Daylight (Tank) developing of 4x5

Discussion in 'Darkroom Equipment' started by JLP, Mar 21, 2006.

  1. JLP

    JLP Subscriber

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    Thanks first to APUG and the great many resources this site gives access to.
    Just recently became a subscriber and now need a little advice.

    Using MF the last couple of years after many years of 35mm but have now jumped into the deep water and bought a 4x5 (Shen-Hao)

    My question is: What is the best tank for film development (Know it is very subjective) I do not have a completely dark wet room, only a dark loading room.
    I use Jobo's tanks for 120 and 35 but can see that the Jobo for 4x5 is to large for hand agitation.

    Any suggestions will be appreciated.
     
  2. AZLF

    AZLF Member

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    I just looked at the name on my daylight 4x5" tank. I thought it would say "Yankee" but in fact it is an "FR" daylight tank.I seem to recall that Yankee was the name of one made for years that looks about the same as this one. I picked it up off ebay about a year ago. It is about 5" wide and 6" tall and the 4x5" sheets go in "portrait" style in ten curved curved plastic film guides. It is certainly bigger than a Nikor style roll film tank but not too difficult to hand agitate. I have never developed more than 5 sheets at a time in it so far but you can do ten in a sitting. It does take more developer to fill it than even a larger multi roll stacking type tank but hey, this is LARGE FORMAT you recall. I don't think I paid more than $10.00 it.

    The one thing I would caution about is to keep track of the film orientation when loading it so that when you agitate you are causing the developer/fixer to move through the sheets of film rather than splashing up against the broad side of the first/last side sheet of film. The slots the film sheets rest in are not very wide and I think is is possible that if you were to agitate in the latter manner the liquid moving against the film could dislodge the first or last sheet and cause it to bend out of the slot and come in contact with the next sheet thus causing uneven development or spots on the negative where the sheets were in contact.

    But other than that the tank has worked very well for me and I am in about the same condition you are in terms of lack of darkroom. I use a bathroom at the back of my house after dark with the door closed for loading and unloading and develop at the kitchen sink. I do have a large film loading bag I could use in daylight but it is a real pita to use as I have not built a wire frame for the inside of it as of yet.
     
  3. ggriffi

    ggriffi Member

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    I have a Combiplan tank. It wasn't the easiest thing to work with at first but I have do pretty well with it now. For me the two hardest things to do, was getting the sheets loaded correctly and then making sure that the lid was completely closed. If the lid wasn't secure, I would get these annoying "dribble" leaks. so I just made sure that I went around the lid twice with pressure to make sure it was secure.

    g
     
  4. rjs003

    rjs003 Subscriber

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    I use a Yankee tank and stand development with Rodinal. Works just great.
     
  5. Konical

    Konical Subscriber

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    Good Evening, JLP,

    Just search the Forum; we've had various discussions on the different ways to process sheet film. Try "BTZS" or "drum" or "Unicolor" or "Chromega" or "Jobo" and you should find a ton of posts.

    Konical
     
  6. JLP

    JLP Subscriber

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    Hi and thanks all for the responses.
    At least i don't have to leave the house to load film and can wash in my bathroom.

    Will try the different search advices.

    Thanks again.
     
  7. Nick Zentena

    Nick Zentena Member

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    Which Jobo tanks are you using? If you're using the 2500 type tanks then all you need is a new reel.

    The 2500 tanks can be hand agitated but they use a lot of chemicals that way. It's easier to get the midsized 2551 tank and roller base. Bases [unicolor or beseler] aren't that expensive on the used market.
     
  8. Neal

    Neal Subscriber

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    Dear JLP,

    I tried trays, FR tanks and hangers before getting some Jobo 2500 series drums. They make developing sheet film as easy as roll film. I built a little drive system using a drill press and parts from a local scavenging/surplus house. It's so easy I even use it for a single sheet of 4x5.

    Neal Wydra
     
  9. JLP

    JLP Subscriber

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    Currently using a 1520 for my 120 rolls. Would that take a 4x5 spool?
     
  10. Sportera

    Sportera Member

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    I use the Combiplan. I hated it the first time I used it, it fills slow and the negs wouldn't stay in their holders, but the I learned a few tricks. Agitating on the short axis keeps the film from being shaken loose by the sloshing developer, and starting my timer at the instant I poor the developer in helped a lot. I get much better results now than when I tray processed. No more scrathed negs too.
     
  11. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    The 2500 tanks are wider than the 1500 - they are as wide (exactly) as the 28xx print drums. So the 1500 tanks won't take the 4x5" film reel.

    I used a 2521 tank with inversion until I bought a CPE2. It uses a lot of developer volume, so I used very dilute developers...
     
  12. NikoSperi

    NikoSperi Member

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    Why wouldn't one be able to hand agitate using a Jobo 2521? I know I do... Sure, it takes 1500ml to fill it, but that's only 15-30ml Rodinal! :wink:
    If I find a roller base, maybe I'll try that too one day, but for the moment, I'm too busy trying to find my dev times doing it by hand to go to another type of agitation.
     
  13. Nick Zentena

    Nick Zentena Member

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    The 2521 is too short of the motorized bases most use. Need at least the 2551.
     
  14. bauhausler

    bauhausler Member

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    I use a CPE2 and 2521 tank. Develop up to 6 sheets at a time and 270ml of solution. Reaaly nice and easy.
     
  15. Kilgallb

    Kilgallb Subscriber

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    I use an old Unicolor 8x 10 Roller Print Drum. It holds two 4x5 films and requires only 125 ml of D76. I continuously roll the drum during development After 10seconds with stop bath I turn off the lights and transfer the film to fixer in a tray. This step can be done in dim light.

    Works great and gives very even development.
     
  16. JLP

    JLP Subscriber

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    Again thanks for the many good recomendations.
    bought the Yankee and developed the first few sheets yesterday, seems to be a fairly easy tank to work but i now realize why LF shooters are trying to dilute dev's as much as possible. Huhhh it's thirsty.
     
  17. markbb

    markbb Member

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    The Paterson orbital processor can be used for B&W LF developing. It'll either take 4 sheets of 5x4 or 1 sheet of 10x8. The bottom of the processor needs roughing-up a bit, use wire wool or a small power tool to add some texture to the surface. you'll need 1 litre of chemicals, but you can re-use this, check the fact sheets for the chemicals you are using.

    For C41 and E6 processing, you'll need someway of maintaining the tank and chemicals at 38 degrees. I now use Jobo Expert tanks and the CPA processor having worked up from a Combiplan tank, a Yankee tank and the Jobo 2509 reels (I found the later hard to load with 6 sheets of film without them touching). I still use my paterson processor for low volumns or when doing N-/N+ processing for B&W.