Wanting to Print RA-4 at home

Discussion in 'Color: Film, Paper, and Chemistry' started by Ektagraphic, May 9, 2010.

  1. Ektagraphic

    Ektagraphic Member

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    Hi Guys- I have the itch to try RA-4 at home. I have a uicolor enlarger with filters and a uniclor processing drum. I also have a Beseler 23C set up for black and white and an Omega DII. I would like to give it a try with the unicolor....How toxic are the RA-4 chemicals compaired to the black and white print processing steps? I have a septic system here....Are there any room temperature RA-4 chemicals left?

    Thanks,

    Patrick
     
  2. tiberiustibz

    tiberiustibz Member

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    They're no more toxic than B+W. The RA4 developer does have an odor to it. I like it but maybe that's just speaking to how much I've printed it. It's not so bad in 8x10 trays as it gets in 16x20 trays...

    I wrote an article on this, with the only ammmendment that you shouldn't use fuji paper. Edge or Royal Generations or Ultra Endura or Supra Endura (stock up now) should work just fine.

    http://www.apug.org/forums/forum221/58260-ra-4-printing-200-a.html
     
  3. hrst

    hrst Member

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    They are not more toxic than BW. One could claim they are less toxic because of hydroquinone in many BW paper developers. I like the fresh, fruity odor in Kodak RA-4 developer :rolleyes:.

    I don't recommend drums as I find traditional tray processing - just like BW - easier, but this is up to you.

    Just give it a try! It's easy and fun.

    Look at the another thread that's going on for recommendations on chemicals. Kodak RA-RT replenisher and RT-LU replenisher seems to work perfectly at room temp, without a starter.
     
  4. sepiareverb

    sepiareverb Subscriber

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    Why not Fuji Nicholas?

    There is one Mono kit left, Tetenal branded. Not in stock at B&H. I use the Fotospeed Mono version (only one kit left tho), with both Kodak and Fuji paper. 1620 trays are a bit much- even with ventilation I get a bit of a headache if I'm in there all day.
     
  5. Greg Davis

    Greg Davis Member

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    You can use the Kodak RA-RT developer in trays at room temperature with a 2 minute developing time. You will use a slightly different filter pack than at normal processing temperature, but it works great.
     
  6. perkeleellinen

    perkeleellinen Member

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    I also like the smell the Kodak developer gives off. Kodak chemistry is far less repellent than the mono kits in terms of smell.

    I think the issue with Fuji paper is its performance at room temperature.

    Cut paper is becoming difficult to source with Endura stocks starting to disappear. Fuji CA is starting to be cut again by 3rd parties over here, I see no reason why Kodak Edge couldn't be cut down also.
     
  7. tiberiustibz

    tiberiustibz Member

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    I process at room temperature in trays. Fuji Type C in room temperature chemistry gives the nastiest magenta crossover and poor color saturation. Type P just gives poor saturations. Supra Endura gives great saturation without crossover. Just my observations.
     
  8. sepiareverb

    sepiareverb Subscriber

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    The Super C has been fine here in the Fotospeed Mono- that may be the difference the designed for room temperature chemistry makes?
     
  9. thefizz

    thefizz Subscriber

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    I now use the Kodak RA-RT Developer Replenisher & Blix at room temperature for 2 minutes each as recommended here on apug. Its working great and is much less expensive than the Fotospeed kit I had been using. The Kodak stuff also lasts much longer when opened due to there being 3 parts to mix for developer and 2 parts for the blix. The developer smells very sweat, kinda like washing liquid.
     
  10. pentaxuser

    pentaxuser Subscriber

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    I was always a Jobo drum processor at 35 degrees for RA4 and I kept my Nova 4 slot for B&W. While the 4 slot can be temp controlled for 35C it would be simpler if I could use it for RA4 at room temp. However what I am reading here is that Fuji paper is problematical at room temp and yet it is Kodak that has dropped it's sheet option. So while Fuji cut sheets are now available through various third parties such as Agphotographic in the U.K. it would appear that it isn't suitable at room temp which is a pity.

    So in summary Kodak Supra Endura is OK at room temp but isn't available or won't be for much longer while Fuji RA4 will be available in cut sheet form but has to processed at 35 degrees. Have I got this correct?

    pentaxuser
     
  11. thefizz

    thefizz Subscriber

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    I think you are almost correct but the Fuji paper can be processed successfully in chemistry other than Kodak's. I have used it in Fotospeed's room temperature kit without any problems.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 11, 2010
  12. pentaxuser

    pentaxuser Subscriber

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    thefizz, thanks for that. I think you are saying that if Fuji RA4 is going to be the only cut sheet paper in the near future as Kodak Supra disappears then at room temp development I'd have to try something other than Kodak RA4 such as Fotospeed.

