Lith Printers - The End

Discussion in 'Alternative Processes' started by schrochem, Oct 8, 2012.

  1. schrochem

    schrochem Member

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    No not the snatch point....

    The end of the bath.

    Your humming along and then it takes twice (or longer) as long to develop.
    There it is, the warning that the sucker is almost depleted.
    What do you do?
    Regenerate and keep going?

    Let's say you don't.
    You like this particular ratio/mix/manuf whatever.
    You know (maybe?) at this depletion it works well with paper x or y? Perhaps....
    Or are you that tuned in that you grab a specific negative that 'needs' this 'mix'?
    Perchance you 'know' the right paper and negative combination and just wait for this to happen?

    Or do you stick with what you have a push on? Maybe throw more light at it?
    You don't really have a lot of play time here.....the depletion will be complete soon.

    Or do you just stop and say 'that takes too damn long'? ;-)

    Does it just depend on how tired you are and 'that's it session over'?

    Curious wants to know.

    ;-)
     
  2. Travis Nunn

    Travis Nunn Member

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    When it stops giving me what I want, it graduates to Old Brown
     
  3. Mark Fisher

    Mark Fisher Subscriber

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    If you have a neg that you want to print when the developer is in that state, go ahead and print it. I heat it up as hot as I can since I am usually not patient enough for a half hour.....otherwise....what the wise Travis said!
     
  4. walbergb

    walbergb Subscriber

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    If you want to keep using the same bath, then replenish it. I don't know what developer you are using or in what concentration so I will use my developer/dilution as an example.

    I use Fotospeed LD20. Initial dilution is 100ml A + 100ml B + 3800ml water + 100ml old brown in a 16x20 tray. When the colour of the print goes beyond what I want (usually around print 15), I replenish with 100ml A + 100ml B + 50ml sodium sulphite (that's sulfite with a "t"). I make the replenishing solution up in advance in a 2 liter container. I fill this bottle up with used developer from the tray for better mixing; then pour the whole 2 liters back into the tray. Sometimes I replenish with less than the above formula but in the same proportions. The next few prints will resemble the earlier prints from the fresh bath. I eventually get back to the colour I want. At that point I process 2 or more prints at the same time for consistency. This assumes I want multiple copies.

    Another use for old lith developer is as a second-pass lith. Bleach to completion, or a portion thereof, a print processed in a regular developer. Process the bleached print in the old lith developer. As Mark says, it works better heated to around 40 degree Celsius. Warmtone papers such as Ilford Warmtone work well with this process.
     
  5. Thomas Bertilsson

    Thomas Bertilsson Subscriber

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    Save half, mix with another half of fresh chemistry. Although I rarely hit the wall with a gallon of chemistry mixed.
     
  6. rst

    rst Member

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    I used to mix the developer and at some point in time refresh it with a lot of fresh developer which changed the working solution and the next print looked very different.

    At the moment I run with what I call "replenished old brown" as that is what my developer looks like - old brown. And I keep it from session to session. I mixed a liter of developer (two months ago) and I add 3-4ml fresh stock per 8x10" print and go on as long as I can and that is quite a few 8x10 prints by now. It took a few prints to stabilize but now it works very consistently. However, it is a bit early to call it a success.

    Cheers
    Ruediger
     
  7. mooseontheloose

    mooseontheloose Subscriber

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    This is exactly what I do too, although I don't usually start with a gallon of chemistry.
     
  8. schrochem

    schrochem Member

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    Thanks for the replies. I'll admit I'm kinda bummed. I thought maybe some wizards would speak up and reveal some magic :smile:
    It's a pretty interesting time when it's like that...
    I think it's a point where creativity can step forth. There are so many variables to mix up. The typical ones of course but also the small tweaks. Throw a pinch of this or that in there at this stage and get a beautiful print (or a dud) B-)
    Or perhaps there are papers that don't normally do anything come alive when the bath is almost dead.
    I'll take a bushel of paper if someone wants to donate it ;-)
     
  9. DarkroomDan

    DarkroomDan Subscriber

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    What ever Ruediger is doing, I can attest that it works great. I have one of his prints and it is beautiful.

    Dan
     
  10. Travis Nunn

    Travis Nunn Member

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    Wise??? Wow! I really do have you fooled! :smile:
     
  11. Travis Nunn

    Travis Nunn Member

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    That's a good way to extend the developer. Like you, though, I mix up a lot of developer so I usually hit the wall before my developer
     
  12. Dan Henderson

    Dan Henderson Member

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    Most of the time when printing a negative for the first time, I can arrive at a print with the refining crop, exposure, dodges, and burns to satisfy me with 4 to 6 sheet of paper. Happily, with the developer, dilution, and amount of old brown that I use, the prints "turn the corner" from clay/green to the pinky-blackish tones that I prefer at about print #3 or 4, and the developer begins to die about print #6 or 7. So as long as I pay attention, I can hit the window and get 3 to 4 finished prints from one negative in a single session.

    I feel that I am most productive in printing sessions of around 2 hours, which is about the time it takes me to work up a finished print and get to the tones I like. So I seldom, if ever, replenish or mix up new developer.
     
  13. thefizz

    thefizz Subscriber

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    Same here.