Hydrogen peroxide "steaming" to gain add'l speed.

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by fotoobscura, Feb 18, 2013.

  1. fotoobscura

    fotoobscura Subscriber

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    I was going over Anchell/Troop to read up on speed increasing additives and I came across a piece on using h202 to "steam" film to get a speed increase. I've never done this (surprised I haven't, actually) and am looking to try it out.

    Has anyone experience with doing this? Output from negatives "steamed" in this way?

    Thanks!
     
  2. Prof_Pixel

    Prof_Pixel Member

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    Back in the days before digital, astronomers used a variety of techniques to hyper sensitize plates. I believe H2O2 was one such technique.
     
  3. Ian C

    Ian C Member

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  4. AgX

    AgX Member

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    In any case either the liquid or its vapour were employed. No boiling of H2O2 was involved.
     
  5. Nicholas Lindan

    Nicholas Lindan Advertiser Advertiser

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    Hypersensitization doesn't increase speed. It decreases reciprocity failure.

    It also works best with slow films, like Tech Pan. Hypered Tech Pan is one of the fastest films when it comes to 6 hour exposures. For TP and astro films (TP was originally 'solar flare patrol film' - hence the extended red sensitivity for imaging the hydrogen line, making it beloved of amateur astronomers) there is some modest across the board speed increase, but nothing to write home about - I ordered some hydrogen hypered TP once, maybe it was ASA 40 rather than 25 for normal use.

    Hypersensitization won't do anything for you if you are trying to get more speed out of Tri-X.
     
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  6. Rudeofus

    Rudeofus Subscriber

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    And that seems to be the main problem with these "I gain two stops if I immerse the film in toad liver for two days around full moon" recipes: they won't improve the speed of modern and fast films, where we would like it most.
     
  7. cliveh

    cliveh Subscriber

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    To quote my stock phrase, why would you wish to do this?
     
  8. fotoobscura

    fotoobscura Subscriber

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    Set aside the sarcastic "question with a question" responses, thanks for the information folks!

    Yes Anchell suggests that you should not try this with t-grain films which makes sense considering their improved latitude out of the box.

    Nicholas- interesting and informative reply, thanks. Anchell doesn't suggest this is to be used to offset reciprocity failure, he indicates that film pushed 2-3 steps will benefit from greater shadow detail using this method. Most importantly, and why I am thinking about trying this at all is the part where he indicates 'the results are grainy but have a unique quality that often complements low light photography aesthetics." This is very interesting to me as a lot of my subjects are in this environment but not limited to long exposures at night with slow "traditional" films (e.g. efke/adox).

    Thanks!
     
  9. Athiril

    Athiril Subscriber

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    H2O2 and Mercury hypering improved Provia 400X pushed to 1600 results for one user.


    Researching semiconductor technology may provide better educated guess starting points for things to try.


    What methods have you tried with which modern films and found no effect?
     
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  10. Gerald C Koch

    Gerald C Koch Member

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    The Anchell books contain quite a few errors so read them cum grano salus.

    You use a SS two reel tank with a small amount of 3% hydrogen peroxide in the bottom. An empty reel actrs as a spacer between the film and the peroxide. The film is left for a number of minutes which must be determined by trial and error for each film used. The film must be used shortly after treatment and cannot be stored as it reverts to its normal unsensitized state quickly.
     
  11. Rudeofus

    Rudeofus Subscriber

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    Believe me, I am a die hard analog user, but when it comes to use of Mercury vs. a d*gital camera I'd go for the latter, regardless of whether Mercury provides a measurable benefit or not.
    I've not done any experiments myself, and from reading countless postings, books and other resources about these procedures I see little reason to do so. Tell me a working recipe that boosts the speed of Delta 3200, Provia 400X or Portra 400 without the use of extremely dangerous chemicals and I'm all over it.
     
  12. fotoobscura

    fotoobscura Subscriber

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    What do you mean, "used"? ..You mean, fixed?
     
  13. kevs

    kevs Member

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    My 'bible', "Dictionary of Photography" (19th Edition, 1961, Iliffe Books Ltd., London) Sowerby, A.L.M. (ed), pp 380-381 gives the following formula for hypersensitising film:

    Alcohol (90 per cent) - 8 parts
    Ammonia (0.880) - 1 part
    Water to - 32 parts

    "Immerse panchromatic materials for about five minutes. Dry as quickly as possible in absolute darkness and use within a few hours. The speed can often be doubled (increased by 3 degrees B.S.) in this way, but there is a distinct tendency to fog."

    It also mentions using sulphur dioxide as an "effective, safe and reliable" method of hypersensitising. Exposed film is loaded into a sprial, then placed into a lightproof container such as a bisuit tim over an open vessel half-filled with a mixture in equal parts of sodium sulphite and glacial acetic acid. Develop normally after 24 hours exposure to the sulphur dioxide. The book reports a doubling of speed or a little more.

