Best keeping paper developer??

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by sly, May 2, 2012.

  1. sly

    sly Subscriber

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    For years and years I used Agfa multigrade paper developer. It came as stock in one gallon bottles. I liked it just fine. I bought 3 gallons when a local lab closed down. It's all used up now:sad: and I've been using dektol. I mix up the 3.8 liters, then decant into 750ml bottles to prevent oxidation. Just opened up a full stoppered bottle - all brown, exposed test strip developed in the light still not black after one minute. No printing today after all.
    Between the home renovations we've been doing the last couple of months, and my struggles with carbon printing, the chemicals for silver printing haven't been used as often as usual, but I thought a full stoppered bottle should last at least 6 months.
    I really liked the Agfa. It kept and kept and kept, kinda like Rodinal. Any suggestions? Does the Ilford MG developer keep well? Even half full and gathering dust for months?
     
  2. tkamiya

    tkamiya Member

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    Dektol does last 6 months or longer in sealed and full bottles. I do it and it works. One thing I noticed is that some plastic bottles aren't oxygen proof. If you are noticing yours is expiring before then, it might be that the bottle itself either has a leak or the material is not oxygen proof. You might want to check that first as your next developer may not fare so well if that's the problem.
     
  3. Mike Wilde

    Mike Wilde Member

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    Buy and mix up the formulary's version of Ansco 130, if you are not up to mixing it up from scratch.

    My DIY stuff was murky and brown after only a few months, and then just gradually darkenned. It never changed on how it would develop a print though.

    I had a jug of it mixed and partially used 1:1 working strength (stored in a plastic jug even) and it was still going strong after 2 years of intermittent use.
     
  4. Lee L

    Lee L Member

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    Don't know if it's available in B.C., but Ethol LPD is designed for this. LPD is short for Lasting Paper Developer. You can find it powdered in cans or in a liquid stock. Dilution changes can affect cold-warm tone to some extent.

    Lee
     
  5. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    ansco 130 ( formulary 130 paper developer ) lasts forever ...
    i buy between 5 and 7 gallons every 12months,
    and by the end of the 7th gallon is it still going strong a year later ...
    dilute and in a tray it lasts about 30 days or so they say

    just make sure you mix it when you get the kit of chemistry because the glycin tends to go bad faster than
    anything else ... but once it is mixed you are in good shape.

    john
     
  6. Alan W

    Alan W Subscriber

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    As recommended above,Try some L.P.D.Lasts forever and thats just the half life!
     
  7. cliveh

    cliveh Subscriber

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    Surely one of the main factors that will determin the keeping quality is protection from oxidation?
     
  8. Ben 4

    Ben 4 Member

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    Try Bromophen

    I've been impressed with the keeping quality of Ilford's Bromophen, which is now my standard paper developer. I've kept it for a year (in full plastic bottles) with no change in color, and a month or so in partially filled bottles with only a slight darkening. I can't say the same for Multigrade, which seems more sensitive to oxidation. (I have used 130, but I just don't like putting my paper into the murk!)

    --Ben
     
  9. Rick A

    Rick A Subscriber

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    Ethol LPD as a replenished developer. I'm into 14 months on the same gallon. Have a can of fresh powder to mix sitting on the shelf gathering dust. Same amount of Dektol would have been gone before three months was up at the rate I use it.
     
  10. cmo

    cmo Member

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    Moersch Eco 3812:

    Concentrate: 4 years
    Concentrate in a half full bottle: 2 years
    Working solution 8 months in an air-sealed bottle

    Adox Adotol is a powder. As a working solution it lasts 6-12 months in bottles.
     
  11. john_s

    john_s Subscriber

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    Maybe not as long as some of the suggestions, but home mixed ID-78 is very good in a Nova slot processor. I use it since Agfa's Neutol-WA disappeared (in this country anyway).
     
  12. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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    Lillian:

    I use Polymax T (aka Liquid Dektol in some parts of the world). The concentrate is quite long lived, and being liquid, it is very convenient.

    Glazers sells it at $9.50 per US quart bottle. Beau Photo will order it for you (but I don't know at what cost).

    Glazers also has Ethol LPD on its website: http://www.glazerscamera.com/store/...mistry/ethol-lpd-paper-dev-gallon-liquid.html and http://www.glazerscamera.com/store/film-darkroom/darkroom-supplies/chemistry/ethol-lpd-paper-dev-gallon-powder.html
     
  13. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    Liquidol, from the Formulary, was designed to exceed Dektol in shelf life and in tray life and capacity. In tests, I was able to get 2X longer tray life or 2X greater capacity. This is in direct comparisons of working strength solutions.

