What is wrong with hardening fixer?

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by lesdix, Feb 2, 2005.

  1. lesdix

    lesdix Member

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    The place where I work used to have a well equipped darkroom but this all went long ago. Recently, some Ilfofix acid hardening fixer in powder form was found in a cupboard and I am free to take it home.

    I have heard somewhere that hardening fixer should be avoided. Does anybody know why?

    Les
     
  2. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    For most modern films and papers, it's not really necessary unless you're using a wash procedure (like a rotary drum washer) that is likely to cause scratches.

    It will lengthen toning times and make retouching and spotting with dyes a bit more difficult as well.
     
  3. David H. Bebbington

    David H. Bebbington Inactive

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    Note that Ilfofix is NOT a hardening fixer - it is acid hypo (in other words, a traditional [non-rapid] fixer). It is fine for films and papers (except film developed in pyro or other staining developers). Hardener must not be added to Ilfofix. It can be added to other fixers, it gives some protection against scratching to films but lengthens the required washing time. As already pointed out, there are numerous disadvantages to using hardening fix with paper and really no advantages at all (unless you're printing on FB glossy and hot-glazing it, which I think nobody does these days!).

    Regards,

    David