New to b&W development question: vertical lines

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by 77seriesiii, Jan 26, 2009.

  1. 77seriesiii

    77seriesiii Member

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    Hello all first post and it is a question. My wife is the photographer and I am the developer. We recently purchased a rollei gx and brought film back into a digital only house. Many years ago I used to develop my film negatives but have sadly discovered I lost most of what I knew. Over the weekend we shot ilford, rollei and kodak b&w 120 film.

    I am using Ilford ID-11 to develop? Is there a better developer, mostly using it because it comes in a powder form and easy to ship to my location.

    I am using water as a fixer...I know that is a debate point but seems to work.

    I am using kodak photoflo to wash the film. This is where I think my problem is occurring. I am getting vertical lines, almost banding, on all the photos. here is a link to one of the photos (sorry if this is wrong linking to another site):

    http://www.jpgmag.com/photos/1428335

    I tried looking at the negatives through a loop and didnt see any vertical lines and I did discover I am washing the negatives incorrectly, not enough water or long enough...take your pick as it is both in my case.

    My wife is using an older Microtek 1800f scanner to import the images with silverfast using 1200 dpi.

    I think my lack of washing could be a cause or it could be the scanner or maybe it is part of my re-learning how to develop film...Has anyone seen this before, solutions, could it be the camera scratching the film or me scratching when I load it on the reels? all of the above?

    Thanks for any and all help/tips/suggestions.

    ./e
     
  2. JBrunner

    JBrunner Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    You need to use a fix as a fixer, no debate, end of story. You can use water as a stop, but shake it as much as you want, it won't fix the film. Use water for washing. Got to the Ilford/Harman website and you will find a good wash regimen. Photoflo as a dilute final rinse to prevent water spots. There is a Youtube video series overview of the entire process for 120 if you follow the link under my signature.

    The marks look like squeegee marks on unhardened emulsion, perhaps related to the neg being unfixed, or maybe too strong a Photoflow dilution, IDK. Don't use a sqeegee unless you need to. If you live in a dry climate photoflo treatment is all you need.

    It could also be a camera issue, you can check that by running a junk roll through it and examining the unprocessed emulsion at an angle to the light and look for those scratches, if that is what they are.

    With the neg you have, examine that at an angle on both sides, as the artifacts may not show up looking through it, but will show when looking at surface reflections.

    If you believe it is a scanning issue, you can post for advice on HybridPhoto.com as we don't discuss scanning here.

    Welcome to APUG! You'll find lots of help and friendly advice here.
     
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  3. Thomas Bertilsson

    Thomas Bertilsson Subscriber

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    Squeegee? Do you use one to remove excess water before you hang the film to dry?
     
  4. trexx

    trexx Member

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    Nice pic, if you did not see any with a loop then the scanner would be at fault. Turn the neg 90% and scan.
    As to the processing water stop is good by me and debatable by some, but you need FIX for fixing
     
  5. DannL

    DannL Member

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    Agreeing with Trexx on this one. The lines look like a scanner issue to me. Try scanning them as color, then convert to b/w as necessary. Or try a different scanner.
     
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  6. 77seriesiii

    77seriesiii Member

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    Thanks for the comments everyone. I am not using a squeegee though I was thinking abut it but wanted to try air dry first.

    On the info at photo.net, that is where I discovered I was doing the wash cycles incorrectly. I will take a look at getting a fixer and/or trying either a vinegar/citric acid solution out as well.

    On the scanner techniques cool suggestion, should have thought of that but am feeling under the weather. I will let the wife know and have her move them around to see if the lines are on the scanner or on the photo.

    Thanks again

    ./e
     
  7. pentaxuser

    pentaxuser Subscriber

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    Interesting thread. I have never seen anyone say that wash as a fixer seems to work but based on the OP's comment I presume that without fixer the negs look OK for a while. Just out of academic curiosity can anyone say how long? Could be important in terms of time the OP has left to save the negs.

    OP While you haven't said so in as many words, I hope you have the intention to fix the "unfixed films ASAP and thus save them. Otherwise a lot of time and effort in producing precious negs will go down the drain.

    Given that my fixer looks very much like water, it has made me think that confusing the water, held in a container for washing a la the Ilford system, with fixer could so easily result in fixing with water and throwing the fixer away and worst of all looking at the negs and thinking they had been fixed and not realising the mistake until its too late.

