Oriental Seagull VC fibre, what developer?

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by livemoa, May 30, 2004.

  1. livemoa

    livemoa Member

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    I have some of this paper to try out and will be making enlargements from 35mm negs. The negs have good shadow detail in most cases and I would like, if possibile to hold highlights without to much burning..... What paper developers do you all use/recommend and why?

    Thanking in advance
     
  2. Grady O

    Grady O Member

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    I have been using Sprint developer, which is ok. It gives neutral to cold tones. I think I'm going to switch soon, not because I'm not happy, but because I want to try other things. So I'll be interested in what others say because I know its a very nice paper.
     
  3. david b

    david b Member

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    I would do this:

    1.5 minutes in selectol soft and then 1.5 minutes in dektol.

    the selectol soft will just do the highlight first, and then the dektol will take care of the midtones and shadow detail.
     
  4. Ka

    Ka Member

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    david b,

    At what dilution Selectol Soft and Dektol for the Seagull? Also, who sells Selectol Soft?
     
  5. david b

    david b Member

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    Both developers are 1 part chemical, 2 parts water.

    B&H sells both developers.
     
  6. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    As long as I still have some Glycin left, I use Ansco130. It's a wonderful developer, and lasts foreve. My last batch was mixed in October. By now it's so dark that it's difficult to find the print in the tray, but it still works. When I get home again in two weeks time I'll mix a new batch - just because of the colour.

    It also happens to work very well with Seagull VC.
     
  7. skahde

    skahde Member

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    Ole,

    Ansco 130 has hard to beat keeping capabilities, but what is the tone of your prints like in that old developer? I found that my prints became more and more brown in the shadows (Agfa MCC), from the accumlating halide in the Ansco 130 I assume. An effect I dindn't find very pleasing and which turned to an unusual and annoying green cast in selenium. Fortunately the toned prints turned neutral when dry (piuh!).

    Stefan
     
  8. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    There's been a very gradual "warming" of the image tone all over, but with very big differences between different papers. The Bergger one without baryta layer (can never remember what it's called) is absolutely neutral, and if anything has actually cooled a bit. Fortezo museum is very warm, Bergger Art CB much less so.

    If I remember correctly. I could have told you for certain yesterday, as I have a set of identical prints (as close as possible) made on 12 different papers and developed in (then) four-months-old Ansco130. And now I'm 500 kilometers away.
    But I do rememember that none were greenish except Emaks, which I have other reasons to dislike.
     
  9. doughowk

    doughowk Subscriber

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    Photographers Formulary version of Dektol (TD-30) has neutral to cool tone with Oriental Seagull, but regular Dektol imparts an olive brown color to the paper. Sprint Quicksilver has similiar results to TD-30, while PF-130 (Ansco 130) seemed less contrasty. I just use developer, water stop bath, TF-4 fixer, then wash - trying to keep process simple.
     
  10. skahde

    skahde Member

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    D72 made with Bromide (aka grandpa's Dektol) gives the olive tint. Replacing the bromide with 0,2g Benzotriazol leads to a neutral to coldish colour. This is what I use with Agfa MCC right now if the subject asks for a neutral to cold tone.

    Stefan
     
  11. Donald Miller

    Donald Miller Member

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    I use Zone VI print developer (very near Dektol but improved support for shadows) on Oriental Seagull (graded and VC). This gives me a neutral print tone. I also use my formula for Pyro Plus Paper Developer which seems to also give a neutral tone with seemingly deeper blacks and improved tonal separation.
     
  12. Tom Stanworth

    Tom Stanworth Member

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    You wont go far wrong. I have used ilford bromophen, multigrade and tetenal eukobrom all with excellent results. IMHO all good quality devs produce good results and other elements of your technique (dev time vs exposure etc, contrast...) will have far more of a bearing on the scale of the print than the paper dev - colour is a differnt matter. Multigrade is very neutral, eukobrom a nice blue black. Oriental is my favourite neutral/cool paper! This paper tones very well in selenium for a cool blue/purple black. Picks up a lot of density fast so take care.

    Tom
     
  13. chrisg

    chrisg Member

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    I've used Dektol 1+2 and Ansco 130 (Photographers' Formulary 130) 1+2 with Seagull VC. I print mostly on Ilford MG IV FB. By comparison, I found Seagull VC to be about one grade softer than MGIV, i.e., negs that printed with a #2 filter on MGIV printed with a #3 filter with Seagull, and that max black was not quite as dark with MGIV.

    Chris
     
  14. Gary Grenell

    Gary Grenell Member

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    How's this for a radical idea...Dektol 1:2. It seems to work fine. The image first appears in 1 minute and is fully developed by 2.5 minutes. This is by way of contrast to Zonal Pro, which is very, very slow. It took me close to 2 minutes for the image to begin emerging and a total development time of over 3 minutes, closer to 4. Too slow for me.

    Gary
     
  15. Gary Grenell

    Gary Grenell Member

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    Tom...have you used a current crop of the Oriental paper. As I am mentioning in some other posts, I am presently NOT able to get it to tone toward purplish. I don;t really want my blacks to look eggplanty, but I do want that very slight hint of purple that comes when the selenium is working. I am not certain why I am not obtaining that result.

