Where to get Ilfochrome P-30

Discussion in 'Color: Film, Paper, and Chemistry' started by SkipA, Jun 8, 2005.

  1. SkipA

    SkipA Member

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    I called every photo store in town that keeps darkroom supplies. None have Ilfochrome P-30 kits or Ilfochrome paper. One has had the P-30 kits on backorder since January. They all say they simply can't get it anymore.

    Adorama is out of stock. B&H has it but won't ship it. Freestyle has Arista 2 liter kit, but not P-30. Calumet is out of stock.

    I've done a bit of RA-4 printing from negatives, but I've never made R-prints before. I just want the experience of making contrast masks and producing one or two decent R-prints before the process entirely disappears, but then I think I'll be done with it.

    Anyone know where I can get a P-30 kit and some Ilfochrome paper?
     
  2. Marco Gilardetti

    Marco Gilardetti Member

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    Simply: nowhere. And though Ilford is out of bankruptcy, I guess Cibachrome/Ilfochrome won't be produced any longer.

    Search on that-famous-auction-site. Some stuff pops up occasionally (not more often than once in 2-3 months).
     
  3. SkipA

    SkipA Member

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    That's disturbing. Perhaps I am too late, then. There appear to be supplies of the P-3 commerical materials still in the pipeline. Those no longer produced either?

    What of the Arista kits. Are they rebranded Ilford kits?
     
  4. gr82bart

    gr82bart Subscriber

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    The sky's not quite falling, but there is a big ozone hole!

    I know B&H has it. I saw several kits personally on the shelf a couple of weeks ago. Maybe you can arrange with another APUGger to get it for you from B&H.


    What about Samy's in LA? Last time I was there, they had several kits on the shelf. Vistek, Henry's and Toronto Image Works in Toronto, Canada should also have it. Check out Central Camera in Chicago, they had lots when I was there a couple of years ago.

    It would help to tell us where you are geographically too.

    Art.
     
  5. Bob F.

    Bob F. Member

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    Ilford's colour division in Switzerland was not effected by the problems with the B&W division in the UK and, according to Ilford at the time, was trading normally. No idea if it was, or not, tho. In any event I would guess that distribution was probably hit.

    Many local stores have probably switched to being inkjet paper suppliers now so your best bet is probably online/mail-order.

    Bob.
     
  6. SkipA

    SkipA Member

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    I'm in Texas, Art. I called all the camera stores in Dallas that I know carry darkroom supplies, and none have the P-30 kits. Sadly, two of them thought I was talking about E6 film developing kits when I never even mentioned E6. They all told me it was getting very difficult to get any darkroom supplies anymore. I find that difficult to believe.

    I'll check those other places you mentioned and see if they'll ship. Thanks for the suggestions!
     
  7. SkipA

    SkipA Member

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    I just sent an email off to the Ilford US office to ask about P-30 kit availability.
     
  8. aj-images

    aj-images Member

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    did you check uniquephoto.com?
     
  9. Bob Carnie

    Bob Carnie Subscriber

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    Skip
    I think you should be enquiring about P3x chemistrys with Ilford US, I run P3X at my lab in a Ciba machine, as well I know of others who run in Jobo.
    Cibachrome is not being discontinued to my knowlege, I am not sure about the RC version.
     
  10. Donald Qualls

    Donald Qualls Member

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    It's my understanding that the only part of the Ilfochrome chemistry that's in any way different from standard B&W paper chemistry is a bleaching step that either rehalogenates the silver image so it will fix away, or directly dissolves it. The color image is formed by destruction of dyes (already present in the emulsion), and do not depend on dye agents in a developer step as is the case with C-41, RA-4, and E-6 chemistries.

    I don't know whether the bleach is similar to those used in B&W reversal or C-41/RA-4/E-6 processes, or whether it has a component that contributes to or performs the dye destruction -- but it should be possible to find out. If the Ilfochrome paper and transparency materials are still available, the chemistry kits may be simply a convenenience...
     
  11. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    Donald, the Ilfochrome bleach is totally unlike the bleach used in chromogenic color materials. If you use it with conventional color materials, you will probably destroy all of the dyes. If you use a conventional color bleach with Ilfochrome you will get a black sheet of paper with no image.

    PE
     
  12. Paul Howell

    Paul Howell Member

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    If Ilford is no longer available what are the other options?
     
  13. Dug

    Dug Member

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    SkipA:

    My supplier has been getting calls from all over the country for folks looking for a P30 kit. Get yourself on a backorder list so you are in line for the first post-bankruptcy shipment. If you are absolutely desperate, please PM me and I can swap you a P30 kit and some paper for trade (got any BIG trays or a Gralab timer to swap?)
     
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  15. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    I hesitate to bring this up, but if you are stuck for chemistry and have paper left, I have approximate formulas around here somewhere for the Ilfochrome chemicals. If anyone is interested, I could dig them up, but I will not guarantee that they will work.

    PE
     
  16. SkipA

    SkipA Member

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    Bob, I have a nice little darkroom at home, but certainly not what I'd call a lab, and I'm by no means a high volume user of any photo process. As far as I can tell, the P3X chemistry is not sold in small quantities suitable for the weekend darkroom enthusiast. It seems to be intended for commercial labs or relatively high-volume processors. It sounds good, and there do appear to be readily available P3X chemicals, but I doubt it would be economical for me.
     
  17. SkipA

    SkipA Member

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    Dug, who is your supplier? I want to get on his backorder list.

    I'm not desparate yet. I've never done this before, it's just something I want to try for my personal satisfaction. On the other hand, I have three Gralab 300's and I probably don't really need all three of them :smile: I don't want to trade my 20x24 trays, though.
     
