Fiber based roundup
I hate taking out a new thread, cluttering up the site unnecessarily, but it seems changes in these supplies are constantly changing now. What's out there in the way of single-weight fiber papers with F surface? I know about Slavich, but dismissed it when I saw the European sizes, and the grade 3-only availability. Right now I'm interested in an 8x10 American, non-polycontrast, F surface, cold tone, and single weight (double weight too). Or will I need a time machine for this?
F surface? Polycontrast? Kodak hasn't made any paper for years and this is Kodak terminology.
As far a single-weight fiber-base papers go, I only know of the Slavich. Everything else is double-weight (which I prefer).
The best run-down you will get is the Freestyle website: http://www.freestylephoto.biz . They have about everything except the Slavich, which they no longer import. That is available through Laser Reflections in Washington State: http://www.laserreflections.com/menu.htm , although only in the European sizes (which are fine for me since I trim and dry mount prints anyway).
My personal preference is for graded paper, but I'm using variable-contrast paper more and more as the graded choices become fewer. I like Ilford Gallerie, Slavich 160, Adox 110, and Fomabrom 111 VC in the current line-up of cold-tone/white base papers.
The only single weight fiber, graded, cold tone (aka bromide paper) is Slavich Unibrom. I use the single weight and love it. You can get other grades from Laser Reflections, I ordered grade 3 and 4 (aka normal and contrast respectively). Your only option seems to be to buy the 20x30 cm and cut it down. The only other bromide paper (cold tone) is Kentmere, but that is grade 3, double weight, glossy only...
Slavich info from Laser Reflections...
Otherwise, I hope you've a flux capacitor...
Also, one tip, should you get in a too-contrasty-jam and only have the Slavic Grade 3, a low contrast developer, just like Selectol Soft is made by Freestyle...looks like they went back in time and resurrected Selectol Soft :)
I've also found that some negs can have great affect on merely using a condenser enlarger vs diffusion...food for thought....
So grade 3 is their Kodak grade 2? I just did a metric conversion and 20cm is close to 8 inches, but still a hair smaller. But that could work, once I get the contrast question answered. I intend to continue using Dektol 1:2 like always. If the paper doesn't stock in the grade compatible with that for normal contrast, I'll move on.
Originally Posted by zsas
Pondering this shrinking paper availability problem, maybe I'm going at it backwards. I wonder if these companies offer swatches. What I'm after is a fiber base cold tone with the old Kodak unferrotyped F surface. One that will turn that hint-of-violet neutrality in weak selenium. I would think that even today, many of these papers have that olive-drab color that you are unaware of till you kill it in weak selenium, and hold the prints side-by-side.
Notice I said violet, not purple. I too had always though the 2 terms were interchangeable till I saw a PMS ink book.
I wonder if you could contact these distributors and get a sample package. Barring that, perhaps one of you readers can point my way. Thx.
Hi - Opps one correction, I said 20x30 cm, I meant 24x30cm.
The paper is avail in these sizes:
9 х 12 cm (3,543 x 4,724 inch)
10 х 15 cm (3,937 x 5,905 inch)
13 х 18 cm (5,118 x 7,086 inch)
18 х 18 cm (7,086 x 7,086 inch)
18 х 24 cm (7,086 x 9,448 inch)
24 х 24 cm (9,448 x 9,448 inch)
24 х 30 cm (9,448 x 11,81 inch)
30 х 30 cm (11,81 inch x 11,81 inch)
30 х 40 cm (11,81 inch x 15,75 inch)
40 х 50 cm (15,75 inch x 19,69 inch)
50 х 50 cm (19,69 x 19,69 inch)
50 х 60 cm (19,69 x 23,62 inch)
in rolls per 1 sq.m
Second, the only F surface I've printed on was Ektalure so I find it hard to compare Unibrom to Kodak since my limited experience with Kodak papers. I will say the Unibrom normal is quite normal on my diffusion enlarger and a bit more contrast on my condenser enlarger.
Third, Laser Reflections orders from Europe 4 times a year, I belive at the end of this April, Bernadette from Laser Reflections places her spring order, if you are considering this paper, you might want to contact them and get a sample pack for yourself.
Last, I've only toned this paper in gold, which gives a wonderful dark, crisp print with a hint of blue. What dilution of selenium are you referencing - 1:20 or 1:40?
I believe I was using somewhere around 1 to 30 or so with the Kodak RST. I'd like to resolve the grade situation on the Slavich stuff. I looked on the Laser Reflection site and saw grade 3 being the only available. If their grade 3 was the same as Kodak's and Ilfrords's then I need to move along. If I order, I'll just order a regular supply and hope for the best. My intent is to print 8x10 single weight as "just proof's", for the purpose of shooting lots of useless boring shots, just to polish this hobby of photography that I let rust away for years. I figure while they may be "just proofs" on single weight, a few good prints from all my playing can still be called "final". I just do not like RC paper, never liked it, and never will. Don't ask me why. All RC is good for to me is contact printing a roll.
Forgive my dumb question, but when you say that if Slavich Unibrom grade 3 is like Kodak's and Ilford's grade 3 you will pass on it, what do you mean? Is Kodak grade 3 and Ilford grade 3 too drab or too contrasty for you? This Unibrom is really the first graded paper I've used (except for some expired Ektalure but I don't count that) so I'm far from a good person to help ya, but
I will try. Also Laser Reflections site might say grade 3 is only avail, but I just got a supply from them and got grade 3 and 4.
Last below is a picture of a grade 3 (top) and grade 4 (bottom)...untoned, Slavich Unibrom fiber single weight...I put a reference next to it for you....
Thank you for your trouble. I meant that if their grade 3 was Kodak's grade 3, then I'd rather have grade 2. I looked again at the Laser Reflections site and their sizes are not all available as stated in the chart in post #7. In actuality, it jumps from 7x9 to 11x14. There is no 24 x 30cm from Laser Ref. I guess I'll have to drop the whole idea. Besides, the price list was not very inviting. I had hoped I had found a Kodabromide substitute. Boy, this photographic supply market is getting mighty sparse. I wonder what it will be like in 5 or 10 years. This is sad. Thank you for the trouble you went through. I'll make it a point to pass the good deed along.