Problem with Pyrocat HD

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by HeliH, Sep 30, 2007.

  1. HeliH

    HeliH Member

    Messages:
    181
    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2004
    Location:
    Helsinki, Fi
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    This has happened never before :sad:. My first time developing Ilford HP5 35 mm in Pyrocat HD, semi-stand, and the white dots on film :sad:. Problem with bubbles or what? I pre washed the film for 5 min and then avout 3-5 min agitation and then stand about 20 min, agitation for 2-3 min and stand for 25. All together 50 min which has been great for 6x6 film.

    Here can be seen the dots. Naturally black dots on print :smile:. Well, I messed up with this more and it "got light"... But let's not talk about that :D

    [​IMG]

    Question is, what did I do wrong? I have developed a lot of films the same way and this problem never occured.
     
  2. Leon

    Leon Member

    Messages:
    2,075
    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2003
    Location:
    Kent, Englan
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    not enough banging to loosen air bubbles? did you use an acid stop bath? nice picture by the way :smile:
     
  3. HeliH

    HeliH Member

    Messages:
    181
    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2004
    Location:
    Helsinki, Fi
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Thanks Leon :smile:. Actually, now that I'm trying to think it might be that I forgot to bangbang... I developed in Rodinal another at the same time and agitated every minute. I could have done it... forgotten to bangbang I mean.. Oh dear... :D I'm not sure though...

    But, can there be any other reasons for those dots?

    I used only water to stop.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 30, 2007
  4. noseoil

    noseoil Member

    Messages:
    2,898
    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2003
    Location:
    Tucson
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Heli, I seem to remember a similar thread with this question. Can you do a search and see if it hasn't come up before on apug? If I'm not mistaken, the same thing was happening to someone else. tim
     
  5. George Collier

    George Collier Member

    Messages:
    1,064
    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2005
    Location:
    Richmond, VA
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Heli - I had a very similar thing happen using an acid stop bath (even very, very weak) with alkaline fixer (TF-4). Very important with an alkaline fixer not to use anything but water (they recommend running, for 1 minute) with alkaline fix. Also, if this is the case, don't use the fix again.
     
  6. sanking

    sanking Member

    Messages:
    4,813
    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2003
    Location:
    Greenville,
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    Hi,

    Could you scan one of the spots (directly from film) at very high resolution and post the image here? Some while back a couple of photographers sent me some processed HP5+ that had some highly unique spots that looked like separation of the emulsion from the base. It would be interesting to compare your spots with the earlier ones to see if there is a physical similarity.

    Sandy
     
  7. pgomena

    pgomena Member

    Messages:
    1,386
    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2003
    Location:
    Portland, Or
    Heli --

    Looking closely at the image on the screen, it appears there may be some reticulation going on. Look very closely in the very upper right-hand corner and at some of the other dark areas. I see a "wormlike" pattern. (It also could be weird scanning/digital/compression effects.)

    If your temperatures somehow got out of control enough to cause reticulation, some loss of emulsion bits might also happen. I had reticulation once when developing in PMK and washing in water that got very warm. I think the tanning and hardening of the emulsion followed by warm water that swelled the emulsion caused the effect in my case. I don't recall whether there was any emulsion loss. I threw the film out without printing it.

    Peter Gomena
     
  8. tony lockerbie

    tony lockerbie Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,363
    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2006
    Location:
    Merimbula NSW Australia
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Could there be some undisolved bits in your developer? I used to have this problem when using Beutler two bath, eventually gave up using it.

    Tony
     
  9. Valerie

    Valerie Subscriber

    Messages:
    909
    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2005
    Location:
    Magnolia, Tx
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Heli,
    This is a problem I have also had with HP5 in Pcat HD. I don't have any answers, but can tell you its not the stop (I use water). I also use the liquid PCAT from Photo Formulary. Mixed with distilled water.