  18. SkipA

    SkipA Member

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    PE, I don't have any Ilfochrome paper, and I couldn't say I'm stuck. I just want to have some fun, try my hand at a new (for me) process.

    Paper seems to be readily available. I'd love to experiment with your formulas, no guarantee of results expected. I tend to mix most of my processing solutions from bulk chemicals anyway.
     
  19. SkipA

    SkipA Member

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    Oh yeah, by the way, I tried all of the potential mail order sources that everyone mentioned. No one has P30 kit that I could find except for B&H, who won't ship.
     
  20. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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  21. SkipA

    SkipA Member

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    Thanks, David. It sounds like more of a hint of positive news to come, but good nonetheless.
     
  22. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    SkipA, the formulas that I have are rather old and spotty but here goes.

    The developer is a low alkali phenidone hydroquinone developer. That is all the information that I have. It is also indended to develop as much silver as possible without excessive fog.

    The dye bleach is sodium bromide, about 5 g/l; sulfamic acid or sulfuric acid in a quantity sufficient to get to a pH of about 1.0 (This would range from about 20 - 100 g/l depending on which acid you use), and to that you add 0.1 - 1 g /l of phenazine (a known carcinogen - since my formula Ilford has switched to a less toxic chemical - I believe that it is a quinoline but I cannot find any information about it).

    The fix is an acidic fix of about 4.5 with sulfite and sodium hypo. Kodak Rapid Liquid Fix or similar might be useful without the hardener.

    I cannot find the definitive formula list of the Ilford chemistry, just the sketchy outline above. Sorry I cannot do better.

    This information comes from a talk given by one of the Ilford engineers, and also some patent references in which they discuss bleach-fixes for dye bleach materials.

    PE
     
  23. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    Sorry, but the fix is pH about 6.5 not 4.5.

    PE
     
  24. Donald Qualls

    Donald Qualls Member

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    I've read several times that one can (for instance) use the Beers paper developer system to control Ilfochrome contrast; as you suggest, Kodak or other rapid fixer works fine for fixer; it's only the bleach that's really critical. Sodium bromide isn't impossible to get, and sulfuric acid is both not hard to get and used in other photo formulae (like reversal bleaches). The one that might be tricky is the phenazine or whatever has replaced it.

    All likely to be a moot question, of course, since if Ilfochrome chemisty is gone, the paper and tranny film won't be far behind.

    I was seeing Ilfochrome as a way I could make Polaroid-like one-off color prints or trannies in my plate cameras without having to deal with RA-4 materials and chemicals. OTOH, RA-4 can be reversed without much difficulty (develop in B&W paper developer, exposed to light to reverse, then apply standard RA-4 process); the main annoyance is it's likely to require significant filtration to make images direct from a scene, where I'm told Ilfochrome materials don't. Let's hope reports of Ilfochrome's demise have been greatly exaggerated...
     
  25. Bob Carnie

    Bob Carnie Subscriber

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    Donald
    I don't think that the ilfochrome(cibachrome) line will be discontinued in any short order. We are using Lambda technology to produce cibachromes and have found that we are using more and more material as time goes on.
    I do agree that with the shrinking E6 (transparancey) market, the traditional side of ilfochrome( cut sheet, CLM1k, CPS1K and CFK1k) will slowly phased out but roll 20 Inch and 30 inch (cibachrome universal ) will be seeing a massive increase with the lazer printers that are situated in labs throughout Europe and North America, I would also imagine Australia will be strong in this area as well.
    The inkjet market totally hit the cibachrome market and Ilford did nothing to fight back, but now with these new writers producing beautiful work it will not be long before a resurgence of ciba will occur.
    If you do not like glossy surface ciba is not for you , but there is no other product available that has a better colour gamut than cibachrome. I print most end products and can stand behind this statement.
    Ink jet is a pale comparison , as is crystal archive and endura RA4
    One only has to print from various files on each media to see this.
     
  26. ras351

    ras351 Member

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    After using the P30 kits for a few years I've been playing around with my own developers in order to resolve the contrast issue. Results so far show promise. Firstly the developer is basically a normal B&W developer with a small amount of thiosulphate added to remove the masking layer. Personally I've been testing with the Beers formulas which for lower contrast uses only the metol developer, with the thiosulphate added at a rate of 0.1 to 0.2 grams per 100ml of developer (ie 30ml Beers A stock + 60ml water + 0.1 gm thiosulphate). This develops a silver image in the paper for each of the three layers. I can't see any reason why you couldn't use a normal multigrade type developer (with thiosulphate added) if you're happy with a normal contrast image. Dilution and time can be used to tweak things slightly. You can also use phenidone/ascorbic acid developers if you have a reaction to metol.

    For the bleach I've been using the P3 version which needs to run either longer or at a warmer temperature than the normal P30 bleach. The bleach removes the dye from the paper where there is metallic silver and at the same time converts the metallic silver back to a silver halide. Also although it requires a higher temperature or longer time and does deserve respect I prefer the P3 bleach as you can mix up enough for the job at hand. You do need to neutralise the bleach by adding sodium bicarbonate (or similar) before disposal. Ensure there's adequate ventilation.

    The fixer step is normal rapid fix at 1+9 dilution. This is a simplistic view of the process but it seems to work. The filtration values tend to require more cyan/magenta than the standard P30 chemicals however the ability to control contrast at the developer stage is a big bonus. Ilfochrome still suffers from slight colour crossover (cyan highlights, red shadows) with E6 films although it's not always noticeable and some films are more prone to the problem than others.

    Roger.