You are right about robusto coffee. The only thing going for it is that it has twice the caffeine as the arabica. A friend of mine used to say that coffee doesn't have to taste good, it just has to work.
Originally Posted by jnanian
Since the useful life of a coffee tree is around seven years, the practice was just to move on to another portion of the forest and plant anew. Thankfully, the growers have become a bit more responsible.
Have you ever considered the Beutler developer. The working developer is highly dilute so that it has little effect on the environment. It uses just three ingredients; metol, sodium sulfite, and sodium carbonate. I used it for years as my general purpose film developer when I was a struggling student with little money.
When used for prints does a coffee developer cause any staining with FB papers? This is something I've wondered about.
I have been very satisfied with a) Liquid Dektol (actually Kodak Polymax) and b) Ilford PQ universal (but I would not use it for film). For cold tones I would also recommend Tetenal Dokumol.
In powdered developers my favourite is Ansco 130 (wonderful print colour and tone and it lasts for ages) and Dektol (a nice neutral/cold tone).
If you want to get into home mixed brews you should get a copy of the Darkroom Cookbook by Steve Anchell. It's packed with lots of practical advice.
thanks for the buetler suggestion jerry --- it sounds like d23 but soda instead of borax ...
the java seems to do me well, i mix 1.5L of it and it lasts more than 4 months
and over a hundred prints & 4x5 sheets ... ( can't complain ) .. it was still going strong
and i got nervous and split it and added another 750cc to some seasoned developer and it lasted another 3+ months.
i haven't noticed any staining when i use it with paper. it takes about 2x the time for the print to complete
and paper negatives like it as well...
the sumatra i am using doesn't taste too bad. it has a nice full body and floral notes :)
i take a slurp once in a while if i am brewing some for the darkroom
( i roast it cinnamon ( barely ) and because it is old and some beans have
a higher moisture content than the others some beans are a little darker. )
From a gallon kit take 1/3 of the liquid and add water to make one gallon. That's your working solution.
Originally Posted by Roger Cole
For the remaining 2/3 of the concentrate, add water to make one gallon. That's your replenisher.
Add 300ml replenisher per 30 8x10 prints, and top up the working solution to a full gallong at the end of your printing session if needed.
When you start a new batch, take the spent developer to dilute the 1/3 gallon of fresh concentrate to make new working solution.
Ethol will send you the instructions in the mail if you ask for it.
Thanks for the information. Interesting, but I don't know how practical that would be for me. If I get to print every week or two I'll be doing good.
if you only print every couple weeks, then Ansco 130 is the stuff for you- even at working strength, it lasts for weeks at a time, and although it does eventually exhaust, of course, it never seems to. I remember putting something like 30 8x10s and nearly a dozen 16x20s through one gallon of the working strength (1:3) in a single session, coming back three weeks later and printing again and it seemed like it was still developing full tonal range on my prints in the same time (3 minutes). I had one batch going in my Nova slot processor for two months, replenishing as volume was consumed by prints and/or evaporation. Great stuff!
D72/Dektol was designed first and foremost to be a film developer for plates sheet films, later it was used for papers as well. For some years it wasn't recommended in the UK for papers where D163 was in use instead.
Originally Posted by Adrian Twiss
PQ Universal is an excellent film developer giving good fine grain, sharpness and tonality, ideally it needs dilutiong 1+19 or even 1+29. The disadvantage like D72/Dektol) is because of it's carbonate content it doesn't keep as well and does lose activity, not enough to be a problem with prints but in a more dilute negative developer it may cause issues of under development.
PQ Universal is still recommended for Ilford's Ortho Plus, but Ilford used to publish times for all their films and when I had a commercial darkroom we use it for a lot of negative processing. M&B's (now Champion) equivalent Suprol was widely used at one time for commercail negative processing.
scott is on the money with the ansco 130
i am using stock that i mixed over a year ago
and it is still great ...
some say it lasts for about 30 days in an open tray dilute/working strength ...
I used LPD for years but wanting to change to a developer with a better environmental foot print I switched over to Eco-Pro's ascorbate based paper developer.
The results I get with MGWT are outstanding. I am amazed by the wide range of tones in the prints. The developer life is phenominal as the quart of stock solution has lasted over 8 months in its partially filled original container.
To make a working solution the stock is diluted 1:9 which makes it very economical and is very similar to the results I obtained with LPD. It works well with either warm or cold tone papers and can be diluted to 1:14 for warmer or colder tones.