    Run a search on "pinholes".... there are more threads, but not really any definite answers. :-(
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 1, 2007
  10. Richard Wasserman

    Richard Wasserman Member

    Messages:
    728
    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2004
    Location:
    Wilmette,Ill
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    My vote is for some kind of contamination in the water. If you did not use distilled water to mix the Pyrocat, I would try it and see if that helps. I had a very similar problem when I tried WD2D+ and distilled water solved it.

    Richard Wasserman
     
  11. Will S

    Will S Member

    Messages:
    717
    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2004
    Location:
    Madison, Wis
    Shooter:
    8x10 Format
    I am going to echo disfromage. I had this exact same problem and I bought a water filter that screws onto the tap and it stopped. I need to change the filter though, since it has been a couple of years ! Also, I started keeping my water softener filled more religiously.

    Good luck,

    Will
     
  12. HeliH

    HeliH Member

    Messages:
    181
    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2004
    Location:
    Helsinki, Fi
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    1. I used only water to stop
    2. My fixer is Agefix, no problems before
    3. my development is quite the same every time, got my rutines and nothing special this time
    4. I put this film first to a wrong tank and when opening the "cap" the film got light, that's why this photo is not well at all :smile:, the "wormlike" pattern is due to that I think (and the light on the right in lower photo)
    5. checked my developer, no undisolved bits
    6. no, I did not use distilled water to mix the pyrocat HD, I have never done that. Just straight from water pipe, 20 degrees.

    Here is a high resolution scan.
    [​IMG]

    And a bigger:
    [​IMG]

    Both straight from scanner.

    But anyway, I will try again, because this Pcat HD has been so great with medium format (Ilford HP5 as with FP4 and Delta 100) and as I told, this never has happened before.

    Oh yes, this solution B has turned very light orange (or reddish). These bottles have been open for a year (squeezed the air off), can it affect?

    But I will also search for "pinholes". Thank you all anyway!
     
  13. TheFlyingCamera

    TheFlyingCamera Membership Council Council

    Messages:
    9,551
    Joined:
    May 24, 2005
    Location:
    Washington DC
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I think you may be pushing the limits for the age of your Pyrocat. If you have a fresh kit, try mixing it up and see if that cures your problem.
     
  14. Sponsored Ad
  15. Shawn Dougherty

    Shawn Dougherty Member

    Messages:
    4,184
    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2004
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    Shooter:
    4x5 Format
    Year old Pyrocat HD!?!? Yikes, that sounds like a problem to me. Best of luck. Shawn
     
  16. Tom Hoskinson

    Tom Hoskinson Member

    Messages:
    3,879
    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2004
    Location:
    Southern Cal
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Yes! year old stock solution A is pushing it!

    I mix my Pyrocat in Propylene Glycol which gives me a very long shelf life.
     
  17. erikg

    erikg Member

    Messages:
    1,455
    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2003
    Location:
    pawtucket rh
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I don't think it is the age of the solution, or the stop bath, or the fixer. It just seems that this is a problem that happens with p-cat and HP-5 for some people. You are now in the club. I've had this issue, I'm one of the folks who sent film to Sandy to check out. I've run a bunch of tests, trying to narrow it down. I did have better luck with P-Cat in Glycol, but for me it was always rather random, I never had so many spots in one frame as you have shown. This has come up for others, but the answer is still out there. Do a search on Pyrocat and HP-5 and the other threads should come up: Here is one:
    http://www.apug.org/forums/forum37/31481-hp5-pyrocat-compatibility.html

    I wonder if stand development has anything to do with how many spots one might get? I'd love to get an answer for this whole issue!

