Red/Amber Safelight

Discussion in 'Darkroom Equipment' started by panchromatic, Mar 31, 2005.

  1. panchromatic

    panchromatic Member

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    Is their any difference? I heard that you could load black and while in red safelight, but I'm not sure if that is true?
     
  2. Neal

    Neal Subscriber

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    Dear Ryan,

    Your handle should be the clue.<g> Orthochromatic film (generally only blue or blue-green sensitive) can be handled under a safelight. Panchromatic film is sensitive to the entire visible (and then some) spectrum.

    Neal Wydra
     
  3. panchromatic

    panchromatic Member

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    We had an arguement about it but she insisted it was true. Thank you
     
  4. rbarker

    rbarker Member

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    It may not be wise to tell her that she was wrong - only that she forgot to include the word "some" as to which B&W films can be safely handled under red safelight (i.e. Ortho only, please). :wink:
     
  5. John Cook

    John Cook Member

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    Red safelights were used for orthochromatic lithography film which could not see red. Of course as printers go digital this film is becoming difficult to find. Ilford made ortho film until their monetary problems last year. Don't know if they still supply it. Extremely interesting and useful material if you can find it.

    Some Bergger papers also call for red safelight, according to the information on their website. Don't know if that material is still available either, after the trouble with Forte.

    Yellow safelight is only for print paper. Years ago when there was much more contact printing being done, two colors of yellow filters were sold by Kodak, one which was lighter for relatively slow contact paper and another which was deeper for faster enlarging paper.

    In practice, I have red and yellow safelights virtually interchangeable when working quickly with dim bulbs placed more than three or four feet from my light sensitive material. Conversely, most safelights (of the proper color) are not safe when used too close and for extended periods of time. Kind of like so-called "bullet-proof" vests which the manufacturers only claim to be "bullet-resistant".
     
  6. Claire Senft

    Claire Senft Member

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    Film ?

    If you are refferring to film loading, bulk 35mm cassettes for example then you could use a red filter for Ortho..blue or blue green sensitive emulsions only. If you want ot load 35mm film suck as Agfa APX 100, 100 Tmax or Ilford Delta 100 etc these emulsions or panchromatic and would easily fog while loading if used with a red or any other common safelight. Darkness is required with these films. Any b&w paper that is not panchromatic, which is very much the case for almost all papers, can be used with a red safelight.

    Even without a bulk loader 35mm film can be easily bulk loaded in a clean and dark enviroment. Here is one method:

    Make sure your darkroom is dark. The faster the film being loaded the greater the care in achieving darkness required. If you have used flourescent lighting in the area you will notice that the light continues to subltly glow for a consideable period of time after being turned off...be careful. If necessary do this after dark.

    Clean off an area and put things where you can reach and find them in the dark. Cover any items emitting light such as luminous tape or dials or keep them a goodly distance from the film..these items are easily capable of fogging your film. I precut my tape and put it onto the spool(s) to be loaded... the length should be enough to go around the spool and an extra 1/2 to 3/4 inch on each side. I lay theses spool on their side with the adhesive side downward and touching a surface to which they will not strong adhere by simply touching. If the tape on the spool to be loaded touches each other, they will stick together and become unusable.

    Open your film cannister and remove the film spool from the black bag. Hold the bulk film spool in your right hand so that you can pul the film to the left while coming off the spool from the side of the spool closest to you. Pull off a suitable length. In my own case if I hold the film end in my lefthand and the spool in my right hand and pull off as much as I can while holding unto both ends across my chest I will have an approximate 36 exposure roll. I am 73" tall so this works for me. In actual fact you can load any length desired capable of fitting on the spool and within the cassette.

    I cut the film from the spool. I tape the lefthand end of cut film to the cassette spool which is out of its shell. The longer projection of the spool must be downward. I hold the spool and turn it to the left and wind the film snugly unto the spool until I get to the end. Then the shell is slipped over the loaded spool. and the cap(s) anre pressed into place. If I am loading more than one cassette I repeat the process. The bulk spool is put into its bag and put back into the film can and closed up.

    After loading check to see that when the pool is placed into your camera that it is emulsion side downwad. If not you misunderstood the directionsand I admit that cleaer directions, easily understood are my specialty..
    This is not rocket science but does take a little practice to get right.
     
  7. Bob F.

    Bob F. Member

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    Ortho film is rare and only used for special purposes. The vast majority of B&W film you buy in the shops must never be exposed to ANY colour of light (other than when taking the actual picture) until after it is processed.

    Your friend probably read an old book dating back to when Orthochromatic film was more widely used.

    Cheers, Bob.
     
  8. Loose Gravel

    Loose Gravel Member

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    I'm not so sure. You might get away with this. If you look at the spectral sensitivity for Tri-x

    http://www.kodak.com/global/en/professional/support/techPubs/f4017/f009_0506ac.gif

    it shows little to no sensitivity to light beyond 670 nm. Photographing LEDs used to be problematic. Unless you are colorblind, your eye probably has some sensitivity left between 670 and 700 and maybe beyond. I made a quick search for deep red LEDs, but didn't find any that deep. Some at 650 nm. Maybe with a red source and an 89B filter you might get enough light that you could see something.

    Remember, too, that the eye's threshold level is far below any film's threshold level. This suggests that you could use any color light, if it is dim enough, very dim. This is what the light leaking under the door is for.

    A whole lot easier to just learn to do it in the dark.
     
  9. fhovie

    fhovie Subscriber

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    reminds me of a line from star wars .... "let the wookie win"
     
  10. dancqu

    dancqu Member

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    If you can find it? You've got to be kidding!
    Ortho Line and Halftone Film? There is quite
    a selection at www.valleylitho.com . Dan