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  1. #1
    arigram's Avatar
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    Cold washing water

    The recommended temperature of washing water is around that of the chemicals and usually at 20C or higher. During winter time though I have trouble controlling the temperature which for the running tap water is about 14-15C. What I do is double or triple the washing time in hopes that its enough.

    Is it enough?


    I print RC and develop film in the Jobo CPP-2.
    Its washing procedure is about this:
    after fix, I fill the tank with distilled water that has been tempered in the jobo and rotate it for five minutes. Then put the tank through the running water with a jobo hose which jets the water inside with pressure, for ten minutes. Then two minutes with Kodak Hypo Clear in the Jobo.
    Finally, another wash with tempered distilled water for five minutes and another with running tap water for ten minutes.
    aristotelis grammatikakis
    www.arigram.gr
    Real photographs, created in camera, 100% organic,
    no digital additives and shit




  2. #2
    Dave Miller's Avatar
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    For RC paper I wouldn’t worry too much about the temperature, I wash in cooler water than 15C without any problem, and I don’t increase the time. Film is I think a little more sensitive. Have you considered Ilford method of washing? This uses far less water, so it is possible to use tempered water; and it is good exercise as well.
    Regards Dave.

    An English Eye


  3. #3

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    all liquids you use on the film should be the same of the developer for best results. it's no problem if it's a few degrees off, but it's not too good for getting consistent results.

    I don't think you need to wash longer because your water is colder, the only thing I would be worried about is how the film responds to a different temperature. it makes the film expand or contract suddenly, and that could make the film emulsion 'crack'

  4. #4

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    For RC paper, your wash cycle is already way too long. Excess wet time for RC paper lets water seep in under the poly coating and cause it to separate from the paper base. Two to 5 minutes total wash time is recommended. I rinse for 1 minute, hypo clear for 30 seconds and final wash for 1 to 3 minutes. Hypo clear is not usually recommended for RC papers. Ilford flatly says not to use it. It won't hurt it if kept short. The reason for resin coating is to keep chemicals from getting into the paper. It's made for rapid processing.

  5. #5

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    Dear Aristotelis,

    I'll second the observations that you are over-washing, and (with the RC) doing more harm than good as a result of excessive wet times.

    With either film or RC paper, 6 or 8 30-second washes is sufficient, even at the temperatures you are using.

    You are familiar, I take it, with the Ilford wash sequence? Fill the tank; 5 inversions; drain; refill; 10 inversions; drain; refill; 20 inversions. That's it: washed. And no, you don't need to wait between steps.

    Oh, yeah: and there's no point in using distilled water BEFORE tap-water washes. Use distilled water for your final rinse if you like (I do) but washing with tap water after distilled removes the only advantage of distilled water, i.e. no residue. Tap water usually washes more effectively than distilled water anyway.

    The normal rule of thumb is that below about 10 to 15 degrees, you double the wash times in running water. We're not looking at an Arrhenius equation here: it's simple diffusion.

    And there's no point at all in using hypo clear with film or RC.

    Cheers,

    R.

  6. #6

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    I tend to wash longer in winter and let the tap water be whatever temperature it is. I don't know if it makes much difference, but it makes me feel better. The thing to watch is letting the film temperature change too abruptly because as Teus says, you can get little cracks in the image called micro reticulation, which look awful when printed. Various contributors to this forum in the past have said that modern films are more resistant to this issue, but why take chances and those of us brought up on the films of the Stone Age (AKA the 1970s) feel happier if we still take precautions against it. I make up a dev tank full of water at 20 degrees centigrade (chemical temp) as a first wash, then plug the tank into the tap and run in tap water very slowly so that the film drops to the temperature of the tap water over several minutes. Only then do I turn the tap up to wash speed.

    By the way, I long ago stopped using distilled water in the final wash. I have one of those chemical filter jugs (in this case by Brita) for getting the chlorine, lime etc out of drinking water. I run the final wash water through it twice, add a drop of wetting agent and use the result. It's easier and just as good.

    David.

  7. #7
    George Papantoniou's Avatar
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    Film gelatin will swell more with higher temperature water and so be easier to wash than with cold water. This does not mean that HOT water (over 24deg. Celcius) would be recomended, for it'll render the emulsion too soft and vulnerable. I would wash the film for a longer time with cold water than with normal temp (20 deg) water. But not triple the time... maybe 50% more.

    Modern films are much more resistant to water temp difference from one bath to the other. I think that the 5 degrees (downwards and only once) that Ari is talking about won't affect a film (so that the emulsion cracks). If we talked about 10 degrees and more than once, I would start getting worried.

    I woudn't worry too much about RC papers, emulsion swelling doesn't apply for them (I think). With FB papers washing water temp might be a concern, making me increase the time 30 or 40%...

  8. #8

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    I've found Ilford RC paper to be very forgiving of water temperature and time. I've overwashed it in both colder and warmer than normal water and even toned it in hot Nelson's Gold solution for long periods with no apparent ill effects. That's not to say the paper won't stain or delaminate ten or twenty years down the road.

    In summer, I can't keep water cool. Cold water from the tap runs into the 90F range during the hottest months. For my film, I process with solutions around 75F and use a hardening fixer and haven't had any damage to the film emulsions yet.

  9. #9

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    I don't make allowances for film, (I use the Ilford method outlined by Roger and my argument is it doesn't run as cold as constantly running water) but for FB paper in the winter if I'm using cold running water only (though I often do a mixture of diffusion/running water) I wash for 90 mins rather than 60 mins. I think you're supposed to make allowances if your water runs below 10 degrees but this is just from memory and I could be wrong - I make allowances when it feels really cold to put my hands in!

  10. #10

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    Ari. My early experiences with both film and paper(both Ilford) indicated that both are incredibly tough. The taps in the film development area which was was fully lit were being used so I went to the taps in the print processing area which were under safelight and failed to notice that I was using the hot tap for several minutes until I placed my hand under the tap. It felt quite hot so had to be way above blood heat i.e. way over 37/38 degrees C. Result was: no damage done.

    The prints done in the early part of the two and a half hour session print sessions were allowed to lie in water by all of us students for most of session while we processed other prints and only dried at the end of the session in an automated print dryer. We'd all queue to use it with about 10-15 mins to go!

    Result: No damage done - at least not then and not yet and those prints are now 4 years old.

    None of the above is to suggest that you should do what I and the other students did and now I have my own darkroom I am careful about washing temps and time BUT it does serve to indicate that Ilford film and RC paper is incredibly tough. Of course I may have been incredibly lucky with the film and all 20 students may have been lucky with their paper but I think that at least with Ilford paper and film the material is tougher than we might imagine.

    For the benefit of others who favour other makes of film and paper, I am not promoting Ilford or trying to imply other papers and film aren't equally tough, its just that I was using Ilford(HP5+) and all the students were using Ilford Multigrade IV RC

    pentaxuser



 

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