should i use a different developer?
i am thinking of changing film and print developers.
i have been using the same thing ( ansco 130 ) for 4-5 years
and switched from xtol & dektol before that ( years and years ).
i am not sure why i am doing this, maybe because i just ran out of 130, and want to try something new once again.
anyone have any suggestions for me?
i am leary about going back to xtol. it has such a short shelf life ... i won't really get a chance to use it before it expires ( i mixed some up in the spring and i don't really want to trust it now ... with only a few rolls & sheets put through it )
thanks in advance for your suggestions
if you´d tell us what films you are using, we might be able to make a suggestion based on that (and the individual experiences)... and what formats you plan to apply the dev to.
Witht he old Xtol - do a snip test just priot to developing. Mix the solution, put in a snip of film in it and watch it. If nothing happens, the dev is dead, if it turns black in appropriate time - everything is allright.
I have never used that Xtol, but from what I have heard it is a binary developer - if it fails, it fails completely. ;->
Check out the thread about Microdol that I posted. The suggestion for storage in plastic Coca Cola bottles should work for Xtol, which I think already has a long shelf life in my huble opinion. In gas tight plastic bottles filloed to the very top, I imagine you could keep it for quite a while.
I cringe in vain when I read that someone is using drink/food bottles for darkroom chemistry. No, you won´t die from drinking Xtol - but you´d feel pretty bad for a while.
And next time a kid or a drunk at your new years party will take a slug of the dichromate enhancer in the coffee milk bottle. :-(
Or it might the paint thinner in the milk jug. Or the soda bottle you take up to drink from in the darkroom - you can´t see as much and you don´t care and BANG... it´s done.
And actually I don´t like to think about what some other nerd filled in the water bottle before returning it for refilling. No, I don´t want to know it.
Dedicated bottles are cheap and plentiful available. Dark brown glas bottles will have an airtight cap, are easy to clean and you can use them more or less indefinitely.
Not an issue
My bottles are clearly marked with a large yellow sticker, in a private darkroom and in a closed plastic tub that has all sorts of other chemical bottles chemicals in it. There are never children in this darkroom and it is my plastic tub with a lid on it and in my personal space under a shelf. I am not worried about it. The fact that it is in a Coke bottle should also pass muster as it obviously isn't Coke. If this leads to problems it is a Darwinian issue and not a neglegence issue. If it were a public darkroom where my things were sitting around, I would agree. I have a plethora of Coke bottles and it works perfectly.
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Originally Posted by jnanian
john: you seem like the type of person who likes to make photographs instead of messing about experimenting with chemical concoctions. You will have as many suggestions as there are developers so I'll begin. Try a liquid like Kodak HC110 or Rodinal. Either have extensive shelf life and are quite easily used. Both may be diluted and used as a compensating developer. They both create greater grain (and in some cases, contrast) than say the Metol-based developers. Unfortunently you will have to try the various developers yourself to see the effects on your personal film choice. If I'm wrong and you like experimenting, then have a ball - it all out there for you.
I love the smell of fixer in the morning. It smells like...creativity!
Truly, dr bob.
? Xtol short shelf-life. My current working solution has been on the go for 2 years.
Originally Posted by jnanian
I 've been using X-tol for about 4 years now and use it as a replenished working solution. I don't have deep tanks and rely on Paterson tanks for 35mm & 120 and a Jobo tank for 5X4.
My method is to use a 2.5 litre bottle for the working solution and smaller bottles for fresh stock solution to use as the replenisher. I've used this system for about 35 years first with Microphen then later with Adox-Borax MQ, and now X-tol. As the working solution is replenished at the end of a session the bottle is always full and so keeps well.
The advantages are superb results similar to using deep tanks, the negatives are more similar to using Xtol at 1+3, economy and speed of use.
thanks for the suggestions!
i have been using tri-x, tmax 100-400 and plusx aero film.
i shoot 35mm-8x10 and i am not really particular to any format -
once in a while i'll shoot different "stuff" ( ilford, and things from eastern europe) ...
i do have a ton of sheet film to burn through ... when i see the light at the end of the tunnel, i'll probably be buying all my film from j&c.
i've never used rodinal, hc110 or a staining developer ... i have a few things to think about now before i go out and buy any chemistry ... <g>
- - john