Will the loss of Forte films repackaged for Freestyle and J&C impact you?

Discussion in 'Ultra Large Format Cameras and Accessories' started by Jim Chinn, Jan 13, 2007.

  1. Jim Chinn

    Jim Chinn Member

    Messages:
    2,512
    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2002
    Location:
    Omaha, Nebra
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I posted this because I wanted to get some feedback specifically from ULF shooters.

    From what I understand, Forte was the manufacturer for all of J&Cs classic line of films. I know they made film for Freestyle, but I don't think Freestyle ever offered repackaged Forte (Arista line) in anything larger then 8x10. They also produced the 200 speed Bergger which has been offered By View Camera Store in ULF sizes.

    That now leaves only 2 manufacturers that cut film in a variety of ULF sizes.

    Efke/Adox in 25/50/100
    Ilford FP4-125/HP5-400

    I suppose one can add Kodak on the list but I don't know the status of any future runs of TMY to be cut for ULF sizes so for all I know we may have seen the last of ULF Kodak.

    I know there is Foma, Maco Slavich and others, but (correct me if I am wrong) none of them cut film any larger then 8x10.

    I am interested in responses as to how Forte closing will affect you (if any) and what do you see for the future of ULF.
     
  2. jgjbowen

    jgjbowen Member

    Messages:
    879
    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2003
    Location:
    Richmond, VA
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    MAS just posted on the Azo Forum that Forte is not involved with the production of Lodima, so this won't have any negative impact om me. I use Kodak films for ULF. JandC posted on their website that Kodak is interested in another ULF run of TMY.
     
  3. bherg

    bherg Member

    Messages:
    89
    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2006
    Location:
    sweden
    Shooter:
    4x5 Format



    You can get Rollei r3 in ULF sizes. Atleast one to add to the list. But it must be though to not be able to know if there are going to be another run on film for your camera. I have long pondered the idea of a ULF camera, and i really hope they keep it coming.

    With Forte closing down its production their market shares goes to the other companys that still lives.

    And hopefully it will strengthen their place in this market that now is a niche market.
    Atleast I could live with a price increase if the companys feel the money isnt enough for keep producing.

    Maybe soon we will be forced to use glas plates again. back to the stone ages, not that i mind, but not having film would be a drag.





    Cheers Johannes
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 13, 2007
  4. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Messages:
    17,942
    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2002
    Location:
    Honolulu, Ha
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    I suppose it will change my strategy. For instance, if J&C 400 is available in 11x14", I'd just buy it, but if it isn't I may make more of an effort to organize a Tri-X order or participate in one if someone else organizes an order in that size (and no, I'm not interested in TMY or HP5+).

    On the other hand, for the moment, I'm getting along just fine lately with Efke 100 in 11x14", and if I need more speed, there's Acufine for the field, and I can always add another strobe pack for the studio.
     
  5. Scott Peters

    Scott Peters Member

    Messages:
    360
    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2005
    Location:
    Scottsdale,
    Shooter:
    ULarge Format
    Well, I really like EFke 100 in 7 x 17 and 8 x 10. For some reason, I really haven't had issues with needing faster film...I mean, I use a tripod, can calculate reciprocity, and hardly ever, if ever shoot moving objects...I recently shot images at 20 - 30 seconds in the field that were fine. Perhaps its because I contact print that I stop down so much that even with 400 speed film my shutter speeds are real slow too. I have used the J and C 400 and like it in high sbr ranges, but not so much in low sbr's as building density is an issue for azo or alt. processes. The kodak tmy is wonderful to work with. I really like it too. I will probably load up on the next round of kodak orders, but it is really expensive too....so, I may lean more towards the efke 100. I guess I will shoot more efke. I purchased a lot from JandC recently when they had a sale. Overall, I have mixed emotions. First, any B and W closing is bad news about the market.....however, it may actually bode well for the longevity of other players as they supplant/pick up this market lost by Forte. I guess there are rumors too of perhaps someone purchasing assets of Forte and continuing in perhaps a more market competitive fashion.
     
  6. Jim Chinn

    Jim Chinn Member

    Messages:
    2,512
    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2002
    Location:
    Omaha, Nebra
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I only used the J&C classic a few times, mostly when I first started shooting 11x14 and at that time it might have actually been HP5 repackaged. (about 4 years ago) I will say that the affordability was a big factor at the time. Now I shoot mostly Ilford but have been re-reading a lot of posts regarding Efke and think I am going to go back and give the 100 speed film a try again.

    Maybe the Forte films were not that big of an item for ULF shooters. The more I go back and look at old posts the more I find tremendous interest/loyalty for Efke/Adox and Ilford. Plus enough interest to get Kodak to do the run of TMY cut for ULF sizes.

