Help with Fuji Microfine developer

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by lawrenceimpey, Oct 25, 2011.

  1. lawrenceimpey

    lawrenceimpey Member

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    I bought a few packets of Fujifilm Microfine developer but there seems to be a problem with it. I mixed it as follows: "While stirring 1 litre of warm water (50 deg C), pour in sachet contents gradually. Keep stirring until completely dissolved. Use complete sachet contents at once."

    The problem is that I am left with a cloudy stock solution in which there are many suspended particles that don't dissolve, even though I followed the instructions to the letter and left the stock to dissolve for a day or two. The expiry date on the packet is 11/2011.

    I've now wasted two packets on this and have only one packet left. Has anyone else had this problem with Microfine? I have no problems with dissolving other developers (D76 / Xtol etc.). Maybe because I have hard water?
     
  2. Gerald C Koch

    Gerald C Koch Member

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    Did you use tap water or distilled water? I am unfamiliar with Microfine but I would surmise from the name that it is similar to Kodak Microdol. High sulfite developers tend to precipitate calcium sulfite when mixed with hard tap waters.
     
  3. michael_r

    michael_r Subscriber

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    Gerald, assuming it is similar to Microdol/Perceptol, it would have the same concentration of sulfite/volume as D76/ID11, D23 etc. So why wouldn't OP have had this problem before with D76? Unless the Fuji product is missing an additive present in D76 that prevents this sort of thing from happening in hard tap waters.
     
  4. lawrenceimpey

    lawrenceimpey Member

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    Thanks, I didn't know that. Yes, it's similar to Kodak Microdol / Ilford Perceptol. Will try with distilled water.
     
  5. Rick A

    Rick A Subscriber

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    How warm was the water? Try bringing the temp of the solution up to around 125f and stir a whole bunch more.
     
  6. lawrenceimpey

    lawrenceimpey Member

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    Tried at 50C both times and did indeed stir 'a whole bunch' :sad:
     
  7. john_s

    john_s Subscriber

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    For what it's worth, here is Ryuji Suzuki's take on what is in Microfine, copied from his now-defunct website:

    Microfine is a ultrafine grained developer supplied in dry powder package. This
    formula somewhat resembles a cross of D-25 and Microdol. The developing
    agent is metol (3-7%). The solution contains a large amount of sodium sulfite
    (70-90%), some sodium chloride (7-15%), and a small amount of sodium
    phosphate monobasic (0.5-1.5%) to make the solution pH very weakly alkaline.
     
  8. Gerald C Koch

    Gerald C Koch Member

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    In place of using distilled water you can use tap water that has been boiled for 5 - 10 min. Allow the water to cool and stand overnight, and then filter off any sediment. This will remove the calcium salts from the water.
     
  9. lawrenceimpey

    lawrenceimpey Member

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    As it was my last packet I got a bottle of purified water and heated it to 50C. This time the powder dissolved perfectly.

    Thanks for all the feedback.