I use a GraLab timer to time the steps. Developer 2', Stop 30", Blix 2' and wash for up to 20 mins or more at 68 - 75 deg.
I usually run 2 prints back to back. I manage about 10 prints per hour in trays, but usually print for several hours. My usual run is 24 prints per evening. I usually dump the developer after a fixed # of prints, about the same as the Jobo recommendation.
I limit myself to 11x14 max in trays. Any larger and I use the Jobo drums and can still run at room temp.
I used a Jobo machine in the past for 8x10 prints, and it worked fine, but with the Jobo, I didn't need to process at room temperature. I used the prescribed temperature for the given process.
I even processed Cibachrome and Kodak reversal paper with good results.
Drying the drum was indeed a bit tedious. I guess you could be more productive with multiple drums.
A Jobo machine is great when you want to process film also, you can use the same machine.
A paper processor with roller transport is of course a very productive device. But is is not very appropriate if you want to make five prints during a lab session.
I have to second the Jobo recommendation. I have owned the CPA-2, CPP-2 and now the ATL2300 for both film and paper. I run E-6, C-41 and B&W film in 4x5 and 8x10 through this set up. Prints up to 20x24. For low volume it's hard to beat. Get
multiple drums to increase productivity so you don't have to dry in between runs.
You like working in the darkroom, so RA-4 printing is a good approach for you. From your comments, you seem to be pretty productive, too. That goes in favor of staying in the darkroom. More and more, I've moved toward scanning the negatives and printing on an inkjet. It is just so fast and convenient for me, and the controls in Photoshop are outstanding. But I keep my darkroom, and I still do some RA-4. There are negatives that work much better with traditional printing, especially when working with the local red rock. From your notes, I suspect you share a production darkroom. As long as you have access, we will all just be jealous - it's a great way to work. Small processors are excellent and very ecomomical for the small darkroom. I use a Jobo and time the steps with a kitchen countdown timer. Works great, but may not be quite as efficient as your production setup. Before I got the Jobo (some years ago), I used a cheap DevTec processor and maintained the temperature with a fish tank heater-themostat. That also worked very well, although it was messier and more cramped than the Jobo with lift.
You will never get a better deal on a tabletop processor than you can get now. About 2 years ago I bought a Durst Vario 40 for 351 USD in like new condition. I had a FGujimoto CP1 with replenisher and dryer. Parts from Jobo were very expensive. With Jobo gone I do not know what is available for service.
You can make color prints quite inexpensively in RA4.
Claire (Ms Anne Thrope is in the darkroom)
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I have been using the CP-51's little brother, the CP-31, for the past 5 years, and just bought myself a CP-51 on eBay, mind you, for $456! Yup. These are the days.
I am an editorial photographer, and use the machine quite a bit, and have to say it's real easy to use, uses 2 liters of chemicals in each bath, with my set-up runs dry-to-dry like the Kreonite you're used to, and is very easy to clean up.
The CP-51 is a big piece of machinery, and takes up quite a bit of space. It runs on 6 liters each developer and blix, but has an automatic replenishment system built in, which is optional on the CP-31. I love it! And a lot easier than dealing with drums, unless you are really patient, which I am not.
The chemistry can be left in the 51, there are floating lids available, but it is recommended to clean the tanks if the processor isn't used in more than a week.
So, if you have the space, I highly recommend the Fujimotos, they are easy to work on, reaaaaally dependable, and make processing a breeze. Omega Satter bought the analog division of Jobo, parts and support are available, but yes, a bit expensive, you can try and find a used processor on Ebay for parts if need be. I did.
And regarding the "retro" thing: it doesn't get any more retro than this place now, does it?
Claire, I can buy anything I want from Jobo, what are you talking about? They are not gone.
Sorry, I thought they went out of business. They just changed US distributors I guess.
Claire (Ms Anne Thrope is in the darkroom)
Using a table top processor is great but you have to have reasonable volume as the chemicals simply go bad sitting in your processor. I could buy an old Noritsu enlarger/processor combo that can do from 3.5x5 up to 11x14 without a darkroom for may be $2000. The problem is that if I don't use it enough I will lose the large quantity of chemicals.
I use Unicolor drums and a motorized roller I had for over 20 years. I used to used from just a watch, a stop watch, a programmable calculator. Recently I used an old laptop with a timer program that I wrote. But the old laptop died so I right now use a pocket PC with a new program I just wrote.
This sounds perfect for an Ilford cap-40 processor, the times are right as well as the temps. Any reason it wouldn't work?
Originally Posted by Photo Engineer