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  1. #1

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    Problem with second set of negatives..

    I scanned in my second set of negatives and noticed there was an issue. I ran into brown stains (which from my research implied I didn't have it in the fixer long enough as this is only the second use of that fixer so it shouldn't be exhausted) and some "dots" on some of the images, especially at the edges. I managed to rescue many of them in LR4 with cropping (I also did some exposure adjustments.)

    Here is a picture directly from the camera that shows this. I should also add I'm not sure if the film went on the spool 100% correctly. Were the dot's also caused by lack of fixing time? I was using ilford fixer and I'm sure I had it in for at least 30 sec. I should also add that it was probably 75F degrees in the house so the chemistry was probably warmer than usual. Thoughts??
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  2. #2
    Alan W's Avatar
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    Only 30 sec in the fix?I fix everything for at least 4 minutes.Having said that,the white dots don't look like a fixer problem to me.The central area of the negative does look underfixed.

  3. #3

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    What kind of film is this? Traditional grain film just starts to clear in rapid fixer in about 30 seconds and takes at least 2 minutes to completely clear. If you are using T-grain film like Tmax, then double or triple that.... Ilford makes at least two different fixers... which one are you using?

    When you look at your film, does it look milky? If so, it's way under fixed.

    Dots can be anything.... but I think the first order of business is to make sure your steps and processes are right.

    If you tell us what film you are using and chemistry (and how long in each), some of us can help you.
    Develop, stop, fix.... wait.... where's my film?

  4. #4

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    I was using t-max 400 (so I expect a little graininess.)
    developer was Koday t-max developer - a little over 6 min
    stop bath was kodak professional stop bath - roughly 30 seconds
    fixer was Ilford rapid fixer - between 30-60 seconds
    photo flo was used in the final rinse which did prevent the water spot issues I had last time.
    The negatives appear fine..not milky.
    The developer and final rinse were made up with filtered water...the stop bath and fix were re-used from last time (second use) and I had made them up with tap water.
    As I mentioned it was about 75+ (F) in the room so warmer than last time.

  5. #5
    Alan W's Avatar
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    You're not fixing for long enough.Try 4-5 minutes.

  6. #6

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    Hi,

    One of your BIG problem is fixing. If you put Tmax 400 in fix, you'll see at 45 second mark, the emulsion will START to clear. It takes about 2 to 2 1/2 minutes to completely clear. Rule of thumb is double that number. I do 6 minutes.

    Fix it again for 5 minutes. Wash again, then photoflo.

    By the way.... Tmax400 is an amazingly fine grained film. So much so that it's almost as good as traditional ASA100 film. You should be fine on grain department.
    Develop, stop, fix.... wait.... where's my film?

  7. #7

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    Interesting....so fixer can even "fix" the negatives after they've been photo-floed and dried?

  8. #8
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    Whooo nelly - 30 secs in the fix? Even the Ilford literature suggests 2-4 mins. I have found that even conventional grain films don't clear in 30 seconds.

    I think you need to satisfy yourself and do a clip test. Pour some of you diluted fix into a beaker and cut off around 2 or 3cm's of film (use a waste piece - a leader off of a roll of 35mm will do). Put a small drop of the fix on the centre of your film cutting, wait a few seconds and then drop it in the fix. Observe and time how long it takes for the film to clear. You can tell when its pretty much done, as the drop in the middle and the rest of the film will look the same. From my experience, conventional grain film (FP4, HP5, ect) will take between 30 secs to 45 secs on fresh fix. T/Delta/ non conventional grain films can take up to a minute and a half.

    The suggestion is that you should go at least twice the time it takes for the film to clear - but longer doesn't hurt either.

    I personally go really long on the fix - 4 to 5 minutes on conventional grain films, 8 to 10 minutes on non conventional films (using 2 bath). This is more a bit of OCD behavior, as opposed to what is necessary - but 30 secs is way to short in anyones language. There is evidence that too long a fixing will start to bleach the highlights - I haven't found this in my experience. I am open to suggestion though!

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by cepwin View Post
    Interesting....so fixer can even "fix" the negatives after they've been photo-floed and dried?

    Oh, yes. Fixer removes undeveloped emulsion. So... if your firstfix was insufficient, you still have undeveloped emulsion left on your film. You can fix it again and that will come off. This is why I asked if your film looks milky. Milky may not be the right word to describe it although it's a common expression on APUG. There's no way Tmax can be completely fixed in 60 seconds.

    If you are curious, take a small piece of undeveloped film, like the film leader you clipped off when loading film into the tank. Soak it in your fixer under normal light. If you keep pulling it out, you'll see it will progressively become clear. This is called "clearing test". You time how long it'll take for the film to become completely clear. Then multiply that time by 2 to get the proper fix time.

    It's really hard to tell from scanned image but it looks murky to me. What I think should be white looks gray and grainy. I think that's undissolved (unfixed) stuff.
    Develop, stop, fix.... wait.... where's my film?

  10. #10

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    Thank you folks! Since I'm planning on attempting printing this weekend where I'm going to use the same fix I'll do some tests and run the negatives back though it ...re photo-flo/dry and see what happens. I've got the originals on the computer already so it's worth a go.

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