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  1. #21
    gainer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Grant View Post
    I'm loathe to tamper with a formula, so unless I'm adapting or designing a new one for a specific purpose I wouldn't put ascorbate in. Ascorbate/Ascorbic acid & derivative based developers have been around for a long time, they are in Kodak (1947) & Ilford (56 & 57) patents, unfortunately the Patents probably aren't available online, the Kodak Rather one is French & the Ilford one British. (I only just found the referances a few minutes ago).

    I think what surprises me is just how much work was done on developers using Ascorbates and how until Xtol most of us didn't contemplate using it. There's a Swedish company who patented (USP) an Xtol style developer in the 60's so nothings that new.

    Of course, I wouldn't have suggested it if I hadn't tried it. My first published ascorbate developer was an accident that I published in Darkroom & Creative Camera Techniques in 1994, before XTOL was made public. I was looking for a substitute for sulfite because ascorbic acid was available close by while sulfite was not, and both are antioxidants. Needless to say, it was sulfite free, simple and quickly made a liter at a time. Metol or Phenidone, ascorbic acid and sodium carbonate. You can see that article reprinted at www.unblinkingeye.com. It's whimsically entitled "Non-chromogenic Antiscorbutic Developers for Black & White."
    Gadget Gainer

  2. #22

    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Multi Format
    For small negs:

    FX-39 - very sharp, but can be rough with faster films.
    Pyrocat HD is the best all round dev for acutance and grain IMO
    Xtol 1+3 is fairly decent acutance wise, but with moderatelt fine grain.

    For larger formats or when using modern slow eumulsions Xtol 1+2 or 3 with some rodinal added works nicely.

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