Now ready to order film and developer

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by RonaldD, Apr 21, 2012.

  1. RonaldD

    RonaldD Member

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    Hello,
    AS I mentionned in the MF thread I am getting ready to first start developing black and white with my Nikon FE2 to see how I get along.
    I am not worried at this moment about how I will process the negatives into prints.
    It seems that there is an array of different emulsions and developper.
    Infact; it is overwhelming.
    I have come up with a few, please let me know of your suggestions as I have never ever tried this before.
    But apparently the sense of achievement can counterreact the learning curve.
    Firstly, what's with the solvent, staining, high accutance on developpers, can't find anything on this.
    Or, perhaps I should not worry about this at first.
    And what about, developpers that apparently ( clump on the silver sulfides ) more than others.
    Please remember that I am at the moment using a 35mm and some negatives if adequate I will probably try and enlarge
    to a 8x10. so grain is on my mind since I do not have a MF yet.
    I was thinking Ilford FP4 125 asa
    or Delta 100 asa or HP5 plus 400asa.
    In the kodak Tmax 100-400 asa or tri-x 400 asa.
    Worried about the 400 grain ?
    I will also be using the speed as per the film that is suggested, push, pull, and shove is too much at this moment.
    DEVELOPPERS /// ID-`11 seems nice , perceptol, DD-x
    Kodak Extol. I already have a roll of T -max unopened and would be nice to have a developper for both Kodak and Ilford,
    But if you guys and gals suggest just one type of film and developper to start with that is easier for a beginner , tha'ts fine.
    Any and all of your help is greatly appreciated.
    Sorry for the long post; it is just boggling at the moment with all the possibilities.
    Thank You,
    Ronald
    PS Inasmuch as there is info on the subject I am making a quest for information as it pertains to only 35mm at the moment
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 21, 2012
  2. Rick A

    Rick A Subscriber

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    Get ready for the deluge of everybodys favorite combos. Any of the films you have listed along with tried and true Kodak D-76 will get you started. If you don't want to mix powdered chems, then HC-110 should suffice. IMHO, D-76 is probably the best place to start as all other develpers are compared to it and ease of use.
     
  3. paul_c5x4

    paul_c5x4 Subscriber

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    Films I have used and can recommend: Panf+ & FP4+, both from Ilford. Fuji Acros 100 - Possibly the cheapest film from the big three.

    Developers: D76/ID11 - Virtually the same developer from the Kodak and Ilford stables. Used at 1+3, it gives me the benchmark to judge all others by.

    My recommended combo: FP4+ and D76.
     
  4. zsas

    zsas Member

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    There is sooooo much out there, but the best advice I received is pick one developer and stick with it, shoot some film to see if there is some differences that you enjoy. For eg, there are two types of film, classic and tgrain, classic are like your Tri X, HP5, FP4; the tgrain are modern films with a tgrain (tabular instead of cubic) that give a finer grain, such as Acros 100, Delta 100/400/3200, Tmax 100/400/3200. Now the hard part is you need to figure out which of the two types you like. Many like classic, others tgrain, but a lot has to do with what you photograph too. I have found that I like two speeds of film a lot but I always dev in Xtol, I like that it is more enviornmentally kind than others and is quite able to be pushed. I have tried a variety of stocks to arrive at the two main stocks that I like to use depending on the lighting - a slow one and a fast one. I think the choice is up to you, and it really often depends on what you shoot. Bulk loading 35mm also led me down a path if you are condidering loading bulk, it sure drops the price but the options are less...

    Welcome to Apug and analog, the possiblities are endless and quite fun to figure out your way!!!
     
  5. RonaldD

    RonaldD Member

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    Thanks,
    You are all helping, appreciated.
    At this moment I am worried about the grain because of the 35mm size.
    So I suppose the Fp4 would be the best of both world.
    Lower asa than HP5 and tri-x so less grainy, but not as fine as the T emulsions.
    Also, apparently easier for a beginner to handle than the T emulsions.
    Ronald
     
  6. cmacd123

    cmacd123 Subscriber

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    D76 or the Ilford version called ID-11 is almost considered the "Standard" developer, that all others are compared to, so it is a good choice. The two are identical for all practical Purposes.

