Color processor, dirty prints, what to do?

Discussion in 'Darkroom Equipment' started by Imke, Apr 7, 2006.

  1. Imke

    Imke Member

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    Hi all,
    the Fujimoto CP-51 I bought on eBay gives me dirty prints, I let the machine run for 24 hours with Jobo Processor Clean II in it, cleaned all the rollers in the dryer (which were mighty caked), scrubbed and hand-cleaned all the rollers of the 4 racks, let the machine run on pure water for a bunch of hours, and still get a streaky residue on my prints.

    The manual recommends using clean-up sheets (which cost a fortune), and I have heard that running regular (already developed) paper throguh the processor at start-up would take care of the issue, but in my case, it didn't.

    Does anybody have experience with this problem?

    Thanks a bunch!
    Imke
     
  2. Samuel B

    Samuel B Member

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    I have had this problem with minilab machines. Sometimes it has just taken quite a few prints through the processor to clear the dirt, but this is probably not practical, as it can be a waste of paper. In my lab I clean the racks with a special rack cleaning solution, I think it's called tar & rack cleaner. I have heard of people soaking the racks in houshold bleach with good results, but I have never done this because I was uncertain weather household bleach would cause chemical problems. Sometimes you just have to keep cleaning and cleaning, esp if the machine has been neglected for some time.
     
  3. Kino

    Kino Member

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    I used to clean an RA-4 paper cleaner with a tar remover, but cannot remember what brand it was, however a quick Google search brought this up:
    (never used, don't know how effective it is, but it seems cheap)

    Hydra Sprint 2

    http://www.qentinc.com/cleaners.html

    I also used a citrus-based cleaner, but again, I can't remember what name...

    The old dichromate bleach rack cleaners are toxic to compound and use, but they sure worked good; frankly, I would try the other stuff first.

    Frank W.
     
  4. jd callow

    jd callow Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Some things I would recommend may be specific to my machine but...
    1) pull the racks and clean the rollers with water with a bit or toilet bowl cleaner of dilute stop bath and a brush

    2) do the same with the tanks and rinse both racks and rollers completely

    2) don't leave developer in it for more than a couple days without running some prints

    3) run clean out sheets* through the machine every time you start a new printing session

    4) if you have a 'washerless' system (the wash tanks use a hypo-clear and are not plumbed) find out what it will take to turn it into a plumbed wash system.

    I used a washerless system on a fotoprint and it really is not so great and the wash water and rollers got pretty nasty pretty quickly.


    *clean out sheets are undeveloped paper
     
  5. Samuel B

    Samuel B Member

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    Just had a look at my cleaner, it's called Tar & Rack cleaner, (contains 2.5g/L Sodium Hydroxide, 44g/L Alkaline Salts). I get it from a specialist photolab supplier. It's a bit harsh on the nose, but it does work very well.
     
  6. Robert Brummitt

    Robert Brummitt Member

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    Lysol toilet bowl cleaner with scotchbright pads and lots of water.
     
  7. Imke

    Imke Member

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    Thank you all!
    Toilet bowl cleaner, oh lordy! Doesn't that stuff eat away at the rubbber rollers? Some of the rollers seem more porous than others, and I thought i had to be careful with any strong chemicals to come in touch with them and possibly soak in and contaminate the chemistry ... Too cautious?

    I have been successful in getting lyme off the plastic gears of the racks by soaking them in a 50/50 water/vinegar solution, which makes me think that could work on the rollers, too. (Just wary of putting it onto the dev. racks for above reasons).

    Mr.Callow, thanks for the clean-out tip, and thank goodness the proocessor has a washer-dryer module, so isn't a washless.

    Back into the darkroom for more scrubbing.

    Cheerio,
    Imke
     
  8. Imke

    Imke Member

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    OK, I have solved the mystery of the streaky residue.

    I completely took the racks apart and found that the cushion rollers of the second rack were essentially decomposing, plus some rollers of the 2 wash racks are falling apart, leaving rubber on the prints, which turn into streaks in the dryer.

    Sigh.

    There goes the dream of a great ebay deal.
    Anybody selling spare rollers for a CP-51???
     
  9. jd callow

    jd callow Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    JOBO USA in Ann Arbor MI was at one time a distributor of this thing (as well as Durst and of course JOBO). They appear to be out of the photo biz, but who ever took over might be able to help you. A search of the web should prove beneficial.
     
  10. Imke

    Imke Member

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    Thanks, yup, OmegaSatter in Maryland took over the analog division of Jobo, they seem to be a bit overwhelmed with the task, but are slowly catching on (and are very friendly), I dealt with them regarding my CP-31 already.

    Those rollers are extremely pricey, so if anybody has a processor, or racks, or parts sitting around unused... :smile:

    Cheers,
    Imke