Rodinal vs PyrocatHD

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by bobbysandstrom, Sep 7, 2005.

  1. bobbysandstrom

    bobbysandstrom Member

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    OK

    Whis is sharper?

    1) A pyrocatHD neg processed in a Jobo (constant agitation)

    or

    2) A Dilute Rodinal neg processed with only 10sec per minute agitation.



    :smile:
     
  2. fhovie

    fhovie Subscriber

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    why would you compare one developer with constant agitation with another developer with hand agitation? I am trying to understand what you are trying to learn?
     
  3. Bruce Osgood

    Bruce Osgood Membership Council Council

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    Frank,
    I think he is asking do Apples make sharper negatives than Oranges?

    I guess the correct answer would be -- You tell me.
     
  4. noseoil

    noseoil Member

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    "I think he is asking do Apples make sharper negatives than Oranges?"

    Simple one to answer, bananas. Of course. tim
     
  5. sanking

    sanking Member

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    Hi Bobby,

    I honestly don't know the answr to your question, and doubt that anyone else does.

    If the answer to the question is important you can test it yourself. All you need to do is, 1) find time and temperature for a given dilution of Rodinal that will give the same average contrast as Pyrocat-HD, 2) make two exposures on the same film of a pictorial subject that has a lot of detail (distant skyline for example), 3) develop one of the negatives in Rodinal, the other in Pyrocat-HD, based on the conditions of your question, 4) make 20X24" prints (or sections equal to 20X24"), and 5) evalute the results very carefully. I would suggest 6X6 format for this test.

    Look carefully at grain and sharpness and make your own determination.

    This is my ultimate test of films and developers.

    Of course, as others have pointed out, this would still be an apples to oranges comparison because of the different methods of agitation.

    Sandy
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 7, 2005
  6. Claire Senft

    Claire Senft Member

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    Gee Whiz Mr. King if photographers start doing careful objective tests one may come to the conclusion that there is heresy coming from the head office in Demark of the Church of Rodinal.

    Certainly, this matter has been dealt with Ex-Cathedra and if need be could be dealt with Ex-Communicationa.

    Does blind faith count for nothing?
     
  7. sanking

    sanking Member

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    Claire,

    Oh my goodness!! I was burned at the stake by the Holy Inquisition in two previous lives for heresy. Since then I left Europe and moved to America and am trying to get through this reincarnation with no serious burn abrasions.

    Sandy
     
  8. Daniel Lawton

    Daniel Lawton Member

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    Using Rodinal at 1+100 with reduced agitation was my most used combo until I discovered Pyrocat-HD. I find the images are at least as sharp if not more so and grain seems much less apparent due to the image stain. Pyrocat also gives a much larger compensating effect which leads to very printable negatives in all but the most contrasty scenes. All-in-all Pyrocat-HD has become my standard developer and I rarely find myself using anything else these days. I've yet to find another developer that excels in so many aspects of negative quality.
     
  9. bobbysandstrom

    bobbysandstrom Member

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    Sorry guys, I should have been more clear when I posed my question. I've recently done BTZS tests using rodinal 1:50 at 72F with agitation first 15sec then 10sec each additional minute. Got all my data (was surprised at the amount of speed loss with txp320 by the way) and having done a few test shots, all seems right-on! I have pyrocatHD sitting right here. (ordered from PF). Not being able to make an educated decision based on my own definitive knowledge with regards to toxicity, I hesitate to use the pyro. I would only consider it if I use it in my JOBO. Even then, the thought of residule chemistry left about after emptying the JOBO and whatever splashes I don't notice etc, etc, concerns me. Now, if I knew with absolute certainty that all the scary things I read were unfounded, I'd be in there getting my numbers on the stuff right now. So, I'm not ruling out the pyro. But, if I had enough people telling me that I can get the same degree of sharpness from the rodinal the way I'm currently using it vs Pyro in a JOBO, I'd be done with it. (hence the apples oranges comparison) However if nobody has had an opportunity to see, together, prints made in the ways described, I guess I'm on my own.