    Mmmm There may be more of a case for labelling than I thought, even in a simple four liquid process of dev, wash, fix and wash.

    pentaxuser
     
  8. Jordan

    Jordan Member

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    Water is not a suitable fixer -- it's not even a debatable point. Because you didn't use a proper fixer, your film still contains all of its light-sensitive material and probably looks very cloudy. The vinegar or citric acid would be for a stop bath (which CAN be replaced with water), not for a fixer. There are no good fixers that can be made using just "supermarket chemicals".

    All that said, your vertical lines are almost certainly a scanning issue caused by dirty scanner glass. It has to be absolutely clean and dust-free and you have to make sure the negative is positioned at the correct place on the scanner glass. If you have more questions about scanning, though, you'll have to take them to another site.
     
  9. Venchka

    Venchka Member

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    Does the Microtek scanner have a film mode? Do you have the proper film holders?

    I agree. Everything you ever needed to know about devloping film is at the Ilford site. Dig around for the time-temperature conversion chart. It's a one page PDF file. Very detailed from about 64 F to 78 F in 2 degree increments. Invaluable information. don't get too hung up on brands. Kodak Rapid Fixer works just as well as Ilford or any other brand. I ma getting more and more partial to Kodak Xtol diluted 1:3 for Ilford films. It worked great for me with HP5+ and I developed my first ever sheets of Delta 100 last night and they look very good.

    Good luck!
     
  10. 77seriesiii

    77seriesiii Member

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    Boy did I make a monkey of things. I do plan on fixing the negatives as soon as possible and will be going to a local camera store in morning. I will have to wait and see if the film will last. Lucky for me it was the beginning and I found out my mistake by luck. Now to explain it my better half.

    thanks again

    ./e
     
  11. manfromh

    manfromh Member

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    What do the negs look like? Are they transparent? Last time I accidently got unfixed negs, they were milky white, but the negative image was there.
     
  12. CBG

    CBG Member

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    Belt and suspenders philosophy here: keep the unfixed film in the dark till you complete the fixation.

    ID-11 is the same as D-76. D-76 is the most standard film developer ever made - the one by which all others are judged. You're fine with ID-11.

    You need to go back to utter basics. Those are very good photos and deserve the best treatment you can give them.

    Keep all your solution temperatures very consistent. I shoot for within one degree. Easiest way is to mix your working strength solutions and put bottles of them in a tub of water at room temp. so they all even out in temperature. (presumes room temp. is around 68 F) An hour or two will usually get them very close in temp.

    Create an intentional agitation schedule for your development. That will ensure consistent and repeatable development.

    The simplest and most dependable process is to use film developer as a "one shot" developer. That usually means using the developer in it's working strength as a fairly dilute solution and then discarding after one use. Just toss it.

    ID-11 / D-76 is very commonly used diluted 1 to 1 with water as a "one shot" developer. Because it is more dilute than the basic stock strength, a longer developing time is used. www.digitaltruth.com/devchart.html has a "Massive development time chart" enter your film and developer and it will give you a good starting point for developing time.

    Use several changes of tempered water to stop development.

    When you are doing new film, keep film in the dark well into the fix.

    Fixer is the only item to fix the image with. Just use any commercially made fixer and follow the directions exactly.

    Water is the only thing to wash with. Use ten changes with considerable agitation. I don't mean thrashing it to death, but a consistent right side up - right side down inversion schedule. Be methodical.

    PhotoFlo is NOT a solution to do the wash. Use PhotoFlo once the wash is finished. PhotoFlo is a detergent like substance that helps the water in your film sheet off the film evenly so you don't get pool like drying marks. Most folks find it should be diluted somewhat more than manufacturer's directions. A little goes a very - VERY - long way. I use it one HALF capfull per gallon final rinse water. When you are done with your diluted PhotoFlo mix - toss it - one use only. It is bad economy to reuse it since any contaminants could be carried from film to film. Why take a chance?

    Many people do their final rinse after washing with distilled water so that mineral junk doesn't make drying marks on the film. If your area has hard water - heavy mineral concentrations - distilled water as a final rinse is a very good idea. Mix your PhotoFlo with distilled water.

    Take your time. Label all solutions and line them up in order of use so you are organized in the dark. The last thing you want is to get confused whan you are new to this. Don't be improvising yet.

    Take notes of what you do. Sounds dorky, but you'll thank yourself because it helps you be methodical.
     
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