    Gary
     
  16. Donald Miller

    Donald Miller Member

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    My question is why one would consider using this choice of two developers with a VC paper...this is a technique used many years ago with graded papers; the effect was to move "between grades"...hardly necessary or attractive in this time of variable contrast materials.

    I have used Seagull VCFB for years. I used graded materials before that. There are several single developers that will work very well with this paper. My personal choice has been Zone VI or Dektol for off the shelf developers...my Pyro Plus Paper Developer will work very nicely if one is into mixing their own concoction.

    I concur with Tom about the selenium toning effects of this paper..
     
  17. ann

    ann Subscriber

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    gary, i seem to remember on another thread that you were using a HCA with the selenium; if so, try water instead.

    Years ago using HCA was very common but with new testing , many have found it more productive to switch to water. ALso, are you using your mixture as a one shot toner. Current "wisdom" indicates that if one is using a HCA instead of water it should be used as a one shot process.
     
  18. kiku

    kiku Subscriber

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    Hi Gary! Yeh, that "radical" photographer Ansel Adams also liked Dektol 1:2.
    (sad that so many people these days like to criticise his work). Kiku
     
  19. Tom Stanworth

    Tom Stanworth Member

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    My papers are the regular G and VC FB papers (not the latest GF series graded). I have had no problems with a subtle shift towards a cool deep purple black but then again all my paper is at least 6 months old....maybe something changed? I have had no issues regardless of my slapdash approach to selenium concentration.

    Tom
     
  20. jstewart

    jstewart Member

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    I just recently started using VC papers (all FB). I'm still experimenting with Afga Classic, Ilford MC, Forte Polycontrast, Kodak Polymax Fine Art, and Oriental Seagull. I develop in Ansco 120 1+2 (with benzotriazole as restrainer) or D72 with KBr restrainer.

    My toning experiments in Sel 1:19 (to get a purple black hue) on A120 prints were disappointing. Only Forte PC toned at all, and that was more a "warming" of the image. Prints were left in the toner for 20 minutes at 70 deg F. I toned a Forte print printed in D72 in Sel 1:19... it quickly toned a distinct brown versus purple.

    I'm wondering what could explain why some can get a good hue shift with Sel while others don't. Should I be using a stronger dilution of Selenium (I use KRST by the way).

    Jim
     
  21. Les McLean

    Les McLean Subscriber

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  22. Tom Stanworth

    Tom Stanworth Member

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    Stronger dilutions induce much more colour change, normally. Warmer papers shift in tone more obviously than cool papers and warm papers often change colour quite easily even if dilute selenium used (esp forte). KRST is potent stuff and colour shift take place with Forte PWT or PG at 1+19 very comfortably (too fast for me). I dilute approx double this or use very cold when using forte papers otherwise you end up with a rust red/plum in no time at all esp if the solutions are warm (I often tone outdoors in the summer). shift also depends upon the image tones. If an image has few half tones, you will see less colour shift as most tones are either black or pale grey. Warm tone images where there are lots of middle values show the greatest apparent colour change. Most cold papers show a change in colour only noticeable in comparison with a wet untoned print, esp if a cold tone dev used in the first place. I find that when toning for Dmax with cold papers an untoned wet reference print in an adjacent tray is essential for seeing how far the Dmax has increased and to make sure you dont get confused and go too far and reduce Dmax.
     
  23. photobackpacker

    photobackpacker Advertiser Advertiser

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    Why would you go here as a starting point? If the negatives have good detail, you don't need Selectol Soft. Dektol will do a fine job. The approach you have suggested is to gain a 1/2 papergrade contrast reduction. It is a step that is used to fine-tune a print being made with graded paper. To suggest this as the initial approach to the negatives is puzzling.
     
  24. Tom Stanworth

    Tom Stanworth Member

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    I agree, keep things simple. I print at one grade when it is all I need. I only complicate thigs when I have to.........

    I have found that the more time I spend printing, the less I have to try complex things as I am better in control of the basics and can massage them to work better for me than previously (like small changes in main grade, dev time, and toning time/concentration. I would never initially approach a print as a split grade as normally this just is not neccessary apart from perhaps some local hard or soft. Split grade for me, is for when the simple tools dont work. Sometimes one is pleaseantly surpised how easy a print can be. I would hate to have spent time zeroing in for split grades when my second attempt is spot on......
     
  25. photobackpacker

    photobackpacker Advertiser Advertiser

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    Amen. I used to experiment with different developers, film, paper, toners. I discovered this camouflaged the fact that I am the weak link and handling all of the complexity kept me from concentrating on the learning and discipline needed to improve my contribution to the process.

    Start with one film, one paper, one developer for each and work with them until you can verbalize why you need to change. If you want help selecting what materials to work with, look to the pros - not the seekers. I am a huge fan of John Sexton. He uses Tmax 100, Tmax RS 1:9 and xtol. He prints primarily on Polymax Fine Art using dektol 1:2. I have seen his work first hand and if these materials satisfy his requirements, they satisfy mine. When I use these materials, I am certain I am not being held back because the developer doesn't handle the shadows well. If my shadows are empty, it is because I failed to place them at an appropriate level on the film.