Selenium and Ilford Multigrade

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by Scott Ridgeway, Oct 24, 2007.

  1. Scott Ridgeway

    Scott Ridgeway Member

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    I'm thinking I might want to try Ilford Multigrade fiber paper. From what I read, Multigrade shows little effect from selenium toning. My question is: How do you know when your print is fully toned? How do you know when your toner is exhausted? With Forte, you pulled the paper when you saw the change. At the beginning of a session, this would happen quickly. As the session progressed, I'd have to leave the paper in longer and longer. Without visible clues, how do you know that your Multigrade paper is adequately toned?
     
  2. Michel Hardy-Vallée

    Michel Hardy-Vallée Membership Council Council

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    The best way to know how much a paper will tone is to make two identical photographs, and then leave one in the water tray while toning the other. Use an incandescent light very close to the trays, and you will see the differences as they gradually appear.

    Multigrade reacts very little to toning, but it does. The comparative method would be best in your case. As for toner exhaustion: Selenium lasts forever, and does not degrade on its own. When you feel it's becoming weaker, just add a splash of concentrate. Given that Se toning is a trial-and-error process, you don't need to bother about exact concentrations the way you need to do with developers.
     
  3. Leon

    Leon Member

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    MGIV FB responds well to bleach back and redevelop in selenium (and other bleach back toners) - very nice
     
  4. MurrayMinchin

    MurrayMinchin Membership Council Council

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    Hi Scott,

    I don't know what dilution you're using, but I had to go to 1:10 before I started seeing any real effects. At this dilution they'll 'eggplant' in about 5 minutes so I usually tone for about three minutes when it's fresh.

    The tip on using a tungsten bulb to judge an untoned print with the one you're toning is a good, as it's easier to see the toner kick in with warm light.

    Good luck...it's a paper that comes alive with selenium!

    Murray
     
  5. Scott Ridgeway

    Scott Ridgeway Member

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    So I WILL see at least some change in the print then. Great.

    Thanks!
     
  6. bdial

    bdial Subscriber

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    So far, I've not allowed the toning of my MG prints to progress to a really obvious color change, but there is a definite difference.
    My test is to hold up two otherwise identical prints, one toned, the other not, from across the room and ask my wife which she likes. Every time, it's the toned one.
    Since this sort of subtle effect is my goal anyway, I'm happy with MG in Selenium. I've been using Ilford selenium at 1:20 dilution.