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  1. #1

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    My chemicals ate air!

    I just found out, my less than half full bottle of Dektol and XTOL solutions have the appearance of air being sucked out. That is, the plastic bottles have significantly caved inward. Fixer bottle is unaffected.

    Is this a result of these chemicals absorbing air and as a result creating vacuum inside the bottle? How do I prevent this. These bottles are only few weeks old since mixed to full strength.

    Nearly full bottle is unaffected.

  2. #2

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    They didn't eat it. They sucked it up...

    You can displace the air with nitrogen from a gas cylinder - I do that. Or you can use glass and not worry about it as it will not suck the bottles in.
    Kirk

    For up from the ashes, up from the ashes, grow the roses of success!

  3. #3
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    The term, I believe is "oxidizing" -- combining with the oxygen in the bottle. It is a good sign...it means the cap in on tight and that no air is being sucked in to replace the oxygen.

    For better results, if making a gallon of developer, fill four 1-quart bottles (filled to the top) and start using the fourth which will not be filled quite to the top. Kodak's data guide say that a full bottle of Dektol will last 6 months -- and a half filled bottle will last 2 months (and one day in a tray).

    Other ways to preserve developers is to put in clean marbles to raise the level to the top again, or squirting in an inert gas (heavier than air) that forms a barrier between the developer and any oxygen in the bottle (sold in wine shops).

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

  4. #4

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    This is something I wasn't prepared for. I purchased all large storage bottles. Is this oxidizing characteristic only applicable to developers or do fixers have the same issue? What is the mode of degradation for fixer solutions?

    More importantly... since I do not process that many negatives or prints in any given months, keeping fresh chemicals handy will be my problem. According to the docs, Kodak fixer (Professional Fixer) has only 2 months shelf life once mixed with water. Would going with Kodafix concentrated solution and mix as needed be better or would concentrated solution will degrade just the same once it becomes less than full in the bottle?

  5. #5

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    Plan Ahead

    Quote Originally Posted by tkamiya View Post
    I just found out, my less than half full bottle of Dektol
    and XTOL solutions have the appearance of air being
    sucked out. That is, the plastic bottles have
    significantly caved inward. Fixer bottle is
    unaffected.

    Is this a result of these chemicals absorbing air and
    as a result creating vacuum inside the bottle? How
    do I prevent this. These bottles are only few
    weeks old since mixed to full strength.
    Nearly full bottle is unaffected.
    Well you could use bottles that don't suck. That's what
    I do. Also, I split solutions to 'session' amounts. I know
    ahead how much chemistry will be needed for any one
    session. In fact split amounts dictate the amount of
    processing to be done. I don't like to waste good
    chemistry.

    Organize your work load. You'll always have at hand
    a full bottle of fresh chemistry. Dan

  6. #6

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    Dan -

    Thank you for your input. My only problem at this point in game is that I *just* came back to film photography and I don't have an established protocol or workload just yet. I would, perhaps, invest in collapsible bottles. One 1/2 gallon regular bottle and one 1/2 gallon collapsible to store mixed 1 gallon.

    I expected my (re) learning curve will be steep but I am encountering things I didn't expect - such as this. I'm glad I have a place to ask questions and make my process better though.

    Would someone be kind enough to comment on fixer issue? That is, knowing Kodak professional fixer only lasts 2 months once mixed - are there a better solution? What is the model of degradation for fixers?

  7. #7

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    Small one time use bottles. 250 ml for paper developer. 125 ml for film developer.

    Decant 1 liter at a time when you open it into smaller bottles.

    Anytime developer is exposed to air, it deteriorates. Partially full bottles are not acceptable.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by tkamiya View Post
    Would someone be kind enough to comment on fixer issue? That is, knowing Kodak professional fixer only lasts 2 months once mixed - are there a better solution?
    Keep it as a concentrate as long as possible. If you are starting with Kodak Rapid Fixer which is a liquid concentrate, you can mix a portion of the stock bottle that you bought - make 1 quart instead of 1 gallon. Then you still have some concentrate to make the next quart up with. The concetrate will still go bad faster in a partially full bottle, but I think it will last longer than mixing the entire stock solution up into working solution.

    If you are starting with powdered fixer, then I suggest switching to a liquid concentrate for fixer.
    Kirk

    For up from the ashes, up from the ashes, grow the roses of success!

  9. #9
    Vaughn's Avatar
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    Ilford Rapid Fix comes in a liquid concentrate -- make up as much as you need as you need it.

    Or something like this...

    http://www.freestylephoto.biz/6204-A...e-5?cat_id=303

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

  10. #10

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    Thanks everybody....

    One last Q... Fixers... Do they degrade when exposed to oxygen just like developers or is the degradation process different? Please note, I do not reuse chemicals. I use everything as one-shot only so contamination is NOT an issue.

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