Aside from Sandy Kings recommendations I recall conversation about completely filling your drums with water before you even load the film, purging oxygen from the drums by blowing in compressed nitrogen (!) once you're going and some forms of Pyro being much better than others as were expert drums over the standard variety. PMK I know is one of the lesser behaved variants in drums - I get no end of predictable streaks with it - yet in trays its all good ...
I'm about to start up a heap of processing again so might shoot 1 spare neg in 8x10" of everything I shoot to use as experimentation in getting rid of the damn stain streaks (on the base side, exactly where the jobo drum ribs are)
I think if you're talking 14x17" you're in Jobo expert or otherwise sized drum anyway ?
As much as love the speed and ease of rotary processing for 8x10" where I can afford to shoot more negs for 11x14" and higher I find the hassle of sweaty and antisocial tray developing not too bad in the ultra large context.
Cleared the bowel problem, working on the consonants...
A: I don't like to stand in the dark for a half hour or more.
Tray developing 14x17 would be one sheet at a time anyways. No chance of scratching, unless you have long finger nails. I've scratched more 8x10 sheets loading tubes/drums than I have in trays. I do love my BTZS tubes as very little chemistry is required. I imagine a tube for such a large sheet of film would be huuuuuge.
B: I scratch sheet film when I try to tray process - no matter the size, no matter the number of sheets.
I'm quite happy with the results I'm getting from Pyrocat HD. I'm using a Jobo 3063 expert drum, which can handle at least 16x20 if not 20x24. Also, with the Jobo the fumes are minimal, whereas with 16x20 trays, you're dealing with a very large volume of chemistry with a very large surface area. My darkroom sink can barely handle three 16x20 trays, let alone the 16x20 washer. So it's a NO to trays.
When I had my piddly darkroom in Japan, I developed with just one 16x20 tray. I kept each solution in pitchers. Pour in developer, pour out developer, pour in stop, pour out stop, etc... What I like about tray development the most is the ability to play around with agitation regimes. Can't do that with drums.
Originally Posted by Andrew O'Neill
I have also seen folks stack trays when faced with limited space issues. Being creative in overcoming obstacles is something we deal with before we build our darkrooms. Tray development scared the crap out of me initially until I saw Paula Chamlee personally demonstrate the technique. Particularly with large sheets it provides me with perfect results. I also learned that when you have limited holders and re-load on a trip and store sheet film, make sure that you put the exposed sheet film into the black plastic bags that the film came in so that you do not end up with unintentional exposure. Please don't ask me how I became familiar with this issue.
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Again I suggest monobath. If you can do a good job agitating constantly for about 2 mins the results should be good. Scott, I have the chems and the Haist book, we should try it some time this winter! For ULF contact prints I think it'll be perfect.
after the holidays are over we have to have a get-together. Let's round up the gang and do some kind of shoot. I'm going to look at a studio space for rent today after work - it even has a sink, so I might be able to resurrect the classroom!
Has anyone tried developing 14x17 (or other ULF film) in hangers using gaseous burst agitation? I haven't tried it, but, in theory, it would seem to address most of the problems discussed here (streaking/bromide, uneven development, scratching, etc.). 14x17 is a very common size for x-ray film. So, hangers (both stainless steel and plastic) and tanks should be attainable.
Originally Posted by ReallyBigCameras
I have tried gaseous burst agitation with 8x20 in a test tank that Alistair Inglis built when I was assisting him with this process for a number of ULF formats.
I can tell you that it works marvelously well but the logistical issues with ULF do come into play in this instance as they do with lenses, holders, film etc. Not impossible, it just is what it is.
Even skinny tanks to accept such large sheets of film amount to quite large volumes of chemistry. Alistair can in fact produce gaseous burst agitation tanks and hangers for a number of ULF sizes including 14x17, but the prices are commensurate with the time and effort in fabricating these products. You can see these on his web site. You also need N2, a solenoid valve and a timer to control the bursts.
Gaseous burst agitation is optimal when you can acquire used tanks, plenums and the other accessories. For 35mm, 120/220, 4x5, 5x7 and 8x10 the process is truly foolproof. Beyond 8x10 it is surely possible, but it is a road much less traveled.
Originally Posted by keithwms
Will you start a thread to explain your monobath routine?
I never thought about it much until Polaroid vanished, then I wondered just how the devil they made it work as well as it did.
I know the monobath won't do the transfer like a peel apart, but I suspect that the developer/fixer action is similar.