Cleaning filthy drums?

Discussion in 'Darkroom Equipment' started by Greg Davis, Aug 2, 2011.

  1. Greg Davis

    Greg Davis Member

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    Recently I have purchased some old and used Chromega print drums that have a coating of silver on the inside. Anyone have a recommendation on a cleaner to get them like new? Jobo Processor Clean II is gone and Lysol Toilet Cleaner doesn't do it, so I need some suggestions before I try running paper through them. They are large 20x24 drums, so I definitely don't want to waste paper in dirty drums. Does Kodak Developer System Cleaner and Neutralizer work?
     
  2. Ian C

    Ian C Member

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  3. Rick A

    Rick A Subscriber

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    Either Clayton Blue photo systems cleaner or Clayton No Chrome Developer Systems Cleaner, both available from Freestyle. Look under B&W chems, specialty chems.
     
  4. Bob Carnie

    Bob Carnie Subscriber

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    Greg

    We use Zep Industrial 505 - cleaner and degreaser and then clean well with water.

    Home Depot Item

    Bob
     
  5. Mainecoonmaniac

    Mainecoonmaniac Subscriber

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    If it doesn't affect your prints, just leave it alone. I have a developer print tray that has a patina of silver that I've used for years without problems.
     
  6. Jim Noel

    Jim Noel Member

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    Fill it with water and then drop in several tablets of Polident. Leave overnight. Next morning rinse well and use.
     
  7. Rick A

    Rick A Subscriber

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    I've done that for years with my small trays and tanks, even my slot processor.
     
  8. Greg Davis

    Greg Davis Member

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    I'll try the polident, then the Zep 505, then the Clayton, then Kodak. Hopefully the the first and cheapest will work and I won't have to shell out for the rest.
     
  9. Greg Davis

    Greg Davis Member

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    Polident didn't work. It didn't even make a slight difference. I'll try the ZEP 505 next.
     
  10. Greg Davis

    Greg Davis Member

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    ZEP 505 didn't work, either. Here are some pictures of the buildup. I have the original, after polident, and after ZEP 505. I will have to try one of the Clayton cleaners next, probably the blue one, then the no chrome. Finally, if they don't work, I will try the expensive Kodak System cleaner and neutralizer.
     

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  11. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    Greg;

    Try blix and if that does not work the only thing left that I can think of is Potassium Dichromate and Sulfuric Acid. If that does not work, it is not Silver. in that case I suggest concentrated NaOH mixed with concentrated Na2SO3. It must be Sulfur from a fix or blix that went bad.

    PE
     
  12. Greg Davis

    Greg Davis Member

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    I have the formulas for Kodak TC-1 and TC-3. TC-1 contains potassium dichromate and sulfuric acid and TC-3 is very similar to the current Kodak cleaner, but less expensive. I may try that. I have 5 20x24 drums and several smaller drums that all have this dull gray staining, so I would like to get them cleaned out.
     
  13. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    The Dicrhomate cleaner will work until it turns green.

    PE
     
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  15. Grainy

    Grainy Member

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  16. John Wiegerink

    John Wiegerink Subscriber

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    I had an old Ciba drum with the same problem and tried a ton of things with no real results. I finally decided to do nothing since the film/oxidation on it had no bearing on the output of my print. I might have tried a little harder to remove the staining if I were going to sell the drum, but I wasn't selling it. I'd say if you're not selling it then just buy yourself some very thick sunglasses so you can't see the stain. Just joking of course, but you get the drift. JohnW
     
  17. Photo Engineer

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    Just as an afterthought, I have been using my Jobo drums for - well, pracitcally forever, at least 20 years or so...

    And, I have no staining or discoloration in them at all.

    The processes include B&W, C-41 and RA4 along with E-6 and Ektaprint 3 and Ektaprint 2.

    I wonder why you all are having problems.

    PE
     
  18. Ian C

    Ian C Member

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    PE, that's my experience too. I've used my Jobo drums extensively since 1988 with no deposits. I never used anything but a water rinse.

    Possibly the drums were used for selenium intensification of films. That will leave a stubborn, somewhat shiny silver deposit on Patterson trays.
     
  19. Greg Davis

    Greg Davis Member

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    Nothing is on the Jobo drums I have, even the old used ones, but these Chromega drums have quite a bit of build-up. I suspect they are silver stains from RA-4 since that is the process they are most used for and all my used drums exhibit it, regardless of where they came from. The previous owners may not have kept them as clean as they should between uses, Ron.
     
  20. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    Greg;

    The blix step, when used properly, should leave no silver stain as it is designed to remove all silver. This is another puzzle to me.

    PE
     
  21. Greg Davis

    Greg Davis Member

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    It may not be silver. I don't know what it is, but it is very stubborn. My wife thinks it's hard water, but my drums come from several different locations, usually as a miscellaneous item in a bulk purchase of used stuff. I may try "Lime Away" while I wait for my TC-1 chemicals to arrive just to make her happy. The last thing I may try, if no chemical solution is found, is scrubbing with a mild abrasive, but I really do not want to risk removing material.
     
  22. Monito

    Monito Member

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    I would advise strongly against abrasion since that multiplies the surface area several times and provides lots of hard to reach sites for chemicals to trap and interfere with the next chemical step in a sequence.
     
  23. Greg Davis

    Greg Davis Member

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    And that is why I want to find a chemical answer.
     
  24. Monito

    Monito Member

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    You don't want to do that. Much better to simply live with the very thin film of whatever it is, rather than scratch up and pit the surface providing numerous sites for chemical carryover and contamination. Since the film is resisting chemical efforts to clean it, it is very stable and thus not contaminative.
     
  25. Greg Davis

    Greg Davis Member

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    FYI, CLR (Calcium, Lime, Rust) cleaner doesn't work at all.
     
  26. Photo Engineer

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    Give us a list of what you tried. Then we might come up with something.

    PE