I don't see how starter could possibly be the issue here. I don't use starter and it works fine every time.
Starter is only important on a replenished line to maintain consistency, it actually slows down developing by making new developer act more like older replenished developer. If you aren't running a replenished line, the starter simply isn't needed.
Typically when there is no image it is exposure. For me this happens when I get in a rush and get the wrong side of the paper up. I've gone to testing each sheet as it comes out of the box by gently rubbing my check with the paper to verify it is right-side-up.
It's not a big issue, and won't cause the image to go away, but stopping for a minute is overkill, 30 seconds including drain time is plenty, I use 30 seconds for the first wash too.
Kodak recommends that the bleach fix time match the development time, that works well for me. Again even if there is a mismatch it won't cause a blank sheet.
All three temps will work as long as an appropriate time is used, that's not the issue either.
Mark Barendt, Beaverton, OR
"We do not see things the way they are. We see things the way we are." Anaïs Nin
Since guilleguillotina already stated that his paper remains white even after exposure to room light, I doubt that enlarger exposure is the main culprit here. IMHO there are basically two options left: either the paper has lost all its photographic sensitivity, or the developer went bad. These two things can be easily tested for:
- RA4 color developer will also develop B&W paper, albeit slowly. Drop a clip of regular B&W paper into the color developer and see whether it turns gray or black. If not, I would suspect the color developer has gone bad, or was mixed incorrectly.
- In similar fashion, RA4 paper in room light will turn black if you put it in regular B&W paper developer. If a test clip does not turn black, there is something wrong with the paper.
Trying to be the best of whatever I am, even if what I am is no good.
It has been some time since I left an exposed but undeveloped piece of RA4 in room light but if I recall correctly it had a bluish look initially which then went slowly to a beige colour. If the paper is white as in the borders of a fully processed RA4 doesn't this suggest that it was never developed at all but went straight into blix. I am assuming that blixing RA4 is similar to simply exposing and then fixing in B&W without any developer.
Originally Posted by Rudeofus
Totally exhausted developer given what the OP has said seems impossible. Might it be that he has mixed blix twice and used this in his first process step thinking that his first blix was developer?
Sounds a crazy suggestion I know but whatever it was that he did or didn't do it has to have been pretty fundamental and drastic to get the effect he has got.
Exposure isn't the problem. Assuming your paper is good (which I would bet that it is), the problem is with your chemistry. Any chance you mixed up your blix and developer?
If you blix before you develop, you will get the "white" result.
Originally Posted by WayneStevenson
“Photography is a complex and fluid medium, and its many factors are not applied in simple sequence. Rather, the process may be likened to the art of the juggler in keeping many balls in the air at one time!”
Ansel Adams, from the introduction to The Negative - The New Ansel Adams Photography Series / Book 2
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You do not need starter! That should be stated at the outset. It is only really useful for replenished processes. In fact, using straight replenisher should give you a tad more snap.
Now, if color paper, right out of the box is white, it is NOT color paper. All color papers have some color from pink to green depending on manufacturer and product.
Color developer should be a light tea color with a faint to strong odor depending on age. All of the parts before mixing should have either no color or a light tea color which darkens and then lightens. There are 3 parts to the replenisher.
The blix is blood red. If you use it first or get any in the color developer, the developer is going to die!
So, it sounds like you have either the wrong paper, have used blix first, have mixed things wrong, or have a bad developer. I hope we can help you through this.
Hey guys I'm gonna test the Fuji Crystal Archive Type II (Mate finish I got it from BH ) in Dektol and Microdol to see if its the paper, also I found some guideline for mixing chems here on the site I'm gonna try mixing 500ml tests (I got the 10lt RA/RT and BLIX from adorama) with the following sets:
Part a: 25ml
Part b: 12 ml
Part c: 25 ml
+H2O: Final volume 500 ml
Part b: 11.1ml
Part c: 25 ml
+H2O: Final Volume 500 ml
Part a: 70ml
Part b: 10ml
+H2O: final volume 500 ml
Part a: 71ml
Part b: 100ml
If all of this fails to get anything on the paper I'm gonna burn it all up with gasoline either way I'll report back to you guys thanks for all of your responses C: .
EDIT: Also I'm sure I'm not mixing the blix twice or using it before the dev I'm hoping I just screwed up mixing the chems, each step I stir the chem for like 2-2:30 min so I'm gonna try mixing again the 500 ml tests.
I like the idea of mixing fresh and trying again but I have difficulty figuring out how it is possible to screw up the mixing to a sufficient extent to get a white paper result.
Originally Posted by guilleguillotina
I don't want to appear to be insulting you but I seem to recall at least one other APUGer swearing blind that he hadn't made a mistake with the processing order when he got clear film with no edge markings which is the classic fix first mistake. I did this once and was also sure that I hadn't made such a mistake but the irrefutable science involved made it inevitable that I had.
Let us know how it goes
When you mix fresh chems this time, use DISTILLED WATER. When I first moved out here on the South Dakota prairie, I ran into the exact same thing. Nothing would develop, B&W, or color. After going nutz I found it was the water. You would think that well water from 2400 feet down would be pure, but don't you believe it. Now all chemistry and solutions are made using distilled water and no more problems, A big plus is mixed chems store very well.
Gun Control is like: Reducing drunk driving by making it harder for SOBER people to buy cars.
If your water is so bad you have to use DW to get an image, you have made a major error somewhere. Sorry! True!
Do NOT use Microdol or any other film developer with an RA paper. These developers can inhibit development totally as the emulsion types are incompatible.