How to lower contrast on grade 2 paper

Discussion in 'Enlarging' started by darkosaric, Oct 12, 2013.

  1. darkosaric

    darkosaric Subscriber

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    Hi all,

    I have a lot of fix grade 2 papers, and sometimes final prints have too much contrast. Is there some paper developer that will lower the contrast, or maybe some other method can be used (beside developing negative with less contrast)?

    thanks,
    Darko
     
  2. wildbill

    wildbill Member

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    dilute the developer.
     
  3. cliveh

    cliveh Subscriber

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    Have you thought about flashing the paper?
     
  4. Bob Carnie

    Bob Carnie Subscriber

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    Selectol Soft .. basically a metol only dev.
     
  5. darkosaric

    darkosaric Subscriber

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    Thanks for fast replays :smile:. Did not think about flashing the paper, never tried, will give a one go. Right now I am using developers from Wolfgang Moersch (Sepia paper developer and ECO 4812), I will try to dilute them to half of recommended minimum to see if I get lower contrast. Selectol Soft: I should mix it myself, or I can buy it somewhere?
     
  6. DanielStone

    DanielStone Member

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    there's some good info here :smile::
    http://www.apug.org/forums/forum37/68471-selectol-soft.html

    Selectol(not selectol-soft) is a really nice developer, similar to Dektol. Kind of an "in-between" I've found.

    cheers,
    Dan
     
  7. Bill Burk

    Bill Burk Subscriber

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    Also, you can dodge to make it seem like there is less contrast...
     
  8. doughowk

    doughowk Subscriber

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    Since you are already familiar with Moersch products, would suggest his Separol Soft by itself or as 2nd bath. I also use a RH Design pre-flasher.
     
  9. David Allen

    David Allen Member

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    Depending upon how much you want to reduce contrast you can use one (or more in combination) of the following:

    Soft developer
    Water (hot) 750 ml 
Metol 12 g 
Sodium Sulfite 36 g. 
Sodium Carbonate 30 g. 

    Cold water to make 1 liter stock solution.

    In use you dilute the stock 1:2 with water to make your working solution.

    and/or use a water bath - develop for 1 minute and then place in a bath of plain water for 1 minute and return to developer if necessary.

    and/or pre-flash the paper (learning to do this has particular benefits as you can selectively soften parts of the image of desired.

    Best of luck,

    David
    www.dsallen.de
     
  10. Doremus Scudder

    Doremus Scudder Member

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    I've had real good luck with Selectol Soft, sometimes in conjunction with water-bath developing as detailed above, to reduce contrast by a paper grade or more. More often, I use Selectol Soft in tandem with another harder-working developer (e.g., Dektol) to get intermediate contrast on graded paper. This was a more common practice before VC papers became mainstream.

    The Moersch Separol Soft will work like Selectol Soft in this regard and may be easier to find in Germany. You can mix your own as well using David's formula or just Google for Ansco 120 or Selectol Soft substitute.

    Flashing is a useful tool, but reduces highlight contrast in the process. This is often desirable, but sometimes not. All three tools together can squeeze a lot of contrast on to grade 2 paper.

    One more technique to reduce contrast is selective latent image bleaching, or SLIMT. The basics for reducing print contrast are outlined here: http://unblinkingeye.com/Articles/LatentImageBleach/latentimagebleach.html and on David Kachel's site here: http://www.davidkachel.com/assets/nw_strry.htm

    That should be more than enough to get you going.

    Best,

    Doremus
     
  11. darkosaric

    darkosaric Subscriber

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    Thank you all, I have more than enough to try now :smile:
     
  12. Rafal Lukawiecki

    Rafal Lukawiecki Subscriber

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    Which brand of paper is it? Some graded papers respond to light filtration a little bit like VC. For example Ilford Gallerie can be manipulated about 0.5 grade up/down by using yellow (green) vs magenta (blue) filtration, with white light getting a half-way result.
     
  13. darkosaric

    darkosaric Subscriber

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    It is Fotokemika Emaks paper. I have Ilford filters, and color head in Focomat V35.
     
  14. Rafal Lukawiecki

    Rafal Lukawiecki Subscriber

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    Darko, I've not tried this with Emaks, only with Gallerie, and I've reports from others that this technique also worked with later Agfa papers. I'd love to hear from you if it worked with Emaks, please let me know if you tried.
     
  15. darkosaric

    darkosaric Subscriber

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    I will try it next week or so and let you know :smile:
     
  16. darkosaric

    darkosaric Subscriber

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    Hi,

    I have tried it - with Ilford 00 filter and without filter - I got same result. Only with 00 filter I needed 3 times longer exposure. Did not tried other procedures yet.

    regards,
     
  17. AgX

    AgX Member

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    Selectol Soft is less common in Germany than Tetenal Centrabrom S, which also can yield a 1 grade lower contrast.
     
  18. Rafal Lukawiecki

    Rafal Lukawiecki Subscriber

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    Thanks for trying and reporting. I'll put Emaks into "doesn't work with" column in my notes... Good luck with selectol-soft.
     
  19. coa_lund

    coa_lund Member

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    I use 3 different developers to change contrast, centrabrom (soft), dektol (normal), and documol (high kontrast). I van also switch from condensor light to color head or cold light to löser contrast
    Carl

    Sent from my Nexus 4 using Tapatalk
     
  20. RalphLambrecht

    RalphLambrecht Subscriber

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    mix it yourself or ask Moersch to do it for you;I'm sure he will.
     
  21. Jim Noel

    Jim Noel Member

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    if you are going to use any soft developer, it should be used prior to the normal contrast developer.
     
  22. AgX

    AgX Member

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    As said above, in Germany one easily can get Tetenal Centrabrom S.
     
  23. Thomas Bertilsson

    Thomas Bertilsson Subscriber

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    Emaks works wonderfully using the water bath method. Just use a tray of plain water next to your developer tray. Develop the print for a minute, and go to the water bath and submerge the print. This allows highlights to continue developing while developer activity exhausts in the shadows.
    You can go back and forth if you don't get it right on the first attempt.
     
  24. darkosaric

    darkosaric Subscriber

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    I had tested this method, and it is working pretty good. Together with proper exposure (some dodging and burning) - I am getting much better results.