Polycontrast Rapid developer? Zone VI?
I recently got a fair bit of old Polycontrast Rapid fiber paper in quite good condition. As far as I can tell, it is nearly as good as fresh, but also just as bad as it was new.:) I'm hoping someone might have actual experience getting good image quality with this, and I have a specific developer question below.
I'm not planning to use it as my primary paper, but would like to get a better image tone out of it. The image color is a bit green and the shadows seem a little murky; pretty much how I remember that paper. In addition to Dektol I tried a good warm tone developer thinking that might make it warm enough to be interesting, but no real improvement there.
I remembered getting quite a different image color when I had some similar paper from Mr. Photo a number of years ago. At that time I used Zone VI paper developer. I found one or two good packages still laying around and tried it last night. It really does seem to improve both the image color (less green) and the shadow contrast. I see a lot of contradictory information about what that developer was (from people who should know). Fred Picker generally used published formulas for his chemicals, and it seems like there is a good chance this was D-73 (not D-72). D-73 was a cold tone developer, so that makes sense.
I can mix something if I need too, so any knowledge here about the Zone VI paper developer formula, or particular experience with a developer that improves the tone of Polycontrast Rapid?
Just FYI, I know about toning and am not asking that question right now, just hoping to get something more palatable straight from the fix.