Royal Pan and other experiments in film archaeology

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by David A. Goldfarb, Jun 25, 2003.

  1. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Okay, this is my latest experiment in film archaeology. I got a sealed box of 25 sheets of Royal Pan 4x5, exp. 1965.

    Is Royal Pan the same emulsion as Royal-X Pan?

    Anyone have any favorite developer combos/speed recommendations for this one.

    I found an old recommendation for Royal-X Pan in Acufine, EI 1600, 10 min at 21 deg. C, and I'm tempted to test the first two sheets at EI 1250 and 800, figuring it has to have lost some speed.

    The instruction sheet has times for Polydol (what was that?), DK-50, D-76, Microdol-X, and even Dektol (1:1) at EI 400.
     
  2. Donald Miller

    Donald Miller Member

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    David, I believe that Howard Bond shot this film at one time. At least I recall that film as attributed to some of his images. You might contact Howard he lives in Ann Arbor, Michigan. I am sure that he will have the information that you are seeking.
     
  3. edbuffaloe

    edbuffaloe Member

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    You should find this film listed in an old copy of the Photo Lab Index. I vaguely recall that Royal Pan was a 400 speed film, while Royal-X was rated at 1000 (or possibly 1200). I remember using some Royal-X 120 roll film once--it was quite grainy.
     
  4. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    In retrospect, I think you've got that right, Ed. I drop my ratings a bit more for Acufine for the first test, maybe 800 and 640.
     
  5. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    I thought I'd revive this old thread since Randy Libersky sent me gratis a few 6x9 film packs circa 1952-54. I've got Plus-X and Ansco Superpan Press in packs, and some Super Panchro-Press B in loose sheets.

    Yesterday I shot some of the Plus-X, rated at EI 50, processed in Acufine, 2.5 minutes at 75 deg. (room temp.) in trays. I tried a couple of sheets in the Yankee tank rack in a deep tank, but I ended up fishing them out of the tank (fortunately, I was wearing gloves, and I realized what had happened before development time was up). Base fog was heavy, but they look printable, maybe on grade 4. I was shooting the Busch Pressman C with a 105/2.8 Xenotar. I'm still getting used to the finder, so I overcompensated a little for parallax error on this one.

    I didn't add a restrainer to the developer, because I don't want to mess up the rest of the developer in the tank, but once I get enough negs, I think I'll try some Farmer's reducer to clear some of the fog and that should increase the contrast.

    My first experience with pack film--an interesting idea, but I don't know if I would feel really compelled to advocate for a film pack revival. I only lost one sheet due to pulling the tab too hard so that the film pack adapter came out of the camera without the darkslide in place. The film base is thin, like rollfilm, so I don't think film flatness would be much better than rollfilm. The tabs and interleaving sheets aren't quite as bad as all the extra trash generated by Polaroid, but I could do without them. It's also not easy to get the interleaving sheets cleanly separated from the film in the dark, so little bits of paper end up in the developer. I think I'm content with rollfilm, traditional holders, and Grafmatics.
     

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  6. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    And here's the old Royal Pan test. I originally posted this in the gallery.

    I think I settled on Acufine and Edwal Liquid Orthazite, but it was still really foggy and grainy. First attachment is a full 4x5" sheet, second is a detail showing the grain structure. I think I did this test with the Linhof Tech V and 135/3.5 Planar.
     

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  7. Bill Mitchell

    Bill Mitchell Member

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    They're a lot more useful in 4x5, since there is rollfilm in 6x9. Also, they'll really save weight and bulk for more extended shoots. They don't have to be loaded in the dark like sheet film, and, like Quickloads, there is no dust problem. After doing a couple of them, they're as easy to manage in the darkroom as rollfilm.
    Oh, I miss filmpacks!
     
  8. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    David, Royal Pan and Royal X Pan are two different films with two different speeds and two different dates of issue.

    Royal X Pan was not out until the late 70s or early 80s IIRC. I have several 120 rolls of it in the freezer. It is fast, grainy and foggy even though frozen. Want some? It is the 1000+ ISO film. Royal Pan was 400 IIRC.

    PE
     
  9. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Thanks, PE. I think I finished my Royal Pan experiments from a couple of years ago, but maybe there are some other takers. It was interesting enough to try a few sheets, but not interesting enough to shoot the whole box.
     
  10. gordrob

    gordrob Subscriber

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    The film placks were a great idea for anyone that needed to carry a lot of film and couldn't handle the weight of the film holders. I use a Nikkor 4x5 tank for processing them because it is adjustable to accommodate the little larger size of the pack. I still have about 12 - 3x4 and 6-4x5 packs of Tri X frozen.

