Kodak C41 Flexicolor question - thx

Discussion in 'Color: Film, Paper, and Chemistry' started by yoharv, Sep 6, 2008.

  1. yoharv

    yoharv Member

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    Hello:
    Our school was given a color lab. We were told all of the chemicals were there to do color neg. and paper. Well we were able to get the paper side of things working just fine (kodak ektacolor) but the film side is still a mystery. The chemical we have are Flexicolor Developer Replenisher C41 C41B C41RA, and C41 Fixer. I'm pretty sure that the film needs bleach - correct? Can I use the bleach from the Ektacolor set? Also can I use the chemical in a Mohrpro 8 (ME42)?
    Thanks in advance - Russell

    OH BTW any good resources on where I can find instruction manual for a Therma-Phot ACP502 processor?
     
  2. AgX

    AgX Member

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    Welcome to Apug.

    Yes, most kind of current colour material needs some kind of bleach. The bleaches for C-41 film and RA-4 paper are quite similar, but still the film needs a more active bleach. (Our fellow member Photo Engineer is the specialist on this matter.)
    The correct bleach for C-41 would be C-41 Bleach or alternatively C-41 Bleach-Fix (BLIX) which is a special combination of the two baths in one.

    In case you could not find a link to an ACP502 manual you still could contact the manufacturer, Thermaphot, as this machine is still on offer.

    What chemical do want to use in a Mohrpro 8?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 6, 2008
  3. Neal

    Neal Subscriber

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  4. epatsellis

    epatsellis Member

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    Yoharv,
    I have a pdf of all the relevent C41 documents, I think I got it from Don Bryant's website, you can grab a copy of it here: http://www.eriepatsellis.com/z131.pdf

    I would stay with the separate bleach/fix as opposed to a blix. You can recapture your bleach and aerate/regenerate, saving a small fortune, as bleach is the most expensive of the solutions.


    erie
     
  5. tiberiustibz

    tiberiustibz Member

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    Okay. I figured this out. My school doesn't have color so I had to make mine myself. You're lucky. What school? Yes the film needs bleach. It should come in a gallon jug. Doesn't need an activator, use stock strength and lasts forever. Developer oxidizes so keep the cap on. Bleach needs oxidization to work. You can use any fix. Start by tempering in waterbath and then bring the waterbath to 102 F and keep it there-ish for the developer step. I don't always temper the blix (i used the combination, will be getting bleach and fix when it arrives in mail).

    You can try using that bleach. I would recommend getting the c41 bleach though.

    FILM

    Developer: Depending on which one you got, you may or may not need an activator, I believe you do. Mix the developer per the instructions. It may be an A-B-C mix in the box or the directions are written on the bottle of activator. Get everything to 100 degrees (if you're doing reel and tank try 102 to compensate for loss in transfer) Pour it in, agitate for the first 30 seconds and then 4 lifts each 30 seconds for the remainder. Fresh chemistry is 3:15 time, second use 3:30, third use 3:45 as guidelines. It doesn't need to be as precise as you think.

    Bleach: You use it straight from the bottle if I'm not correct. Should be heated to 100ish although not imperative. If it's cooler use more time. 6:30 at 100 F. Same agitation.

    Fix: Dilute per instructions, same as bleach. Time 6:30 at 100f. same agitation.

    Wash: 3 mins running water 95-105 F. Dump it a few times to be sure.

    Stabilizer: Not completely sure on the specs. I started on a kit with a formaldehyde based stabilizer which required 1-2 mins with agitations. I believe kodak's is non formaldehyde so it can't hurt to leave it for a bit. I normally use a min or two.

    As usual be careful with the emulsion. Dry it hanging, big clothespin on the bottom while it dries so it doesn't curl.

    A processor might use different times due to agitation. Otherwise it might make things simpler. I don't have the $$ so I use reel tank and waterbath.

    PAPER:
    You said you had this working. I use room temp for a minute or two in developer plus about that in the blix tray with agitation. Works fine.

    My school only does B+W so I had to figure this out myself. Good Luck!
     
  6. epatsellis

    epatsellis Member

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    simplifying a bit, we'll stick with non SM or AR processes.

    Developer
    There's two developers available, LORR (Low Replenishment Rate) and non.

    Both have 3 parts to mix to make a stock replenisher solution. Stock replenisher solutions need to be further mixed with water and (each has a specific) starter to make tank solutions

    Bleach

    There is really only one bleach Bleach III, though it is available in a variety of sizes and as a replenisher/starter combination as well. For simplicities sake, stick with the 1 gal. Bleach III.


    Fixer

    Flexicolor Fixer and Replenisher is all you need, dilute 1:4, one gallon makes 5. While you can use this fixer for other processes (B&W paper and film) the reverse is not neccesarily true, and at one time I recall PE noted why.


    Stabillzer

    There is only one, yes you need to use it.


    The standard Flexicolor C41 process for rotary tube and sink line processing is:

    Developer: 3:15 100.0 +-.25

    Bleach 6:30 75 - 105

    Wash 3:15 75 - 105

    Fixer 6:30 75 - 105

    Wash 3:15 75 - 105

    Stabilizer 1:30 75 - 105

    Dry


    Some things to note:

    If you're using a processing tube and rotary agitation, by running a few tests with your tank, you can determine how much temp you lose during development, if the tube (with the appropriate amount of water) drops from 100 to 90, start your next test at 105, should end at 95, averaging 100.0 degrees. It takes a few tries to nail it down.