    So as others have pointed out, perhaps thinning the herd is not such a bad thing with regards to film. We still have a more affordable alternative in Efke and Ilford seems to be committed to doing a yearly ULF film run. If Kodak stays in the game thats pretty good. Paper is another story. the loss of Forte paper as has been discussed in other threads is in many ways an irreplaceable loss.
     
  7. ReallyBigCameras

    ReallyBigCameras Advertiser Advertiser

    Messages:
    523
    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2004
    Shooter:
    4x5 Format
    Jim,

    For now (knock wood), I can still get my three favorite films (TMY, HP4+ and Efke PL100) in ULF sizes. Still, I hate to see the options dwindle.

    Ironically, it was the Kodak and Ilford special ULF programs this time last year that finally convinced me to make the jump to ULF. With the two big guys joining Efke/Adox and Forte/J&C Classic/Bergger, the selection of ULF films was greater than any previous time in my life. The impending loss of the Forte films (and all their re-branded versions) hurts, especially for those shopping based on price, but so far there are still enough choices to keep me shooting ULF and even contemplating adding a new (to me), larger camera (14x17) to my arsenal.

    Kerry
     
  8. avandesande

    avandesande Member

    Messages:
    1,246
    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2002
    Location:
    Tijeras, NM
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    You have to wonder if Kodak had gotten out of the paper business earlier that Agfa would have survived.
    Another annoyance is the Krispy Cream expansion all over the US... they put half the dunkin donuts out of business in Albuquerque, then they were overextended and closed all the shops in the Southwest. Now it's hard to get a donut.
     
  9. juan

    juan Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,745
    Joined:
    May 7, 2003
    Location:
    St. Simons I
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    It's my understanding that the popularity of South Beach, Atkins and other low-carb diets is what put all of the donut shops out of business. Very similar to the film situation.

    Where I'm going to be hurt is in 2x3 - now only Efke and HP5 are available in 2x3. I'll really miss the Classic 400.
    juan
     
  10. Jan Pietrzak

    Jan Pietrzak Member

    Messages:
    239
    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2003
    Location:
    New Mexico
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    David,

    Last year, we put an (11x14) Tri-X order in. A number of people did not take part. But we still did the order. I have 50/10sh boxes on ice my half of the order, (no it is not for sale) but Kodak cut and shipped more film than the order needed. SOOOOOO Freestyle has 25 or 30/10sheet boxes in stock. Call them to place an order. If you can get a 140 box order togeather than fine they will try and get it for you.

    Jan Pietrzak


     
  11. Robert Hall

    Robert Hall Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,047
    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2004
    Location:
    Lehi, Utah
    Shooter:
    ULarge Format
    I haven't been hit by the film issues. I am still shooting quite a stock of FP-4 in 8x10 and 12x20. What really hurts is the loss of the paper. I count on that like Michael and Paula like their AZO.
     
  12. jd callow

    jd callow Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Messages:
    8,003
    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2003
    Location:
    Milan
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    What little b/w I shoot is kodak.
     
  13. david b

    david b Member

    Messages:
    4,031
    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2003
    Location:
    None of your
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    I give 99% of my money to Ilford.
     
  14. Sponsored Ad
  15. c6h6o3

    c6h6o3 Member

    Messages:
    3,219
    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2002
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    No. I use only Kodak film.
     
  16. Alex Hawley

    Alex Hawley Member

    Messages:
    2,894
    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2003
    Location:
    Kansas, USA
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    My answer is a strong YES.

    J&C film had been the only film I have used in 8x10 up until this last Fall. Then I started using Efke 100 for normal and low contrast subjects, J&C 400 for higher contrast stuff. I have gotten by with only J&C 400 and I think it is quite versatile. The sole reason for not using Ilford or Kodak is the high cost of their 8x10 and larger sheets.

    I can live with a 100 ASA film but would sure like to have a 400 ASA too. If it gets to where only Ilford and Kodak are available, I guess I will have to bite the silver bullet. But, the very high cost of Ilford/Kodak in ULF will probably keep me at 8x10 and smaller formats. That 7x17 or 8x20 rig is getting to be more of a fantasy as each day goes by.
     
  17. User Removed

    User Removed Guest

    Messages:
    1,298
    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2004
    Shooter:
    Plastic Cameras
    I've been shooting the JandC Pro 100 for a few years now and just finally getting it under control with Pyrocat-HD developed in tubes on a rotor base.

    With the film no longer available, I gave some HP5 a try with Pyrocat-HD in the tubes. Each negative got TERRIBLE streaking, so I stopped using the tubes and developed the rest in trays.

    I found that HP5 does not expand as quickly or as much as I would like in Pyrocat-HD when developed in trays. I cannot build up the highlight density as much as I could with JandC.