    Gord
     
  11. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    In a similar vein i've got a pack of 12 Perutz Peromnia Rapid (red label) 13x18cm glass plates, which have been in cold storage for at least 50 years.

    I'll try one first with a lens with an actual shutter before using the rest with the Aplanat casket set :smile:
     
  12. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    I have a Nikor tank and considered doing them that way, but I don't have that much pack film, and I've got it adjusted perfectly for 4x5", so I'm hesitant to change it.
     
  13. Charles Webb

    Charles Webb Member

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    I used Royal Pan rated at ASA 200 (reg 400) for newspaper work for several years developed in exotic DK50. Prints made a great half tones with 130 line screens. Royal X Pan was actually to grainey for good night football photos, the grain really messed up when 130 line screens were used, worked and looked much better with 85 line. I was shooting 4x5 with Ascor 200 ws strobes and I guarantee when the Great Yellow God discontinued it it was no loss to me. Liked Royal Pan very much, then they introduced TriX and I never looked back!
    Charlie...............
     
  14. df cardwell

    df cardwell Subscriber

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    Royal Pan, though is/was a very lovely film, with an un-ending straight line.

    Replaced by TMY, witht the same charecteristics, and the improvement was welcomed !

    I still have ... a LOT..of 8x10 Royal in the freezer....and it's just lovely. Especially because it was about a penny per sheet. Yippee.
     
  15. vet173

    vet173 Member

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    I have some royal pan also. Exp date 1994. Shot at 400 and developed in d76 1:1 there is more fog than I like but is still usable. (worth shooting, but not anything important) I don't think it would do very good in my standard pyrocat. Next outing will be at 200 and 100 with some benzo in the developer. I also have some tri-x in film packs to try. I'll develop them at the same time. ( love DBI with night vision goggles, any film any developer any temp, make some gumbo)
     
  16. Rlibersky

    Rlibersky Subscriber

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    David

    Nice to see your able to get something out of it. Didn't think there was much hope for it.
     
  17. herb

    herb Subscriber

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    royal pan

    I used it in the 50's- made a great portrait film. I seem to remember D76 as
    the developer, but the mind is not clear at that distance. It would be fun to
    fool around with it again, kinda like going home.
     
  18. Atlo

    Atlo Member

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    processing times for royal pan?

    i have a box of 5x7 that i got for free, expired in 1971 i think (on vacation at the moment).
    does anyone have times for say, d76?
    its a box of 100, i'll be willing to try other developers if needed.
     
  19. bdial

    bdial Subscriber

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    My old Kodak darkroom dataguide shows "Not Recommnded" for D-76, but it shows 8 minutes for HC-100 dilution B
     
  20. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Threads merged.
     
  21. gainer

    gainer Subscriber

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    There is this to remember: some time back then, film speed ratings changed from ASA to ISO which about doubled box speeds by taking away the shadow allowance. I bypassed that allowance sometime in the 40's by measuring the shadows I wanted to keep with my meter set for 10x box speed. Now I use 4x. The same film that said 50 on the box was suddenly 125. My inclination would be to try setting my meter at 500 for Plus-X and metering the shadows. I mean the really shadowy shadows. Minimum correct exposure usually improves grain.
     
  22. dhosten

    dhosten Member

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    Picked up 9x12 Tri-X pack film for my Voigtlander Avus, and am excited and nervous to try it, as the pack says develop before 1966!
    I have HC110 in the basement, would that be a good developer to start with? I am thinking of rating at 100 ASA and see how that goes. Any other suggestions? I have never developed or shot film this old so feel like a complete novice.
     
  23. Bill Burk

    Bill Burk Subscriber

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    I got 0.33 B+F and EI 100 from 4x5 Tri-X expired 05/1985 that I shot and developed in D-76 1:1 for my standard time (13 min tray) this summer. I got a normal 0.62 Contrast Index. So your plan to shoot at 100 sounds fine.
     
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  24. gordrob

    gordrob Subscriber

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    The way to test this film is to shoot one exposure and then take the film int the darkroom and "rob" the pack of the one exposure and develop it and see if you are satisfied with the results. If there was instructions in the pack it should explain how to remove the exposed sheet of film for development. I have shot tri-x in film packs that expired in the 70s and some came out remarkably well and others were fogged. It all depends on how it has been stored in the last 40 or 50 years. I usually use D76 or HC110 and rate the film at 100ASA.

    Regards
    Gord