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  1. #1
    Edimilson's Avatar
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    (Another) newbie question, now regarding Photoflo

    Hello again!

    I know this is another newbie question, but I have to ask it. I have been experiencing problems finding Photoflo or similar products in Rio de Janeiro. Can Photoflo (or Ilfotol or whatever) be easily and adequately replaced? What can I use to do its job while I don't get my hands on the real thing?

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Photo Engineer's Avatar
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    Use any non-ionic surfactant. TWEEN or other similar products come to mind.

    Ionic surfactants can interact with calcium or other ions in water and form scum and some surfactants contain colorants and scents. Avoid them at all costs.

    PE

  3. #3
    Edimilson's Avatar
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    Thanks! I'll have to do some research though. As I have never heard of Tween, chances are it is not sold in Brazil. But knowing I must look for a non-ionic surfactant will probably be helpful.

  4. #4
    Photo Engineer's Avatar
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    Try poly ethylene glycol or poly propylene glycol, the latter is better than the former.

    PE

  5. #5
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    Palmolive dishwashing liquid

    Just a quick note....

    A long time ago, a friend at the Fort Wadsworth photo lab on Staten Island told me he used Palmolive dishwashing liquid instead of Photoflo to rinse his B&W films. So years later, remembering what he said, I went to the supermarket, got some and I mixed 4 or 5 drops in a 1/2 gallon of water to make a very dilute solution. I then used that to give the films a final rinse before I hung them up to dry.

    Worked like a charm. I never had any water marks on any film I have ever processed. A regular sized bottle of the stuff will outlast you. Mind you, this was used with the water in NYC, so maybe it works fine here. I have no clue how it would work where you are.

    Thanks,

    Bob M.

  6. #6
    Edimilson's Avatar
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    Thanks Bob M.! This is another possibility I'll look into.

  7. #7
    Photo Engineer's Avatar
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    The fragrance and coloring agents in some dishwashing fluids may be harmful to film, leaving an oily residue. In addition, many of these fluids are alkaline which is not good for the film.

    PE

  8. #8
    rmazzullo's Avatar
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    Thanks PE,

    Edimilson, please pay close attention to the details provided by Photo Engineer. He has 30+ years of experience as a chemical engineer at Kodak, and I may have just been lucky. I also did a quick rinse of fresh water after the 'make-believe' photoflo, so I may have avoided potential problems without even realizing it.

    You will have to look at different products carefully, and those suggested by PE are much more appropriate to the task.

    Thanks,

    Bob M.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by rmazzullo View Post
    Just a quick note....

    Worked like a charm.
    It "works" because nonionic surfactants are a major ingredient of many household detergents. But they also contain other types of surfactants, and as PE points out, other ingredients that may in the long run be not so good for your film.

  10. #10
    rmazzullo's Avatar
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    Now you have me wondering.

    It has been quite a while since I have examined the earliest negatives I rinsed in "Palmolive-flo", so I will have to dig them out of storage to see if there are any long term effects that may have occurred. This won't happen until the later part of the week, so I will post an answer then.

    Thanks,

    Bob M.



 

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