Printing question

Discussion in 'Darkroom Equipment' started by kjsphoto, Dec 15, 2004.

  1. kjsphoto

    kjsphoto Subscriber

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    Ok,

    I just got my supplies today and I am getting ready to head back into the darkroom!!!!

    MY problem is I have no idea how to use the VC Zone VI head I got. How to you set it to a grade 3 for example and then how to you set it for grade 5, 1, 2, etc...


    Also what do I need for developing archival prints. FB.

    Developer
    Stop
    Fix
    Wash
    Hypo
    Photo FLO????

    I am not sure on the step here or the times so any help would be greatly appreciated. How long to you keep the print in the developer for? I remember back years ago we would watch the print and pull it when it was where we wanted it then put it in the. By the steps a rather vague as it was about 15+ years ago.

    Also I ordered some Kodak Fix with Hardener. DO I need part B or just Part A or do I need to mix both?

    I also got some Dektol and Afga paper developer as well.

    For the Stop I got some Kodak stop indicator and for the hypo I got Kodak. I remember we used this but I do not remember why or what step. Oh yeah also picked up photoflo.

    So please any help you can offer that would be awesome!

    Thanks,

    Kev
     
  2. Lee Shively

    Lee Shively Member

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    Can't help you with the enlarger as I have no experience with it.

    The process is generally anywhere from 1 1/2 minutes to 2 1/2 minutes (depending on the paper you're using, it can vary) in the developer, 15 seconds to 30 seconds in the stop bath and then in the fixer. I use two baths of rapid fixer without hardener, 30 seconds in each and then into a tray of water to hold the print. A one-bath rapid fixer without hardener would be one minute and a standard fixer would be about 5 minutes.

    The materials you have are fine. Mix them according to directions on the packages. The Photo Flo, however, is for film to promote drying without spotting. You may be thinking of Hypo Clearing Agent. This is used after the fixer. Rinse the prints first in running water and then give them 5-10 minutes in the HCA. Wash for 30 minutes to one hour in an efficient print washer.
     
  3. Lee Shively

    Lee Shively Member

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    Per the hardener in the fixer. The common wisdom is that paper washes better is the fixer used has no hardener. It may be beneficial in some circumstances but I don't use the hardener. If you don't want to use it, just leave it out.
     
  4. ann

    ann Subscriber

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    go to ilford's website and download their pdf files on processing , simple diagrams easy to read and it will be helpful. they also discuss archival processing.
     
  5. Joe Symchyshyn

    Joe Symchyshyn Member

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    Kev,

    Forget about set grade numbers... You have a new system now and will develop a new language based on your equipment.

    I have the Zone VI VC head too... After getting used to the way it works, you'll find it easy to adjust and guage where you should be. It's easy...

    The left button is for the green tube, the middle button is for the overall intensity of light, the right button is for the blue tube. (Soft, Intensity, Hard)

    My suggestion would be to put the middle button to 10 and forget about it. It's rare that I need less light with mine and for now you've eliminated 1 dial to think about.

    Basically think of it this way... The green tube (soft) will lay down the highlights and midtones, the blue tube (hard) will lay down the shadows. Mixing them will give you varied contrast ranges. Once you get to using it, it will fall into place... But you have to start somewhere...

    I've tailored my negs to print well on this light source. So while I know they are of good tonality and range, I have no idea what they would print with gel filters for instance...

    It's kind of like split contrast printing all in one exposure.

    Try setting the dials to the middle (leave intensity at 10) and make a test. Need less contrast, back off on the hard... Need more midtones and highlight detail, give soft an increase in value. It is like a balance though... Setting it to Max/10/Max will likely be the same (other than intensity of light because of relative quantities) as D/10/D...

    Jeez I hope this is making sense... If not, feel free to PM me and I can address specific questions you come up with.

    joe :smile:
     
  6. Deckled Edge

    Deckled Edge Member

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    Kevin,
    Dektol 1:2 2 min. at 68 F
    Then 30 sec in fresh Kodak Indicator Stop bath. Use this until it starts to turn color, or if you think some evaporation has occurred.
    Kodak Fix, no hardener. Make two trays. Immerse into first tray for one minute after the Stop. At one minute, you can a) turn on room lights b) transfer to tray #2 for next 6 minutes, agitating frequently.
    Water rinse
    Hypo Clear 1:4 for 4 minutes with occasional agitation after the 1st 30 sec.
    Water rinse
    Holding water tray
    Wash, wash, wash, wash 60 minutes in tray with 5 full changes of water or an archival washer.
    Squeege with a windshield wiper (new, not off the DeSoto) and onto plastic screens to dry.
    No Photoflow that's negs only.

    After about 40 8x10 prints, toss Fixer #1 and use tray #2 as Fixer #1. Make a new batch at the recommended dilution and use it for a new #2.
    Keep rotating the #2 to #1 every 40 prints.
    Have a rager!
     
  7. Nige

    Nige Subscriber

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    what paper have you got? The comments above are suitable for fiber. If you're using RC you don't have to wash for so long.
     
  8. kiku

    kiku Subscriber

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    Hi Kevin:
    If you are asking these questions, who printed the pix in your gallery?
    Kiku
     
  9. kjsphoto

    kjsphoto Subscriber

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    No one. It was a straight scan from the neg... I am considering printing this one and that is why I noted NA for paper.

    Thanks,
     
  10. kjsphoto

    kjsphoto Subscriber

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    I want to thank everyone for all the excellent advice and help! I am getting ready to enter the dark zone :smile:
     
  11. Les McLean

    Les McLean Subscriber

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    Kev, let me have your email address and I'll send you a guide to the Zone VI VC enlarger grade settings. It was prepared by Rod Dresser who also uses a Zone VI and I've used it for the past few years and found it very useful. My email address is les@lesmcleanphoto.demon.co.uk
     
  12. hortense

    hortense Member

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    Kevin - If you will send me you e-mail addess, I will attach a file that provides you with all the settings for various grades as well as index as you change from one grade to another.