Reminds me of a "Rube Goldberg" type contraption...lol
Looks like an easy to load set up. Certainly much easier than my ancient Yankee Agitank!
I don't think it's strange to shoot 4x5 without a darkroom. I have done for quite a while, using a changing bag and daylight safe combi tank, then scanning or printing at a public darkroom. The darkroom costs me per hour so I never want to waste time there developing film. I'm proably never going to win an award or sell a print but I enjoy the process!
Bill - I've never used this contraption, it doesn't look more complicated than the combi tank and probably uses less chemicals. My two reel paterson is 500ml so if the three is 750ml or 800ml thats better than the litre in the combi. It would also be better if it empties quicker too.
I think things to look out for are lining up the sheets in those grooves, and not getting two sheets in one groove. I would also watch out for the edges of the plastic damaging the emulsion of the film, the grooves look like they overlap the sheet quite abit. Lately I found this happening in the combi with Adox 100 (which has a delicate emulsion) so I've had to calm down the agitation.
It looks like this uses the central column from the paterson tanks, presumably making it possible to turn the whole thing inside the tank using that little twist stick, it could be interesting to do this instead of inverting the whole tank.
Finally if you have to buy a paterson tank the financal advantage is quite a lot less, this £35 plus tank £30 is £65 only £20 more for combi, sorry thats UK money I'm not sure about comparison in the US. Althouh the paterson can be multi-tasked where the combi is pretty much sheet film only.
there's my thoughts, Andrew
You mention concern over developer volume.
Not sure if you are a mix your own sort when it comes to developers, but I do.
While others have set me back for calling it 777, I have mixed the 777 developer recipe from the unblinking eye site, and am most happy with the results.
It is a deliberately re-used replenished developer. It needed to be 'seasoned' with some scrap films to even start using a fresh tank. I seem to recall my replenishement rate is 60mL per 80 sq in. You need to be able to process at least a few sheets every few weeks to keep its activity consistent. I keep the overflow after replnishment to form a 'seasoner' so that for a 1L tank I start with 1L of fresh stuff, and 250mL of 'old brown', and then there is always enough to fill the tank; I find with just 1L and replenished, that the volume can drop with carry over, etc.
I find it very clever.
One very strong advantage of Paterson is the very quick fill or dump of chemistry whatever size of the tank.
With that in mind it is already better than Combi-Plan or the old 4x5 Nikkor tank.
For small runs it seems perfect.
Hmm, this seems quite similar.
OK, I bought one of the ones I originally inquired about and will report back when I get it and use it. Bill Barber