    While I have no reason not to try Fotospeed room tem RA4 chems, I think I'd have preferred to opt for Kodak. Pity about this.

    pentaxuser
     
  13. thefizz

    thefizz Subscriber

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    Yes thats how I understand it. Its a pity as the Kodak developer is much cheaper and lasts way longer.
     
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  15. perkeleellinen

    perkeleellinen Member

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    I've still got quite a bit of Supra paper but I want to buy a box of Fuji CA soon and do some side-by-side comparisons. I normally heat my chemistry up (in a Nova) but I could try a few prints at room temp to see how the Fuji fares. Although the consensus is that Fuji paper and Kodak chems at room temp are bad, I'd like to see for myself how bad.
     
  16. njelle

    njelle Member

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    There is Supra Endura paper at macodirect.de
     
  17. perkeleellinen

    perkeleellinen Member

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    Unfortunately it's Endura VC Digital paper.
     
  18. njelle

    njelle Member

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    may i ask how different they are?
     
  19. pentaxuser

    pentaxuser Subscriber

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    I don't want to further confuse things but I seem to recall that there are other threads where some APUGers say that Fuji paper is OK at room temp.

    Despite dev taking about 2 mins as opposed to 45 secs at 35C, room temp developing is so much easier to handle and is cheaper!!

    As a previous contributor to this thread I now use Supra Endura at room temp in a Nova Quad processor but the time will come when the Supra will run out and I'll have to use Fuji so I am going to do some research into threads where I think rather than know that Fuji is said to be OK at room temp.

    So to the OP, don't assume just yet that Fuji paper can't be used at room temp.

    pentaxuser
     
  20. hpulley

    hpulley Member

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    Macodirect has the Ultra Endura too which is the only paper left that Kodak makes and recommends for optical printing. Expensive compared to expired rolls of Supra Endura (pre-VC Digital), Metallic (pre-VC Digital) and Supra III which cost the same or less than a pack of paper cut by Macodirect as Kodak doesn't cut them anymore; hence the white boxes.
     
  21. njelle

    njelle Member

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    Thats what i was talking about, haven't tried it yet but i spent all evening yesterday reading Apug discussions and found out that the Fuji paper is indeed contrasty at room temp development, when my chemicals arrive i'm going to print side by side both at room temp and at 35 and post here,
    if it doesen't work out i'm going to try the kodak Endura HD paper(is also supposed to be optimized for optical printing)
     
  22. hpulley

    hpulley Member

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    Fuji Crystal Archive Type Ii is contrasty at room temp for sure. I find heating trays is a pain but am interested in your test results.
     
  23. pentaxuser

    pentaxuser Subscriber

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    I infer three things from this, rightly or wrongly and you can tell me which are right or wrong

    1. It is more contrasty at room temp developing than at 95F. Too contrasty to be acceptable?

    2. It is more contrasty at room temp than say Kodak Supra Endura paper

    3. You have had no experience of room temp casts( I think magenta was mentioned) at room temp dev

    If all of the above are right then short of using dev at 95F what steps can be taken to tame the contrast.

    Thanks

    pentaxuser
     
  24. mfratt

    mfratt Member

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    I need to give this another go. I tried once with Arista's RA kit at room temp in my home darkroom. I had never C-Printed before that, and I was getting completely unpredictable, all over the place results. So I just resorted to using my school's darkroom with their behemoth Colex roller-transport processor.

    But now that I actually have some semblance of an idea what I'm doing I'm gonna bust back out those RA chems and give it another whirl... especially since the color lab isn't open during the summer and I have rolls upon rolls of color negs I need to print :wink:
     
  25. hpulley

    hpulley Member

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    1. Never tried Fuji CA at 95F. I tried Endura hot and room temp and found no difference and so far haven't thought to try Fuji CA hot.

    2. I find it more contrasty than Supra Endura for sure.

    3. No magenta cast.

    I actually like the contrast for some shots. I use the Enura as a low contrast paper. Depending on the negatives you can tame the contrast somewhat, overexposing some C-41 film gives it more pastel tones and lower contrast.

    To mfratt, my results at room temperature are completely consistent, no problem there even using the chemicals beyond recommended capacities and lifetimes.
     
  26. SkipA

    SkipA Member

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    Is Ultra Endura the only Kodak RC color paper left? I can only find it in rolls and in the semi-matte N surface. Is it a good paper? Does it have good keeping properties? If so, I might buy a roll when I run out of the stuff I have. I can cut it in the dark as I need it, I suppose.

    Right now I've got a partial 100 sheet box (mostly full) each of old Kodak Ultra III, and Portra II and Supra III in 8x10, and Ultra II in 16x20. I bought all that paper maybe 7 or 8 years ago, some of it expired at the time I bought it, and I have no idea if it's still any good.