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  1. #1
    juan's Avatar
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    I am about to begin an endeavor that's probably hopeless, but I want to try. I recently was given a 2x3 Speed Graphic camera. Included were four film holders - all showing the black side of the dark slide. I checked them in a changing bag, and all have film in them. Inside the camera case is an unopened box of Agfa Isopan film with an expiration date of January 1945, so the film in the holders may be the same film with a similar expiration date.

    I want to try developing the exposed film. I'm thinking of tray developing it in Pyrocat HD and developing by inspection. I could also try Rodinal. Anyone have any thoughts?

    Thanks in advance,
    juan

  2. #2
    David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
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    Inspection is a good approach. Base fog will be high, so you might want to add a restrainer like benzotriazole or increase the level of whatever restrainer is already in the formula you decide to use. For Pyrocat HD, ask Sandy.

    I've experimented a bit with very old films, and since speed is often slow, I've found a high-energy developer like Acufine works well.
    flickr--http://www.flickr.com/photos/davidagoldfarb/
    Photography (not as up to date as the flickr site)--http://www.davidagoldfarb.com/photo
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  3. #3
    Ed Sukach's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by juan
    I am about to begin an endeavor that's probably hopeless, but I want to try. ...
    I want to try developing the exposed film. I'm thinking of tray developing it in Pyrocat HD and developing by inspection. I could also try Rodinal. Anyone have any thoughts?
    I just went that route. I developed a roll of Ansco "Plenachrome" - found in an Antique Shop in Charlotte, North Carolina. That film, I guessed, was probably exposed sometime in the mid- `30's, and never processed.

    I used the "oldest" developer I could think of - Rodinal, and after a couple of test "clips" I used 1:25 for 7 minutes.

    Apparently, the emulsion was separating from the base in random places - so - *many* holes in the developed image (black specks on the print), but the images were recognizable.

    I *love* doing things like this ...Ah, the adventure!!!
    Carpe erratum!!

    Ed Sukach, FFP.

  4. #4
    Jorge Oliveira's Avatar
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    I had an unexposed roll of very old (by the type of can) TX, and decided to try it, jut for fun.

    First test series (all the same image): from EI 20 to 400, in Diafine. Lots of fog, images barelly acceptable at 20 (Diafine has some fog tendency).

    Second series: from 5 to 40, in HC-110B (since HC-110 is a low fog dev), 50% more than the recommended time. Darker base (maybe less time would have been better), but image at about 20 would even be printable.

    Jorge O

  5. #5

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    I once met a young lady who was taking a photo class in collage and found a roll of film her mother had left in an old camera. The student developed and printed her own baby pictures!
    Wm Blunt

  6. #6

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    I often use 127 Adox (Efke 100) that is over thirty years old and has only been frozen for the last ten or so.
    I have found that D-23 with high sulphite content and some additional restrainer gives very little base fog

    Mark Layne
    Mark Layne
    Nova Scotia
    and Barbados

  7. #7

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    [quote="David A. Goldfarb"]Inspection is a good approach. Base fog will be high, so you might want to add a restrainer like benzotriazole or increase the level of whatever restrainer is already in the formula you decide to use. For Pyrocat HD, ask Sandy.

    I second David's suggestion to add a little Benzotriazole. You might try something like 5ml per liter of developer of a 1% Benzotriazole.

    This is one application where I would not recommend Pyrocat-HD. The b+f, which is already very high, will be increased much more with a staining developer than with a traditional non-stainining developer. Better to use Rodinal or perhaps D76 1:1.

  8. #8
    noseoil's Avatar
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    I tried a box of 1968 Tri-x this summer. Since I had only PMK as a developer, this is what I used. I was never able to print through the fog in order to get proper contrast. When I extended development times to increase highlights, it seems the fog density just came along with it. This box was not cold stored, but was on a shelf where the climate is "warm" six months of the year. A different developer would have helped, but I ended up returning the box with a "thank you."

  9. #9
    David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
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    Here's a test shot on Royal Pan 4x5" that expired in 1965:



    and here's a detail to show the grain structure of this film:



    This was rated at EI 400 in Acufine with 1 oz. Edwal Liquid Orthazite per quart of developer. Linhof Tech V with 135/3.5 Planar, probably close to wide open using rangefinder focus.

    You can see from the relatively light film edges that the base fog is still pretty high if the scan is adjusted for relatively normal contrast in the image, but the film had a pretty good density range so there's still some room there. Midtones were nice, and I liked the grain structure, but I decided it was not really worth bothering with except as an experiment.

  10. #10
    juan's Avatar
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    Now this raises another question - what make and model is that archtop in your shot, David?
    j

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