Digibase C41 kit stabilizer drying funky

Discussion in 'Color: Film, Paper, and Chemistry' started by kiss-o-matic, May 21, 2014.

  1. kiss-o-matic

    kiss-o-matic Member

    Messages:
    23
    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2013
    Shooter:
    35mm RF
    Hi

    I've got the Rollei Digibase C41 kit. It seems to work fine, except the stabilizer. It tends to crystalize on the negs when drying. I asked at rangefinderforum.com and the best I got was to use Kodak Stabilizer (not available in my area) or to clean the negs, which is easy but I'd rather avoid that step. Anyone have any other advice? Dilute it? Try a different temperature?

    Cheers
    Paul
     
  2. Rhodes

    Rhodes Member

    Messages:
    494
    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2009
    Location:
    Figueira da
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Crystalize how? Does it apper like a dry white foam after the film is dry? And did you use tap water to make the stabilizer? If so, that is because the water is very hard. I got the same problem. For the stabilizer bath is best to use distilled water.
     
  3. pdeeh

    pdeeh Member

    Messages:
    3,513
    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2012
    Location:
    UK
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    do you mean dilute it more?

    Or do you mean you are using the stock solution straight out of the bottle? Which might be interesting, as it is intended to be diluted 100+900. you probably shouldn't dilute it further

    Otherwise, i'd second the idea of using distilled or deionised water to mix it, which is what I do and I don't get any marks.
     
  4. Xmas

    Xmas Member

    Messages:
    6,459
    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2006
    Location:
    UK
    Shooter:
    35mm RF
    If you need to descale your kettle at all frequently you need to use some of:

    - deionized water to mix the preservative in C41 kit, and leave it to soak for longer
    - a proper film squeegee cleaned carefully each use
    - hang sprocket hole side down rather than along length

    I only do the squeegee still get ocassional deposit
     
  5. bvy

    bvy Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,897
    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2009
    Location:
    Pittsburgh
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Are you in the US? Adorama sells the Kodak Final Rinse for $6.95 (concentrate to make five liters) and will ship it for a few dollars more. I had the same problem with the Rollei stabilizer.
     
  6. wombat2go

    wombat2go Subscriber

    Messages:
    298
    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2013
    Location:
    Michigan
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    The mixture ratios shown on Item 4 of the C41 digibase Instruction manual are, apparently, wrong.
    This will give a mixture that is about twice as concentrated as it should be, and the result will be "blobs" and the film will be sticky when dry.

    The correct ratio is shown on the Stabilizer concentrate bottle
    that is {water, 475 ml } + {stabilizer, 25 ml} = 500ml

    This error was pointed out to me some time ago by Apug member Nuff.
    With correct ratio, and draining the film horizontally in a spiral on a paper towel before hanging, I am getting much better results.
    Thanks Nuff!
     
  7. kiss-o-matic

    kiss-o-matic Member

    Messages:
    23
    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2013
    Shooter:
    35mm RF
    Hi Guys

    Thanks for the prompt replies. I mixed everything with distilled water, using the instructions on the internet. It seems that wombat2go has had the exact same issue as me, which is the "clumps". You can see them on the film if you look hard, but it's painfully apparent on the negs. Imagine a straight line of white crap. :smile:

    Anyway, I am pretty sure I mixed the directions on the page, which was 900ml water + 100ml of stabilizer for the working solution. That gives me 1 liter, which says it will last all 60 rolls (the maximum the developer will last). So, with that being wrong, it looks like I need to dilute that by 1+1, giving me 2 liters. Should I assume it will be exhausted after roughly 30 rolls?

    The vendor I got it from said the stabilizer is simply a wetting agent, and has nothing to do w/ the development. Would any B&W wetting agent (Driwel, etc.) work just as well? I'm in Japan, not the US, so getting Kodak stabilizer is a hassle.
     
