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  1. #1

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    Does choice of papers affect paper developer left in tray?

    I mixed up some Agfa Neutol WA warm tone developer in the darkroom to make some prints before checking how much warmtone paper I had left. Silly me. I had a few sheets but not enough for the session so I started using my other paper which happend to be a cold toned paper. I wasn't too bothered about the images on the cold tone paper as I was experimenting with a few things and practicing dodging and burning techniques. Later in the session I started to use the warmtone paper for some portraits and it suddenly occurred to me that the coldtone paper chemistry might have an effect on the developer in the tray. Is this likely to be the case? Looking at the results the warmtone prints look slightly greener than usual but maybe it is my imagination. What do other people do with different toned developers - do you mix up different trays for each one depending on the different papers you will be using in a session? Any advice most gratefully received.

    Paul

  2. #2

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    I don't mix a different dev for different papers and I've never noticed the problem that you described. Perhaps different papers (silver-rich, if there is such a thing) might use up a dev faster than others. This may have to do with how the paper is and whether is FB or RC. I would think that with FB, especially DW, the fibers would soak up the dev more and lead to the dev becoming oxidized faster because of lack of volume.

    Perhaps others can shed some light on this question, but you've got me.wondering.

  3. #3
    ann
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    am not sure i understand the statement" differed toned developers," assuming you mean neutral developer vs. warmtone developers.

    We use the same developer for both types of paper and in fact have a specific class that runs a series of papers in a wide variety of developers.

    The type of developer effects different papers with regard to tone, i.e. neutral tone papers have a different look with a warmtone developer, but have never worried about one effecting the results on the other.

    As jim suggested fiber paper does soak up more chemistry than does RC and it is wiser to be sure you have a great volume of chemistry in each tray.

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by ann
    As jim suggested fiber paper does soak up more
    chemistry than does RC and it is wiser to be sure
    you have a great volume of chemistry in each tray.
    Using the single tray processing method and with a
    pre-wet of the paper you'll find 4 ounces of chemistry
    enough to develop one 8x10. Be sure the tray has a
    flat bottom because that 4 ounces is not any to
    much. Those that use rotary processing may
    use even less than 4 ounces.

    Somewhat greater than usual dilutions will yield
    good mileage from the chemistry. Dan

  5. #5

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    I am very doubtful that using two different types of paper..Neutral and warm tone...is going to have any effect on the print color of for example warm toned paper after having previously develpoed neutral or cold toned paper.

    I have never done this so it is speculation on my part. It will be a very unusual day when any warm toned paper gets into my developer.
    Claire (Ms Anne Thrope is in the darkroom)

  6. #6

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    I seriously doubt that running different papers through your developer is going to do anything more than exhaust the developer. FB papers have a tendency to exhaust developers faster simply because they soak up a lot more chemistry and carry it out of the tray. Before you know it, there's not much left in the tray and what is left gets exhausted faster. Things just spiral downward from there. It's the same for stop and fix as well, though in these two steps you have the added burden of carrying more contaminants over from the previous baths. What I have seen is a decided shift in print color with some papers, notably those which do not have any developer incorporated into the emulsion, when the developer is either grossly over diluted or nearing exhaustion. I think that's what you might be seeing.

  7. #7

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    The only way that I can imagine one type of paper affecting a second type run through the same developer is if the first paper was a cold toned paper containing incorporated developing agents. If enough of the agents leached out into the developer this could effect the tone of the subsequent warm tone paper. For example, Phenidone and Dimezone produce neutral to cold tones. Incorporated developing agents are used in just about all RC papers. The idea behind their use is to extend the useful life of the developer during machine processing by photofinishers. I don't know about their use in modern FB papers but suspect that it is small or nonexistent since machine processing uses RC paper exclusively.

  8. #8
    David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
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    I don't think any FB papers use incorporated developing agents, and I believe Ilford stopped using them in RC papers with MG III or MG IV RC for archival stability reasons.

    I've never noticed a problem from running different papers through the same tray, and I find Neutol-WA to be a long lasting developer (1+7 dilution), but I have a theory. It might be that one paper is more sensitive to the weakening of the developer than the other. As you run paper through the developer, bromides build up as a byproduct of development, resulting in longer development times (one solution to this is factorial development, described in Adams' _The Print_). With some paper-developer combinations, you can add potassium bromide intentionally for warmer tones. So maybe with the developer you are using and the warmtone paper, you are getting more "warmth" (turning toward olive) as the bromide builds up in the developer, and maybe the cold tone paper just doesn't react strongly in this regard, so it seems more stable.
    flickr--http://www.flickr.com/photos/davidagoldfarb/
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  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by David A. Goldfarb
    I don't think any FB papers use incorporated developing
    agents, and I believe Ilford stopped using them in
    RC papers with MG III or MG IV RC for archival
    stability reasons.
    Freestyle a year + ago informed me that NONE of the
    GRADED papers they carry had DI emulsions.

    Turn back the clock for a really well lighted
    darkroom. Go Graded. Dan

  10. #10

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    Thanks for the replies everyone. Another thought is that I am finding that temperature control in the darkroom (bathroom) is harder in the summer here in London. It has been 29 degrees C outside and trays that start off at 20 degrees C rapidly rise to 22 degrees or more. Maybe this is also a factor in developer exhaustion. But basically the feedback has been helpful though I think for my own peace of mind I will not try to mix papers too often if I can avoid.

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