Time to Stockpile Chemicals

Discussion in 'Color: Film, Paper, and Chemistry' started by newcan1, Sep 12, 2012.

  1. newcan1

    newcan1 Subscriber

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    I've amassed quite a lot of film including over 10,000 feet of ECN-2 stocks (1800 36 exp rolls approx). Now I'm worried that photo chemicals will become unavailable before I can develop it all, so I want to stockpile key chemicals -- CD3, CD4, maybe metol , hydroquinone, potassium bromide, benzotriazole, hydroxylamine sulfate, potassium ferricyanide, ferric ammonium EDTA- before they become unavailable or are banned by the enviro police.

    My question relates mainly to the color developing agents. Most of the chemicals will keep a long time but the developing agents - especially the color ones - can deteriorate. I have some CD4 that I bought in 1987; it's still useable but is discolored and has lost some strength - maybe 10% or so.

    My question to the knowledgeable is: Can such chemicals be frozen, and would that extend longevity? If so, should I add a small dessicant pack to each bottle before freezing?

    Finally - anyone know where I can get CD3 and CD4 in larger quantities than 100g or 1/2 LB? I'd like to end up with about 2KG of each of CD3 and CD4.
     
  2. Gerald C Koch

    Gerald C Koch Member

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    Most of the chemicals you mention are used for many other purposes other than photography. Their availablity is NOT going to change. As far as the color developing agents are concerned they do not keep well and should not be bought in large amounts. Don't panic!
     
  3. Photo Engineer

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    All dry, crystalline chemicals can be frozen AFAIK. Stock solutions should not be frozen, nor should concentrates.

    Chemical prices will go up, as the common use of many of these was photography and as use declines price goes up.

    PE
     
  4. newcan1

    newcan1 Subscriber

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    Yes PE, they are all dry chemicals except the EDTA can no longer be obtained dry as far as I know. The ones I listed are, I believe, used mainly/only for photography and I am guessing will be extremely expensive in year or two. As for Gerald's comment re: color developing agents' keeping properties, I have to disagree where dry chemicals are concerned: As I indicated I have some 25-yr-old CD4 and I would definitely use it if I had nothing fresher - the only thing holding me back is I would need to develop a couple of test rolls to establish how much I may have to compensate for its age. I used it a year ago with no compensation and got pretty good negatives - maybe slightly underdeveloped, but I never did any testing to quantify. I'd probably add 10%. Twenty five years is probably all I have left!
     
  5. Bob Carnie

    Bob Carnie Subscriber

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    Hi Ron

    For C41 and RA4 developers is there a shelf life that one should be aware of? I just spoke to someone who should know and he
    stated 10 month timeline.
    If this is true, how would one stockpile these chemicals with frozen paper?
    FWIW I was thinking of purchasing a stock of C41 chemicals and colour negative film , and was thinking that enough for 5-8 years of imaging and processing.

    If what this person says is true , how would I be able to develop the film into the future ?

    thanks

    Bob
     
  6. newcan1

    newcan1 Subscriber

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    I buy dry powder raw chemicals and mix my own formulae - these chemicals last unmixed almost indefinitely. Ten months may be for the liquid components of pre-mixed chemistry. I'm still using some chemicals that are 25yrs old - potassium bromide, metol, hydroquinone, etc. It's these basic dry components that I want to stock up on.
     
  7. Bob Carnie

    Bob Carnie Subscriber

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    I am specifically questioning colour C41 and RA4 chemicals.. is this what you are referring too?
     
  8. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    C41 and RA4 chemistry, made up as concentrates, does not keep beyond a certain limit. I have not measured this limit, but it is indeed about 1 - 2 years, and longer if refrigerated (not frozen and never opened). Kodak and others made the decision to supply only liquid kits, and then to supply most of the chemistry in plastic bottles. This limits the lifetime.

    PE
     
  9. newcan1

    newcan1 Subscriber

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    yes, I was referring to the dry, raw individual chemicals to make up C41, RA4 or ECN-2 chemistry.
     
