I'm finally getting around to testing some various FB papers I've had sitting around for six to eight years. It's interesting to see how the various papers have withstood the years.
The good news is that all my old Forte Polywarmtone prints beautifully, and shows no sign of age fog. I bought some of this paper in 8x10 and 11x14 around 2000 or so, and hardly used it at that time. Recently, I started printing FB again and quickly went through a 100 sheet box of 8x10 Forte PWT. The thing that surprised me about this paper was that I found it to be the contrastiest VC paper I've ever used!
Was the Forte paper always this "punchy", or might this have been an effect of aging? I would have expected a loss of contrast in an older paper, not an increase.
Today, I tested a partially used package of AGFA MCC 111, and found it to be hopelessly fogged. The paper had a very even kind of fog, rendering the whole unexposed sheet around a zone III when developed. I only had 15 sheets of 8x10 MCC remaining, but I thought it would be fun to have one more printing session with MCC, which was my paper of choice around 2000 - 2001. Alas, it was not to be.
I still have some hope for an unopened package of 16x20 MCC 111. In general, my unopened paper packages have handled the passage of time much better than the opened ones.
Essentially, I'm just biding my time, until the "new" MCC 111 becomes available...
East Snook, TX
Gary, don't throw the Agfa away as it is still probably good for lith. I also cull old papers, and have found that oldies that go black in 1+2 dektol will often lith just fine, with no fog. Who'da thunk it?