    ID-11 / d76 is listed as a recommended developer for almost any film on the market, even obscure Chinese and eupoean brands.

    The other popular ones are Kodak's HC-110 and Rodinal. Both of which are Highly concentrated liquids which are mixed up just before use. Some folks find they are more convenient that way. Rodinal is known for Very high sharpness, but also move visible grain. But If you have ID-11 already you are good to go. One or the otehr of the Kodak or Illford D76/ID-11 developer will be less expensive depending on the local market

    As far as Film, HP5 is an excellent general purpose B&W film. It is often a few cents cheaper than the FP4, perhaps because many photographers use it as their only film. if you are planning to only go to 8X10 prints I don't think you need to worry so much about the grain.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 21, 2012
  7. RonaldD

    RonaldD Member

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    Can you use a flash with these two films?
    Ronald
     
  8. brucemuir

    brucemuir Member

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    you can certainly use flash with any film.
    as long as it is used skillfully :smile:

    Don't let grain scare you. Embrace it.
    It is what makes silver based photography beautiful imo.
    You might prefer a T grain film in 400 if you are really adverse to grain but be aware that T grain films can be a bit more fussy when it comes to processing. It is less forgiving.
     
  9. tkamiya

    tkamiya Member

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    About grain in film....

    I wouldn't be too concerned with grain because even with 35mm Tri-X 400 enlarged to 11x14 (I do this routinely), grain is not obtrusive. Even though the name is the same, Tri-X of today is not the same "stuff" as we had several decades ago. Tmax 400 is about as fine grained as traditional ASA 100 film. This is just by developing with D-76 in standard way. No tricks necessary. If you are thinking (if you are in my age group) of old film, you will be pleasantly surprised. With high speed shutter available in 35mm gear, I pretty much have standardized on Tmax 400 and Tri-X film.

    Yes, you can use flash... why not?

    About developers... I started with XTOL and settled with D-76. It just works and to be honest, I really don't see much difference in results. When I started, I studied and reviewed lots of technical data and picked the "best." I wouldn't stress over technical merit of each developer.
     
  10. Worker 11811

    Worker 11811 Member

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    Tri-X Pan 400 developed in D-76 @ 1:1 has served millions of photographers well for decades. I don't see any reason why it won't serve you just as well.

    You're only going to be enlarging to 8x10. Grain won't be an issue if you don't crop in too much.

    My photography teacher in college had a hard on for people who cropped too much. He would often rant about how you should be composing your photos in the camera, not on the enlarging easel.
    If he caught you cropping in too much and you didn't learn to compose in-camera when he told you, he would give you a special filed out aperture plate that showed the film all the way to the borders of the negative and order you to print your next assignment full frame with the sprocket holes showing.

    Anyhow, I digress... For 8x10, Tri-X will be fine.

    If you want a slower film with less grain, Fuji Neopan 100 Acros is a good choice. Again, D-76 @ 1:1.

    If you don't want to use D-76, XTOL is a good choice. XTOL works well with Neopan.

    Anything from Ilford will also serve you well. I like Pan F+. If you watch your exposure and development to keep the contrast down, you can get some really tasty pictures with it.

    Honestly, I think you're over thinking it. Just pick one and stick with it for a while.
    Do at least a dozen rolls of film with the same combination of film and developer. Then collect all your negatives, contact sheets and prints together, sit down at the breakfast table with your film and a cup of coffee and look everything over, then decide what you like or don't like.

    After you have done at least a dozen rolls of film the same way (I'd probably do a couple dozen) THEN decide whether you want to change to another product.