    The next film I'm going to try will be Tri-X, I presume. However, with the recent large layoff at Kodak, who knows how much longer the film will be made for...
     
  18. sanking

    sanking Member

    Messages:
    4,813
    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2003
    Location:
    Greenville,
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    Kerry,

    Why don´t you check with the fellow who makes the Chamonix cameras to see if you can´t get some Chinese film cut to ULF size. I mention this because my colleague Sam Wang visited him last year and found out that he is a pretty good ULF photographer, and when asked about supply of film, he said no problem in China.


    Sandy
     
  19. jgjbowen

    jgjbowen Member

    Messages:
    879
    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2003
    Location:
    Richmond, VA
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    Ryan,

    Check out the Azo forum for some lengthy discussions on TMax-400 and Pyrocat. That is what got me started with this combination.

    Good luck with your quest,
     
  20. User Removed

    User Removed Guest

    Messages:
    1,298
    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2004
    Shooter:
    Plastic Cameras
    So it must be good if you and others are using it, correct?

    I will go ahead and give it a try since my normal film is now gone.

    Thanks much,

    Ryan McIntosh
     
  21. PHOTOTONE

    PHOTOTONE Member

    Messages:
    2,411
    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2006
    Location:
    Van Buren, A
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    Hey, they don't even stop production for another 9 days, or so, and who knows how much film stock is already made, and how much is still in the pipeline. Just because J&C is unavailable right now, doesn't mean that Forte made film stocks are completely gone. There is still (in small format) Agfa film stock to purchase. (as another example).
     
  22. jgjbowen

    jgjbowen Member

    Messages:
    879
    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2003
    Location:
    Richmond, VA
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    Ryan,

    Well, I do have your Iceland Portfolio II and a couple of your other prints to use for reference, so I know first hand that your current materials work for you, and work very well I might add.

    I use trays and have found that with my Zone VI compensating developing timer that developing Tmax-400 for 16 minutes @ 68 degrees (Pyrocat-HD 2-2-100) shuffling through the stack every 30 seconds gives me negatives that will give me very good prints on Canadian Grade 2. One of my goals was to find a combination that would work with Canadian Grade 2 Azo since there was so much of it available in 2005, while Grade 3 was and remains quite scarce.

    The Zone VI timer allows me to heat up the developer (to 70-73 degrees) and it will compensate by reducing the developing time to the equivalent of 16 minutes @ 68 degrees. Sandy King's articles on the Unblinking Eye site are very educational, and the Azo forum has a lot of info on Tmy and Pryocat-hd. As you probably know, Sandy is always more than willing to share his knowledge should you have any questions.

    After all, my goal is to keep one of my favorite young photographers producing prints that I will continue to want to purchase. How's that for a win-win :D

    Again, good luck with your search. I'm sure you could use almost any film on the market and make beatiful prints, but the qualities of TMax-400 combined with Pyrocat-hd and Azo are worth investigating, IMHO. I wonder what MAS would use today if his stash of Super-XX ran dry or become too fogged to use?

    John
     
  23. User Removed

    User Removed Guest

    Messages:
    1,298
    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2004
    Shooter:
    Plastic Cameras

    Thank you so much, John. I'm going to give both Tmax and Tri-x a try and see how it works out with Pyrocat-HD and printing on AZO. I'm sure it will be just fine. The combo of JandC-100 and PcatHD was really not the best, as many people found it gave poor negatives. However, if you spend time with one film and developer, you can really make anything work well.

    Do you still have a good quanity of AZO left? After printing the Iceland portfolios, it took my supply down to around 15-20 sheets of both grades, however, each time I get close to running out, some magically turns up from somewhere. I just recently recieved five brand new boxes of both 2-3, so that should cover me for the large body of work I'm producing this year.

    I believe that M&P has plenty of XX to last them for the rest of their life, but I seem to remember hearing them say that if it ever ran out, they would probably use HP5. I'm getting together with M&P this weekend and next and finally get to see their Iceland images, which should be very exciting!

    All the best,

    Ryan McIntosh
    www.RyanMcIntosh.net
     
  24. John Kasaian

    John Kasaian Member

    Messages:
    1,030
    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2002
    The loss of Forte dosen't affect me as much as J&C being temporarily off line. It is a loss or course, and they had some very excellent products, but while the Hungarian has checked out of the ""LF Hotel," Lucky and Era from China are checking in so now there are even more options available!
     
  25. jstraw

    jstraw Member

    Messages:
    2,703
    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2006
    Location:
    Topeka, Kans
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Who's selling Lucky and Era sheet film?
     
  26. mammolo

    mammolo Member

    Messages:
    48
    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2004
    Location:
    Berlin
    Shooter:
    ULarge Format
    You mean 12x20? 14x17? 16x20? 8x20?

    Where from?

    Thanks!