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  1. #1
    Randy Moe's Avatar
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    Ilfosol 3 1/2 bottle dark brown liquid after 6 months

    Is fresh developer always clear? I just used the above described, with 3 different films from 3 different cameras and shooters, and all came out almost totally clear. First roll I blamed the shutter, second roll the Leica shooter said he forgot how to rewind and opened the bottom, third roll shot with fully auto Nikon N70.

    The Infosol 3, 8 oz bottle was 6 months old, half full and tightly capped. It obviously has been 6 months since I used it and I have forgotten what it looks like.

    I will try another roll, with a different camera and a fresh bottle of Infosol 3 tomorrow...

    And I want to wait til my old brain is fresh to open the next bottle.

    Maybe it's my meds.

  2. #2

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    Fresh developer diluted to working solution strength is usually clear to a light amber or straw color. Concentrated liquid developers that must be diluted to get a working strength solution are usually darker, and can be quite dark. I don't know about Ilfosol, I've never used it. But if that was your working strength developer that was dark brown, it was oxidized.

    Film that develops totally clear indicates either a processing error such as fixing before developing, or an inactive developer, or film that was never exposed in the first place. Did the frame numbers show up on the edges? If no, then your developer was bad. If yes, then the film wasn't exposed.

    If the Leica shooter had opened the back and exposed the whole entire roll to light, then it would develop totally black, not clear.

    It sounds like your developer is bad.

    Before using an old developer, test it for activity by clipping a small bit of your film leader and develop it with the lights on. It should turn completely black. If it doesn't, the developer is no longer active.

    Don't exceed the manufacturer's specified capacity of number of rolls or equivalents for a given volume. Not all developers can be stored as working solutions. Some are meant to be single use (referred to as one-shot). As I said, I've never used Ilfosol, but according to the Ilford web site, it is intended for one-shot use at 1:9 dilution.

  3. #3
    Leigh B's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Randy Moe View Post
    Is fresh developer always clear? I just used the above described, with 3 different films from 3 different cameras and shooters, and all came out almost totally clear.
    These two sentences make no sense together.

    Do you mean that the liquid in the bottle is clear, or the developed film is clear?

    The storage life of Ifosol 3 per the Ilford data sheet is:
    "24 months in fully tight capped bottles.
    4 months in half tight capped bottles."

    - Leigh
    “Wise men talk because they have something to say; fools, because they have to say something.” - Plato

  4. #4

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    Who would only screw a lid half tight?

  5. #5
    Leigh B's Avatar
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    They meant half-full and tightly capped, but that's not what they printed in the brochure.

    - Leigh
    “Wise men talk because they have something to say; fools, because they have to say something.” - Plato

  6. #6

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    You may wish to say a few words over the bottle before you chuck it.
    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

  7. #7

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    Yes Ilfosol developers don't have a very long shelf life. However, what I do with other short life developers (RA4 working solution is one) is to buy small dark brown (or green) screw top GLASS bottles. I get mine from a dispensary and cost very little. I have kept developers such as Ilfosol and RA4 in these for up to 12 months before they even hinted of deteriorating. Even half full glass bottles will keep developer better than plastic ones, because oxygen that makes the developer 'go off' can permeate through plastic, but not glass.

    I don't know about in the States, but in UK, I can buy bottles of 60cc and 100cc which do the job perfectly.

  8. #8
    John Bragg's Avatar
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    The older incarnation of Ilfosol (Ilfosol s) was cursed with a reputation for sudden failure. It would seem that Ilfosol 3 has the same problem. Ilford has other liquid developers that last well. Try DDX or Ilfotec HC.

  9. #9
    Tony-S's Avatar
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    This is why I no longer use Ilfosol 3 and have switched to XTOL for most of my developing. Of course, it needs to be kept from air as well.

  10. #10
    David Goldstein's Avatar
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    Newbie question here. Would a used wine bottle with a screw cap work as a better way to store Ilfosol 3 instead of it's as shipped plastic container?
    --
    David

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