has merit. Perhaps a more energy-friendly design would use two gerbils running in a geared excercise cage. (vbg)

    John, Mount Vernon, Virgnian USA
     
  4. pentaxuser

    pentaxuser Subscriber

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    This is crazy money as far as I am concerned but maybe if you were rich enough to not want to be bothered with hand inversion rotation and money was no object then this would suit the bill.

    The owner of RH Designs is a 100% genuine guy who, it appears, is simply offering another company's product to the U.K. marketplace, at what I assume to be their( Heiland's) price plus a small mark-up for handling and distribution.

    If it doesn't sell at this price and I doubt it will then it's probably no skin off his nose.

    When you consider what his analyser pro does for well under half this price, it makes the price even more ridiculous but that's Heiland's lookout.

    Have you checked out the Heiland price in euros? Does it equate with this price in sterling? I wonder if Robert Vonk from Fotohuis will comment?

    The analogy for me is having a VCR( dev tank) which has buttons you press manually( hand inversion) and then someone offering the same equipment but which has a remote that is pressed once and does the rest. Makes it a great remote but not for 20 times the price of the VCR.

    As Duncan Banatyne would say on Dragons Den." I'm oot"

    pentaxuser
     
  5. jim appleyard

    jim appleyard Member

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    For that price it better shake cans of paint AND clean my house!
     
  6. srs5694

    srs5694 Member

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    When I took debate in high school, a "squirrel" (not a gerbil, I'm afraid) was a debate argument that was difficult to counter because it was so ridiculous that you didn't have the references handy to prove it was ridiculous. IIRC, the name emerged from a debate in which one side claimed that squirrels in exercise cages could generate significant amounts of electricity.
     
  7. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member

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    Well, it looks easier to set up, if you currently use inversion tanks, than a nitrogen burst system.

    [And having graduated high school in 1984, I had totally forgotten about that use of "squirrel."]
     
  8. srs5694

    srs5694 Member

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    I see we were in high school at the same time -- I also graduated in 1984! I don't know if this use of the word "squirrel" is still current, I'm afraid.
     
  9. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member

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    Maybe we debated!
     
  10. john_s

    john_s Member

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    It's overkill for the amount of film processing that I do, but RH Designs' Stopclock is fantastic and well worth the money. I have the Vario model.
     
  11. Andy K

    Andy K Member

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    Unless you are running a commercial set up, I'd say that at nigh on £600 it is an unnecessary luxury.
     
  12. Mick Fagan

    Mick Fagan Subscriber

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    Ann, that machine has been around for a while in Germany and The Netherlands, it has never been cheap.

    Neither has any "Bought New" Jobo machine or part, ever been cheap either.

    I have a friend in Germany who has one, with which he develops 4x5 in. Apparently it processes his 4x5 film, as flawlessly as his previous Jobo rotary machine.

    Quite a few people these days don't actually make darkroom prints it seems, so a small footprint machine which can be stored in a cupboard alongside a film developing tank and reel(s), may make sense to them.

    It does use a lot of chemicals compared to a Jobo, though!

    Mick.
     
  13. ath

    ath Member

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    Personally I don't have the need for one; but if you want to develop in a tank with inversions and for whatever reason have rather long develoment times (pushing or highly diluted rodinal), this one is handy. Esp. if time is money.

    The inventor and manufacturer is, btw. not RH Designs, but Heiland Electronic from Germany. They are the manufacturer of the splitgrade module as well.

    For the price - this is a new design and highly flexible. Everythin can be programmed and adjusted. Things like this need a lot of development, electronics, software and tools for the housing. This translates in a huge amount of money and time needed.
    Since these guys do this for a living, the money has to come in via the sales price. The excellent support from them is for free.
     
  14. RH Designs

    RH Designs Advertiser

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    Well yes, I have sold a few and people are happy with them - at least I assume they are as I've not had much in the way of feedback. It is expensive but our price is similar to that at which Heiland Electronic GmbH (the designer and manufacturer) sells them in Germany.

