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  1. #31
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    Tablespoon = 5mL of water.
    No, a TEASPOON is 5ml. A tablespoon is 15ml. If the spoon is labeled with the ml, make sure there isn't a faint 1. There looks to be a large watermark across the shot with the billboard.

    Initial agitation of 30 seconds to 1 minute is usually standard. Make sure you start initial agitation as soon as possible. Assuming you are pouring the developer into the tank, do it quickly, and begin agitation right away.
    Also quite important and I haven't seen you write that you do this.

  2. #32

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    Winger,

    Teaspoon, I meant yes. I mix the two up sometimes, but the measuring spoon says 5 mL (1 TSP in brackets), I double checked to be sure . Did you read the response I gave you? I haven't done that no, that would be why you haven't seen me write that I do it. I'll try it tomorrow, though, and post back my results. I tried agitating more a couple nights ago on my most recently processed film, but the markings still came up occasionally. I will try more rigorous agitation and the pre-wash, though. Hopefully that quells my development issues.

    Water marks are a constant nuisance for me, which is why I explained I do use a chamois. Even that I sometimes have to twice over due to marks still showing up. On the roll I posted in the OP, though, I didn't see any water marks on any of the negatives. Yes, I do final rinse in distilled water, but it still seems to be an issue.
    cities & citizens - edmonton street photography (mostly), 100% film

  3. #33

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    HV, looking at your pictures I can see the blob in the sky in the first one and the stain across the centre of the second. They don't look like drying marks to me, nor anything to do with agitation. I think these are red herrings and leading you the wrong way.

    The idea of using a pre-soak is good. But the problems you have are seemingly both shown as areas of less development taking place, so the blob is dark on the print because the negative is thinner in that area. And the stain, while it does have a wavy edge, is again a darker area in the print, so less development has taken place. So firstly I thought that the film has been touching, unlikely though on a Paterson reel, or perhaps you are leaving too long a period before getting the stop bath into the tank.

    But then I think, what if you are under fixing them, or using exhausted or incorrectly mixed fix, this can have a similar effect. As you pour the fix out there usually isn't a need for speed for getting the wash water in the tank, a cleared neg is a cleared neg and it can't clear anymore. But if your fix is exhausted you pour it out at the right time, yet where it remains on the neg in spots and runs it carries on working because the negative hasn't fully cleared. Hence some areas on the neg are fully cleared, and perhaps the rest of the negative area has the slight bloom that you see with an under fixed negative. So looking at your negatives can you see any slight traces of cloudiness, the clear edge where the marking are will have a colour to it, but can you see any areas that look cloudy, not clear? Are your negs as 'bright' and clear looking as the lab processed ones?

    So I would suggest mixing up some fresh fix, leave it in the fix for a couple of minutes longer than the minimum time, and make sure you wash them properly using the Ilford 'economy' method, but 10 inversions, 20, then 40. Follow this with a solution with just a tiny drop of photoflo in it. Finally make sure all your chemicals and washing water is at the same temperature (changes can cause reticulation which can look like increased grain in mild cases), and with the wash in particular this is much easier to do with the Ilford method than simply putting them in running water.

    Steve
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  4. #34

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    Quote Originally Posted by h.v. View Post
    Water marks are a constant nuisance for me, which is why I explained I do use a chamois. Even that I sometimes have to twice over due to marks still showing up. On the roll I posted in the OP, though, I didn't see any water marks on any of the negatives. Yes, I do final rinse in distilled water, but it still seems to be an issue.
    This shouldn't be. Distilled/deionized water with a couple of ml Photoflo/Ilfotol per liter. Shouldn't be any drying marks of any consequence.

  5. #35

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    I sense real and understandable frustration from the OP but at the risk of making it worse all I can say is that I use HP5+ and DDX in very hard water in the U.K. and have never had the effects the OP has. I stick strictly to the Ilford instructions.

    The scans look much more grainy than any neg I have produced and my prints up to 10x8 do not look grainy at all

    What I am leading up to is that I feel that changing agitation regimes/ pre-soaking or not pre-soaking etc has very little, if anything, to do with the problems.

    All I can suggest is that using fresh chemicals and sticking to the Ilford regime develop another film. Try and dry in a dust free area then and this is the most important bit, get your negs printed by a lab or someone who has a darkroom.

    I have a terrible feeling that the devil in this whole situation is that of relying on a scanner and assuming that what you then see is what a darkroom print would be like.

