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  1. #1

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    using stock dektol (no dilution)

    For some reason, I missed the part of the Dektol instructions that indicated that stock Dektol needs to be diluted. I've been using it straight (Duh!) and re-using it for a few months at a time.

    Can anyone tell me what the effect of this would be theoretically speaking? What changes should I anticipate from doing it the right way? I'm using Ilford MG Classic FB Glossy with a developing time of 2 minutes at 68 degrees. I've even done some tests with my step/wedge & densitometer which seem to indicate that I'm getting lower contrast at the various filters advertise, but the color temperature of the cold light head may be contributing to this as well (arista v54 bulb).

    Thanks,

    A

  2. #2
    Photo Engineer's Avatar
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    Concentration with Dektol governs contrast and development rate. It raises contrast as you go up in conc. and it lowers the required development time.

    PE

  3. #3

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    PE: All this makes me nostalgic for the days of old. Just for fun, my brother and I would shoot VP 126 and develop it, when I was literally 10 years old. Since all we could afford was the Tri-Chem-Packs, we used Dektol to develop the film**

    This gave me the habit of using Dektol as my only developer. I later found a combination I actually liked - shooting Panatomic-X (135) at an EI of 100, then developing it in a 1:1 dilution of Dektol at 62°F/16.7°C for five minutes. Unfortunately, it was not long after that Panatomic-X was dropped from the catalog.

    I wonder if you could explain how that "happy combination" worked?

    **You would not believe how many people think that since Dektol is a paper developer, it cannot be used to process film. when I tell people I used to develop film in Dektol, they tell me I'm lying, and that dipping film in Dektol would just ruin the film without processing it. Of course, Dektol is alkaline and has hydroquinone, so it will process film. It's not used for film because it (usually) delivers high contrast and coarse grain. In fact, the Tri-Chem-Pack had instructions on how to process VP in dektol.

  4. #4
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    Dektol is a fine, but grainy, developer at 1:3 or 1:7 (3 mins or 7 mins) for most films. It was used in the newpaper industry back about 50 years ago to give quick results. They dried the images using alcohol.

    It is a good, but coarse grained developer for films.

    PE

  5. #5

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    I remember Tri-Chem packs. Kodak never disclosed the formula for the developer but I don't think it was Dektol.

    The powdered stop bath used sodium diacetate as the acidulant.
    Last edited by Gerald C Koch; 05-05-2015 at 12:42 AM. Click to view previous post history.
    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

  6. #6
    jnanian's Avatar
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    i currently use dektol as a film developer
    it works great, and isn't very grainy ...

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by jnanian View Post
    i currently use dektol as a film developer
    it works great, and isn't very grainy ...
    Watch out! You can't do that! You know, like DK-50 gives big grain. Read that somewhere, ya know!

    I'll bet, without testing, that dilute Dektol will give a sharp image with little to no grain worth mentioning with 100 speed films. Like my DK-50 experience.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by jnanian View Post
    i currently use dektol as a film developer
    it works great, and isn't very grainy ...
    So do I occasionally. Not much grain with an 11x14 contact print!
    At least with LF landscape, a bad day of photography can still be a good day of exercise.

  9. #9
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    I'll bet there would be with Royal X Pan.

  10. #10
    Vaughn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Photo Engineer View Post
    I'll bet there would be with Royal X Pan.
    I have only used Royal Pan...and that was awhile back (and only in 4x5)!
    At least with LF landscape, a bad day of photography can still be a good day of exercise.

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