Hi all. I am new to developing (or actually back after a long-20 yr.-hiatus).
I am having a problem with water spots on my negatives. I am using photo flo. What I want to know is whether I should squeegee my negatives as well, or do I run a risk of scratching them? I simply can't remember what I did the first time around.
Any input would be appreciated. Thanks.
I have squeegeed my negs for years, however I have just discovered that I can't do this if I use PyroCat HD as my developer. Have no ideal why, but the negs get all messed up. Beyond that no problems.
I always make sure the blades are good and wet prior to applying them to the negs.
Welcome to APUG.
My method is to run the film through Photo-Flo and then I take piece of Photo-wipe, dip it in the Flo and run that down each side of the film, effectively squeegeeing off the excess liquid from the film surface. The wet photowipe is soft and lint free and since I use a new one each time, it eliminates the chance of film-scratching grit building up on it. Last week, I tried just drying the film without wiping it and was sorry.
That is called grain. It is supposed to be there.
Don't do it! Squeegees and film don't get along very well. It is much to easy to scratch your film with one of those medieval torture devices. One little invisible piece of grit is all it takes to get you have a nice long scratch down the entire length of your film.
Photoflo is another story. The most common mistake people make with this product is that they use too much. In your case it looks like you may have not used enough. Just how much to use is entirely dependent on your water supply. Kodak recommends that you start at the 1+200 dilution ratio. That's a bit much for my local conditions. A dilution of anywhere from 1+400 (2.5 ml. of Photoflo in 1L of water) to 1+500 works well for my local water conditions, but if your water is very hard, you'll need a less dilute mixture. Ideally what you are looking for is just enough so that the water sheets off the film, but not enough so that it makes more than a little bit of foam.
I don't, DO NOT, squeegee my negs, ever, since I ruined a very nice one.
I agree with fschifano, use Photoflo 1+200, dilute it pouring the Photoflo in the water, don't shake or stir it, it dilutes by itself, wait two to three minutes. Drop your film in the Photoflo solution for about 30 secs, take it out slowly and hang your film.
It works for me, I'm doing it whit success for more than 15 years.
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Yup I used the squeegee and got nasty scratches.
My current method is this.
Run the shower in the bathroom till it's steamed up then let it clear. This should give you a dust free enviroment.
I rinse my film three times in distilled water.
Hang the film up to dry (I cut it into strips of 18 for 35mm).
Making sure your hands are clean, and dry, run your fingers down the film. I put a finger each side of the film and run it down the length of the film. I do this several times till the bulk of the water is removed. Then I leave the bathroom with the radiator turned up full and the door closed.
I sill get the odd mark but usually it does not show when printing and if it does it will usually clean up with a firm rub with lint free cloth. I don't use photoflow.
Dont' even go near a squeegee unless you like scratched negatives.
I once had a guy in a photo shop refuse to sell me a squeegee because he said they scratch like crazy.
Just run it through the Photo-Flo and squeegee the film with two fingers. Doesn't matter which hand you use (or which two fingers for that matter).
I use a photo wipe to dry off the film. Recently, I stopped using photo flo/lfn for roll film because I reasoned that if there are no drops on the film after squeegeeing, there is no reason for photo flo (and to not gunk up my reels/tank). I use the green absorbent photo wipes and cut each one up into 3-4 pieces (each piece then has 8 or more layers). I wipe off the top of the film so it won't drip. Wrap top of film over clothesline and clip with clothespin. Then, wrap both front and back with the folded strip and pinching the sides near the film very slowly squeegee down the length of the film. Dries much faster this way. Have used photo wipes to squeegee for 10+ years.
I use a film sponge stored in a ziplock and replaced periodically for 35,120,and 4x5. I have to have a new solution for 8x10. I have always been careful and never had a problem with the sponge.
Another option with the smaller formats is to squeegee it between your index and middle fingers. That worked less well for me due to issues that I have with both hands from having my fingers broken playing football in high school.
101 ways to skin a cat, or in this case prepare and dry a roll of film!
I think using distilled/di-ionised water as a final rinse is the ticket to perfectly clean negs. I fill my tank with distilled water to about 1cm about the negs then add 1-2 drops of Ilford Wetting Agent, give it a medium gentle stir and let sit for 30secs or so. I then lift out the reel(s) and shake them sideways to diplace most of the water. I then remove from the reels and hang to dry. Always spotless!