    You can talk about the properties of this film or that film or the benefits of one developer over another, all day long, until you are blue in the face but it won't mean a hill of beans unless you have actually held some film in your hands and looked at it and have seen the results.

    Bottom line: Just do it.
     
  11. Newt_on_Swings

    Newt_on_Swings Member

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    Great that your getting into it! Don't worry too much about the variety of different films and chemicals, really any commercial product will do fine! I like to have my students learn on Tri-X (Arista Premium) and good ol' D76. Its a nearly bullet proof combo, and a solid base to learn and build your skills on. Don't worry about grain at all, its part of the image. Anyway a bit of grain will make it easier for your eyes to find when your printing.

    For printing paper and chemicals, try a Resin Coated, Variable Contrast Grade paper, with something such as Dektol.

    I would also recommend you take a look a a little book called Black and White Photography by Henry Horenstien you can get it at any library or buy it used on amazon for $4. It is filled with good info, clear example images, and covers much of the basics of B&W photography, film development, and printing.

    Good Luck!
     
  12. Worker 11811

    Worker 11811 Member

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    Aah! Good old, "H.H."! :smile: Yes, you can also find a copy of that book in my bathroom... Ummm... I mean library, too. :whistling:
    Even though I've probably read that book 100 times, I still find useful tidbits or I am reminded of things that I should or should not be doing, even years after I pulled my copy of the book out of storage in the attic where I keep all my old school books.

    If you don't have it, get it. Many people consider it to the "The Manual."
     
  13. RonaldD

    RonaldD Member

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    Thank You all so very much.
    Some more questions will arise in the detailing of course.
    Sincerely,
    Ronald
     
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  15. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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    Ronald:

    This will duplicate much of the information above, but I'll go ahead anyways.

    Modern 35mm film from the major manufacturers is wonderful stuff. For films between 100 ISO and 400 ISO, you have to work quite hard to end up with an 8x10 print that has grain that intrudes.

    My favourite film recommendation is gone now (Plus-X - :sad:) but any of the other Kodak or Ilford or Fuji alternatives will work great. If I were you, I would start out with Tri-X. Personally, I am currently using a combination of the Plus-X I still have left, and T-Max 400.

    Up where you are, I would recommend HC-110 as a developer. That isn't surprising, because I use HC-110 where I am.
     
  16. Cruzingoose

    Cruzingoose Member

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  17. BradleyK

    BradleyK Subscriber

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    +1. HP5/Tri-X with D76 should be your starting point to get the mechanics down. Thereafter...
     
  18. markbarendt

    markbarendt Subscriber

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    I think there is wisdom in your thoughts here.
     
  19. markbarendt

    markbarendt Subscriber

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    Ronald, judging online is a challenging exercise at best, meaningless at worst.

    My preference for FP4 in 35mm is based in how it actually looks on paper at 11x14 (my norm) as compared to the way TriX or HP5 print at 11x14.

    Purely my opinions here.

    Any B&W film fom Kodak, Fuji, or Ilford can make great pictures. The difference is artistic nuance, not technical merit.

    For me at 8x10 with little to no cropping I find 400 speed films are normally pretty darn nice, when I enlarge more to get to 11x14 or crop significantly, Delta and T-Max 400 are sometimes good/sometimes not, but with HP5 and TriX at 11x14 or cropped I'm normally disappointed; small important details are regularly competing hard with the grain for the viewers attention.

    To really see these differences/nuances, to see if they are important to you, you need real full size prints (your norm) in hand from the various films in question; the Internet won't get you there.
     
  20. RonaldD

    RonaldD Member

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    Thanks Mark,
    on the Kodak site for D76, the development time is for a 36 roll.
    What do you change for a 24 roll?
    I also read somewhere that if you have a condenser head on the enlarger( I don't have one yet, but it seems like something that I should know)
    that you must reduce the exposure time when processing the negative by 15%. What's this stick in the bicycle spokes?
    Ronald
     
  21. markbarendt

    markbarendt Subscriber

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    There is no difference as far as I'm concerned for the development time because of the length of the roll. Hand rolled at 6 or factory packed at 36 all the same.