    If you're using a water bath and stainless reel tank, try to hold the bath at 100 degrees, higher temps will alter the color balance, temp too high, blue gains more contrast than green and red. Too low and the opposite occurs.

    If you can, sweet talk a local minilab operator into giving you an expired roll of control strips, in conjunction with a 3 color densitometer and a little patience, you can get the process exact, and have a basepoint to shoot from. (I've known a few people that make friends with an operator and get them to read their strips for them)

    Xrite 890 densitometers are cheap on ebay, less than $50 typically, it will calculate everything you need to plot the process and keep it in control, I'd be lost without mine. Without control strips, you have to assume that you need no adjustments to the mixed chemistry, I've found that with the last batch of bleach I bought, I had to increase bleach to 7:00 to fully eliminate metallic silver. Without the densitometer I'd never have caught it, the negatives look "about right" but over time the Dmin would have become an issue.

    If you haven't downloaded the pdf I linked earlier, do it and spend some time with it, all of this is covered in greater detail there.

    erie
     
  7. tiberiustibz

    tiberiustibz Member

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    I find it's very easy to hold a plastic tub of water at 102 for 3.5 mins (the plastic tub is sortof an insulator. A metal sink wouldn't work so well). I did however try 100 degrees and it came out too low because some of the tank sticks out and you get heat loss compared inside and out. I haven't had any problems with such film. You really notice it at 5 degrees +- with crossover.

    Since you agitate first I usually get the dev tempered a bit high which happens naturally when I bring the tempering bath temp down to 102 from 140.

    I believe control strips and the like to be superfluous IMHO. I view the prints by eye using a cheat sheet I found a while ago which says "too red, add this..." or whatever. Just think it out I'm too tired right now. I start with my base values (figured out the hard way) and then as I adjust the color with multiple confirming strips I adjust the exposure along the way. The grain really bugs me in 35mm negs even with 100 speed film too. Just something I noticed. I'm going MF for color.
     
  8. epatsellis

    epatsellis Member

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    Well, whatever works for you.

    I won't risk my film (or a potentially expen$ive reshoot) unless I run a control strip and the process is in control.
    It takes very little change in developer activity to make drastic color shifts, the crossover isn't something that can be corrected in photoshop.

    Improperly regenerated bleach can cause retained silver issues, fixer ph being too low can result in leuco cyan dye formation, correctable with rebleach and fix, but impossible to judge by eye. (unless you can judge a .07 density change, the action limits for C41)

    Insufficient fixing can cause a rise in R and G Dmin values, hard to judge by eye.

    One of the advantages of the bleach and fix steps is that they proceed to completion, extending either 30% guarantees completion, if you're just winging it.
     
  9. yoharv

    yoharv Member

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    Wow - thanks evryone!

    I can't believe all of the useful replies to my original question!!!
    So - the result is I definitely need Bleach (I guess Kodak Bleach III). Now the only problem is...B&H can't ship it, and my local brick and mortars are like "color chemicals...are you on crack?". I'm in the Madison area (actually about 45 mins west). Anyone know where I can get the chems?
    Best,
    Russell
     
  10. Kino

    Kino Member

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  11. epatsellis

    epatsellis Member

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    Adorama ships color chemicals without raping you, as does Calumet.
     
  12. srs5694

    srs5694 Member

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    A couple more suggestions for where to get it:

    • Check eBay. A search on "bleach" in "cameras & photo" turns up several hits, although some of these aren't what you want. FWIW, I've dealt with Photo Systems Inc Store before with success. I'm currently using Silver Pixel bleach/replenisher I bought from them to replenish my C-41 bleach. (I dump ~70ml after each roll and add ~70ml of the replenisher solution. Since bleach is the most expensive part of the C-41 process, and since it lasts a long time, replenishing it is a good way to keep costs down.)
    • Freestyle sells Silver Pixel brand C-41 chemicals, although only in large quantities.
    • You could get friendly with a local minilab operator or two. I've heard of people getting them to add photochemicals to their next orders for hobbyists. I've never done this myself, but it might be worth a try.
     
  13. yoharv

    yoharv Member

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  14. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    Well, that is a kit to make 12.5 gallons of Bleach III. However, my Bleach III came in a 1 gallon bottle for about $15.00 to use as-is. It did not come in two parts either.

    PE
     
  15. Kino

    Kino Member

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    Its confusing, but you have to shop around...
     
  16. srs5694

    srs5694 Member

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    Concerning shipping, B&H is notoriously conservative in their interpretation of shipping regulations. The story I've heard is that they refuse to ship anything, by any means, that's restricted for any type of shipping. So for instance, if an item is prohibited from air shipment, B&H won't ship it, even by ground. Another dealer, such as Adorama, Calumet, or Freestyle, might ship the exact same thing by ground but refuse to ship it by air. If you peruse their respective Web sites, you'll see that Freestyle is up-front about items they won't ship by air, and by and large, they're the same items that B&H won't ship at all.