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Thread: Tray processing

  1. #1

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    Tray processing

    Maybe I'm missing something but am about to develop 10x8 in trays and wondered how everyone keeps track of development times in complete darkness? I could count (not very accurately!) for a couple of minutes but when times run to 8 - 10 minutes, precision would be right out the window.

    Thanks for your experiences.

  2. #2
    David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
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    I have a large Omega Pro Lab timer with a luminescent dial (the big Gralab timers are like this as well) that I can see in the dark. It's far enough away from the trays that it doesn't fog the film.

    You could also use any timer that beeps. I ordered three cheap timers like this from a company in Hong Kong, but they only sent me one of them, so I won't recommend this particular company, but this sort of thing is easy to find.

    Then some people develop by inspection.
    flickr--http://www.flickr.com/photos/davidagoldfarb/
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    Akki14's Avatar
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    If I keep my trays in the bathtub and I'm kneeling next to the 'tub, i just point my digital watch away and press its little light button and read off the time occasionally. Barely any light produced by that. Or a kitchen timer but that can be a bit unexpected.
    ~Heather
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    Vaughn's Avatar
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    I use a big Gralab timer -- just keep it pointed away from the film. But any kitchen timer would work. heather -- what watch do you have? Supposively, the Timex Intaglo (or whatever name they use) light that their watches have is just the right color for inspecting film during development!

    Vaughn
    At least with LF landscape, a bad day of photography can still be a good day of exercise.

  5. #5
    mjs
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    I have a large Gralab timer on a shelf about three feet above the trays. The shelf is about 8" deep and the timer is back far enough that from the level of the trays, one can't see it. I painted the walls and ceiling of my darkroom matt dark gray, so no reflections to worry about, either. I cover the timer's face when I'm unloading film, reloading holders, etc. but uncover it once I've got the film into the developer. I run a control test a couple of times a year in complete darkness (counting) and I've never seen a trace of fog.

    Mike

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    Akki14's Avatar
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    Vaughn - hah, I haven't heard that. This is a casio watch with a tiny green LED(i suspect anyway) in one corner of the display. I suppose (very dark)green light is generally the safelight of choice for film, though ...
    ~Heather
    oooh shiny!
    http://www.stargazy.org/

  7. #7
    JBrunner's Avatar
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    I use my enlarger timer, the red LED kind, set to dim. It sits at a level lower than my sink, and a ways away, No problem.
    Last edited by JBrunner; 01-09-2009 at 12:21 PM. Click to view previous post history. Reason: sp

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    Martin Aislabie's Avatar
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    Stephen, I use audible timers when doing 5x4 while I sit in the dark

    I start the timers just after I immerse the film

    I use a Casio wrist watch to repeatedly bleep every minute while Dev’ing the film - http://www.argos.co.uk/static/Produc...ASIO+WATCH.htm

    Concurrently, I run a Paterson Triple Timer to bleep when the Dev/Stop/Fixer times have expired – it will count down 3 times at once & I have found it ideal for timing the overall sequence - http://thedarkroom.co.uk/products_cl...?productID=995

    Martin

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    Dear Stephen,

    I use a Timax Ironman Triathlon digital watch with a timer function (you can program multiple times in, including drain times if you like). I keep it in my pocket and listen for the alarms.

    Neal Wydra

  10. #10

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    Thanks everyone - I was thinking of recording an audio signal on CD using the metronome or drum machine in studio software but it starts to get complicated when you need to distinguish between minutes and parts of minutes. Your suggestions sound a lot easier.

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