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Thread: RAF Pyro-Metol

  1. #11
    Rlibersky's Avatar
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    That looks good. Is the grain in the sky chunky? I couldn't see any in the scan. Certainly looks like a developer worth experimenting with.

  2. #12
    David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rlibersky
    That looks good. Is the grain in the sky chunky? I couldn't see any in the scan. Certainly looks like a developer worth experimenting with.
    Looking with a 6x loupe, the grain in the sky seems big, but I'll know more when I make a real print, which would show if there is a grain masking effect. Here's a neg scan at 1000 dpi, full size, which also isn't an indication of how it will really print, but gives some idea.

    I don't think I'd use this for 35mm. I'm mainly interested in using it for 4x5", but if the grain is comparable to ABC pyro or better, I'd go as small as 6x7.

    Based on what Haist and Chapman write, I suspect this is going to work best with traditional films that stain well like Tri-X, Efke PL100, and J&C Classic 400.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails RAF,5min,75F,agit30sec,EI6400dtl.jpg  
    Last edited by David A. Goldfarb; 07-15-2005 at 09:02 AM. Click to view previous post history. Reason: Forgot the attachment
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  3. #13
    David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
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    I just ran another test, this time with an indoor scene and incident metering just to be sure my spot readings weren't off on the outdoor shot, and to test a more realistic scenario. Tech V, 6x9 back, 150/4.5 Xenar, TX again, this time developing for 4.5 min at 75 deg., again agitating 10 sec. at the beginning and 2 inversions every 30 sec. thereafter, test exposures ranging from EI 1600 to 8000 in 1/3 stop increments, and the negs look really good. Base fog is down to a more reasonable level, grain is better than I expected (so I would probably use this combo for 6x7, but no smaller), and sharpness is pretty good. I'd say any neg on the roll is printable, but eyeballing it, 3200 looks like the best, which is enough for me.

    I'll post a scan when the negs are dry.
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  4. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by David A. Goldfarb
    No info regarding time, temperature, agitation, or EI.
    Don't know if this is of any help. I have the notation that the average development time is 6 minutes at 20 deg C. However, I failed to write down where I got the formula.

  5. #15
    David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
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    Thanks, Gerald. That's in line with my results for TX, so it's good to get some confirmation.

    Here's a scan of the EI 3200 test frame with a detail at 1000 dpi on the right.

    Base fog is down another 12% from the second test roll, and it would be better if I were using fresh film (expired 7/2002). These negs also show some more relief than the first batches.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails RAF,4min30sec,agit30sec,EI3200.jpg  
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  6. #16
    David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
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    I've been testing with TXT (old Tri-X sheet film, of which I still have enough to make it worth testing), and the results are good, but not as dramatic as with TX. I'll probably call it around EI 1000, with a development time in the 4-5 minute range. That's still better than TXT in Acufine, which I rate at 640, but not as dramatic as the results I was getting with TX. I'm guessing that this has to do with TXT's longer toe, but I didn't expect that big a difference. The emulsion relief is really strong with RAF and TXT. I'll post a test shot once I've fine tuned it a bit more.
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  7. #17
    David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
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    TXT I'm considering EI 1000, 4 min., 75 deg. for normal contrast.

    J&C Classic is looking about the same with better controlled highlight density than TXT.
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  8. #18
    Helen B's Avatar
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    I was reading ‘Modern Control in Photography’ edited by John Erith (1951). William Pightling mentions RAF pyro-metol as an ‘optional stain’ developer for 'known gross underexposures', and gives three solutions. A and B are as already described (with one small difference, noted below) and C is 8 oz of crystalline sodium sulphite in 80 oz water. For staining it is used as equal parts of A and B, and for non-staining it is equal parts of A, B and C.

    The small difference is in the volume. The RAF would use British liquid measures. One fluid ounce is 28.41 millilitres (ie about one ounce Avoirdupois of water), not 29.47 as it is with American liquid measure. 80 oz British liquid measure is 2273 ml, not 2366 ml. Robert Chapman appears to have made the same mis-conversion.

    Best,
    Helen
    PS I guess that it's always worth reminding folks that a British pint is 20 British fluid ounces and an American pint is 16 American fluid ounces.

  9. #19
    David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
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    Thanks, Helen. That clears up one mystery, though now that I've been testing it with the wrong volumes, I might stick with them for a while.
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  10. #20

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    The difference in volumes is 4% hardly enough to worry about. It would be hard to detect any difference in density in the negatives.

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