reversal 2nd dev fog

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by mrred, Oct 21, 2011.

  1. mrred

    mrred Subscriber

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    I have gone through great pains verifying no fog on the first step, developing unexposed film.

    During the light flash step, I have visably verified the leaders (35mm) are indeed clear.

    However after the 2nd dev step (and fix) the film comes out with fog on the leaders.

    The developer I use is Dektol, the bleach is Potassium dichromate, the clear is sodium metabisulfite.

    Is the bleach or clear step not long enough? I understand that I may not see some of the emulsion left on the leader after the flash step, but am I just missing something?
     
  2. Gerald C Koch

    Gerald C Koch Member

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    You don't say whether the amount of fog you are seeing after the 2nd developer is objectionable or not. Upon projection are the results unsatisfactory? I say this because you are using both a film and a developer for purposes for which they were not designed. Perfect results may not be possible. When the company dr5 was doing reversal processing certain films were not recommended for reversal.

    For best results, the amount of silver halide solvent in the first developer must be carefully adjusted for each type of film you are reversing. Sodium thiosulfate does not work as well as potassium thiocyanate to clear the highlights. Developers specifically designed for BW reversal processing use thiocyanate rather then thiosulfate.

    Have you tried using a chemical foggant rather than re-exposure to light? While it is hard to have too much re-exposure it is possible. A simple 2nd developer using sodium sulfide will act as a fogging developer. You might get better results with chemical fogging.
     
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  3. mrred

    mrred Subscriber

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    The amount of fog was more of a surprise than anything else, due to it not existing for the developer bleach/fix. It is my understanding that there should be no silver left to develop on the leaders at the 2nd dev stage.

    I have working processes, even for the film at hand (TMY here). What I have been doing is working out a more systematic approach, attempting to get the most out of any film. To do that I need to be able to explain any surprises along the way, with work around to suit.

    I did not mention the amount of silver solvent or the film as they were not important or required to answer the question. I am looking for a more generic answer.
     
  4. mrred

    mrred Subscriber

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    I would think I would still get fog using a chemical foggant vs exposing to light. Developer can only develop the active silver that remains. It's my observation that it should not have existed.

    Is it possible for the second developer to leave behind a fog, even if there is no silver present?
     
  5. Gerald C Koch

    Gerald C Koch Member

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    It would be interesting to see if what you are seeing as fog in the leader is actually silver. You could use Farmer's reducer and refixing on a portion of the leader and see whether the fog goes away. Treat half the leader with the reducer and leave the other portion untouched. So years ago Ilford had a system for reversing their films which used a permanganate bleach. Some people were experiencing what they thought was fog but which was actually manganese dioxide precipitaated in the emulsion. This was caused by an improperly compounded bleach. The bleach must be sufficiently acidic to prevent precipitation of either manganese dioxide or chromium oxide in the emulsion due to carryover of developer. Do you use a rinse between the first developer and the bleach?

    Here are the instructions for Ilford's process http://www.ilfordphoto.com/Webfiles/20061291034093.pdf
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 22, 2011
  6. mrred

    mrred Subscriber

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    I don't have any Farmers Reducer and it would be interesting to try, if I can pick some up locally. I will look tomorrow.

    I swallowed up that reference (and others) to the ilford pdf long ago. It's one of the reasons I am doing what I am. It wasn't methodical in its approach and just gave 1 or 2 unique examples. It didn't take modern emulsions into consideration or if you wanted to use....fuji....foma....lucky.....etc

    Dr5 is living proof that a systematic approach is possible. They have it all worked out; pushing, pulling and the like. When I demystify all that I can, I will try to make some sort of newer reference. Something a lot clearer and relevant than is currently available. Which brings me back to the question at hand; arggggg fog...
     
  7. holmburgers

    holmburgers Member

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    I think your problem is the clearing step. Common practice is to follow dichromate bleaches with sodium sulfite; permanganate bleaches go with the metabisulfite.

    That's what stood out to me at least.
     
  8. mrred

    mrred Subscriber

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    I don't believe I did that.....
     
  9. holmburgers

    holmburgers Member

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    Don't believe you followed with sulfite?

