HELP problem of contrast with durst cls 450 HELP

Discussion in 'Darkroom Equipment' started by amaury217, Nov 3, 2013.

  1. amaury217

    amaury217 Member

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    hello
    I have a big problem
    I debute silver print
    I have a durst laborator900 with a cls450 color head
    it been 2 years since I tinker and learn by himself at home, but without much success
    In fact I can not get a satisfactory contrast in my prints , there is always like a gray veil
    contrast is not correct
    even a grade 5 on scale of ilford and of durst ... and even fiddling
    a remedy for all that I have done two things
    change my bulb
    take courses in enlarging at a camera club near my home
    and they said me that i have the basics of technique, I can do beautiful contrasts with masking adequate and more with my own negatives
    but impossible to replicate at home
    then
    is my enlarger is dead but I do not think because its appearance is nice .... like new
    or I do not know how to use it
    and I rather think that is the case c
    so I ask for help
    ... thank you in adavance
     
  2. paul_c5x4

    paul_c5x4 Subscriber

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    Two things spring to mind:

    Poor safelight - Have you done a check to see if it is truly safe and that there are no light leaks in your darkroom ?

    Are you using fresh, new paper - Old papers that have been stored badly can often show the effects you describe.
     
  3. amaury217

    amaury217 Member

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    thanks
    normaly my darkroom is totaly safe i think it is my bathroom there is no windows and now light through the door
    and i use a photographic red bulb
    and i use new products ilford
    ilford multigrade paper developer paper
    ilford ilfostop
    ilford fixer
    ilford multigrade 4 rc deluxe pearl
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 3, 2013
  4. amaury217

    amaury217 Member

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    i make a light test just now
    a paper in the darkroom with only the safe light during 5 min
    after developpement it stay white
     
  5. michael_r

    michael_r Subscriber

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    That is not a good safelight test as it does not account for the additive exposure of safelight plus print exposure. Do a proper safelight tests by following instructions from Kodak or Ilford.

    Also check for other sources of fogging: light leaks from enlarger etc. These are sometimes less obvious unless you first turn off all lights, let your eyes adjust to the dark and then turn on the enlarger.

    If there is low contrast without fogging check the temperature of your developer, development times.
     
  6. Bob Marvin

    Bob Marvin Member

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    Perhaps you are pulling your prints out of the developer too soon--that could produce the effect you're complaining about. Try exposing your prints so that they need two or more minutes of developing time. Pulling prints out of the developer tray when they look right under the safelight is a common beginners' error.
     
  7. amaury217

    amaury217 Member

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    thank you for your answers
    I will move my safelight is currently above my developer tank
    and I'll let my paper longer in the developer for now I let 1 minute 30
    I try and I tell you again
    thank you
     
  8. Bob Marvin

    Bob Marvin Member

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    If you are developing your prints for 1 min. 30 sec. longer development might produce a slight improvement, but your real problem is likely something else. Could there be a problem with your color head? Perhaps you could obtain some under the lens VC filters and try those instead.
     
  9. michael_r

    michael_r Subscriber

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    Potential problems should be eliminated one by one. Based on the "grey veil" description by OP, it isn't entirely clear to me whether he's just experiencing low contrast, or an actual fogging. I'm assuming (perhaps incorrectly) there is fogging, in which case over/underdeveloping is not going to improve things.

    Rule out fogging (from safelight or enlarger) first with a proper safelight test etc. If non-image light is completely ruled out, then look for other problems which could lead to low contrast and/or veiling. Check that processing is as per Ilford instructions (including fixation - incomplete fixing, overused fixer). Then look for problems with the enlarger. In addition to potential filtration issues, it could even be something like a dirty lens.
     
  10. amaury217

    amaury217 Member

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    ok i check all of that
    and i tell you
    thanks a lot