Film developing gut check request... FP4+ and Pryrocat-HD
It's been thirty years since I've developed B&W film and I've decided to do it again. I do not want to open the best film and developer debate again, but I just want to know if film developer combination that I'm thinking about starting out with should give me good results. And, what a good development time should be for 120 roll and 35mm roll films. I'm thinking about starting with Ilford FP4+ film and Pyrocat-HD developer.
I would also appreciate any recommendations regarding type of stop, fix, clearing, and wetting agents you like.
I too use Pyrocat-HD, but with TMY. I don't use a stop bath, I use a rapid fix (TF-4 from Photographers Formulary), no clearing agent with TF-4 and Photo-Flo.
I'm sure others will recommend other things, but if my memory is correct, Alkaline fixers like TF-4 are recommended with Pyro developers.
Jay, IMHO FP4+ and Pyrocat is an excellent Combination. Check this APUG thread:
Originally Posted by monkeytumble
I use a 5 min presoak in tempered (distilled or deionized) water before developing.
I use a tempered water rinse instead of a stop bath
I use a non-hardening alkaline fixer (TF-4 or equivalent) No Fixer clearing bath is needed with TF-4.
After washing the film, I rinse it in distilled water with no wetting agent.
Last edited by Tom Hoskinson; 02-24-2008 at 10:34 PM. Click to view previous post history.
Everything is analog - even digital :D
I can only second the opinion that Pyrocat-HD and FP4 is a stunning combination. They work really well together. If you print on graded papers, you want to retain as much of the image stain as possible, as it aids contrast in printing. In order to retain the most of the stain, alkaline fixers are recommended. TF-4 is mentioned, a great product that is available from Photographers' Formulary. I recommend mixing the concentrate with distilled water, as it minimizes odor.
The beauty of TF-4 is that it easily washes out of the emulsion without the aid of a wash aid. It also has enormous capacity and can be used over and over again.
One more thing - use water as stop bath. It helps preserve the life of the fixer, and it maintains the pH to keep it as consistent as possible for the film without jumping into acid pH in the stop stage.
I hope that helps.
"Often moments come looking for us". - Robert Frank
"Make good art!" - Neil Gaiman
"...the heart and mind are the true lens of the camera". - Yousuf Karsh
I use fp4+ in 4x5 with pyrocat-hd with excellent results. I've used it in a jobo (cpe2) which only has a fast rotation speed with no problems, and have recently started using dip and dunk tanks. I've always used a water stop and tf4 fix and also ilford rapid fix, both with excellent results.
Sponsored Ad. (Subscribers to APUG have the option to remove this ad.)
Well I use Pyrocat HD with Tmax100, Tmax400. and also FP4 & HP5, using 120 & 5x4, and get excellent results with all the film.
I use a water rinse followed by Ilford Hypam fixer, which I've been using for over 30 years, maybe I should try TF-4 but I don't think its really necessary.
What mixing of the Pyrocat HD and developing times and agitation do you guys use to develope your FP4+ (or HP5) ? What is you EI with the given developement procedure?
My N (normal) dev times for PyrocatHD and Tmax100 & 400, FP4 & HP5 are all around 15mins, 1+1+100, 20°C, inversion agitation continuous for the first 30 seconds then 3 inversions every minute, I use all the films at half the box speed.
I have used PMK, Pyrocat, and WD2D+. I wound up prefering PMK (no after bath), for rather eccentric reasons having to do with my printing style, but my Pyrocat negs were very satisfactory.
That said, I get better results with 35mm using HC110. Personally, I wouldn't recommend a Pyro developer for 35mm, as the stain effect doesn't mask grain very well with the small negative, and Pyro developers do not produce fine grain. I use Pyro for MF on up. Doesn't hurt to try though, you may be perfectly happy, as it's all subjective.
TF-4 is a great fixer. If for no other reason, it clears easily and quickly.
Last edited by JBrunner; 02-25-2008 at 10:34 AM. Click to view previous post history.
I use Pyrocat HD with FP-4+ in both 120 and 4x5 with stunning results, it's my favorite combination. I dilute the Pyrocat 1:1:100 and develop for 12 minutes plus or minus, depending on the contrast of the scene, and rate the film at 64-100 EI. Also, water rinse and a neutral fix.