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  1. #11
    Mainecoonmaniac's Avatar
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    I basically have 2 mixing vessels. One for acid chemicals, for stop and fix and one just for developer.
    "Photography, like surfing, is an infinite process, a constantly evolving exploration of life."
    Aaron Chang

  2. #12
    MattKing's Avatar
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    My advice would be to develop a system that allows you to carefully ensure you never cross-contaminate chemistry. You can use one graduate with rinses between each step, or separately identified/marked/coloured multiple graduates - just make sure your system includes appropriate spacial or temporal safeguards.

    Then use your system each time, without fail.

    Some chemistry is very susceptible of contamination - a s bath developer like Diafine comes to mind - so it deserves its own specialized version of your system.

    FWIW, I do not dedicate graduates to particular chemicals. I depend on temporal and spacial safeguards (including thorough rinsing) to protect me.

    It is worth noting, however, that if you are going to share your darkroom with others, dedicated graduates are a very good idea.
    Matt

    “Photography is a complex and fluid medium, and its many factors are not applied in simple sequence. Rather, the process may be likened to the art of the juggler in keeping many balls in the air at one time!”

    Ansel Adams, from the introduction to The Negative - The New Ansel Adams Photography Series / Book 2

  3. #13
    flatulent1's Avatar
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    You may find yourself ordering some Paterson graduates. The 600ml [COLOR=#333333]borosilicate graduated beakers (I have some by Pyrex and another maker) are marked off in 50ml measures and stop at 500ml (the other graduates are similarly afflicted). Not terribly useful for measuring 600ml, unless you're willing to mark it with a Sharpie and keep renewing the mark periodically. They're great for having the chems ready to pour, but frankly I feel like I wasted my money.
    [/COLOR]
    Fred Latchaw
    Seattle WA


    I am beginning to resent being referred to as 'half-fast'.
    Whatever that's supposed to mean.

  4. #14

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    if you were doing wet-plate work
    and mixing your developer and fix
    in the same container without rinsing
    i would say, yes, you should be afraid.

    but regular b/w chemistry ..
    just "wash and wear" as vidal sassoon used to say.

    good luck !
    john

  5. #15
    Rafal Lukawiecki's Avatar
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    I use the same set of beakers, usually just one of them. A quick rinse between stages and a good rinse at the end.
    Rafal Lukawiecki
    See rafal.net | Read rafal.net/articles

  6. #16

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    If you use concentrated Developer (Ilford DDX, Kodak T-Max, HC110), etc. you really only need a 1L measuring cup. I use cheap plastic ones. They look like the glass measuring cups only plastic, graduated in cups, liters and onces. Get three, one for each chemical...Developer, Stop and Fix and mark them as such. If you use liquid concentrate fixer and you should, then any 1 gallon/4 liter plastic bottle will do for the fix and the stop. Get yourself a collection of Graduated cylinders to measure small amounts of Developer (10cc, 50cc, 150cc, 300cc) If you have to mix up dry chemicals in large quantities(Xtol, D-76, etc.) a plastic household bucket works well. Above all, don't obsess over this, it ain't rocket science.

  7. #17
    MattKing's Avatar
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    Examine your film developing tank(s) to check on the maximum amount of solution you will need to develop the films you intend to develop.

    Then buy one or more graduates that are at least that size.

    I have some 600ml plastic kitchen graduates that I paid about $1.75 each for that serve me well. Plus some 1 litre ones for which I paid even less.

    And a 45ml Paterson graduate for measuring smaller quantities.
    Matt

    “Photography is a complex and fluid medium, and its many factors are not applied in simple sequence. Rather, the process may be likened to the art of the juggler in keeping many balls in the air at one time!”

    Ansel Adams, from the introduction to The Negative - The New Ansel Adams Photography Series / Book 2

  8. #18
    handle2001's Avatar
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    Thanks to everyone who replied or sent a private message! My set of graduates arrived today:
    Click image for larger version. 

