X-ray Fogged Film ? Old Developer ? Not exposed Film ? Don't know

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by Gabino, Feb 17, 2011.

  1. Gabino

    Gabino Member

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    I am a newbie to developing my own film. I've successfully developed 2 rolls so far so please go easy on me. I developed two rolls the last couple of nights and both had come up completely transparent - just a plastic transparent sheet of film. Both films were T-max 400, developed in Rodinal 1:50, for 14 min at 78C.

    I've carried these rolls around to some trips abroad to South America, specifically, always as a carry on. But now I started thinking that the X-ray machines for carry-on luggage are not likely to be calibrated, as here in the US, to avoid fogging film. However, I am not seeing any fog just a transparent film - i not even see the film brand and the numbering of the frames.

    The rodinal solution i have is two months old. It is dark in color and I guess that's a normal coloration so I am not too suspicious about it.

    I have a Mamiya 6 that I bought last year and feel pretty comfortable operating it. I don't know how can I not expose the film. But I am not discarding any option.

    As far as darkroom equipment, i have the universal Paterson Tank, that once I rolled the film into the spiral, placed the funnel on top of it and locked it tight, the tank is completely sealed.

    I don't know what I'm doing wrong and feeling very disappointed about this now. Thanks in advance for your comments !
    Gabe
     
  2. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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    Sorry about your two rolls.

    When you say "rodinal solution" are you referring to the concentrate, as it comes from the manufacturer, or are you referring to a diluted working solution? If it is the working solution, it won't last two months.

    Usually, when there is nothing on the film, it means either:

    1) your developer is dead; or
    2) somehow you mixed up the order of the chemistry (fixer before developer).

    Hope this helps.
     
  3. ozphoto

    ozphoto Subscriber

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    Nothing on the film (no rebate information - film is totally clear) means you accidentally fixed the film first before developing. An easy mistake and one that many have experienced, so you are not alone.

    Easiest way to ensure it doesn't happen again is to pour in your developer first, and then open your fixer and measure out, after starting the development phase. This is how I do it - just to be on the safe side. :smile:
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 18, 2011
  4. Paul Sorensen

    Paul Sorensen Member

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    Yeah, since there is nothing at all on the film, it has to be either of the above, and I would suggest fixing before developing or forgetting to mix the Rodinal into the water and "developing" in plain water. Even using really bad Rodinal or not nearly enough Rodinal would have given you something on the film in all likelihood. X-rays or light leaks make the film darker, not lighter, so it can't be from that.

    I would just shoot and develop another roll and work on ways to ensure that you can avoid this kind of mistake again. My personal work flow is to pour and measure everything and put the containers in order on my counter. I double and triple check everything too. That way, I grab them in order and the chance of this happening is far reduced. Nanette's suggestion sounds like a very good one too. Unfortunately, this is all a part of the learning process. You have now made the one mistake that is most likely to give you useless film. Now that you have done it, you don't have to do it again!

    Paul
     
  5. Gabino

    Gabino Member

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    thanks a lot for your responses and encouragement.

    MattKing : with Rodinal solution i was referring to the working solution. So two months is too long then. How long does a working solution usually last at room temperature? I think this is the mistake I made.

    Nanette and Paul: I have calibrated and labeled cylinders that I put in a row for developer, stop bath (yellowish color), and a two bath fixer (Ilford), so I think it is very unlikely that I have mixed them up but I will be double-extra cautious tomorrow with a new roll. Very glad to hear about that X-ray scans were not the cause, that's a lot of money in film !

    Thanks again guys !!
     
  6. Nicholas Lindan

    Nicholas Lindan Advertiser Advertiser

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    Long enough to develop film and no longer: Rodinal is a 1-shot developer and you discard it after use. There is no 'working solution' to keep - it should be diluted just before use.
     
  7. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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    Gabino:

    I've never encountered anyone who made up and then stored a Rodinal working solution, so I'm afraid that, as far as I know, you are the authority on doing that :smile:.

    Most people make up just enough working solution, just before they use it.

    If anyone else here on APUG has a different experience, I'd like to hear it.
     
  8. Paul Sorensen

    Paul Sorensen Member

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    Wow, I have never heard of mixing up a working solution ahead of time either. I guess that must be it, then. Try again with freshly mixed rodinal and let us know.

    If you are mixing really small quantities, a syringe works well for measuring. I found one at a local drug store that works perfectly for Rodinal.
     
  9. Gabino

    Gabino Member

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    alright guys! that's the mistake i made. First and last ! At the end of the day, you gave me a piece of mind that my error was that simple to fix ! happy weekend !
     
  10. Rick A

    Rick A Subscriber

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    First, but certainly not the last mistake you'll ever make. I've been at this for 45 years, and still screw-up on occasion, its the nature of the beast.