Problem with Sepia Toning

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by thefizz, Aug 8, 2013.

  1. thefizz

    thefizz Subscriber

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    I was toning four prints last night which were all previously fixed (2 bath), hypo cleared and washed properly. Three of them re-developed in the sepia (Moersch MT3) correctly but one failed to come back to anything resembling its original density. I know a little highlight density can be lost after sepia toning but this one was way too light.

    Any ideas what has happened here?

    Peter
     
  2. Thomas Bertilsson

    Thomas Bertilsson Subscriber

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    Exhausted toner?

    The toner does have a definite capacity. Did you mix it fresh, or is it an old mix? You could test it by bleaching back another image and redeveloping it in regular developer. If it develops back in the developer, but not in the toner, it's highly likely your toner is exhausted.
     
  3. thefizz

    thefizz Subscriber

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    Hi Thomas, no the toner was fine as this one was the second print toned. The first, third and fourth toned fine.
     
  4. Thomas Bertilsson

    Thomas Bertilsson Subscriber

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    OK. So all other things being equal, print #2 of four did not tone properly. Something must have happened to that individual sheet.
    Is there a chance it got contaminated or introduced to fixer somehow?
     
  5. thefizz

    thefizz Subscriber

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    I seriously doubt it as I'm very meticulous about how I print.

    The prints were fully washed a few days ago when printed and I had no fixer present last night while toning.

    Its not a major issue as I have enough prints from the other three. I was just curious as to what may have caused it.
     
  6. Thomas Bertilsson

    Thomas Bertilsson Subscriber

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    I wasn't implying that you are a sloppy printer. Knowing about you for many years I expect the contrary. :smile:

    I'm just brainstorming, trying to come up with ideas of what might have happened. It is pretty clear that this individual sheet is affected somehow, since it was treated the same way as the other three. So it could either be a manufacturing error, (although if it developed properly the first time, I sincerely doubt it), or something happened to it along the process. If it had been exposed to fixer somehow before getting toned, that would have prevented it from being re-developed. I'm trying to think of what else might cause that to happen, but like you I'm stumped.
     
  7. thefizz

    thefizz Subscriber

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    Oh I know you weren't implying anything lake that Thomas. Your imput as usual is much appreciated :smile:
     
  8. jeffreyg

    jeffreyg Subscriber

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    It's been close to 40 years since I sepia toned a print so I cannot offer any technical explanation but I know when something I routinely do doesn't come out right there is usually a simple reason. Perhaps you were distracted and pulled the print too soon.

    http://www.jeffreyglasser.com/
     
  9. thefizz

    thefizz Subscriber

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    Yes anything is possible Jeffrey. I have a few more prints of the same subject so will tone them in the same toner at my next session and see if the problem re-appears.
     
  10. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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    Any chance the problem print was in the bleach for much longer than the rest?

    Or did some selenium toner invade your process while you weren't looking?
     
  11. thefizz

    thefizz Subscriber

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    The problem print was bleached further than the others but not excessively. I will try more and see if its a once off. I'm pretty sure I didn't get any selenium in my sepia. With an 8x4 foot sink there's plenty of room for lots of trays :smile:
     
  12. Thomas Bertilsson

    Thomas Bertilsson Subscriber

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    It doesn't matter how far you bleach back. The active toner will re-develop 95% of the tones that were there to begin with, and you said it was #2 in a sequence of four prints being toned. That doesn't make sense.