E6 Blix Sources

Discussion in 'Color: Film, Paper, and Chemistry' started by sharpbokeh, Feb 18, 2011.

  1. sharpbokeh

    sharpbokeh Member

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    Hello all,

    I have been developing my own E6 slides for about 5 years now. I usually use 1L kits, but recently came across a deal on large 15L jugs of Tetenal 1st & color developer. Now I'm looking for some blix to complement these but I'm having a problem finding it in similar quantity. I can only find it as part of a kit. Can anyone point me to a source where I can buy compatible blix separately, or where I can get the components to mix my own? Thanks !
     
  2. Bob-D659

    Bob-D659 Member

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  3. tnabbott

    tnabbott Member

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  4. John Meyer

    John Meyer Member

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    Try doing a thread search with "Suggested replacement for Kodak 5l kit"
    it lists all the product numbers for E6..
    John
     
  5. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    You will need:

    Ferric Chloride or Ferric Nitrate. If the latter is used you will need Ammonium Chloride as well. You will need enough EDTA to make the Ferric EDTA complex and have a 10% excess of EDTA. You will need Sodium Sulfite. Or, just buy Ammonium Ferric EDTA solution, add a 10% excess of EDTA based on EDTA already there, and add Ammonium Chloride and Sodium Sulfite.

    That make the bleach half.

    You can use C-41 Fixer for the fix part. Mixing them both together will make a blix, but you can see that the ingredients will be weakened by their dilution of each other. That is why neither Kodak nor Fuji make a blix. It becomes too weak.

    You will have to have a method to adjust the pH of the above to about 6.5 at 20 deg C.

    Also, you will need either a pre-bleach or a Formalin Stabilizer to give proper image stability. This is no matter what kit or formula you use. Otherwise, your slides will begin to fade in about 10+ years.

    Are you sure you shouldn't just buy some pre-prepared bleach and fix?

    PE
     
  6. brucemuir

    brucemuir Member

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    snip
    It's no longer a case of just buying it.
    It's hard to run down and most wont ship it.

    When you do find a supplier that will ship they never have everything you need so you get to pay hazmat a few different times and have things shipped from the far reaches of the USA.
     
  7. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    Can you get the above chemicals?? If so, and if you are comfortable with mixing, I will give you a formula!

    PE
     
  8. hrst

    hrst Member

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    Ferric chloride is used widely in etching of printed circuit boards (especially popular within electronic hobbyists) and for this purpose it should be available for very low price. I don't know about the quality but probably good enough. The one sold for that purpose is usually the hexahydrate form.
     
  9. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    E6 films put a heavy load on both bleaching and fixing. C41 films put a mild load on bleaching and a heavy load on fixing. This is a very rough generalization. There is more to it due to the use of high iodide emulsions and DIR couplers in C41 films, but that is good enough. So, the bleach designs are different, but the fix designs can be "close".

    PE
     
  10. brucemuir

    brucemuir Member

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    I know this is sacrilegious around here but if I think I've resigned to the fact that I'll have to process my remaining E6 stock (which I have a fair amount in the freezer) in an Arista Kit or some other compromise. I'm only shooting E6 for personal work these days.

    99.8 % of MY clients wont pay for send out.

    The correct chemicals are just too hard to find now and going with a recipe is over my head I'm afraid.
     
  11. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    Make sure that formalin is in the stabilizer then or you are going to have some unhappy customers down the road.

    PE
     
  12. ZorkiKat

    ZorkiKat Member

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    Ron, what is your Bleach formula, using Ferric Chloride and EDTA? I used the ORWO version, but it does not keep well.

    For the fixer, I am using a very simple fixer formula which use plain sodium thiosulphate with some ammonium chloride. This is modified from an ORWO fixer formula for colour film.

    Sodium Thiosulphate 10H2O: 200 grams
    Ammonium Chloride: 50 grams
    Sodium Metabisulphite: 25 grams.
    Water QS to 1000 ml.

    Fixing time for colour negative film is about 3-5 minutes at 38ºC. About the same time for E6 chromes. The fixing times may be different from the official schedules given in C41 and E6 kits, but when hand processing with a tank, the differing times should not matter.

    The 1 litre solutions I use can fix about 25 rolls before the clearing rate slows down significantly.
     
  13. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    Try this one;

    FeCl3.6H2O 24 grams
    (NH4)2EDTA 110 grams
    (NH4)2SO3 15 grams

    Dissolve in 500 ml of water at 80F adding water untll the total volume is 3/4 Liter. Bring to pH 6.6 gradually when you hit 750 ml of volume using 28% NH4OH so that you do not overrun the volume then continue to add water to 1L. This makes Ammonium Chloride in situ. If the bleach fails to dissolve completely or leaves a stain on the film, then there is not enough EDTA. Add another 5.5 grams (~5%) The solution should be blood red, not orange!

    If everything does not dissolve at 1 liter let it stand for a bit in warm water. It should last for months. This is a bleach similar to that used in E6. The fix you give is quite weak for E6 films. Both should be usable for longer than 6 minutes IMHO.

    This bleach should keep months as-is.

    Or, you can buy commercial NH4FeEDTA solution and use that. :D

    Bleaching activity goes up as pH goes down, but an orange precipitate can form. I suggest that pH be no lower than 4.7. The color will turn from red to orange. Higher concentrations of all ingredients can be used if done in proportion. This should give rapid enough bleaching as-is, but may require a longer time. IDK. Never tried it on modern E6 films.

    PE
     
  14. ZorkiKat

    ZorkiKat Member

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    thanks Ron!

    Does this bleach required to aerated like the Kodak bleaches to keep it 'alive'?

    The fixer I use clears Fujichromes in about 3 minutes. I leave it for about 3 more to ensure fixing. For colour negatives, the clearing time is shorter- about 2 minutes.

    Does the ammonium chloride in the formula ( fixer) really convert some of the sodium thiosulphate to ammonium thiousulphate?
     
  15. hrst

    hrst Member

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    "Convert" would be a misleading word - sodium thiosulphate is an ionic compound -- so when you dissolve it in water, you will have Na+ ions and thiosulphate- ions hanging in the solution -- they are now free from each other. Now, you can off course add different kind of ions in the same soup such as NH4+ and Cl- by adding ammonium chloride which is also an ionic compound... Then you can say that you have ammonium thiosulphate there, but you can also say that you have sodium thiosulphate, and ammonium chloride, and even sodium chloride! :smile:. In reality, you just have sodium, ammonium, thiosulphate and chloride mixed.

    Now you can see, if you use ammonium chloride and sodium thiosulphate, you have both Na+ and NH4+ ions hanging in the solution at the same time. Fixer works more rapidly when it uses NH4+ ions instead of Na+ ions to form the silver-thiosulphate complexes, so when both of them are available, the resulting fixing action should be somewhere between the "pure" ammonium fixer and "pure" sodium fixer. I'm sure PE can explain this fixing action in more detail.
     
  16. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    All Ferric EDTA bleaches can be regenerated by aeration.

    No Blix should be regenerated by aeration.

    I don't recommend Blix formulas for film.

    The formula I gave is not a Blix.

    PE
     
  17. ZorkiKat

    ZorkiKat Member

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    Thanks again PE for the info.

    Thanks also hrst. The published material which have the ammonium chloride + hypo formula all say "convert" in one way or another. Your explanation cleared this up. These fix baths indeed do fix quickly, significantly faster than the ordinary hypo types.