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  1. #1
    Silverpixels5's Avatar
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    Well I finally tried it! I exposed my very first 5x7 negatives using J&C Classic 200. One, of two identical shots, I developed in Rodinal 1:50 on a Unicolor roller. The other I brush developed by inspection using a japanese hake, which jorge talked about. I started checking at 6 minutes and ended up stoping 30-45 seconds after that since it looked pretty good(though i really didn't know what is good...lol). The negatives actually look pretty similar, though they are hanging to dry right now and I wont' be able to make a more informed judgement until later. I really like the BDBI, even though i did have a few bumps in teh road. For one, it was hard for me to keep the negative in place when brushing. i was using an 8x10 tray with a 5x7 negative. I got it to a position where i could keep it in place with my finger about halfway through the process. The other bump I had to go over was forgetting to water stop bath and throwing my negative straight into the fix. Hopefully it didn't effect the negative much, although I suspect that it probably knocked some strength out of my fixer. All in all I enjoyed it and I look forward to fine tuning everything. Now all I need is a radio for the darkroom, as 6 minutes in the dark with nothing more than your thoughts to occupy you is a bit scary....lol

  2. #2

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    I just keep my fingertips lightly pressing on the side it is not being brushed. To avoid fingertip marks on the film use latex gloves. In my case I use the glove in my left hand and brush with my right.
    You might also want to use less developer. I dont know if it is possible with the developer you are using but I use 500 ml for an 8x10 neg on an 8x10 tray.

  3. #3
    Silverpixels5's Avatar
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    Less developer will probably make it easier as you suggest. I used a liter of it in an 8x10 tray for this run, but I'll cut it back to 500 mL the next time. this is also good since I'll be saving on dev and water. I guess I need to try the brushing a few more times so I can rely on my sense of touch more...still not used to operating in the total dark and the only way i knew where the brush was, was to start at my fingertips holding the neg down and brush away from there. Hopefully the next run will be much smoother. I really like this method of development and I think I'll stick with it for 5x7 and larger! For 4x5 I'll just keep using the hangers or unicolor drum if i'm in a hurry.
    RL Foley

  4. #4
    Silverpixels5's Avatar
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    Jorge (or anyone else using brush development):

    How often do you brush the negative? I tended to go up then down the negative lengthwise, then the same widthwise...wait a few seconds, then repeat the process. Is this agitation pattern ok?
    RL Foley

  5. #5

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    The brushing frequency is up to you, but the more time you wait the greater the chance of uneven development. This might only be a problem with some staining developers like ABC or PMK.
    If you are seeing good results with your technique then dont worry about it, the main idea of brush development is to obtain the most even negative possible.

    In my case I keep a continuing motion, I start at the top, brush down and then bring the brush to the top without brushing, move it about an inch to the side and brush down again.

  6. #6
    Silverpixels5's Avatar
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    Thanks for the tip as I'll be trying this technique again this weekend on some Classic 200 in ABC.
    RL Foley

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by Silverpixels5
    Thanks for the tip as I'll be trying this technique again this weekend on some Classic 200 in ABC.
    If you plan ond doing it by inspection I would not recommend ABC, every time you lift the neg to inspect it you risk getting streaks by oxidation. This happened to me many times with my 12x20 negs and it is the reason I switched to pyrocat HD. Then again you might have better luck than I did and it just might work for you.

  8. #8

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    Never tried brush development.

    What are the advantages?

    My standard method of development for ULF films is rotary processing in Uniclor and Beseler film drums on motor bases. I get very even develoment with this method using Pyrocat-HD.

    What enhancements on the print would I expect to see with brush develoment compared rotary processing?

    Sandy

  9. #9

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    Sandy,
    I would imagine that compared to Jobo or other rotary processing there is probably nothing to be gained by brush development (provided the flow patterns in the tube are consistant). However in comparing brush development to conventional tray development there is a noticable gain in evenness. The other thing that I have noticed is less potential negative damage.

    Aside from that there is the benefit of standing in complete darkness repetetively moving the brush across the negative for extended periods of time and contemplating one's naval...something almost spiritual about it.
    Art is a step from what is obvious and well-known toward what is arcane and concealed.

    Visit my website at http://www.donaldmillerphotography.com

  10. #10

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    Whoa,

    I gotta be frank about this. Contemlating my navel for 10-15 minutes is not a good enough reason for me to switch from rotary to brush development.

    Now, maybe if I could turn back time to 1985 when I was running 100 miles a week, and slimmer that two rails put together. the navel thing might do it for me. But from my current perspective looking down at that region, not.

    Sandy

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