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Thread: recycling fix

  1. #1

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    recycling fix

    Would you ever pour the fix you've just devved a film with into a tray for fixing paper? It seems like a waste to chuck it after one film. It can't be spent that quickly can it?

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    I can't say why fix used for film can't or shouldn't be switched to paper but it seems it shouldn't be. However fix for film development can be used again. It doesn't have to be thrown away after one film so, NO, it isn't spent that quickly.

    pentaxuser

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    IIRC, some fixers require one dilution for film, one for paper.

    I always used two batches anyway as the fix in the paper tray collects airborne particles and I don't want them on my film.

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    other way around, i've poured the fix from my film into a bottle ready for some printing tomorrow. I've been using the same dilution for film and paper.

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    Quote Originally Posted by pentaxuser View Post
    I can't say why fix used for film can't or shouldn't be switched to paper but it seems it shouldn't be.
    This is because of the iodide content of film. Iodide greatly slows the activity of fixer such that if you use the same fixer for both film and paper, you run the risk of not fully fixing the prints, which is death for a print.

    I can't remember the exact details but they are outlined in Haist.

    I'm sure PE can fill in the missing details.

    Ed
    "I only wanted Uncle Vern standing by his new car (a Hudson) on a clear day. I got him and the car. I also got a bit of Aunt Mary's laundry, and Beau Jack, the dog, peeing on a fence, and a row of potted tuberous begonias on the porch and 78 trees and a million pebbles in the driveway and more. It's a generous medium, photography." -- Lee Friedlander

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    Quote Originally Posted by pentaxuser View Post
    I can't say why fix used for film can't or shouldn't be switched to paper but it seems it shouldn't be. However fix for film development can be used again. It doesn't have to be thrown away after one film so, NO, it isn't spent that quickly.

    pentaxuser
    How many films do you generally process with one batch of fix and how much would you increase the time by as it gets weaker? I've always thrown it away and thought it was wasteful but haven't thought about asking whether to use it over again before. Though come to think of it in school this is what we used to do, pour the stuff back into a bottle for re-use.

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    Drop a bit of film in the fix and time how long it takes to clear in fresh fix. When it takes twice as long to clear as it did originally, then you can dispose of the fix (as long as you're keeping fix for film separate from paper)
    ~Heather
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jarvman View Post
    Would you ever pour the fix you've just devved a film with into a tray for fixing paper? It seems like a waste to chuck it after one film. It can't be spent that quickly can it?
    No, I use a 2 bath fixing system for fiber paper prints. I use fresh alkaline fixer for both baths. The paper fixes quickly without overfixing and washes out easily to archival standards.

    For film, I also use fresh alkaline fixer and then discard (recycle) it afterwards. Fixer is inexpensive and I'm not willing to risk contamination of my fiber prints.
    Tom Hoskinson
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    Why not check the used fixer with a drop or two of “Hypo Chek” or what ever it is called in England? It is a liquid that "tests for exhaustion due to silver saturation".

    I develop film with Rollo Pyro in a Jobo CPP-2. The instructions call for a single usage of fixer. At school they use a five gallon drum of fixer. The students develop in daylight hand tanks. When they are done with fixer it is poured back in the drum. Supposedly the Lab Technician periodically checks to see if a fresh drum is needed.

    John Powers

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    Using Hypo Chek is a good method, but you should draw off a sample to use for the test and discard afterward, as it will weaken the fix otherwise. (search should show up PE's comments on this).
    With film I check the film at 1/2 the minimum time stated on the fixer's data sheet. If the film is clear (usually) then I simply fix for the minimum stated time. Otherwise I double the clearing time, up to the max stated on the data sheet. That is, the clearing time should never exceed the 1/2 max time stated in the data sheet.

    It's wasteful and polluting to dump the fixer after one use, either for film or paper, after all, you are dumping heavy metals (silver) into the waste stream. Or in my case with a septic system, into ground water that I might eventually drink. Thanks but no thanks.

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