    Let us know if that clears up the problem. (did you catch that pun?... yuk yuk yuk :joyful:smile:
     
  10. Nicholas Lindan

    Nicholas Lindan Advertiser Advertiser

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    My guess would be incomplete first developing or incomplete bleaching. The first developer has to convert all the exposed silver halide in the very-well-exposed leader to metallic silver. The bleach has to remove all of the 'black' silver, leaving just the undeveloped white silver halide in the emulsion.

    I've done my reversal work using sheet film and I turn on the room lights when the film enters the bleach. This way I can make sure the bleaching has finished and it also insures complete 2nd exposure. Bleaching can take much longer on heavily exposed film - like the leader - than it can on regular negatives (er, positives). Film can appear clear in the bleach even though there is quite a bit of residual silver halide in the emulsion - if you look at the negatives after the bleach step it looks like they are quite devoid of all highlight detail, but the detail re-appears in the 2nd developer.

    Another mechanism may be that the heavily exposed leader is partially solarized - exposed so much that it is reversing a little bit all on it's own - something that would never be noticed in regular processing. Try giving a frame a Zone XII exposure - enough to be completely clear, but well below any self-solarizing threshold. If this frame comes out clear, without fog, then I would not pay an more attention to leader density.
     
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  11. holmburgers

    holmburgers Member

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    Call me out if I'm wrong, but isn't it a well established fact that you need to clear dichromate with sulfite and permanganate with bi/metabisulfite?

    It just seems to me that the easiest answer is usually right, and this seems like a glaring fault to me.

    Then again, why would the clear have anything to do with removing residual metallic silver? It just clears the bleach solution, which has ideally already done the job of clearing the silver. So who knows...
     
  12. Hexavalent

    Hexavalent Subscriber

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    I would think metabisulfite should work - it's the standard clearing agent for carbon-transfer and gum work.
     
  13. Nicholas Lindan

    Nicholas Lindan Advertiser Advertiser

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    Ah, just noticed - S. Metabisulfite is recommended for the clearing bath if you are using Permanganate/Sulfite bleach. S. Sulfite is recommended for the clearing batch if you use P. Dichromate/Sulfuric Acid bleach.

    Though it seems the problem when using Metabisulfite with Dichromate bleach has been reported as loss of image, and not fog.

    I've not tried Dichromate with Metabisulfite, but Dichromate works perfectly with Sulfite. The problem could be with pH: Sulfite is alkaline, Metabisulfate & Bisulfate are acidic.
     
  14. mrred

    mrred Subscriber

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    Then I am on the mark and have nothing to worry about, except my dufus move on a clearing agent..... I did a full exposure frame on my MF roll before I did this one. It was as it should be.
     
  15. dr5chrome

    dr5chrome Member

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    glaring faults..

    sodium metbisulfite & sodium sulfite can both be used as clear agents - it doesn't matter what bleach you use. Each has it's better use depending on the overall recipe and procedure. Both will do the job. Neither is an error.

    regards.
     
  16. johnielvis

    johnielvis Member

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    sounds to me like it's not complete first development....if you put in second developer and it gets DARKER, then you didn't develop enough silver to have the bleach take it all away....OR incomplete bleaching, like has been said

    you need NO clearing bath with dichromate--if you are patient....you CAN just keep rinsing and rinsing...that will get the dichromate out....permanganate...I dunno...that stuff really stains...

    ACTUAL fog will show up in the transparencies as loss of Dmax and not darkness...it will be the opposite of darkness in the dark areas that were NOT exposed.

    old film, for example, has more fog--you develop that like fresh film and you develop some fog to silver...this gets bleached OUT...then when you re-develop, there is less silver to re-develop, leaving less Dmax....so if it's too dark, it is NOT fog.
     
  17. Nicholas Lindan

    Nicholas Lindan Advertiser Advertiser

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    Yes, that was the point - it seemed to be that the 'better use' was linked to the type of bleach, at least according to Kodak and Ilford literature.

    Can you elaborate more on 'better use'?
     
  18. holmburgers

    holmburgers Member

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    I stand corrected and willfully bow out....