  10. BradS

    BradS Subscriber

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    just one data point: I have a one pound, brown glass jar of Kodak Hydroquinone that dates to the early 1970's. I'm slowly working my way through it. No special storage. It is a little bit brown-grey compared to the fresh stuff I bought a few years ago but still works fine.
     
  11. mts

    mts Subscriber

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    Mine is from the 1960s and works fine. HQ isn't a problem to obtain since it has medical uses and others as well. But PE is right; prices will go up.
     
  12. eclarke

    eclarke Member

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    EDTA from Artcraft Chemicals.. $16.00/lb.
    http://www.artcraftchemicals.com/pr...eneral-chemistry/a-m/edta-disodium-part-1130/
     
  13. Bob Carnie

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    Ok thats what I was hoping to here... where would one find the formula for C41 to mix from scratch?. I am actually only interested in this application.
     
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  15. frobozz

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    Kodak Motion Picture Products Catalog:

    http://motion.kodak.com/motion/uploadedFiles/QA_MotionPictureCatalog_August_15_2012.pdf

    Page 38 has most of what you need for ECN-2 processing in dry powder or concentrate form.

    CD3 in a 25 kilo drum may be a tad more than even you had in mind though :smile: Only $757.97!

    Duncan
     
  16. newcan1

    newcan1 Subscriber

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    Yes, I saw that price for CD3. 2 kilos at $20 per 100g would be $400 so it would be tempting to buy the drum from Kodak if I could find others to co-invest. But I'm sure we would break all kinds of enviro laws in divvying it up.
     
  17. newcan1

    newcan1 Subscriber

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    I use the formula at post #9 of the thread below with very good results:

    http://www.apug.org/forums/forum40/55062-color-negative-developer-near-c41.html

    That's for the developer. I use an acetic acid stop bath (white vinegar diluted 1:1 works well), several rinses between the stop and the bleach, a ferri bleach (I'm sure you can find a formula here - I use Kodak's published formula for ferricyanide bleach for ECN-2) and conventional fixer.
     
  18. Photo Engineer

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    Just remember that the pH cannot be too acidic and you need a stabilizer.

    PE
     
  19. newcan1

    newcan1 Subscriber

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    Oh yes - I forgot the stabilizer - formaldehyde and photoflo, I think. PE, which pH were you referring to? The fixer?
     
  20. Bob Carnie

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    Thanks- very interesting and helpful.
     
  21. Photo Engineer

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    The pH of the tail end process, bleach (or blix), fix and stab should be about 6.0 - 6.7 for best results. The aim would be 6.5.

    I know that the Bleach III from Kodak is more acidic now. That is not a problem as the fix is still higher.

    PE
     
  22. mark

    mark Member

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    New reality show for the learning channel.

    "Doomsday Photo Preppers" :D
     
  23. DREW WILEY

    DREW WILEY Member

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    Does seem kinda silly to panic about major color chemistry at this point in time, unless you're just trying to learn alternatives for the hypothetical long-haul. RA4 is mainstream at this point - all the
    high-volume print units other than inkjet rely upon it. C-paper and RA4 are still a lot more cost effective than inkjet for commercial work, and can be optically printed as well. Still multiple sources
    for the chemistry. C41 won't die until color neg film does worldwide, and there's no evidence of that
    on the near hoizon. Fuji is still making and selling chrome film, and distributing it here, so E6 is still
    required. Just because some neighborhoods might not offer these traditional film and paper services
    like they once did does not imply the cumulative need has been reduced to the point of imminent
    danger. Plenty of commercial use of all the above in my particular neigborhood.
     
  24. Photo Engineer

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    E6 chemistry might be in danger, but IDK for sure. It may change, now that it is in the hands of Fuji alone.

    PE
     
  25. Bob Carnie

    Bob Carnie Subscriber

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    I think E6 is in real danger, with no new labs willing to consider it as a service line, and the big labs with the monster Refremas unable to run enough film through them to control the process consistently.
    Toronto had 10 labs some better than others minimum doing E6 not just 10 years ago, today Toronto Image Works is the only place I would send my E6.
    I will be surprised that they continue with it for 2 more years.

     
  26. RattyMouse

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    Absolutely hilarious!!!:laugh::laugh: