Ammonium thiosulfate fixers are not necessarily acidic - TF4 is a good, well-known example of an alkaline one.
Originally Posted by c6h6o3
If there are any doubts as to whether the result will be archival, it hinges on the prescence of ammonia: Some believe that sodium thiosulfate-based fixers cannot adequately fix some emulsions.
-- Ole Tjugen, Luddite Elitist
Then best and only sure way to tell whether your prints are thoroughly washed is to get a test kit for hypo and test for residual fix. Very easy to do and very inexpensive. All other ways are a waste of time and money not to mention water for those of you who are washing for an hour or more. Lex uses the simple method that works very well. A couple changes of water and voila, done. How archival do you want your prints? 100 yrs? 500 yrs? or is 10 yrs ok?
I'd only just found out about test kits. I'll give silverprint a shout and see if they have em.
If I'm going to the bother of mounting them, selling etc.. I want them to last. 10 years sounds OK but if I last longer more would be good.
The test kit should allow me to stop worrying or alter my method to suit.
I called Silverprint a while back to order the Kodak kit to be told that Kodak no longer supplied them (ta a bunch, Kodak!). You can still get the solution but not the Estimator card used to match the colour. I don't know whether they've managed to source another one from somewhere since then.
Originally Posted by gareth harper
If you manage to get hold of one, please let me know.
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Nae joy I'm afraid, they told me exactly what you have just posted.
Photoformulary may not be much use being in the U.S, I'm in Scotland.
I did have a wee chat with silverprint, and along with all the other research etc I've decided I should really go the HCA route.
Waiting for my Kodak HCA to arrive, once I have that and I've read the packet and re-read the Ilford files I'll decide my final routine.
Should be something like,1 minute rapid fix, 10 minute soak in HCA, 15 minutes in running water, into the selenium, followed by 30min wash in running water or maybe up to an hour at this time of year, then off to dry.
If i remember correctly ; Ilford recommends 10 minute was, then HCA then 10 minutes of wash again. This is after the inital fix step.
Because selenium has fixer in it, I just repeat that step after toning, 10/15 minute wash, HCA for 10 minutes and then a re-wash.
Yup I'll need to re-read the Ilford pdf file, may well be as you describe.
Ilford also recommend a striaght from fix to selenium/wash aid mix but I'll skip that as it's gonna cost in selenium.
I double checked my notes last night at the lab. (too much fixer to the brain). And we are using TIm Rudman's suggestion, which comes from Ilford. after inital fix. wash 5 minutes , HCA 10 minutes, wash 5. Sometimes the wash time may be ten minutes if I get busy and forget to switch , I don't feel a few minutes longer will hurt, altho too long a wash is not good.
After toning I repeat the above. I rarely tone in line. Like to gather up a batch and tone in one setting.
Just need to soak dry prints in water for a few minutes to soften the paper.
As I said on "that other forum", I've seen no downside at all to TF-4 fixer. I simply develop the print, then a 30 sec. rinse in running water, then into the TF-4. No need for HCA, just a 15 minute wash. Then, into the selenium. Although I had nagging stain problems before TF-4, I've had nary a stain on a fiber print since. Is there a direct correlation? I don't know. It's so much easier that I am a little surprised that TF-4 hasn't become more popular.
Does anyone know of a company that brings Formulary products into Gareth's part of the planet? They're a fine company, and I like to support them. Good stuff, too: I use WD2D+ and 130 paper developer.