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  1. #1
    BetterSense's Avatar
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    skipping the rinse

    Is it possible to wash RC prints satisfactorily without a running water rinse?

    My darkroom doesn't have a sink in it. Thus what I generally do is plop the fixed prints into a tray of water. Within a reasonable amount of time, I then take them out of the darkroom to be rinsed. This consumes a lot of time and makes me break darkness too often.

    I'm trying to devise a rinseless process. I'm thinking of one tray with a hypo-clearing agent, then moved to another tray of clean water, soaked for some time, possibly transferred to yet another clean water tray, and then hung straight up in the darkroom. Do you think this a workable plan? I only use RC paper.

  2. #2
    David William White's Avatar
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    Sure. I don't even bother with hypo clear with RC to tell you the truth. Fiber is another kettle of fish.
    Considerably AWOL at the present time...

    Archive/Blog: http://davidwilliamwhite.blogspot.com

  3. #3
    BetterSense's Avatar
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    By the way, what exactly is hypo-clearing agent? I've heard that it's the same thing as washing soda, but washing soda is sodium carbonate, and that doesn't make chemical sense to me. I was pretty sure it was sodium sulfite, but if it really is sodium carbonate then that's good because I can buy that at Kroger.

  4. #4
    Ian Grant's Avatar
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    Hypo clear is just a Sodium Sulphite bath sometimes it needs a little Metabisulphite or Carbonate/Citrate and a water softening agent added depending on your water supply.

    You can use a 1-2% solution of Sodium Sulphite or Sodium Carbonate (Agfa used to recommend carbonate) just soak for a couple of minutes. Hypo clear isn't really needed for RC papers & negatives.

    Ian.

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    Three trays of water is sufficient, moving each print to the next tray just before the next one is ready to come out of the fixer bath. The prints really don't need very long at all in each bath, but I like to use multiple trays so the final rinse water contains as little accumulated fixer as possible.

    Ian

  6. #6
    Photo Engineer's Avatar
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    Look at the very long thread on washing prints.

    With time, improperly washed prints will turn brown. Test your prints with the proper test solutions for retained silver and retained hypo. If they fail, then your work flow is at fault.

    PE

  7. #7
    BetterSense's Avatar
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    Hypo clear is just a Sodium Sulphite bath sometimes it needs a little Metabisulphite or Carbonate/Citrate and a water softening agent added depending on your water supply.
    Are those extra ingredients just for stability? Because I was thinking of mixing it up one-shot.

    You can use a 1-2% solution of Sodium Sulphite or Sodium Carbonate
    I guess you really can use either one, then.

  8. #8
    Martin Aislabie's Avatar
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    I too don’t have running water in my darkroom – so for RC I use a couple of trays of water

    The first is just to rinse off the excess fixer and the second is a holding tray

    Once I have a few prints in the holding tray, I take a break and go outside to wash them properly

    Martin

  9. #9
    BetterSense's Avatar
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    How long do you wash them for? That's pretty much what I do, only with only 1 tray, and after soaking in the tray for so long, usually I only give them a few seconds of running water before hanging them up.

  10. #10
    Martin Aislabie's Avatar
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    I give them a good wash - maybe not quite the full 2mins each that Ilford recommends - but at least 90s each under the cold tap

    I also use the time to evaluate the print tone under normal room lighting levels

    I cannot speak for the achival qualities of my procedure - but I have some 15 to 20yrs old done like this and they are still OK

    Martin

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