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  1. #11

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    Thanks all. I am in the process of nailing down what I like to use. I have done this for printing papers and paper devs, but not yet film devs. I love Pyrocat where cloud, water, mist etc are present, but it isn't (so far) working for me elsewhere, but obviously need to experiment. I am not averse to using another dev all together if it is easier (as blowing out flat scenes is not a likely problem) and confess to being amazed by the performance of Aculux 2 on a variety of films - stunning tonality and incredibly easy to print. I will experiment with pyrocat further and may go for the 2:2:100 concentration to cut times. As I have elected to use minimal agitation (2 min intervals so far) for acutance and local contrast, this makes even more sense....as it will if I use it on 10x8 and print alt process in the future, which I intend to to eventually. So far I have found that about 16/18 mns is likely to be a fair starting point for normal scenes on VC and that is getting too long for me; just a pain. I am aiming to get a normal scene to print on VC G3. That means that G2 graded is still open to me and there is still plenty of scope for higher contrast up the range if I need it.

    I posted as I was just getting concerned that my dev times for VC were getting ridiculously long and seeing as few others have reported these problems, I started to wonder If I was getting something wrong!

    Seeing as I have nothing better to do (once car operational again) I will do some testing to really get to know pyrocat!

    JDEF - Sounds interetsting and next time I order some chems and teh scales come out, I might just make some up!

  2. #12
    noseoil's Avatar
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    Tom, if you are shooting in low light and want short times with good separation of values, try Efke 25 if you aren't in a big hurry with shutter speed and there isn't a lot of wind. This film and pyrocat will expand readily in flat light, in fact, you may find it a bit contrasty for your tastes. It is sharp, slow and very fine in rendering detail.

  3. #13
    Leon's Avatar
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    tom - i generally use fp4 in pyrocat hd 1:1:100 for approx 16 mins at 4 inversions every three mins. As i typically have a range of SBIs on the roll, I generally dev for my N time and use the VC filters to print to the required contrasts. I'm not finding things too muddy at all.

    A while ago I shot some hp5 in awful light - overcast and flat-as-a-pancake. My usual time using the above dilutions and methods at about ei 200 is 18 mins, I pushed it to 24 mins and got fine negs that printed just right at vc grade 2 1/2 or 3.

  4. #14

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    I guess I was finding myself concerned about those long dev times....thinking, "this cant be right"...guess it is. I may well start to try 2:2:100 to reduce them to something sensible.

  5. #15

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    I have had really good luck popping contrast using Sandys earlier recommendtaion of 2+4+100 for the Pyrocat HD. Then I process until it looks good & it has made a difference in scenes with 1-3 stop range.

  6. #16

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    Tom,
    you are not alone in experiencing long dev times with Pyrocat HD. When I first tried it, at 1:1:100, with 5x4 HP5 and Bergger 200, I started at 10 minutes tray developement for scenes of normal contrast. This was way too little. To get negs that printed on grade 3 vc I had to go to 15 minutes with 2:2:100.
    In 35 mm, using Trix,HP5 and Foma400 (a superb film) exposed in bright sunny contrasty light, I use 2:2:100 for 10minutes at 20degrees C. with one inversion every 30 seconds. Films rated at 200.

    10 minutes is a convenient time, but 15 minutes is rather long and I too have wondered about changing developers.

    Alan Clark

  7. #17

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    Alan,

    I love HP5 and appreciate its lowish contrast at times, so I guess this film is a candidate to struggle with gaining contrast under flat conditions with this dev. Ditto for Bergger, which I gather is not recommended for low SBRs. I am settled to use Efke 100 in 10x8 and definitely need to stick to something in 5x4 (it would certainly be APX100 in all if they had not pulled it in sheet)- probably come back to FP4 plus and Acros quickload for travel once I've run out of TMAX readyload. These films normally produce great contrast. I remember developing some HP5 sheets in Exactol Lux taken in South Africa under contrasty bright conditions. I developed as per reccomended times for this film and still had to print on VC Grade 4 1/2 -it ended up looking great, but boy that was close. I'm going to keep experimenting, but am concerned that if my times keep climbing, grain might become an issue in 5x4. As I'm sure you've found, there is a lot of Zone 6 cloud here in the UK and grain just stands out in it! I'm also going to get myself some more Aculux 2, which seems to produce lovely negs -I wonder if it too compensates somewhat as I have had excellent mid tone contrast with tame highlights from some Spain shots so far. So it'll either be pyrocat for everything or for constrasty stuff with Aculux for flatter scenes.

    Tom

    Tom

  8. #18

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    Tom,

    I certainly agree with you about HP5 being lowish in contrast. In 35mm when I have exposed it to the same subject, and given the same dev time as TriX and Foma 400, the highlights were disappointingly flat. (I like a gritty contrasty look in my 35mm pictures! Have now settled on Foma for this look, but am still trying it with different developers.)
    But I don't want to imply that I have found HP5 to be a really low contrast film. When I was experimenting with Pyrocat and 5x4 film I exposed quite a few sheets of HP5 to the same subject as Bergger 200, then developed them for the same time in the same dish. Each time the Bergger came out with noticably lower contrast.

    Alan Clark

  9. #19
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    HP5+ is not recommended for use with Rodinal at 1+50 because it will not achieve a CI of 0.65 at that dilution. That is plenty for many of us, but not enough for some self masking printing processes. The dye image of PMK and Pyrocat can add to the silver image as we know, but the development needed to get a combined silver and dye image of sufficient contrast may lead to excess B+F, hence very long printing exposures. Now I've forgotten the point.

    Well, let me take this opportunity to say that one of my daughters erased all my email inbox from April 2002 to the present, which includes a lot of valuable data. If any of you would like to be on my email list or have personal inquiries I have not answered, please email me at pgainer@rtol.net.
    Gadget Gainer

  10. #20
    Baxter Bradford's Avatar
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    Tom

    Thanks for your info for Acros and PMK. The Acros negs have just the sort of contrast which I think you are looking for. The ones I have developed tonight are better than the FP4 shots, not that the latter are exactly bad!

    I used 120 APX100 on another greyer day (6x12 rfh) and quick visual inspection of these indicates that I am going to have to work to get the sky to come up as desired, despite orange filter. My preferred subject matter is similar, in this case Coniston last week.

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