    Unless you get a neg printed we could go round in the proverbial circles for a long time to come

    pentaxuser

  6. #36

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    +1

  7. #37

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    Sorry guys. Still haven't been able to process that FP4. Some things came up, then some frustrations with scanned negs (including trying to digitally remove some of the blemish marks akin to photo #2 in the OP to try and salvage otherwise good photos - sacrilege I know). I will try my best to do it tomorrow and use some of the suggestions posed most recently. You guys are right, I am incredibly frustrated with this whole experience. Maybe I'm missing something, but while there may be hiccups here and there, for other people, developing just seemingly works and people are so happy to be processing their own film. I seem to be having more issues than usual. Maybe I'm being delusional .

    I don't like relying on a lab for my B&W. They do a great job with the negatives (only issue is they are sometimes dusty, but that can be fixed). I just don't know how much longer they're going to be doing it and the cost keeps going up, so I don't want to rely on the lab for that. For the time being though, I may have to, as much as I dislike it. If I had better luck with Ilford XP2, I'd probably switch to that for B&W. But my HP5 and FP4 and Tri-X negs just come out better, with less coarse grain than XP2. I also contemplate just buying an X100S or M9 and using Silver Efex, but it just wouldn't be the same.

    So I double checked the water. Apparently it is not distilled water! Rather, it's reverse osmosis water (whatever that means). It doesn't have any of the chemicals found in tap water (which leave the residue) so I would think that it'd work fine. But please do correct me if I'm wrong on that one.

    For the FP4, I will re-mix my Ilford Rapid Fixer to ensure freshness and proper dilution (1+4 so 240mL of water and 60mL of Fixer for 2 rolls of film). Right now I have the current fixer stored in a jar because it hasn't been a week since the first mix (Wednesday will be a week).

    The last HP5 I got lab processed is dated January 12, 2013. The lab might be doing things a bit differently now, not sure. Only B&W I've recently given them is Acros and Tri-X, but that wouldn't exactly be apples to apples comparison wise. Anyways I did a side-by-side comparison and the only discernible difference I could find is that the lab processed negatives have more of a purple tinge to them that I'm used to seeing on Tri-X but not Ilford films. My home processed negatives have more of a muted tinge to them. I'm not fully sure of what you mean by clearness, but do you mean areas on the emulsion that should be see-through clear, but are instead cloudy? If you're asking if I do see the smudges and lines on the negatives, then I do, yes, faintly. If you want, I can post side-by-side photos of the negatives against a white screen for a better comparison for you guys. For what it's worth, they both seem about equal in brightness.
    cities & citizens - edmonton street photography (mostly), 100% film

  8. #38

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    The base material of different films will have a different colour and appearance, so yes Tri-X is a bit purple-ish in the clear areas that surround the image. This doesn't matter. But how clear that base material is does matter, your negs should be as clear as the lab based negs all along the whole length of the film. If they have an even slightly milky appearance, like a pale fog, they haven't been fully fixed. Look particularly at difference to the emulsion and the clear edging between yours and the labs. If you want to check you can put a strip of your negs back into fresh fix and see if it comes out clearer compared with the rest of the film (but by now it won't rescue the image).

    Look, it may not be the fix, but you do need to eliminate it as this can cause the same sorts of blotches as badly mixed or badly agitated developer. They way to test how fresh your fix is, is to take a discarded film leader (that you would normally throw in the bin), and put a drop of fixer on it. Leave it for six or seven minutes so there can be no doubt the spot has cleared as much as it can. Then drop the whole film leader into the fix and time how long it takes for the rest of the film to clear as much as the spot. If it takes longer than the recommended time your fix is exhausted.

    Steve
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    landscape photographs in and around the Peak District National Park, UK.

  9. #39

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    I don't have a solution but rather a suggestion. The next time you have two films shot with the same camera and under similar conditions, take one of them to the lab and process the other at home. Then, scan images from both films and compare. This at least eliminates the camera, metering, and scanning as culprits. Also, inspect the negatives visually and compare them to the lab processed ones. Finally, look around you for a film photography club or society or something and ask a fellow photographer to watch you develop a film and see if he can spot the problem.

  10. #40

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    Quote Originally Posted by h.v. View Post
    So I double checked the water. Apparently it is not distilled water! Rather, it's reverse osmosis water (whatever that means). It doesn't have any of the chemicals found in tap water (which leave the residue) so I would think that it'd work fine. But please do correct me if I'm wrong on that one.
    That should be fine so I doubt this is causing any problems unless you're using too much Ilfotol which might leave some kind of residue.

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