Expired HP5

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by maajka, Jun 12, 2009.

  1. maajka

    maajka Member

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    Hi, I'm new to the photography and the forum. It was nice to discover a forum dedicated completely to analog photography, I was never really drawn to digital. Now to the question.

    I bought some expired HP5, according to the owner it's 5-6 years old. It wasn't stored in a fridge but he said that it was never exposed to high heat either.
    I shot several rolls and it seems to be fairly OK. I made a few prints and I didn;t notice any weird anomalies, like lines that I saw on some expired HP5 on flickr. But compared to the new HP5 the film base is darker. Not very dark, but visibly darker when the negatives are compared. I'm not sure if Ilford changed the emulsion or if it is the age of the film. The casettes look different from the new ones.

    I develop with D76 1:1 at 11 minutes. Should I compansate somehow when developing, different dillution, longer/shorter times, because of the darker base?

    Cheers
     
  2. BetterSense

    BetterSense Member

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    I'm sure it's just fogged slightly due to age. There are chemicals that people add to developers to suppress fogging, but I don't remember what they are.
     
  3. ann

    ann Subscriber

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    perhaps it is just some fog, and if it isn't too serious you an just print through the fog.

    i would wait to print the negatives before adjusting times.
     
  4. Mike Kennedy

    Mike Kennedy Member

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    You could rate it at 320 to give more of an edge.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 12, 2009
  5. pentaxuser

    pentaxuser Subscriber

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    If its age is of interest, contact Ilford via its website and state the numbers on the cassette. Ilford will be able to give the manufacture date and if you mention the darker base, it might be able to say if there was any change which might account for this but I suspect that in the last 5 years or so there probably hasn't been any change.

    I can't recall the date when HP5 became HP5+ but if your film is HP5 and not HP5+ then this might well explain the difference in base. HP5+ is a better film than HP5.

    pentaxuser
     
  6. Mahler_one

    Mahler_one Member

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    I am not trying to be sarcastic or critical, but was the savings in the price of the expired film worth the effort that you are now expending? I often see expired film advertised at a savings. However, when one factors in the uncertainty of results obtained with expired film, and the additional means that might be needed to achieve results that one finds acceptable, one wonders if the savings add up.

    Ed
     
  7. MikeSeb

    MikeSeb Member

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    My thoughts exactly, Ed. Film is cheap compared to the effort expended in meaningfully exposing it.

    But to answer the question: isn't the anti-fog additive in question benzotriazole?

    Or perhaps just use HC-110 after shooting at EI 200-250, as it is said to be a fog-restraining developer by nature.
     
  8. keithwms

    keithwms Member

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    It's probably almost as good as new. Just try it. Maybe do a clip test... snip off a bit and develop it and see if you 'd like it a bit more contrasty. But VC/MG papers and filters will probably help you out.

    I agree somewhat with Ed that fresh film is going to be the most reliable and is probably worth the cost but on the other hand, I've got some quite nice results with expired films (panatomic x, tech pan), results that I wouldn't even know how to get with the fresh films that are still available. And one thing I very rarely see with any of my (traditional grain) b&w films is too little contrast. More often I have too much, really.

    There is always benzotriazole.
     
  9. Mahler_one

    Mahler_one Member

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    Not worth it Keith....buy new and up to date HP5...no added chemicals needed, and no uncertainties...why worry and struggle with benzotriazole unless one enjoys the process of making such projects work.

    Just my opinion of course...
     
  10. Rick A

    Rick A Subscriber

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    I buy expired film ONLY if its dirt cheap--less than half price--to have extra film to teach the neighborhood kids with. I have several p&s cams that I let the local urchins(my daughters friends) shoot with. We then spend an afternoon in the darkroom printing(after I develope) the negs. The kids LEARN some things, and stay out of trouble in the process(pun intended).
    Rick
     
  11. Mahler_one

    Mahler_one Member

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    What a great thing to do...lots of congratulations from Florida. Keep up the good work.
     
  12. Krzys

    Krzys Member

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    [​IMG]

    This was shot in a Holga with Hp5 that expired 21 years ago. It seems that those lines are a common problem as they were evident on the latter half of the roll.
     
  13. steven_e007

    steven_e007 Member

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    I buy out of date film because I collect old and decrepit cameras. Currently when I get a 'new' camera I stick a roll of Fortepan 400, circa 1983, through it first. This is good enough to tell me if the shutter is working, if the speeds are reasonably consistant, if I have light leeks, if the transport mechanism is working, etc.

    If all is well I chuck it away and stick a proper film in :smile:

    The only other time I'd use out of date film is if it is something exotic and out of production. I have some Konica Infrared left in the fridge - just waiting for the right light and free time to use it all up before it dies...

    If money is an issue, better to buy fresh budget film (Adox, Foma or the new Kentmere, maybe) than out of date top brand stuf, IMHO.

    After all, if you spend valuable time and learn to get exactly what you want out of that old film - when it's gone you will have to start all over again with a different batch of film. You want your hard earned experience to be be useable in the future!
     
  14. mikebarger

    mikebarger Subscriber

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    I tend to buy my film in a large batch (all the same emulsion) and freeze it. By the time I use it up it generally is a year or so out of date. I haven't had any problems with it.

    I may have bought to much HP5 in 4x5 on the last buy, I'm sure it is going to go past a year out of date before I use it up. Guess I didn't realize how long 600 sheets would last me. Tri-X in 120 I tend to buy 200 rolls at a time.

    Color 120 I buy outdated in the 160asa speed range, but don't care about brand. I just use 120 color for snaps.

    Boils down to I haven't had any problems with outdated film, if I buy it new and freeze it.

    Mike
     
  15. Steve Roberts

    Steve Roberts Member

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    I suggest that the first thing is not to worry yourself by comparing base fog and/or film base colours! There are so many variables in the darkroom processes that the presence or absence of a little bit of fog (that you only seem to be aware of because of a comparison with newer stock) is probably neither here nor there. The success or failure of the finished product depends on many far more important things, not least what we point our cameras at!

    Best wishes,
    Steve