    Good luck-- erik
     
  18. sanking

    sanking Member

    Messages:
    4,813
    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2003
    Location:
    Greenville,
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    I really don't have an answer to this problem. The thing that makes it hard to pin down is that people are using the term pinhole to describe a problem, but all of the actual scans of the irregularities indicate there is not a single type of problem. The irregularities on Eric's film, as I recall, suggested that there was some kind of separation of the emulsion from the base, and then a subsequent tear or eruption of the separation. I posted an example of this problem some time back. The current irregularities are entirely different in that there is clearly no emulsion separation or tearing. Also, the incidence is far greater than anything reported previously.

    The fact that the overwhelming majority of folks who use Pyrocat-HD and HP5+ have not experienced any problem suggests to me that the most likely culprit is some type of water contamination. There could also be some type of gases entrapped inside the HP5+ emulsion that only erupt in very specific, and fairly rare, conditions.

    Sandy
     
  19. Will S

    Will S Member

    Messages:
    717
    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2004
    Location:
    Madison, Wis
    Shooter:
    8x10 Format
    Sandy,

    I have some negatives that have almost that many spots on them and they were developed semi-stand. I can send them to you if you want. But, I'm pretty sure that there are tears in the emulsion as you describe so I'm not sure you would learn anything new.

    I wonder if all of the folks affected have hard water?

    Thanks,

    Will
     
  20. erikg

    erikg Member

    Messages:
    1,455
    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2003
    Location:
    pawtucket rh
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I have tried it with distilled water used throughout, and I still have had some defects, although as I mentioned, far fewer than is reported here. Will's comment makes me think that stand and semi-stand may increase the problem for those who have the problem. Sounds like one of those disclaimers on the drug commericals. It is a mystery. Lucky for me that I wasn't married to 35mm HP-5. There are other fish in the sea and thankfully other high speed films on the market.
     
  21. Valerie

    Valerie Subscriber

    Messages:
    909
    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2005
    Location:
    Magnolia, Tx
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I've been using distilled water the entire time.. and stand or semi-stand. The spots have shown up on both 35 mm and 120 HP5.
     
  22. Mahombi

    Mahombi Member

    Messages:
    11
    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2006
    Location:
    London, UK
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    Alternatively, you could check your fix for any undissolved crystals.
     
  23. Usagi

    Usagi Member

    Messages:
    360
    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2007
    Location:
    Turku, Finla
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I have had similar problems with some films and developers (mainly hp5+ and fp4+, D-76 and Xtol) over years. Not as bad though, only one or two small "pinhole" in the negative.
    I never had figured out what is the reason, I have tried all tricks but nothing works so I take always 3-5 frames per each subject to ensure that I have at least one fine negative.

    My best guess so far is that "pinholes" are caused by undissolved crystals of the developer.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 3, 2007
  24. HeliH

    HeliH Member

    Messages:
    181
    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2004
    Location:
    Helsinki, Fi
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Terve Jukka :wink:,

    Well as I already told, I checked my developer and at least I can't find any undissolved crystals.

    But yesterday I found out that my other tank has some dry fixer in the bottom. It's very possible that this tank where I developed this film, had also dryed fix in there... Could it be the reason?
     
  25. Thomas Bertilsson

    Thomas Bertilsson Subscriber

    Messages:
    15,257
    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2003
    Location:
    Minnesota
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Heli, do you know the pH of your fixer solution? I would think that if it's acid it would possibly matter, since the 'specks' on your film is blank, something prevented development from taking place in those spots. Perhaps it's some sort of local contamination by crystals of dry fixer that stuck to the emulsion during the pre-wetting stage, fixed those specks clear before development took place? Is that a possibility?
    Try alkaline fixer. I've developed both FP4 and HP5 in pyrocat without problems, but I always use neutral or alkaline pH fixer.
    - Thomas
     
  26. Chris Breitenstein

    Chris Breitenstein Member

    Messages:
    226
    Joined:
    May 29, 2007
    Location:
    Tucson Az
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Those look like pin holes in the emulsion. the tell-tale halo gives them away. I occasionly have the same problem.

    Gordon Hutchings, "The Book of Pyro" should provide a remedy.

    Yours;