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  1. #11

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    I mostly use a Jobo with it, and do not pre-soak.

    Metol is the hardest ingredient to obtain, followed by sodium sulphite. The metaborate can be synthesised using hardware store borax and sodium hydroxide in a pinch. But Aleks lives almost on top of (for US Western States' definitions of close) Photographer's Formulary, and shouldn't have too much trouble obtaining chemicals 8-)

    Graham
    Graham
    I feel, therefore I photograph.

  2. #12

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    In a two bath developer there is theoretically no development in the first bath. The film absorbs developing agents in the first bath and when immersed in the second bath, which is alkaline, development takes place. What you get is what you get. You have no control as to film speed and contrast.

    There is however what are called divided developers. Due to the alkalinity of the first bath some development does take place. When the film is transfered to the second bath development is completed. In such sevelopers you have some control as to speed and contrast. However, like a conventional developer you must be aware of the developer temperature and how long film remains in the first bsth. An example of this class of developers would be divided D-23.
    A rock pile ceases to be a rock pile the moment a single man contemplates it, bearing within him the image of a cathedral.

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  3. #13

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    You have no control as to film speed and contrast.
    Not to question, but my reading seems to indicate that the contrast control can be obtained by varying the time in Bath B or by adjusting the amount of Sodium Metaborate in Bath B.

    I think Thornton suggested making 3 different Bath B's with 12, 15 and 20 grams of Sodium Metaborate in order to increase contrast when needed.

  4. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by mwdake View Post
    Not to question, but my reading seems to indicate that the contrast control can be obtained by varying the time in Bath B or by adjusting the amount of Sodium Metaborate in Bath B.

    I think Thornton suggested making 3 different Bath B's with 12, 15 and 20 grams of Sodium Metaborate in order to increase contrast when needed.
    If you have 3 different bath's B then you have in essence 3 different developers. If you change the amount of borax in D-76 is it still D-76 or something different. For a particular bath B formulation the speed and contrast are locked in. This is the main reason why people use these developers. They don't have to watch the temperature or the clock. If you want control then use a conventional developer. There is no perfect developer that will you everything that you wish.
    Last edited by Gerald C Koch; 03-16-2012 at 11:10 PM. Click to view previous post history.
    A rock pile ceases to be a rock pile the moment a single man contemplates it, bearing within him the image of a cathedral.

    ~Antoine de Saint-Exupery

  5. #15

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    There is no perfect developer that will you everything that you wish.

    I beg to differ. If you know what you want and have 'pinned down' your working methods and work in a consistently methodical way, then most developers can give you everything that you wish. For me, since the past 11 years this has been one camera, one lens, one film and a two-bath developer. When I make a photograph, I know exactly how a straight print will look and then proceed to interpret it further at the printing stage.

    Best,

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  6. #16
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    A lot of food for thought here, I really appreciate it. Just to keep things simple for my first time back developing my own I'll be sticking to Thornton's method and take good notes. I'm curious about the contrast thing so I will be trying other methods as well to aid in getting the effect I desire. It's a going to be a long and fun process getting to a method that I'm comfortable with and that gives me the results I want.

    Thanks for your input.
    Aleks

  7. #17

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    If you have 3 different bath's B then you have in essence 3 different developers.
    That's a good point, I never thought of it that way.

  8. #18

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    I have used the Thornton 2 bath and like it. I modify it to put 1/2 the Sodium Sulphite in each bath, instead of all in the A bath. I have also used the -version of the B bath to reduce contrast. It worked.

  9. #19

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    Stick with the Thornton recipe and times until you know that you want to make changes.

    The alkalinity of the first bath controls how much development happens from the metol at that step. The Thornton formula allows some bath A development. The alkalinity of the second bath plus metol exhaustion controls the shadow build up and the compensating effect.

    The Stoeckler article at http://www.largeformatphotography.info/twobath/ is very informative.
    I feel, therefore I photograph.

  10. #20

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    When I stated that "there is no perfect developer" I was not indulging in hyperbole. The qualities that we desire in a developer such as film speed, granularity, resolution, ... are not independent but are all interrelated. If you attempt to increase film speed then another quality such as granularity or resolution will suffer. This problem is discussed in the following article, "The Genesis of Xtol", Dick Dickerson and Silvia Zawadski, Photo Techniques Vol 20, #5. The authors liken the desirable qualities of a developer to the corners of a pillow. Push in on one corner and another will pop out. Not only do they show that there is no perfect developer but also that there never can be one.

    I highly recommend the above article. At one time it was on the Photo Techniques website but no longer appears there. If you can find the article it is well worth reading.
    .
    A rock pile ceases to be a rock pile the moment a single man contemplates it, bearing within him the image of a cathedral.

    ~Antoine de Saint-Exupery

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