Ilford wash method.

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by trexx, Jan 29, 2009.

  1. trexx

    trexx Member

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    I often hear of the Ilford wash method. Something along the lines of:
    Fill tank and give 5 inversions, sit some length of time, dump
    Fill tank and give 10 inversions, sit some length of time, dump
    Fill tank and give 20 inversions, sit some length of time, dump
    ( optional Fill tank and give N inversions, sit some length of time, dump )
    This is basically the way I wash. We all know it and know it as the Ilford Wash Method

    My question, where on the Iflod site is this documented. I have searched and not found it anywhere but in an user forums. There is one dead link that may have had it but there is no page or PDF of direct Ilford content that has this method in it.

    Does someone have such a link or a copy of a pdf that may have once existed.
     
  2. Venchka

    Venchka Member

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    I printed all the pages of instructions for HP5+ and it's buried on one of those pages. I guess I printed those instructions in 2006 when I bought a box of HP5+.
     
  3. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Subscriber

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  4. Kent10D

    Kent10D Member

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    I think it's in the film technical data sheets (the pdf downloads), if I remember correctly.

    But Ilford doesn't include the wait times between stages. Anchell & Troop say you need to let the tank sit for five minutes between fill and invert stages.

    Works for me.

    Cheers,

    EDIT: Damn, there are some fast typers around here ...
     
  5. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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  6. trexx

    trexx Member

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    Thanks, Steve and all. I have looked at some of thje processing I like get stated ) and i was not in there. The TI for the the films have it

    Thanks.
     
  7. Venchka

    Venchka Member

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    ps: As I recall, there is no waiting time.

    Fill
    5 inversions
    Dump

    Repeat with 10 inversions.

    Repeat with 20 inversions.
     
  8. Kent10D

    Kent10D Member

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    As I said above, Ilford doesn't mention a waiting time.
    But in "The Film Developing Cookbook" Anchell & Troop state that although the process has been published without the wait time elsewhere (possibly referring to Ilford), this is wrong and the tank should be left to stand for 5 minutes between each fill and set of inversions.

    It can't hurt.
     
  9. Anon Ymous

    Anon Ymous Member

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    Ah, the ideal conditions for a flame war :D

    PS No, I'm not insinuating anything for those who have posted up till now.
     
  10. pentaxuser

    pentaxuser Subscriber

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    Ah to wait 5 mins or not to wait 5 mins, that is the question to quote from Hamlet. Well certainly it's not a quote from Harman Technology but it is an interesting question, as would be the answers to: What's the evidence that causes Steve Anchell and maybe others to say you should wait?

    You'd think that Harman would have researched what a waiting period does or at least checked that the Ilford method without waits reduced the fixer content to archival proportions. If Harman doesn't say to wait can we take it that it has concluded that waits aren't necessary? I wish I knew.

    I'd would be nice to hear from Harman on this subject as it's come up at least twice in about the same number of weeks

    pentaxuser
     
  11. Vincent Brady

    Vincent Brady Subscriber

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    I've been developing films for 25 years and never allowed a waiting time between inversions and dump. My negs are still OK. Perhaps the 5 minutes are for the water to remember which end to pour out from.

    Cheers
    TEX
     
  12. Kent10D

    Kent10D Member

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    Good one!

    Funny, but I think the idea is to allow extra time for dispersion.

    It may or may not be necessary depending on other factors: the types of chemicals used, individual processing procedures, water quality. My approach is to err on the safe side.

    If you have the extra 15 minutes required it certainly wouldn't hurt. Besides, "waiting" isn't exactly a labor-intensive procedure.
     
  13. Vincent Brady

    Vincent Brady Subscriber

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    Ken to be serious, I always imagined that the inversions shook up the chemical adhering to the film and was dumped before it had time to settled back onto it.
    As the inversions increased the chemical was being washed off the film even more thoroughly and again you dumped it before it had time to settle back onto it.
    This was my layman's thinking to the 3 changes of water and the increased inversions.

    Cheers
    Vincent
     
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  15. trexx

    trexx Member

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    The reason for my post is I help out at a community darkroom. There are often a bunch of new bees that line up to put their tank under the water tap for the ten minutes that is listed on the helper sheet on the film darkroom wall next to all the development times. I would much prefer them to form a conga line of fill invert ( wait for the tap ) and dump, instead of standing on line with empty tanks and fixer drying on their fresh negs.

    I now have something I can take to the, very good but set in his ways, instructor as an alternative for washing
     
  16. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Subscriber

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    Or as Roger Hicks once put it: "Why would they tell you to use a method which didn't work?"



    Steve.
     
  17. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    Chemicals aren't just washed off a film they have to diffuse out of the emulsion as well, this is why using minimal water techniques requires time for this diffusion to happen during the waiting periods. Even using running water won't appreciably shorten the time for the diffusion to take place.

    Ian
     
  18. Martin Aislabie

    Martin Aislabie Subscriber

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    Ian, I thought all the Chemicals came out of both film and paper by diffusion after the initial immersion which of course washes off the surface chemicals.

    Doesn't running water only ensure that the largest posible chemical gradient exist?

    Thanks

    Martin
     
  19. fotch

    fotch Member

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    Mistake?
     
  20. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    Diffusion takes time, some of the silver/thiosulphate complexes are only semi-soluble particularly in a used fixer bath. Sure most of the chemicals diffuse out quickly but the last traces take longer.

    Ian
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 30, 2009
  21. Ulrich Drolshagen

    Ulrich Drolshagen Subscriber

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  22. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Subscriber

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    Not very likely.



    Steve.
     
  23. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    The Ilford wash method has been pretty much disavowed by its author (Mason) in his textbook. If he kind of discredits it, then who can we believe?

    PE
     
  24. pentaxuser

    pentaxuser Subscriber

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    OK between Ulrich's link article ( thanks Ulrich), TEX's experience of 25 years and that of Roger Hicks and Les McLean ( both more than 25 years) I'll stick to the Ilford 5/10/20 inversions and dumps. Oh and then 10/5 on the way down - just for luck, you understand

    pentaxuser
     
  25. Martin Aislabie

    Martin Aislabie Subscriber

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    The major problem I see in the Ilford wash method is the great unknown - carry over

    How much of the previous fix/wash water are you carrying over to the next wash

    If you make some basic assumptions on the assumption of zero carry over and then do the same calculations but with even fairly small quantities of residual fixer sol'n then the number of wash cycles increases dramatically.

    I am always amazed when I empty a film tank how much liquid stays in at the first pour out, leave it a minute and do it again there is plenty more - and then does not take any account of the liquid on the film and spiral

    Martin
     
  26. Tom Kershaw

    Tom Kershaw Subscriber

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    I don't understand this way of thinking. I haven't read the Mason text but logical theory and experiment can trump vague notions of 'it works'. Or to phrase the situation in another way, excessive certainty based on "folk knowledge" or lack of evidence can be dangerous.

    Tom.