Film Pre-soak

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by Grillage, Jul 19, 2013.

  1. Grillage

    Grillage Member

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    I did post something similar to this sometime ago but I wanted to ask about presoak times. For a long time I am using distilled water when I use the developer. I use T-Max 400 film in formats from 35 mm to 8x10 processed in a Jobo CPP2. I generally give it one minute Pre-soak. Kodak told me all their developers are designed to work with filtered tap water, which I do have. I was getting some "Motteling" but I have not resolved that problem. Could I possibly use a 1 1/2 to 2 minute presoak and how would it effect the film? The motteling is on all formats and it follows the rotation of the Jobo drum. The emulsion IS ON THE INSIDE as it should be. It can be seen only on contact prints and enlargements and of course it happens in super clear skies without clouds. Some images can not be taken again. Any help is appreciated!
     
  2. cliveh

    cliveh Subscriber

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    This has been discussed many times here. But for my part, I have never done this and don't see the need to do it.
     
  3. eddie

    eddie Subscriber

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    I use a 5 minute pre-soak, when using my Jobo, using distilled water. I believe it was a Jobo recommendation.

    For tanks, I don't use a pre-soak, unless I'm using a large tank (4-120/8-35mm). I do this to avoid streaking caused by the amount of time it takes to pour the developer in to the larger tanks.
     
  4. Sirius Glass

    Sirius Glass Subscriber

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    Kodak and Jobo specifically specify to not pre-soak film when using Kodak XTOL developer.
     
  5. eddie

    eddie Subscriber

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    The OP didn't specify which developer he's using.
     
  6. PhotoJim

    PhotoJim Member

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    The only times I've found pre-soaking to be desirable:

    EP-2 print processing - I got streaking if I didn't presoak.
    Two-bath developers - I find I get more consistent results if I presoak. (Not entirely sure I should, but that's my habit at least.)

    Jim
     
  7. Vincent Brady

    Vincent Brady Subscriber

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    Ilford advise not to presoak their Delta 400 prior to development and I never do. With any other B&W film I will always presoak.
     
  8. Sirius Glass

    Sirius Glass Subscriber

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    Yes, but my answer is germane to the OP/s question.
     
  9. Michael W

    Michael W Member

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    It'd be useful if you posted a scan of the problem. I had a streaking problem on a few 8x10 sheets that I rolled in a Jobo. Photo Engineer said it might be lack of pre soak, or it might be due to using water as a stop bath rather than acid stop. Since then I've always done a pre soak and used acid stop and had clean film with no marks. This is HP5 in Rodinal.
     
  10. pentaxuser

    pentaxuser Subscriber

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    I hadn't noticed this statement so ignorance was bliss for me as I pre-soaked TMax 400 for a full 5 mins to rid the film of the dye when using Xtol. The pre-soak rid the film of the dye very successfully and I didn't notice any problems with using a pre-soak as part of the development process.

    The water in the OP's location may hold the key rather than whether a pre-soak or not is used

    pentaxuser
     
  11. wildbill

    wildbill Member

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    I always do 2-3 minutes regardless of film type in my jobo. Ilford says do not for their films but out of spite I do it anyway. Tmy, no mottling. I only use distilled for mixing developers and for the final rinse.
     
  12. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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    It seems to me that there are very few examples of manufacturers advising not to pre-soak.

    And a few examples of manufacturers indicating that a pre soak is "not required" or "not necessary".

    And a further few examples of manufacturers being silent on the issue.

    Correct me if I am wrong, but only the first means anything like "dont do it!".

    I use a pre-soak unless told not to.

    It keeps my replenished HC-110 a golden hue.
     
  13. Rolfe Tessem

    Rolfe Tessem Subscriber

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    I don't think Kodak and Jobo actually say "don't pre-wet when using Xtol". What happened was that Xtol came out after rotary processing was already popular so Kodak did the testing and published times that were good without a pre-wet. So yes, that is the official manufacturer's recommendation because those are the tests they did.

    Prior to that, Jobo itself tested a huge number of films and recommended a five minute pre-wet in order to bring rotary development times into line with the times recommended for inversion processing with intermittent agitation. There is nothing magic about Xtol -- the same technique works with it as well.
     
  14. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    xtol always suggested ix-nay on the soakpre-ay ..

    i usually presoak because i am bored and a creature of habit and don't ever use xtol ..
    besides sometimes i pour the AH dye into my spent developer and watch it vanish, its fun
     
  15. Sirius Glass

    Sirius Glass Subscriber

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    Yes
     
  16. Grillage

    Grillage Member

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    I'm sorry, T-Max RS Developer
     
  17. Grillage

    Grillage Member

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    95% of my Bridge photography is with my 3 Hasselblad 2000 FCW's I would NEVER trade them for anything.
     
  18. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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    Sorry John:

    j109 - the Kodak XTol data sheet - is silent on the issue of pre-soaking when it comes to roll films or when it comes to small tank, large tank or rotary processing. With respect to sheet film and tray processing, j109 expressly recommends a pre-soak: http://www.kodak.com/global/en/professional/support/techPubs/j109/j109.pdf

    And for the OP, j86 - the Kodak TMax/TMax RS data sheet - is silent on the issue of pre-soaking when it comes to roll or sheet films or when it comes to small tank, large tank, rotary processing or tray processing: http://www.kodak.com/global/en/professional/support/techPubs/j86/j86.pdf
     
  19. Grillage

    Grillage Member

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    The problem is very complex. Kodak could not figure out the problem. I sent them negatives and sample prints. They have no idea.
     
  20. jerrybro

    jerrybro Subscriber

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    Jobo started recommending the presoak when they discovered that using it allowed customers to use published times for small tank inversion development. They confirmed this with multiple films and developers. When Kodak developed (pun not intended) Xtol they tested and published time for continuous agitation that did not include the presoak. I've done TMax with Xtol in the Jobo with and without the presoak, once the process is calibrated I could see no difference. I decided years ago to stick with the presoak.
     
  21. nworth

    nworth Subscriber

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    Has anyone really looked into how presoaking affects development. You would think that prewetting would make the emulsion more permeable to fluids, but that the accumulated prewet solution would also slw down penetration since the developer has to displace the existing liquid. How does presoaking affect development time to a given gamma, overall contrast, and things like that? We really need good experimental work, not guesses.
     
  22. pbromaghin

    pbromaghin Subscriber

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    How is your water being filtered?
     
  23. john_s

    john_s Subscriber

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    For maybe 20 or 30 years I didn't presoak, and in fact had never heard of it. This for 35mm and 4x5 in an inversion tank. My agitation was vigorous for the first minute after a couple of sharp raps on the bench to dislodge airbells which I have not experienced since the 1960s. Then remaining agitation every minute thereafter. I gradually moved over the years to less frequent agitation after the first minute to control contrast.

    When I started to use 120 size (Neopan 400) I had a few random little circles of slightly reduced density, visible in prints in clear sky only (maybe 0.5mm diameter leading to a few mm on an 8x10 print). I became very particular about rapping the airbells and agitating fairly vigorously but I still got them. I started to use presoak, 2 min fairly vigorously, followed by dev as usual. The problem went away. I still don't have a good explanation, but it works for me.
     
  24. Grillage

    Grillage Member

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    I have two 5 micron filters for both the cold and the hot. Thanks