    PE
     
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  15. Oren Grad

    Oren Grad Subscriber

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    I've had good luck with Ilford PQ Universal and Ilford Multigrade. I buy them in the large jugs, which I may not use up for more than a year. They do gradually darken, so obviously some oxidation is occurring. But at the standard 1+9 dilution I've never seen any change in performance in the tray before using up a bottle.
     
  16. polyglot

    polyglot Member

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    I have a half-full 5L bottle of Ilford Multigrade concentrate that would have to be at least 6-8 years old (someone abandoned it in a club darkroom, I grabbed it after a couple years). Still works fine though it's about apple-juice colour.
     
  17. brian steinberger

    brian steinberger Member

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    I'd go LPD replenished. I used to like 130 but had too many problems with bad glycin and such and it is quite a bit more expensive than LPD. LPD is the best value and most flexible developer out there I believe.
     
  18. zsas

    zsas Member

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    Another shout out to Liquidol...
     
  19. cdholden

    cdholden Member

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    John,
    What's your experience with that 30 day limit? I just mixed up a 4L batch (and decanted to smaller bottles) this weekend and went through ~20 sheets of 8x10 Emaks-888 (Nuance, etc). I mixed it 1:1 but after the first few test strips, decided I wanted more contrast. I started with about 600ml of 1:1, then added about 350ml of stock to boost contrast to where I wanted it. It looked nice, but I want to play with that combo some more before making any judgement on it. I was happy enough to want to continue working with it. I just hope I can use the same tray of developer when I get to turn the lights out again in 2 weeks.

    Chris
     
  20. cmo

    cmo Member

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    Now I remember that other name... in East Germany they had a developernamed N 113 that lasts a very long time, even in trays. It's still available as Calbe N 113 (powder, very cheap).
     
  21. hrst

    hrst Member

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    I use Dektol mixed two years ago without any problems, stored at room temp (23degC). (I am surprised it still works perfectly.)

    I have 5-10x the (conservative) shelf life specified by the manufacturers and 2-3x the shelf life compared to others here at APUG for practically all processes and all chemicals.

    The answer is, again, very simple:

    squeezed PET plastic bottles.

    But for some reason, most people want that their chemicals go bad, because it gives more chances to discuss shelf-life related matters :D. So, people insist playing around with their half-full brown glass bottles and lousy HDPE plastic bottles with leaking caps, even though the sustainable solution is just around any corner! So, I know only one other guy here who is using squeezed PET plastic bottles. He seems to have even longer shelf lives!

    And, if you want to go even further, dropping the temperature is a very good way. Just don't go too near to the freezing point.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 3, 2012
  22. Mick Fagan

    Mick Fagan Subscriber

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    Calbe N 113 is certainly very cheap, works out at $2.03 AUD including taxes.

    Mick.
     
  23. Bundesphotograph

    Bundesphotograph Member

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    You can buy Calbe N 113 under the name of Adox "Adotol konstant" too.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 3, 2012
  24. Bundesphotograph

    Bundesphotograph Member

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  25. Stan160

    Stan160 Member

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    I bought a sealed but second hand 5L bottle of Ilford Multigrade a few years ago - I forget how long but at least 3, probably longer. Decanted into two glass and three plastic 1L bottles. Opened the last plastic bottle a few weeks ago - the concentrate was dark brown so I just poured it away. The contents of the glass bottle that I opened afterwards had only slight discoloration, and the developers works fine when diluted to working solution. Presumably the difference was an oxygen-proof seal on the glass bottle, but not the plastic one.
     
  26. Smudger

    Smudger Member

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    There you are :X different replies,X different developers.
    Before you give up on Dektol,consider this :
    Mixing and storage are critical. For maximum storage, pre-boil the mixing water (reduces oxygen content).
    Dektol requires vigorous stirring, start with a small amount,dissolve it,add more,etc.
    Never shake the container -you will aerate the mix and introduce oxygen = short storage life.
    I use a power drill & agitator, but don't let that sucker spin near the top.
    Use PET soda bottles or glass. Let stand fully filled overnight & cap.
    Butane gas part-full bottles.
    If mixed developer is darker than a light brown - you made an error,as above,or the powder was bad to begin with.
    Diluted 1:2,good working soln will make good prints until the tray is empty.