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  1. #1

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    Strange spots on negatives

    I have a problem with white spots on my negatives, it looks like dust, but when I inspeected negatives with magnifying glass they looked like salt crystals sticked on emulsion side rather than plain dust. I suspect that I may have fixer problem here. I use fresh fixer, mix all chemicals with demineralized water, and use all chemistry at recommended time and temperature. I use rapid fixer, wash film in running water for about 25 minutes, and do my final wash in demineralized water without wetting agent, and I never wipe the water off the film.
    Any clues?
    Thanks.Click image for larger version. 

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  2. #2
    Jaf-Photo's Avatar
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    That's a lot. I do get the occasional white spots but never that many or large.

    I guess you clean all the equipment thoroughly with no residue and the spots are too large to be airborne from drying, I think.

    That probably only leaves the chemicals or the water. Maybe your water has a lot of particles that stick to the soft emulsion during the wash?

    Or maybe you should replace you chems in clean bottles?

    Sorry, no answers, just guesses.

  3. #3

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    Unless your fixer bottles have crystalized material in the lid or pouring area, I doubt that it is from the fixer.
    The most likely source is the tap water used for the wash. One way to find out would be to use the demin water for the wash too. You could use the Ilford fill and dump method, or else, do maybe 4 fill and dump intervals over 20 minutes then hang to dry.
    The other thing to try would be a wetting agent, which is what I'd try first.

  4. #4

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    Thanks for reply.
    I keep my equipment very clean, and use only fresh chemicals and mix them with bottled demineralised water, which I also use for my final wash.
    My main suspicion is fixer... but I don't know how to prove it...

  5. #5

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    Some sort of non-soluble precipitate from your tap water. I had such a problem for a while on city water. Little white specks that wouldn't wash off, but when dry would smear like talc or chalk. See if they wash off with an acid stop.

  6. #6

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    But if it is dirt from tap water, how come that it only sticks on emulsion side of negative?

  7. #7
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    The emulsion is soft and sticky when it's wet. Very susceptible to particles.

    The acetate side is smooth so particles don's stick so well.

    Drying marks are more visible on the acetate, though because of its smoothness.
    Last edited by Jaf-Photo; 06-12-2014 at 05:22 PM. Click to view previous post history.

  8. #8

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    What fix are you using?
    Also, is the place where you hang the film to dry reasonably dust free?

  9. #9

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    I'm using Fomafix rapid fixer, and dry my films in bathroom.

  10. #10

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    I have heard that some people wipe excessive water from film with their fingers, but I am afraid that it could damage negative.

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