Developers in Tablet Form - Coincidence or Destiny?

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by holmburgers, May 6, 2011.

  1. holmburgers

    holmburgers Member

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    Ok, so I ask 'coincidence or destiny?' because last night I was reading through a book with a boat load of old developer formulas (W&J's PF&F) and among them were a few references to tablet form developers. This lit a light bulb...

    And what do I see when I log in this morning?? This thread.... http://www.apug.org/forums/forum37/90953-mintol-developer.html using "frisk" tablets.

    So, it seems that it is indeed destiny. :laugh:

    In all seriousness, a tablet seems like a very convenient way to package dry chemicals and especially for intermittent users of chemistry.

    What I'd like to know is how to make tablets. What is the binding agent? I'm sure there are a million patents in this vein, but I haven't looked yet.

    I hope that the above mentioned OP will chime in.

    Thanks!
     
  2. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Subscriber

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    So rather than mix up the whole of the contents to e.g. one gallon like you do with D76, you want to thoroughly mix the dry ingredients then add some sort of binder and mould it into convenient tablet form so you only mix the right amount at the time you want it.

    It sounds like a good idea to me and I'm sure it can be done.


    Steve.
     
  3. holmburgers

    holmburgers Member

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    Yeah, that's basically it! Another alternative, would be to mix up your own chemistry and put it into tablet form.

    I guess one good question is, if I can make a suitably homogenous mix, what's the advantage of tablet form as opposed to powder in little baggies or something?

    But, I suppose it would be convenient and well, fun. Furthermore, perhaps a coating on the tablets could effectively seal the ingredients from oxidation, and thus the storage container wouldn't be as critical.

    The wiki articles on pills & tablets (pharmacy) are pretty insightful. Some common binders (excipients) include glucose and hydroxymethylcellulose.
     
  4. ArtTwisted

    ArtTwisted Member

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    If kodak sold that I would be all over it, hell if anyone sold that I would be all over it, especially for the rare chemicals I dont use often but for some reason have to buy in massive quantities.
     
  5. railwayman3

    railwayman3 Member

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  6. holmburgers

    holmburgers Member

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    Yeah, that's exactly what I thought. Imagine, you have a pill of D-76 (or whatever) that's measured for 500mL, drop it in and you're good to go. 1L, no problem, drop in two.

    There are many pill presses and pill rollers on eBay and the like. Apparently herbal medicine folks do this kind of thing.

    Thanks for the links!
     
  7. vpwphoto

    vpwphoto Member

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    I know a guy here at Purdue that does this sort of thing with medicines. He is working on tablet food... I told him if only he could do Merlot in tablet form without the "gritty" feel of his coffee tablets. (Yes he has coffee chewables).
     
  8. nhemann

    nhemann Member

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    The idea of tablet form developers is pretty cool but I would make these comments. 1) tablets can be a real bastard to dissolve completely, especially if you have a coating on them to prevent oxidation (and hence water uptake.) You can actually buy sodium sulfite tablets but they are so annoying to use that it was easier to just use granulated. 2) I basically do what you are describing - I just calculate the amount of dry chem I need for a volume and weight it out - even cheapo scales are accurate to a tenth of a gram.
     
  9. holmburgers

    holmburgers Member

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    I fear you are right. I don't know if it offers much of an advantage, but I will say that I wish that someone manufactured and sold them in this manner.

    If coated in CMC gum (hydroxy methyl cellulose) or even gelatin, they would definitely require hot water to dissolve quickly. And after that, now you need to cool your solution back down to 20°, kind of negating the convenience and use-when-needed aspect. So yeah... hmmm, sounds good on paper I guess.

    But if the right advantage comes to light, it'd be a fun project!
     
  10. Rich Ullsmith

    Rich Ullsmith Subscriber

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    If you are thinking dissolve the tablet and you're ready to go, your development times will have to be adjusted, or wait until the next day to allow the dissolved O2 in the water to do its thing. I guess that's not too much trouble, for the convenience of it.
     
  11. holmburgers

    holmburgers Member

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    Hmm, I guess this is lost on me. Care to elaborate?

    I've never used a powder developer right after mixing, but have used HC-110 in that way.
     
  12. wogster

    wogster Member

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    I think for powders, a break apart plastic container might work better, so you have a two part sealed plastic container, just large enough to hold the chemicals needed, you twist it and it comes apart drop the whole thing into your container swirl it around, fish the plastic bits out, and use the chemistry. By the same token, it would be possible to have two parts to it, where they combine when it breaks apart.
     