    It is more likely that you will at least in the beginning, use a diffuser. Condenser enlargers can print sharper but they also accentuate problems; dust, minor scratches, finger prints...
     
  22. RonaldD

    RonaldD Member

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    Hello,
    Will I be using a yellow 2 filter with the fp4, tri-x and HP5+.
    I believe the yellow filters are usually used in conjection with pan films,
    I already have a uv1 ,but does not have threads for an outside filter.
    Thanks,
    Ronald
     
  23. markbarendt

    markbarendt Subscriber

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    Filters are like salt, season to your own taste.
     
  24. Worker 11811

    Worker 11811 Member

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    As far as I know the only thing that changes with different sized rolls is the amount of chemistry needed.
    There is a minimum amount of active chemicals that needs to be in the mix for each square unit of film. Other than that, there is no difference.
    The amount of chemistry needed is usually stamped on the bottom of your developing tank. Use the amount listed and don't worry. Time and temperature should be per manufacturer's spec until you have enough experience to be able to judge your negatives and decide if you want to vary the amount of time. Again, just do what the instructions say.

    Condenser versus diffuser... Don't even worry about it.
    Condensers produce more contrast, all other things equal, but you don't even need to think about that yet. When you make a print on an enlarger, there is no set time for exposure. Exposure time is determined empirically for each negative. No two negatives will print exactly the same. For contrast, you're going to determine that, empirically, for each negative, too. You'll use different filters or settings on each negative.

    Not to sound rude... but... I think you're putting the cart before the horse.
    The best thing you can do for yourself, right now, is to go get some film and soot some pictures. Develop them and look at the results.
    Until you do that... Until you get some film in your hands, you're basically just spinning your wheels in the sand.

    Like the advertisements say: "Just do it!" :wink:
     
  25. AlbertZeroK

    AlbertZeroK Member

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    For Medium Format Film, Acros 100 is 2.69 / roll from Adorama. Ultrafine xTreme 400 is 26.90 / 10 pack on Amazon. Both are good films and I have a few hundred rolls of each in my fridge. I also shoot TMAX 400 typically pushed and I love me some Delta 3200 at 1600 or 3200 which is 5.29 per roll at Adorama right now.

    For developers, I prefer TMax RS Replenished which will do something like 60 + rolls for $13 and Rodinal for stand development, a 500ml bottle will do something like 70-80 rolls. You can skip stop bath and just use water, heck I do just because the faucet is easier to deal with than stop bath. For Delta 3200, you might want something else, I use XTOL.

    D76 is a standard which can't be beat and there is A LOT of information out there about it.
     
  26. RonaldD

    RonaldD Member

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    So here it goes, all at Henry's in Toronto.
    Kodak D-76, 128 oz powder $ 6.99
    Kodak Indicator Stop 16 oz $6.99
    Kodak Fixer Powder 1 Gal $6.99
    Kodak Photo Flo 200 16 oz $8.99
    Does this cover the ratio without
    buying more of one item?
    It also mentions Rapid Fix Hardener; where does that fit in
    and do I need it?
    Re- plenisher, I am asking to make sure but
    you probably will tell me to forget this for now.
    Am I missing something as far as chemicals is concerned. Little additive drops of some sort?
    All I need now is to find a site either forum or personal
    that tells or shows me the steps and what I need to do
    and what is not necessary, stuff like to squeege or not to squeege; here is the question
    Without having to bother all of you for each individual steps.
    Trays and clothespin and what not I ( think ) I will figure that out.
    Oh, what kind of cannister and inserts, plastic or metal?
    If this is enough to finish a few rolls of BW 24 lenght I can see that once being able to finish this at home is still a lot cheaper than
    having it shippped to a lab in Southern Ontario.
    Sincerely,
    Ronald