    It is really intended for use in a communal darkroom such as a college or photo club where it can be used by a number of people. Programs can be stored on memory sticks so each user can have his or her own. It is a beautifully engineered product which will probably last for ever and that is reflected in the price - I wouldn't be surprised if it's hand hewn from solid :smile:. It's completely programmable for inversion times, frequency, stand time etc and will provide a high level of consistency from film to film - something that users of hand tanks might find occasionally troublesome if the phone rings in the middle of development for example!

    I'm not going to pretend that it's a necessity for everyone's darkroom any more than a Rolls-Royce is to take the kids to school; you pays your money, you takes your choice, but sometimes it's nice to be able to indulge :smile:.
     
  15. Dave Miller

    Dave Miller Member

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    I want to indulge, but must get another Roller for the wife first.
     
  16. Peter Black

    Peter Black Subscriber

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    Hi Richard and please don't think I was being critical of you or your company, in fact quite the opposite! I appreciate that this particular device is a bit expensive for the sole user, but I'm generally impressed with the concept behind it, especially now that the onset of arthritis means it isn't so easy to agitate a Paterson tank with one hand.

    I genuinely meant that there might be a market for a cheaper (build your own?) device that would give the 2 different motions available with the Jobo and the Orbital, and if you wanted to build the device or supply kits then who can guess what the demand might be? (just ignore the stand/semi-stand crew smiling smugly at the back!) :smile:
     
  17. Andy K

    Andy K Member

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    No offence Richard, but when I am developing, both phone and door get ignored. :wink:
     
  18. Stephen Frizza

    Stephen Frizza Member

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    ok im just curious has anyone used one of these? how does it tap for air bubbles? when i process by hand and agitate with inverses i always tap the tank to make sure air is not trapped on the film surface. could this machine have an issue with that? Ive no experience with this device im curious over it.
     
  19. pentaxuser

    pentaxuser Subscriber

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    It doesn't tap. The instructions suggest that you tap once and once only at the start then the machine does the rest. No different to Jobo in that respect. I usually tap every time I stop inverting but this is probably completely unnecessary. I just feel better for it.

    I am amazed that there are enough clubs still using film developing equipment often enough to make it sell in sufficient quantities. Colleges tend to have each student manually do his own. If there are 20 students on a course all with a film to develop that day/evening then to free them to get on with other things the college is going to need a lot of machines and a big budget. Maybe there aren't enough sales which helps explain the high price. Insufficient economies of scale.

    Unless there is something better about inversion than rotation most people who want to switch something on and leave it will use their Jobo rather than spend this kind of money, I would have thought.


    I go back to my analogy with the Dragon's Den. This is a TV programme where hopeful entrepreneurs try and convince business people to invest in the idea and have to explain cost, projected sales etc.

    I have a feeling that this idea would never have got any backing there. Still, best of luck to Heiland if they have got enough demand, Good job everyone isn't like me or it seems like the respondents so far.

    Maybe we should run a poll on APUG asking how many intend to buy? I think it would make depressing reading for Heiland

    pentaxuser
     
  20. David Brown

    David Brown Subscriber

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    I taught high school in the 1970s and one of my privileges was judging debate. There was a freshman who developed a case on alternative energy sources in which the energy source was fog. It was so ridiculous that his partner refused to debate it with him. So, he debated it by himself and won on points. :smile:

    Sorry to be off topic, but I couldn't pass this up. :wink:

    As for the subject of the original post - I want one!!!!
     
  21. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member

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    [A couple of years ago I was walking down the halls of my university on a weekend when they were hosting a high school debate tournament, and I heard many of the same arguments we were making in the 1980s. It was frightening to think they're still running "countercyclical financing" and the old nuclear annihilation disads.]

    Back on topic, there are cases where inversion is better than rotation. Stand and low agitation development and highly dilute developers that oxidize quickly are two that come to mind immediately.
     
  22. RH Designs

    RH Designs Advertiser

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    The TAS rotates the tank a quarter turn on each inversion as well. It would be ideal for semi-stand development, and in fact one customer asked for the maximum process times to be extended for just that application.

    Peter and Andy - no offence taken I assure you :smile:
     
  23. Akki14

    Akki14 Member

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    I think Robert at FotoHuis has one of these. I seem to recall seeing it as part of his setup for C-41 at home (outside during a hot summer's day) and I think he uses it for his Rodinal lifespan tests for consistancy too.