  13. BetterSense

    BetterSense Member

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    Even better than tablet would be small single-serve packets, like ketchup packets, of HC110 or similar liquid developer. I would package 10mL so that you can easily mix up 50:1 with 500mL of water.
     
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  15. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    "that's not bromo-seltzer, its dektol !"
     
  16. Nicholas Lindan

    Nicholas Lindan Advertiser Advertiser

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    The standard Kodak amateur developer was a tube of M-Q Elon Quinol developer tablets. 'M-Q' was a standard developer from many companies, usually in two tablets, the second containing the 'activator' (carbonate, one presumes).

    The product was succeeded by the 'Tri-Chem' pack of three foil packets that made up 8 oz of developer, stop and fix - enough for developing and contacting a standard amateur roll of 616 film.
     
  17. panchro-press

    panchro-press Member

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    Some friends and I spent the better part of our sophomore year trying to make Beer Fizzies. We never succeeded. Still seems like a good idea, though.

    -30-
     
  18. vpwphoto

    vpwphoto Member

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    Thats the best on ever...:cool::D:cool::confused::tongue::smile::wink:
     
  19. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    Developer tablets came and went. They were not popular AFAIK. I also don't remember any outstanding qualities of these tablets.

    FRISK is not a developer. Neither Menthol nor Phenol are developers, in fact, they are weak cyan couplers. The developer in the referenced thread will develop without the FRISK.

    PE
     
  20. michaelbsc

    michaelbsc Member

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    I have actually thought about doing this. Those little "essential oils" bottles are readily available, not very expensive if you buy a case of them, and are frankly quite good little bottles. Spend an afternoon filling a bunch of little bottles, and you've got easy to use premeasured chemicals that are stored in full bottles.

    In case the little bottles don't hold exactly 10 ml, so what if you're dilution comes out at 1:47 or 1:56 instead of 1:50? If you're using individualized development times you've determined by testing, this slight dilution change will be accounted for in your time standard.

    Of course, it assumes one shot use.

    MB
     
  21. 2F/2F

    2F/2F Member

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    I don't know if it would be much help having pre-mixed powdered developers in tablet form instead of pouch form, but having individual ingredients that way would be nice. A huge gel tablet of 100 g of sodium sulfite (or 10 smaller ones of 10 g each), or 1 g and 5 g tablets of metol or hydroquinone, for instance. 10 g of potassium bromide would be a helpful one, as would 10 g of sodium carbonate.
     
  22. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    Several notes here to be considered.........

    Kodak sold small packages of all of its chemistry in pouches in the 80s and 90s. Entire kits were sold in small boxes about 5x7x1 inch to make 1L of process chemistry. This included all color and B&W products. I still have a few boxes here with incomplete ingredients. They were not very cost effective for the average individual. The same is true of the tablet chemistry.

    So, to me, everything here has been deja vu! :wink:

    PE
     
  23. nworth

    nworth Subscriber

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    Back when I was in junior high school (a very long time ago), I remember that there were a number of tablet developers available. they were one shots, much like the Kodak foil packs. 1951 was about the last date for them. I can't remember exactly what they were or who made them, but I believe most were film developers and some were special purpose. I think one was from Agfa.
     
  24. heespharm

    heespharm Member

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    I did some pharmaceutical research in pharmacy school at purdue....

    Many many problems the binders you would need may change the chemical composition of what your working on... Tablet presses are expensive and need cause slot of heat when the tablet is formed... Lastly tablet presses are dangerous... When making tablets I had to stand behind bullet proof glass in case one of the dyes shot out and killed me

    I would go for pouches.... I have small plastic bags and keep d76, dektol, and tf2 ready to mix just add 500 ml of water and your ready to go
     
  25. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    "Tabloid" form photographic chemistry was available from the late 1800's onwards, an 1898 reference notes that acetic acid had to be omitted from the "Tabloid" form of a Uranium intensifier. Chemistry for the Ozobrome process was also manufactured in Tabloid for in the early 1900's.

    The major disadvantage of "Tabloid" chemistry appears to have been some tablets were more difficult to dissolve but a reasonably full range of chemistry was available from Burroughs Welcome under their "Tabloid" brand name by the 1930's and 40's.

    Ian
     
  26. Gerald C Koch

    Gerald C Koch Member

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    Preventing mixtures of dry chemicals from reacting is a very complex art. Pressing them into a tablet compounds the problems. The problem with the Tabloid products was that they did not keep very well.