View Full Version : Developing old dryplates

11-09-2010, 01:45 PM
Hello gang. I recently just became the new owner of a Eastman View No 1 with six 5x7 film holders. It would appear that each holder is loaded with glass plates that have possibly been exposed. Any suggestions on processing to see if there is anything on them? I currently have access to Diafine, HC110, D76, Dektol, and Quick Silver. Did the old plates develop with a film developer, or a print developer? Thanks for any help you can give.

Nicholas Lindan
11-09-2010, 02:04 PM
HC-110 is as good as any and better than most for developing old film. 6 min in B with constant sloshing in a tray. Occasionally lift and drain the plate and put it back in the tray the other way round - though I doubt developing evenness counts for much.

There is a chance the plates are ortho and you can develop them under a red safelight.

I don't leave film holders lying about with exposed film in them. I do find them lying about with unexposed film that I loaded in 1994. 5x7 glass plates probably means they were loaded pre WW-II. And you have to ask how many times someone pulled back the darkslide in broad daylight, wondering if the holders were loaded?

http://www.westfordcomp.com/ does a lot of developing of old exposed film - don't know if he has done glass plates, though, and the oldest on the website probably late 40's.

11-09-2010, 02:29 PM
Thank you very much for the info. I can only assume that the plates are very old, even closer to the 1920's. There was a box of unexposed paper with the camera that expired in Jan, 1921. The camera and holders look almost brand new. The ser. # on the camera is 213, so that should tell you something. Ill post it if I get anything. Thanks again.

11-09-2010, 04:29 PM
I did as you suggested, and just as we feared, they were over exposed. Turned totally black when developing. At least we tried. Thanks again.