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    I went to a big box store to look at plastic kitchen graduates and they wanted $3 apiece for plastic 1L measuring cups. No thanks, I'll make do with plastic cups. It sounds like as long as I rinse the mixing graduate thoroughly between chemicals I should have no trouble. All the stuff arrives tomorrow and I'll be processing my first roll of Ilford Delta-400. I'll be sure to post the results here!

  9. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by handle2001 View Post
    I ordered a set of borosilicate graduated beakers from Amazon that comes with 1000, 600, 250, 100, and 50mL beakers.
    I'm actually surprised that more people didn't disabuse you of some erroneous notions. First of all there is really no need to have so many beakers. Also beakers are not precision measuring devices. I use them if I need to measure large quantities of fluids such as 600mL. When you buy beakers from reputable places they will tell you the marked lines are for general use and should not be used for precise measurements. I would use graduated cylinders for precise measurements. So if you need 45 mL of a developer stock solution don't use a beaker to measure that out.

    Before I purchase beakers or graduated cylinders I plan out how I'm going to mix everything. This has saved me from buying a bunch of stuff I don't need... and missing stuff that is critical.

    Quote Originally Posted by handle2001 View Post
    I'm starting off with Ilford chemistry since I'm shooting with Ilford film.
    There is no need to buy everything from one manufacturer. People routinely develop Ilford film in Kodak chemicals with no problems. D76 is sort of a benchmark developer and you will be able to find a recipe to develop every common B&W film in it. I am not recommending it I'm just illustrating that being that rigid about that sort of thing isn't helping you. There are definitely things you need to be anal about when it comes to developing film but getting everything from one manufacturer definitely isn't one of them.

    Quote Originally Posted by handle2001 View Post
    I read somewhere before that people often use 16oz plastic cups for holding working solutions, so I didn't think having four 1000mL beakers would be necessary (I need 600mL of each working solution to develop two 35mm rolls at a time), but now I'm curious if using the same graduate to mix up the developer as the fixer is going to deplete the fixer quicker than otherwise? Or will mixing up the stop solution in between mitigate this?
    I am not familiar with the Ilford chemicals but most chemistry is mixed up and then stored for months. And the mixing usually doesn't really require that much equipment. I think you are making this more complicated than it needs to be. I will speak about some Kodak chemistry. First of all I use Kodafix which is a hardening fixer. I like it because it comes as a liquid. The liquid is enough to make one gallon of fix. So you find an empty gallon container and dump all the Kodafix in. Then you fill the container to the top with water. Be sure to stop before the top so you have some air in there. You need to invert the container a few times to ensure everything is mixed. Then top it off with water. I would have a smaller container to pour 1 liter of fixer into and then store the remainder of the gallon. You will now use the fixer out of that one liter container. The fixer can be reused many times before it is exhausted. You don't mix it up each time and you certainly don't discard it each time either. Once the fixer in the liter container is exhausted or you've run a predetermined number of rolls through it dump its contents and get some fresh fixer from gallon container. So I don't use any beakers or graduated cylinders to mix fixer.

    I use a water stop bath so I don't need to use any chemicals for the stop bath. It's cheap, environmentally friendly, and effective. I do mix up stop bath for developing paper in the darkroom. Again though I mix up a gallon batch. So that only happens every few months. I use a glass graduated cylinder to measure out the stop bath fluid. It's one of the graduated cylinders I use to make my developer. But since I never need to do both on the same day the cylinder has been run through the dishwasher by the time I need to use it.

    Developer is where things get tricky. First of all all developers I've used have an issue with oxidation. So if you use something like XTOL you have to mix up a big batch and then store it in multiple sealed containers. If you use something like Rodinal you can mix up just what you need each time you use it and you don't need complicated measuring equipment. I use a regular plastic kitchen measuring cup and a medicine dropper. That's it. I don't like Rodinal for higher speed film (400 ISO, 3200 ISO) but it works well with 100 ISO and slower film.

  10. #20
    handle2001's Avatar
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    Everything you say makes sense.

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