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Thread: D-23 question

  1. #1
    ronlamarsh's Avatar
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    D-23 question

    I have read many opinions about the classic D-23 formula acting as a silver solvent due to the amount of sodium sulfite in it. According to Barry Thornton reducing the sulfite to 80gr/litre eliminates the solvent action.
    The question: can one use the classic formula for D-23 but dilute 1:1 and achieve the same results or is it a question of ratios i.e. sulfite to metol?
    I routinely use D-23 at 1:1 with great results. thanks
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    PhotoJim's Avatar
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    Diluting it 1:1 or 1:3 obviously reduces the solvent action.

    Whether reducing the sulfite and keeping the metol the same will change the behaviour in some desirable way versus diluting it 1:1 with the published formula is an exercise for you. I suspect it will be different in some way.
    Jim MacKenzie - Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada

    A bunch of Nikons; Feds, Zorkis and a Kiev; Pentax 67-II (inherited from my deceased father-in-law); Bronica SQ-A; and a nice Shen Hao 4x5 field camera with 3 decent lenses that needs to be taken outside more. Oh, and as of mid-2012, one of those bodies we don't talk about here.

    Favourite film: do I need to pick only one?

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    Cutting the sulfite to 80g/liter doesn't eliminate the solvent action, but merely reduces it. The cutoff point is about 50g/liter. Diluting the stock 1+1 will get you to the point of 50g/liter as the stock solution calls for 100g/liter.

    In addition, 1+1 or greater give a compensating effect which is often desirable.

    Not sure that this will help. I have a feeling I'm telling you something you already know.

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    ronlamarsh's Avatar
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    D-23

    Thanks all, I may have already known it but I tend to think too much which makes for questions of all sorts. I regularly use a 1:1 dilution and often times modifiy this by developing in straight D-23 for the first 2 miins then dilute to 1:1 for the remainder of my standard developing time. This seems to give excellent results with good low and midtone contrast while keeping the highlights under control. My images routinely run a 6 to 8 stop range.
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  5. #5
    gainer's Avatar
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    While you are comparing, try substitutung sodium ascorbate in place of sodium sulfite. Add a little borax to keep pH the same for both.
    Gadget Gainer

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    Quote Originally Posted by gainer View Post
    While you are comparing, try substitutung sodium ascorbate in place of sodium sulfite. Add a little borax to keep pH the same for both.
    That's the beauty of D-23! It's so simple that you can change it to anything you like. However, I was once politely informed that once you change it, it isn't d-23 anymore.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jim appleyard View Post
    Cutting the sulfite to 80g/liter doesn't eliminate the
    solvent action, but merely reduces it.

    In addition, 1+1 or greater give a compensating effect
    which is often desirable.
    My D-23 formula is 8-80, metol-sulfite. I've used
    it on a few rolls of Acros at 1:7 and like the results.
    My gray card tests with densitometer determined
    densities show I'm making ISO 100. Looks like
    good highlight control.

    One roll of 120; 500ml at 1:7: developer in then
    3 inversions, then 3 at 1 minute and 3 at 2 minute
    intervals. One-shot, 16 minutes. Dan

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    gainer's Avatar
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    Don't get me wrong. I used to like it a lot. Every so often I try it again and think "That was really pretty good." The most expensive, and for, hardest to get is the sulfite, so I save my sulfite for jobs I haven't found a substitute for at the local pharmacy or grocery.
    Gadget Gainer

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    I've been replenishing my D23 with the balanced alkali replenisher from the cookbook rather then using it one-shot, so much better. I mix 1 liter of D23 and 1 liter of replenisher. I went through nearly 40 rolls without any issue. There was so much silver in the liter bottle I was suspicious it might do something to the film so i mixed up some fresh. Recently I've been developing 2/3 time straight and 1/3 time in a 1:3 dilution, or 1/3 in an 8 grams/liter borax solution. I'll post some examples ASAP.

    I have a question about replenishing the 1:3 D23 dilution. Should I be using a 1:3 replenisher dilution or just less replenisher
    Chris Saganich
    http://www.imagebrooklyn.com

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    Anscojohn's Avatar
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    You should use only straight DK-25R; and only replenish used straight D23.

    John, Mount Vernon, Virginia USA

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