XTOL shelf life

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by modafoto, Nov 30, 2004.

  1. modafoto

    modafoto Subscriber

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    Hi

    I am about to try XTOL and I wonder how long a stock solution will keep (air-tight bottle fully filled) and how many batches of film it will develop before it exhausts (recommendation on replenishment are welcome).

    Links to good explanations are very welcome.

    Morten
     
  2. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    hi morten -

    i had questions about xtol a while back too ...
    from what i can understand, it is a binary developer - it either works
    or it is dead. i have a bunch of pieces of film that i have cut-up. some is to test my fixer and some is to text xtol. for xtol i just stick it in the developer (stock) and see if the film changes. if it does, i am in business, if not, i mix new. for fix i see how long it takes the film to "clear" and double it for my fixing time. i also make a note as to what the original time was ( before any film or paper was put through the fixer) and when it takes double THAT time, i know it is time to mix new fixer.

    i don't have any experience replenishing xtol, but

    http://www.kodak.com/global/en/prof...9/j109.jhtml?id=0.1.16.14.30.14.7.20.14&lc=en

    has a section on replenishment :smile:

    good luck!
    -john
     
  3. BradS

    BradS Subscriber

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    Heresy?
     
  4. Robert Hall

    Robert Hall Subscriber

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    I've had xtol in air tight bottles for over a year and have had no problems with it. I've also used it in half full bottles after 9 months with no issues either. I also think that trying a small strip of film like John said is a great idea.

    I think that my darkroom stays below 70 year round may help with the storage.

    Best,
     
  5. Gim

    Gim Subscriber

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    I just processed several rolls of Tri-x in stock Xtol mixed 9/27/03, dilutions 1:2 and 1:3. 14 months old and the negatives look good. I store the stock solution in 22 oz., full beer bottles, saran wrap over top and normal bottle cap. Cheap caps and hand bottle cappers are sold at brew supply houses. Nice assortment of bottles available.

    Jim
     
  6. modafoto

    modafoto Subscriber

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    No, just a quick fling
     
  7. Neil Souch

    Neil Souch Subscriber

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    Hi Morten,

    I have been using XTOL for quite a while now for for TriX, HP5+ and Kodak Infrared films. I store it full strength in 1 litre brown bottles (get from chemist) and use 1 litre at a time at full strength for approx 6 films, then I throw it away. Used this way I find a litre of neat XTOL will be OK for up to about 6 months. The stuff is so cheap I do not bother about working with dilutions, also I haven't found any great advantage in diluting it anyway. I love XTOL and rate it very highly over a lot of other developers thatr I have used over the years. Used neat and not kept too long I have found it to be very consitant in use, with superb results.

    All the best,
    Neil.
     
  8. modafoto

    modafoto Subscriber

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    Thanks for all the answers. I have ordered a 5 litre pack from my local supplier (99 DKR, US$17, £9.25, 22 AUD, 25.7 NZD).
    Is that an ok price or am I being robbed?

    I plan on mixing all the dev and keep in a 5 litre bottle and pour it over into my 1 litre bottle for use. Is that ok?

    Morten
     
  9. photomc

    photomc Member

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    Morten, don't know how long it will last...have not mixed the stuff I have up. But thought you might be interested in checking out using it with Rodnial. :smile: ..Yep!! unblinkingeye had an article on using Xtol and Rodinal - plan to try it sometime, just have not had time (or a jug to store the Xtol in once I get it mixed).
     
  10. modafoto

    modafoto Subscriber

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    Some may say it is blasphemy to do so. But I see it as a helping hand to XTOL :tongue:.

    Morten
     
  11. titrisol

    titrisol Member

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    I think that it's better to "break" the stock into several small bottles
    I got a bunch of Nalgene bottles (250 and 500 ml) that were being thorwn away from the lab, as well as some old bottles that had photo chemicals (Ilford, Agfa, whatchamacallit) that I use to store LPD stock.
    Peroxide/bleach bottles are also excellent to store developer.
    As last resort use green plastic bottles (Sprite) from soft drinks.

     
  12. Neil Souch

    Neil Souch Subscriber

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    Morten,
    I mix my 5 litre packs up in one go (that's essential - don't try to split the chems). I use an ex 5 litre water container (marked up!) as it is easy to mix the chems by sloshing. Once mixed I would keep the dev in full bottles as far as possible to max the keeping properties. Not sure about the price you paid but it sounds a tad high by UK prices. I usually buy three packs at a time. IIRC the last time I purchased a 5 litre pack cost about £6.50. 5 litres at your price is still a good deal though! If you want a 'neat' dev time for your films let me know.

    Cheers,
    Neil.
     
  13. AndrewH

    AndrewH Member

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    I have kept full strength Xtol in 1 litre coca-cola bottle filled entirely to the very rim for over a year and had no problems. As I use the bottle, I simply squeeze the sides before I cap it to pull the water line up to the rim.
     
  14. SchwinnParamount

    SchwinnParamount Subscriber

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    Morten,
    I've been using XTOL for a couple of years and always finish a 5 litre bottle before it goes south. This last time, it started going before I finished. I'm not sure I buy the 'binary developer' idea. My experience is that if diluted 1:1 then it's good until the end, then it starts to weaken. As it weakens, you notice your negatives get pretty thin but are still printable with a harder paper. The contrast goes away fairly rapidly. Bottom line is, you know before it completely dies that it is dying. If I had waited a week or two to develop the film with old developer, would It be completely dead? If so then my impression would have been that it goes from good to dead because I would have missed the window of opportunity to see dying developer. Does that make sense?
     
  15. waynecrider

    waynecrider Member

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    I've noticed that it will turn slightly yellow at the end. I've kept it up to a year in normal indoor temps.
     
  16. john_s

    john_s Subscriber

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    Concentrated solutions tend to last better than diluted ones. The contents of the 5Litre pack can be dissolved in 2.5Litre of water. Use the max temp recommended, and wait for Part_A to dissolve first before adding Part_B.

    Then just dilute appropriately.

    I bottle it in 8 bottles of 125mL and some larger ones. When the small ones are used, I refill them from a larger one. I ensure that bottles are completely full, except for a day or two sometimes. I've not had a failure, but I'm still neurotic enough to do clip tests quite often with this developer.
     
  17. David Ruby

    David Ruby Member

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    I've been using XTOL exclusively for about a year. It is $12.50 locally. I have a half full gallon container that is 8 months old (probalby at least 3 as less than full). I tested it a few weeks back and the negatives came out great. The package says 6 months in full container, 2 in partially full (if I remember correctly). I like the test idea though, since I hate to waste it!