X-ray film anyone?

Discussion in 'Alternative Processes' started by EASmithV, Mar 3, 2009.

  1. EASmithV

    EASmithV Member

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  2. PHOTOTONE

    PHOTOTONE Member

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    X-ray film is blue sensitive, some is also green sensitive, therefore you get a tonal distortion of your scene, which can look quite vintage. Most x-ray film has emulsion on both sides, so there are issues with scratching and only one side will be in the absolute plane of focus of the lens. I have successfully used X-ray film as camera film, and there are people who make quite lovely images with it..but it is different. Exposure and development will have to be trial and error until you find your sweet spot with it. But, the good thing is that it is cheap. Also, X-ray film is on a blue base, which may, or may not interfere with your method of printing.
     
  3. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    PhotoBulley uses xray film often.
     
  4. mabman

    mabman Member

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    I seem to recall someone said it was also quite slow when used pictorially - something like ISO 10 or less. But I could be wrong on that.
     
  5. Whiteymorange

    Whiteymorange Member

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    I've tried it and will try again, but I haven't put the time into it to get really comfortable. I found the particular (green sensitive) version I tried to be about ASA 25 in incandescent light and about ASA 200 outdoors in winter. More experimentation is clearly needed.
    As to the issue of it being coated on each side: what is known as "extremity film" to x-ray techs I've asked, or mammogram film on the websites, is emulsion coated on only one side - for more detail. It is more expensive, but not as expensive as regular 8x10 film. I haven't tried it yet.
     
  6. nworth

    nworth Subscriber

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    X-ray film may also be coated on both sides. Most sheets I've seen have rounded corners. I've seen some interesting results from using x-ray film as a printing medium, backing it with white board about a centimeter behind the film. The double image (one on each side of the base) produces some interesting effects. I haven't seen any results from camera use. You might survey the products available an choose a likely one for some experiments, though.
     
  7. PHOTOTONE

    PHOTOTONE Member

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    The thing about X-ray film is that by comparison to conventional camera film, it is dirt cheap. 100 sheet 8x10 box for under $40.
     
  8. Alexander Ghaffari

    Alexander Ghaffari Member

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    Make friends with a radiologist and get expired film for free. Well, that's my plan anyway. : )
     
  9. fschifano

    fschifano Member

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    A popular misconception about x-ray film is that it is primarily sensitive to x-rays. That's not the case. The film holders contain phosphor coated screens which emit blue or green light when exposed to x-rays. The film is held in close contact with the screen, and it is the light from the glowing phosphors that make the bulk of the exposure. Green sensitive films are used in conjuntion with screens using green emitting phosphors and blue sensitive films get used with blue emitting screens. X-ray film comes in different sensitivities for different applications. Some are faster than others. It does not surprise me that under incandescent light, which is sorely lacking in the blue/green spectrum, would be very slow. The dramatic speed increase under daylight is also not surprising. It is good to know that there are some films that are coated only on one side. I imagine these would be best for pictorial use. The support of these films is thicker than pictorial films because they must be sturdy enough to withstand rough handling. Double coated films would have one side considerably off register, and consequently out of focus.
     
  10. DeBone 75

    DeBone 75 Member

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    "Double coated films would have one side considerably off register, and consequently out of focus."
    In general this is so not true. All I ever use in my 8X10 is green X-ray film and it is usally tack sharp. Also it can be bought for less than $27.00. per 100 sheet box.
     
  11. EASmithV

    EASmithV Member

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    Could you please tell me what type/brand/website you got this film from? I'd love to have some of your notes on how you expose this film/develop it.

    Is the x-ray film orthochromatic enough for safelights?
     
  12. Brian Bullen

    Brian Bullen Member

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    Try this place.
    http://www.cxsonline.com/text/detai...82777&cart=1241754948882157&location=10011001
    I generally rate green x-film at 125 develop in D-76 1:1 for 7 minutes. Temp is 74 F. I print with straight Palladium almost all the time and I couldn't be happier with this combo. You will have to do a little experimenting to find out what is best for you, but at this price it makes experimenting fun. Always remember to be gentle, it scratches easily.
     
  13. EASmithV

    EASmithV Member

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    Thanks!
    Does this film have a code notch? I usually develop my 8x10 in daylight roll tubes.
     
  14. Brian Bullen

    Brian Bullen Member

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    The emulsion is coated on both sides so there is no need for a code notch. I've never tried to use daylight tubes but I suspect there may be issues with development on the side touching the tube. Uneven development streaks?Maybe someone else has tried it.
     
  15. neelin

    neelin Member

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  16. JG Motamedi

    JG Motamedi Member

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  17. PHOTOTONE

    PHOTOTONE Member

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    While the X-ray film is either blue sensitive or orthochromatic, it is much more sensitive to light than photo papers are, so theoretically you CAN use a safelight, but in practice, it would need to be dimmer than for photo paper. I have fogged blue sensitive xray film using my red graphic-arts safelight, which is fairly bright.
     
  18. Lukas Werth

    Lukas Werth Member

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    I used once a film called "monitor film" brought from an x-ray company in Berlin, Germany (they can be located via the web). This film is orthochromatic and coated on only one side. It is quite fast; I remember I exposed it at 500 ASA. But obviously, if you use a yellow filter you have to increase exposure for at least two stops (possibly more).
     
  19. Ektagraphic

    Ektagraphic Member

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    Put some in the camera and in front of the microwave oven and develop and see what you get :smile:
     
  20. tiberiustibz

    tiberiustibz Member

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    It fogs under most safelights. Theoretically if you used the same lens to print the film as you did to shoot it you would end up with no double image effect. It has a tendency to get very dense and contrasty. You might try a pull process.
     
  21. gatewaycityca

    gatewaycityca Member

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    Patrick, microwave ovens emit microwaves (radio waves in the gigahertz frequency), not X-Rays. :wink:

    Although actually...if the seals on your microwave are working right, hopefully it's not emitting anything!

    I experiment with high voltage as another hobby, and I've taken apart several microwave ovens. One time, I actually powered up the magnetron tube from a microwave...outside of a microwaven oven. I limited the power though. But it lit up a neon tube with no wires, and it put a loud hum on my stereo.

    Anyway, that's a whole other topic.

    I just found this topic through a group Flickr, by the way. I was asking if anyone had tried using X-Ray films in a camera. Someone in the group gave me a link.
     
  22. PHOTOTONE

    PHOTOTONE Member

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    Modern Xray film is used in "cassettes" that have blue, and or green phosphor screens which expose the film with visible light emitted from the screens in contact with the film. The X-rays cause the screens to glow, exposing the film.
    So X-ray film has to be sensitive to visible light. Only thing is the Xray film is only sensitive to blue or blue-green (ortho). This can be used as a creative tool in pictorial photography. As the X-ray film sensitivity gives similar pictorial results to the old Wet-plate collodion (tin type) photos, or in the case of the green sensitive (ortho), similar results to Ortho style camera film.