Effects of no filtration?

Discussion in 'Color: Film, Paper, and Chemistry' started by davetravis, Jan 11, 2010.

  1. davetravis

    davetravis Member

    Messages:
    659
    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2004
    Location:
    Castle Rock,
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Hi All,
    I'm using an ICP42 (Ilfochrome) 3-tank processor to do RA4/RT 2-step for Kodak Endura and FCA. My tank solutions were mixed on 12/29/09, and have been replenished 4 times since. This is a closed system processor and is incapable of filtration. Anyone know how this will affect the print quality the longer I don't replace the tank solutions?
     
  2. Mike Wilde

    Mike Wilde Member

    Messages:
    2,933
    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2006
    Location:
    Misissauaga
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Well the developer may develop 'chunkies' that may clog any developer sprayer or pump orifice mechanisms. I drain my Fujimoto CP31 (no filters either) after each use if I am not going to use it the next day, and rinse it out. I filter the dev though a coffee filter if it is getting 'mungy', and sprayer holes need unplugging.

    I replenish about every 8 or so sheets of 8x10 at a rate of 20mL/sheet. I pour straight into the tanks with the cover off when there are no paper bits in the transport. the overflow goes to jugs off each tank.
     
  3. Mike Wilde

    Mike Wilde Member

    Messages:
    2,933
    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2006
    Location:
    Misissauaga
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Oh - after a while the colours will go wimpy in the blacks.

    Don't exceed the capacity of the blix; it may 'silver out', and believe you me, it is a hell of a thing to get the racks and rollers clean after that.
     
  4. davetravis

    davetravis Member

    Messages:
    659
    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2004
    Location:
    Castle Rock,
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Thanks Mike.
    I dumped the tank chems and found tons of brownish particles floating around in the dev. Some chunks in the spray pipe too. Since I can't filter, I'm going to limit the replen cycles to 2. That will give me a total of 3 square meters of print material for each batch.
     
  5. Mike Wilde

    Mike Wilde Member

    Messages:
    2,933
    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2006
    Location:
    Misissauaga
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    You are in the right range. I try to limit my 1.85L to 60 or so prints; usually I am time limited in that i get to the end of storage life before the chems are otherwise exhausted.

    I stumbled on a trick that I think extends used developer life.

    My machine had the fancy digital first tank thermostat die; I replaced it with one that is less accurate than the analog thermostats in my tanks 2 and 3. So I moved dev to tank 2 and blix to tank 3 (after thorough scrub down with dilute toilet bowl cleaner and nylon scouring pads, and many rinses). Tank 1 runs a water prewet, that serves to rinse off a lot of the dye overcoat of the paper. So the dyes, an organic, are not as prevalent on the paper for the developer to react with and oxidize in tank 2. Less other material than paper optical forming dye tooxidize, less quickly the developer cooks off.

    I have used 4 to 6 week old used developer in the machine for non critical (ie contact prints) use after having sorted them in galss jugs in the dark.

    I also pre-boil then cool the r/o or distilled water for the developer working solution prior to mixing the concentrates. This drives off dissolved oxygen , which is another thing that the developer can oxidize off with.
     
  6. davetravis

    davetravis Member

    Messages:
    659
    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2004
    Location:
    Castle Rock,
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    That's interesting Mike.
    I'm wondering if that affects the color balance, contrast and/or saturation?
     
  7. akaa

    akaa Subscriber

    Messages:
    223
    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2010
    Location:
    Sacramento,
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Hey Dave, I too am using a ICP 42 to process Ra4 at home. I don't leave my solution in the tanks that long, but to filter, I just bought a bunch of cheap in-line fuel filters and pop those (keeping track of which ones go to which tank of course) in when I drain the tanks into their respective jugs. works like charm. when the flow gets so slow i can't take it - time to toss.
     
  8. Mike Wilde

    Mike Wilde Member

    Messages:
    2,933
    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2006
    Location:
    Misissauaga
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I am not sure that pre-washing the exposed print pre development has any affect on the contrast or saturation of a print, but have not tested it rigorously.

    Colour balance may vary with this method, but I have no second processing path handy to me to compare with.