    Thanks, and sorry for the confusion.

    Bob
     
  10. sanking

    sanking Member

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    Jeeez, it is not like we are dealing with vastly different entities. Bobby, all reducers, with the possible exception of Vitamin C, are toxic. Rodinal is toxic, D76 is toxic, HC-110 is toxic, all of them. If you drink enough of any of them you will die. OK, so don't drink your developer. And use nitrile gloves when you develop your film. All this exchange about the dangers or pyro developers is, to put it quite bluntly, BS.

    BTW, it is not that this subject has not been discussed before in great detail. Go to the large format forum and/or photo.net and you will find multiple discussion of this issue.

    I am as concerned about my own health as anyone on this forum. Based on my understanding of the issue the use of pyro developers, such as pyrogallol and pyrocatechin, do not pose any greater risk to my health, or that of my environment, than commonly used developers that contain hydroquinone ( including HC-11 and D76) which is of the same family, and virtually identical in toxicity, to pyrogallol and pyrocatechin.

    Do your develop prints? Hydroquinone is in virtually every print developer old commercially. Please, don't drink your print developer, and be sure to not soak your hands in it. It is actually much more concentrated than film developers.

    Is Rodinal any safer? Well, just find the active reducer and check it out on the MSDS charts.

    AND THE ANSWER IS. DON'T DRINK RODINAL AND DON'T SOAK YOUR HANDS IN IT. AND DON'T ALLOW YOUR DOG TO DRINK IT. IT IS TOXIC.

    Sandy
     
  11. bobbysandstrom

    bobbysandstrom Member

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    Sandy, I'm a sensible guy and I know you are too. When I'm not qualified to decide for myself what's best in any given situation no matter what it be, I seek the guidance and advice of others who are qualified. When I find those whom I believe qualified having opposing views... 180 difference in opinion... a red flag goes up in my mind. You must admit, pyro gets a heck of a lot more bad press than hydroquinone. Again, I don't know, I'm a freakin musician. If I were a scientist you can bet your bottom dollar I'd know. However I'm not and I'd be a fool not to question. Now, I can see how someone like yourself who knows better can become frustrated with all the newcomers that raise these concerns. Honestly, I can understand your frustration. But please, understand mine. I see John Sexton with his hands in the Dektol yet he wears gloves with selenium. I assume he knows what the risks are and he has no problem with putting his hands in the Hydroquinone. I see other guys with their bare hands in Selenium! And other guys that won't use it! Geez, there's a lot of conflicting messages out there. Do you see how this can be confusing and frustrating to a relative newbie?

    Anyway, I want to thank you for all of your help with the numerous questions I've posted. (Along with everyone else that's helped along the way.)

    It is appreciated!

    Bob
     
  12. scootermm

    scootermm Subscriber

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    I honestly think respect is key.
    show respect to the chemicals no matter what they are and youll remain safe.
    (IE - dont develope in a tray and then eat out of it... dont wash in your sink and not thoroughly clean it afterwards)

    from the research I did prior to doing home mixing and developing I found that the MSDS sheets for rodinal and PMK pyro and Pyro HD all seemed within similiar cautionary levels. none being all that dangerous. in fact none of the chemicals really seem to deem alot of danger as long as caution is taken and respect is shown.

    if you think about it... likely not much more dangerous than walking down to the corner store :D
     
  13. sanking

    sanking Member

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    Anyone who keeps his hand in Dektol (which contains hydroquinone) is pretty much clueless. You should not have your hands in either dektol or selenium. For sure, you could probaly soak your body in either of them and not die within the hour, or within the decade. But in the long run you should protect your hands from both by wearing gloves. They are both toxic.

    So, to be very direct, John Sexton does not really understand the risks. As a role model he should, but based on what you described, he obviously does not. Too bad.