  8. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

    Messages:
    25,894
    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2005
    Location:
    Rochester, NY
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    The stabilizer is Photo FLo + formalin. The Final Rinse is Photo Flo + a proprietary germ killer.

    Neither should crystallize.

    PE
     
  9. kiss-o-matic

    kiss-o-matic Member

    Messages:
    23
    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2013
    Shooter:
    35mm RF
    Don't know what to tell you, but it does. Maybe crystalize is a bad word to describe it. Congeal? Either way, it's not pretty, and apparently I'm not the only one it's happened to.
     
  10. Rudeofus

    Rudeofus Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,586
    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2009
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Let me guess: there are no visible crystals on your film surface, but white drying marks that look the same as the patterns on a glass surface where droplets of tap water were left to dry. I have the exact same drying marks when I use too much Ilfotol in my black&white final rinse, so excessive concentration of wetting agent in that STAB bath is the likely problem.

    Either make your own STAB from Formalin and a tiny amount of wetting agent, or dilute the STAB you have 1+4 and add some Formalin.

    PS: you did use distilled water for making your STAB, yes?
     
  11. kiss-o-matic

    kiss-o-matic Member

    Messages:
    23
    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2013
    Shooter:
    35mm RF
    Hi. Yes, I used distilled water for all three baths plus the stabilizer. I shouldn't have any "hardness of tap water" issues. Now I'm just assuming I should dilute my 1 liter of stabilizer into two, and use it for half of the suggested rolls. I'll probably experiment next week when I have some more time.
     
  12. Rudeofus

    Rudeofus Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,586
    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2009
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Make sure you add some Formalin (should be available in well stocked pharmacies), lest the extra dilution diminishes the bactericidal/fungicidal activity of your C41 STAB. You can test optimal dilution with small test clips, just dilute more and more until there are no drying marks. You can add any amount of Formalin as it leaves no residue. Caution: Formalin is volatile and both toxic and a carcinogen, so handle with appropriate care!
     
  13. pdmk

    pdmk Member

    Messages:
    38
    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2014
    Location:
    Europe
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Hi I am using this set for developing my films, mix 1:9 (25ml stab +225ml water) as per manual and I use tap water. This should be working for 15 films, I usually use it for 10-12 films.
    never had this problem. Maybe your stabilizer is old? Try to mix it again in clear bottle
     
  14. Rudeofus

    Rudeofus Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,586
    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2009
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    I accidentally mixed my STAB with tap water once - never again, the drying marks even showed up in prints and scans :sad:

    Either your tap water is unusually soft, or your STAB maker found a compound that would bind Ca2+ into a volatile compound. My bets are on the first option ...
     
  15. ala

    ala Member

    Messages:
    16
    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2014
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Hi! Did you make the experiment?

    I am using Digibase c41 as well. Was really surprised by the suggestion about the wrong proportion in the manual in this thread...

    I made 1 litre mixing 100ml of the STAB with 900 ml of a distilled water. After soaking the film in it I wiped it with a film cotton cloth, which was also soaked in the solution. The film came out with no marks.

    Now I am curious if I can add twice more water and get the same result. Please keep us posted with the result of your experiment!
     
  16. wombat2go

    wombat2go Subscriber

    Messages:
    298
    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2013
    Location:
    Michigan
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Using the Digibase C41,another tip that seems to be helping:

    Immediately after pulling film off the spiral, I get it into the filtered airflow and orient it so the drops start falling laterally to one side of the images.
    With 120, I hold the ends of the strip in a bow and tap the edge of the strip fairly vigorously against a plastic covered surface.

    With 135, I cut the strip in half and holding each horizontally,in turn shake them in the air.
    The idea is to encourage the drops to fall to one side of the strip before they start to congeal.

    When the strips visibly have no drops, it is safe to hang the strips vertically to dry for a few hours

    If the film strip is pulled from the spiral and immediately hung vertically, the drops run down, getting more concentrated with sticky solution as they dry, so the images at the lower end get more problems.