Increased edge density

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by David Vickery, Oct 12, 2002.

  1. David Vickery

    David Vickery Member

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    Hello. I would like to hear about how you have dealt with increased density around the edges of sheet film, especially when processing more than one sheet at a time in trays. Is it possible to prevent this build up of density? I have found that when processing one sheet at a time and using a brush to agitate I get a lot less density build up around the edges. But if I have a lot of film to process then this takes a lot of time, even with running four or five sheets one after another in the same tray of developer(ABC pyro). I will settle into processing one at a time if that is the only way to get the most consistent and even development with 8x10, 11x14, and 12x20 film, but I know that a lot of really good photographers are able to process more than one at a time with excellent results. Any suggestions are appreciated.
     
  2. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    How big are your trays? Usually increased edge density is an agitation problem produced by using too small a tray. Generally, one should try to use a tray that is one size bigger than the format (so 11x14" trays for 8x10" film, etc.).
     
  3. David Vickery

    David Vickery Member

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    Thanks for the suggestion David, but that isn't it. The last time I processed 8x10s they were in a 16x20 tray, after a couple of 11x14s.
     
  4. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    That's curious, then. I process in trays and don't have this problem.

    What is your agitation method? I usually agitate by shuffling the stack either every thirty seconds or every minute, depending on the film/developer combination. I also turn the sheets 90-degrees periodically. I don't rock the trays when doing multiple sheets.

    If I'm doing one sheet, I will rock the tray, lifting one edge, following the same interval as if I were using the method of shuffling, but I will turn the sheet 90-degrees periodically as well. I suppose I could remove the sheet and replace it, as if I were shuffling, but I figure the less I handle the neg the better.

    Do you presoak? If not, that may be worth a try as well.