Photographers Formulary BW-2

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by CJBo001, May 8, 2012.

  1. CJBo001

    CJBo001 Member

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    Does anyone have experience (good or bad) with Photographers Formulary BW-2 T-MAX developer? I am interested in optimizing grain and sharpness and don't want to deal with 5 liters of XTOL as I won't be processing a lot of film. Any other suggestions welcome.
    Thanks in advance. - Chuck
     
  2. michael_r

    michael_r Subscriber

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    I haven't used it, but if it is like T-Max developer it favours shadow speed slightly over grain and sharpness. In the end, if you're using TMax films, you can't get much better overall performance than with plain old D76 1+1. TMax films were initially tested by Kodak in D76 and performed beautifully. If you don't want to mess with XTOL I'd go with D76.
     
  3. nworth

    nworth Subscriber

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    I tried it a few years ago at a workshop, and I got quite beautiful negatives. I've had no experience with it since, but it seems to be a quite good developer. Developers can be a pretty personal thing. Whenever you wonder about something like this, you should try the product on 3 or 4 not too important rolls, then make your own decision.
     
  4. mopar_guy

    mopar_guy Subscriber

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    This developer is a great choice. Simple to mix liquid and gives beautiful results. I first used this over 20 years ago. It comes in a small kit for low volume users.
     
  5. seadrive

    seadrive Member

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    I needed to order some more BW-65 anyway, so I ordered some BW-2 to try with the T-grain films I've been testing, especially TMY and Acros. I'll let you know what I think of it.
     
  6. seadrive

    seadrive Member

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    Finally received my BW-2 from B&H today, so I used it to develop a test roll of TMY-2, rated at 400.

    At the recommended development time of 7 minutes at 68F, I'd say my negs are 30-40% overdeveloped. I usually start out with 20% less than the recommended time, but since the instructions were written by someone at Formulary, not Kodak, I thought, hey, maybe they know what they're talking about <sigh>.

    This is not a one-shot developer. You mix up a liter of the working solution, and use it to process up to 10 rolls. Each roll gets 10% more development time than the one before it.

    So... let's say that the dev time for the first roll should have been 5 minutes. That means that the second roll would get 5:30. But that assumes that the 10% increase from roll-to-roll is accurate, which I have no way of knowing until I nail down the initial time, so... <sigh>

    This is gonna be a PITA, but I'll see what I can do.