Ilford DD-X reuse

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by briandaly, Jun 6, 2008.

  1. briandaly

    briandaly Member

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    I have a batch of 4 35mm films I need to develop and wondered if it is wise to re-use the developer.
    I'm using DD-X (1:4 dilution) in a daylight tank.
    I've read that I should increase the development time by 10% for each film.
    Anyone have any opinions or any experience of this?
    How many films is it reasonable to develop before dumping the developer?

    Thanks,
    Brian
     
  2. pentaxuser

    pentaxuser Subscriber

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    I wouldn't use diluted dev more than once. I have no reason to doubt Ilford's instructions on the method you propose to use and it will, in theory allow more films to be developed but take at look at the increase in development time as you get towards the end of the sequence, as one drawback and weigh up as well the extra economy against the consistency of use once and dump.

    I would think that the period over which you intend to develop all the films might be important for any changes in the solution.

    Call me a coward, if you like, but I just wouldn't risk negs, some of which might be unique by the pour back and re-use method.

    If you do go ahead let us all know the outcome. Fortune favours the brave, they say. On the other hand my glass has always been half empty

    Best of luck

    pentaxuser
     
  3. MikeSeb

    MikeSeb Member

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    Developer is so cheap relative to the time, effort, and care (one hopes) that goes into making the photographs that it is a false economy to reuse developer.

    I never reuse developer, regardless of dilution, and would not do so even if my Jobo processor would let me!
     
  4. briandaly

    briandaly Member

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    Just tried it for a 22 frame roll of HP5+. Increased dev time by just over 10% (HP5+ from 9 to 10 mins).
    I re-used the same 300ml I had previously used for a 36 exposure roll of Fuji Acros 100 (rather that using a larger pool of 1+4 stock solution as recommended by Ilford).
    Negatives are drying right now, but look rather dark!
    Also, this roll only had 22 frames (usually, I use 36 frame rolls), so I'm not really comparing like with like.
    As an additional variable, the bulk roll that I used to for the HP5+ had been security X-rayed - not sure if that had any impact towards over exposure.
    I think I'll just stick with one-shot use from now on and also stick with 36 exposure rolls - keep everything nice and consistent.
     
  5. pentaxuser

    pentaxuser Subscriber

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    Brian. I think you are wise to go with the "use once and dump". The method you used, as described above and if I have understood you correctly, isn't the Ilford method. It sounds as if you have used the same diluted developer again for HP5+ as you did for Acros. If so I am surprised that it has even been partially successful. The Ilford method, if I have understood the instructions on my DDX container, involves diluting the stock solution to the standard 1+4 then using say 300mls for the first film and then pouring back into the 1+4 dilution, mixing thoroughly and then pouring 300mls back into the tank so it's a form of a constant replenishment system.

    Even if you were a commercial developer I doubt that the extra number of films you could develop by this replenishment system would be economical on a time is money basis. By the time you get to batch 10(films 46-50) your time has increased by 90%!

    As MikeSeb has said above, developer is still a minor cost when you take into account everything that goes into producing negs.

    You may be familiar with DDX but if not then I think you'll find its qualities justify its extra cost compared to say the standard ID11 which admittedly is much cheaper when bought in the 5 litre amount.

    pentaxuser
     
  6. briandaly

    briandaly Member

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    Pentaxuser,
    What you describe is the correct Ilford reuse method - http://www.ilfordphoto.com/Webfiles/20073211236917.pdf .
    The negatives have scanned OK but I notice thet they are slightly more grainy than usual.
    I think I'll stick with single-shot from now on for consistency.
     
  7. Dave Miller

    Dave Miller Member

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    The answer is in the Ilford instructions "However, for greater
    economy it can be reused but image quality will
    be reduced slightly."
    I never read instructions until things go wrong either.:smile:
     
  8. rtuttle

    rtuttle Member

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    Any images worth the effort to capture, develop and print are worth using fresh developer. That's just my opinion but I wouldn't put the effort into taking them if the developer or any component was in question.