Safelight for Ilford Paper?

Discussion in 'Darkroom Equipment' started by skyrick, Mar 28, 2010.

  1. skyrick

    skyrick Member

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    I'm assembling and acquiring equipment for my first darkroom and am basically down to the safelight. I'll be using Ilford's MGIV paper, which recommends a 902 light brown safelight. Is that the same as an amber? I looked on Freestyle and that auction site but have not seen a "light brown" light or filter offered.
     
  2. fschifano

    fschifano Member

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    It's functionally equivalent to Kodak's "OC" spec safelight. Some call it amber. Make sure that whichever you get, it meets the specs or you could be in for a rude surprise.
     
  3. ann

    ann Subscriber

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    we use the "amber" in a thomas safelight at school, have for years with no issues.
     
  4. RalphLambrecht

    RalphLambrecht Subscriber

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    You can use 'OC', amber or red safelights with that paper. Red safelights are 'safer' but quite a bit darker. Whatever you use, always conduct a proper safelight test before using them. Flat prints and muddy highlights are often a sign of unsafe safelights or light leaks.

    I can offer this link:

    http://www.waybeyondmonochrome.com/WBM2/TOC_files/SafelightTestEd2.pdf
     
  5. Tim Gray

    Tim Gray Member

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    I'd love to get a Thomas safelight. Those things are so bright.

    If this is a temporary darkroom (or not), I could recommend LED lights. I bought a red LED screw in bulb about 3 years ago. It's pretty bright. I have it in a clip on metal fixture that I clip somewhere when I set up my stuff in the bathroom. I forget where I purchased it from, but it was after reading here on APUG.
     
  6. Tim Gray

    Tim Gray Member

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    Ahhh, here it is. It's an optiled festival light. I have the red one. Can't remember which store I bought it at online, but found this link here on APUG: optiled LED lamp.
     
  7. Ektagraphic

    Ektagraphic Member

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    "Red" or "OC" filter will work fine. Which is basically the majority of the safelights in the worlds.
     
  8. RalphLambrecht

    RalphLambrecht Subscriber

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    I'm not a fan of the Thomas safelight, simply because it typically hangs in the middle of the room, and regardless of where you are in the darkroom, you always work in your own shadow. I prefer a few strategically positioned, small safelights instead.

    BTW, I was told by Osram or Phillips (I forgot) that those red LED festival lights are no longer manufactured. Sad really, I think they could be ideal.
     
  9. RalphLambrecht

    RalphLambrecht Subscriber

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    In Europe, I frequently ran across green 'safelight'. I would not use them.
     
  10. Tim Gray

    Tim Gray Member

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    I'll likely never have a darkroom big enough for a Thomas anyway, so it's a moot point :smile: Though there's no reason you couldn't augment the Thomas with smaller lights here and there.

    That's a shame about the festival lights. I'm sure there are suitable replacements though. Anything with a screw in base and in red would probably be fine.
     
  11. fschifano

    fschifano Member

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    Not so. While I agree that red is fine, and probably safer than the OC or amber safe lights (I use red 1A in my darkroom), not all red lamps are safe. Many of these "party bulbs" emit enough light in frequencies outside the safe zone to fog papers in short order. You've got to be really careful here. Check the spectral sensitivity of the paper against the spectral output of the lamp to be sure. The lamp needs to put out light in the region where the paper has no sensitivity, but that your eyes do.
     
  12. Tim Gray

    Tim Gray Member

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    I agree with you on principle, but it's really not that hard to find red LED's that have a limited FWHM. I wasn't talking about basic festival/party lights, but LED ones.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 28, 2010
  13. RalphLambrecht

    RalphLambrecht Subscriber

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    I looked hard and long without avail. If someone finds them in 220V, please let me know.
     
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  15. Tim Gray

    Tim Gray Member

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    Can't help you with the 220 VAC thing, but superbrightleds.com has some suitable red LED lamps. Also, the link above has the optiled festival lights - it seems like they are still selling them.

    Worse comes to worse, you could easily wire something together. There are millions of LEDs that you can buy - the support circuitry isn't that difficult.
     
  16. Mahler_one

    Mahler_one Member

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    Unless you are developing by inspection Ralph! Then the green light is on for a few seconds as the developing process proceeds.

    Ed
     
  17. Mark Fisher

    Mark Fisher Subscriber

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    Even for a permanent darkroom, I'd recommend these. I have about a 6x12 foot darkroom and one red and one amber. I use them both for Ilford and other papers that call for an OC light and just the red for Eastern European papers. I do a lot of lith meaning that there is a lot of exposure of the paper to the safelights. I've never seen fogging and I have plenty of light. Highly recommended!
     
  18. Anon Ymous

    Anon Ymous Member

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    Actually, Ilford state at their datasheets for MG IV RC & FB that the Philips PF710 safelamp (yellow green) can be used (PF712 is the red one). Is it safe? Not exactly, but it's definitely usable. I did a test (without preflashing the paper) and it showed that 2' is the maximum acceptable time that the paper can be exposed to that safelamp from a distance of 1,5m. I used a CD to see the spectrum of this lamp and there was a tiny amount of blue light emitted. Now, if you have the option to put this lamp far enough, you're not going to have any problems with it. I've successfully used this lamp 5-6m away from the paper and I couldn't see any problems. So, why would anyone want to use that lamp? Because it's color is very close to the spectral sensitivity peak of the human eye and it's very comfortable.
     
  19. 2F/2F

    2F/2F Member

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    You can't go wrong with red for most papers. OC also works with MGIV, IME.
     
  20. ic-racer

    ic-racer Member

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    Below is the stated spectral sensitivity of Ilford MG. Bright "safe" light sources can still fog it. I have Rosco #27 Primary Red (transmission at 580 is 0% and 600 2%) on my flashlight (torch for those in the UK :smile: ) and it will fog the paper in seconds if I hold it right up close to the paper in the developer.

    I use OC in my safelights and can go 20 min with no fog but they are very dim and far from sensitive materials.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 28, 2010
  21. RalphLambrecht

    RalphLambrecht Subscriber

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    I'm not taking about dark green for film development by inspection. I was talking about yellow-green safelights for paper, which I consider unsafe. By the way, when developing prints, I prefer not to do that in the dark.
     
  22. RalphLambrecht

    RalphLambrecht Subscriber

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    That's what I'm talking about. Not 'safe' enough for me.
     
  23. RalphLambrecht

    RalphLambrecht Subscriber

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    That's the way I see it too. I got quite used to the dark red safelight.
     
  24. skyrick

    skyrick Member

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    Thanks for all the input everyone. OC it is for me. The light will be about 6 ' from the paper so I should be fine.
     
  25. clayne

    clayne Member

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    Ralph, http://www.superbrightleds.com. These guys sell red LED safelights with US and euro fixtures. They're bright enough and I've tested red-only papers as safe with them. I use a single light, mounted 8ft up, bounced off the ceiling (about 12 ft high).

    Ilford paper, on the other hand, is probably about the most lenient paper out there WRT to safelights.
     
  26. RalphLambrecht

    RalphLambrecht Subscriber

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    Don't forget the safelight test!