    Sandy
     
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  15. bobbysandstrom

    bobbysandstrom Member

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    Sandy, I will try the pyro. Now, will you clear this up for me? What about the issue of fumes. I have a Delta exhaust fan in my darkroom right above my sink with a delta air inlet at the other end of the darkroom. However, I lit a piece of paper and blew it out to check how effectively the smoke was drawn out, and I wasn't impressed. It did not remove the smoke at a rate I thought it should. However, it's a lot better than before I had the fan. Also, my darkroom gets humid. Are there any problems associated with inhaling some of the fumes from the pyro?

    Also, in John's defense, he does state that he would not tell anyone not to use gloves. In fact I believe he encouraged people to use them if they were the least bit concerned.


    Thanks
     
  16. sanking

    sanking Member

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    Bobby,

    If you are using liquid kits there is no problem with fumes. If you are mixing the developer from powder chemicals, just stay on the other side of the air flow, or go outside to mix. You definitely do not want to inhale the fumes from the powder chemicals reducers, whether that be of hydroquinone, pyrogallol or pyrocatechin. Once the chemicals are in solution the only thing you need to be concerned about is putting your bare hands in the solution. Don't do it.

    Sandy
     
  17. bobbysandstrom

    bobbysandstrom Member

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    Alright Sandy. Again thanks for the help. I'll give it a shot tomorrow with a dupe neg that I processed earlier today with the rodinal. Actually looking forward to it!


    bob
     
  18. modafoto

    modafoto Subscriber

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    Damn...It tastes SO GREAT! :D
     
  19. modafoto

    modafoto Subscriber

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    We watch you closely...and the word is out: "Rodinal is not for anybody".
     
  20. Claire Senft

    Claire Senft Member

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    Morten I agree Rodinal is not for anybody. There folks you have it straight from the Danish horse's mouth. You have been warned..DO NOT USE THIS STUFF.

    In the spirit of responisible citizenship I am starting a new group to help members of the CHURCH OF RODINAL. This gruop is caled AA...Acolytes Anonymous. It is a two step program of recovery. The are listed below.

    1). I have realized that Rodinal is really, I mean REALLY a substandard
    developer leading to reduced gradation thru excessive grain. But there
    is a higher power that can and will restore the spirit of my photographs.

    2). The name of the Higher power is Pyrocat HD.
     
  21. Tom Hoskinson

    Tom Hoskinson Member

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    There are people that have been inhaling catechol, hydroquinone and other closely related chemicals for years and are still alive - these are the people who smoke tobacco products - or others who breathe the second hand smoke .
     
  22. johnnywalker

    johnnywalker Subscriber

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    Probably your body builds up an immunity. When I lived in Peru, it was only the non-smokers who got altitude sickness in the Andes. The lungs of the smokers were accustomed to doing without oxygen. :D
     
  23. Claire Senft

    Claire Senft Member

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    Well, when it comes to darkroom dangers, If you use potassium ferricyanide be absolutely certain not to mix it with concentrated acid as you could kill yourself and others in your household. You will be producing a gas suitable for use in a homemade version of a gas chamber.
     
  24. Tom Duffy

    Tom Duffy Member

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    I did my own comparisons in the beginning of 2003. (It in the archives somewhere). I used pyrocat vs. Rodinal in a Jobo which is not what you want to know, but I decided I wasn't going to develop sheet film without using a jobo - both to save time and get more uniform negs.

    My pyrocat negs were sharper than the rodinal. I'd be interested to hear about your conclusions using rodinal in more optimal conditions for the developer.
     
  25. gainer

    gainer Subscriber

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    Amen. I'm 78 years old and developed my first film amd prints in MQ deceloper bare handed by see-sawing them through a tray at the age of about 12. The things that everyone here can see are wrong with me are not the result of photographic chemicals, though some may be the result of photographic frustrations.
     
  26. laz

    laz Member

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    ........and then there was dear old Granny smoked like a Chimney, drank like a fish, lived to 106! yea! smoking and drinking are good for ya!

    With all due respect, just because one person is not harmed doesn't mean they're harmless. Thank your good genetics or luck, but, don't think for a minute that photographic chemicals are without risk.