    Cheers,
    kevs
     
  14. RidingWaves

    RidingWaves Member

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    I once mistakenly shot a roll of Fuji Neopan SS (100 speed) at 1600 thinking it was a roll of Fuji Neopan 1600 at a wedding. It was pretty much a 'Hail-Mary' attempt, but I did the Anchell-Troop recommended and the negs turned out very well, a bit grainy but I was amazed that not only did it work at all but I actually liked the look. For the effort I wouldn't recommend it, but it sure saved my butt that time.
     
  15. Soeren

    Soeren Member

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    If I read Anchell correct the H2O2 treadment is done after development, before fixing and not before exposure like some of the other method he covers.
    Best regards
     
  16. Roger Cole

    Roger Cole Member

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    Yes and no.

    This is true of the gas hypering that amateur astronomers used pre-digital. H2O2 vapor is a different thing, and with different results. It's been literally 30 or more years and I sure don't remember the details but I came across a method for this back when I was in high school and tried it, getting a quite workable EI 6400 out of Tri-X.
     
  17. Roger Cole

    Roger Cole Member

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    Another difference from gas hypering for astrophotography - whatever it was I did back then was definitely in the development phase, nothing pre-exposure. I recall the article (a friend gave me a photocopy) was called "kick in the pants developing."
     
  18. Gerald C Koch

    Gerald C Koch Member

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    There is a big difference between hypersensitization and latensification. Hypersensitizing a film is done before and latensification is done after exposure. Some authors either equate or confuse the two. The mechanism for the two processes is different. However, the same chemicals hydrogen peroxide, mercury, sulfur dioxide, etc may be involved. For the average photographer the processes are a curiousity and more bother than it is worth. This is why only astronomers use these technoques because they must.

    For those who insist on trying hypersenitization the easiest method is exposure to a very dim green light for an extended period of time. The method most often described is the use of a Kodak Brownie safelight with the green cup. A 7 watt bulb is used and half of the cup is covered with black tape. IIRC, the film is exposed at a distance of 8 to 10 feet for a period of several minutes. Afterwards the film is respooled for use. As I mentioned before every film is different and the method must be tweeked for each film.
     
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  19. Soeren

    Soeren Member

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    Ok but that doesn't really matter. the OPQ was about H2O2 steaming which is done after development, before fixing and, as you would put it, is a latensification method. :smile:
    Best regards
     
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  20. Gerald C Koch

    Gerald C Koch Member

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    My crystal ball is in the pawn shop and so I could only base my comments on what the OP asked. He didn't specify whether the process was to be done before or after exposure. My copy of Anchell is currently being used to prop up the short leg of my kitchen table. :smile:
     
  21. Rudeofus

    Rudeofus Subscriber

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    The question remains whether any of these methods improve film speed for >100 ISO film speed emulsions. All these long threads about green light and H2O2 always end up naming ISO 50 or ISO100 films. If I wanted to boost speed of an emulsion, it would be Delta 3200, but for some reason this film is never mentioned in these threads.
     
  22. Gerald C Koch

    Gerald C Koch Member

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    What you say is very true. Need more speed then use a faster film. But there are some who wish to pursue the will-o'-the-wisp of both fine grain and speed. Hypersensitization and latensification are really only used by astronomers. Due to the nature of their work they need both fine grain for detail and the greatest film speed possible. The average photographer has no need for either method. This is one of the reasons I don't like Anchell's book. He doesn't explain just how complicated and unpredictable these methods are. If his book was intended as an exhaustive treatise on photography I could see this subject's inclusion. But his book was never intended for that purpose. So we are only left with what I call the "gee-whiz" factor. "Gee-whiz this is neat, even though it has no practical use for me."

    Has anyone ever pondered why there are so few films faster than ISO 400 or why such fast films sell rather poorly. The average photographer just doesn't need them. Kodak discontinued their P3200 film commonly called TMZ for lack of demand.
     
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  23. Ponysoldier

    Ponysoldier Member

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    I used Hydrogen Peroxide frequently (way back when) as a young photographer assigned to a Military Intelligence unit. The procedure we employed (with Tri-X) was to heat an amount of hydrogen peroxide sufficient to cover the depth of a multi-reel tank to about 1/2 the depth of an empty reel. Stack the reels of exposed (but undeveloped) film above the empty reel and allow 10-12 minutes for the film to absorb the oxygen and then remove the reels, placing them immediately into a tank charged with developer. As I recall, it seems that the temperature of the hydrogen peroxide was about 100-110 degrees F.
     
  24. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    i love threads like this.
    will hypering work with photo paper too ?? or just film ?
    i'd love to make my photo paper super speedy, i barely have use for film anymore ... :smile:
     
  25. Soeren

    Soeren Member

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