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  1. #1

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    C-41 Stabilizer usage

    This question is probably directed at PE;

    I'm currently using the Fujihunt X-Press C-41 kit to process C-41 films; in various posts on APUG, stabilizer seasoning has been mentioned if I recall correctly. The Fujihunt solution contains 1,2-Benziso-thiazolin-3-one . Is there an advantage to re-using the stabilizer, thereby seasoning the working solution with processed films, or is the working solution (of stabilizer) best used on a one-shot basis? The process manual / leaflet doesn't give advice on this subject.

    Tom.

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    Photo Engineer's Avatar
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    Tom;

    The stabilizer in the Fuji kit is a proprietary bacteriostat apparently like the one Kodak now uses. It can be used as long as it is clear and colorless. You do not season it so much as dilute it with carryover and exhaust the chemicals. As long as it acts as a wetting agent, you can be sure that it acts to prevent growths on the film.

    And, the nice thing is that as long as it causes no water spots, you are ok, but if you see beading on the wet film, just use fresh stabilzer. No harm is done. If you let it dry with water spots however, you have a problem.

    PE

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    I am very troubled by the stabilizer issue now. If I send a roll of VPS-III to a lab that uses Fujihunt chemicals I suspect that my film will get a correct bath of stabilizer. For some of my old and not so old expired films that I kept in the freezer I do not even know which stabilizer they should be bathed in. I don't believe lab technicians know about that either. Am I out of luck on this? I guess if you buy and shoot freshly bought films you won't have this issue.

  4. #4
    tiberiustibz's Avatar
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    Speaking of which, the tetenal kit includes "hexamine" stabilizer which, according to wikipedia, is a formaldehyde based chemical. It does not contain a wetting agent (!). Is there anything bad about using a formaldehyde based stabilizer with newer films?

    So a stabilizer with a bacteriokiller is never exhausted?

    Would my slide films benefit from me finding formaldehyde and dunking them in it?

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    VPS III processed today stands a chance of being run through a process with the wrong stabilizer.

    Formalin is known under several names by reason of forming a great number of derivatives which have some of the properties of formain, but sometimes not all of them. If they decompose into formalin then they will stabilze older films, but if they do not, then they will not.

    All stabilzers can be exhausted, but replenishment is not critical and is easy. Stabilzers do not generally go bad, that is they don't spoil after mixing unless they are visibly cloudy or have a precipitate or suspended matter.

    PE

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Photo Engineer View Post
    VPS III processed today stands a chance of being run through a process with the wrong stabilizer.

    Formalin is known under several names by reason of forming a great number of derivatives which have some of the properties of formain, but sometimes not all of them. If they decompose into formalin then they will stabilze older films, but if they do not, then they will not.

    All stabilzers can be exhausted, but replenishment is not critical and is easy. Stabilzers do not generally go bad, that is they don't spoil after mixing unless they are visibly cloudy or have a precipitate or suspended matter.

    PE
    Two questions and a comment:

    What is the result of using the wrong stabilizer?
    When did they change to the new type of stabilizer?

    Formalin (a version of Formaldehyde for those who don't know) is extremely toxic and if even a drop gets spilt it means a full evacuation of the building and a professional Hazmat team response for cleanup. Therefore eliminating this chemical from photographic chemistries is a good thing. I don't know if the antibacterial agents they use now are any more environmentally friendly, or less toxic, although I would guess that is the general idea.

    I would think the biggest issue for stabilizers is that since they follow a water rinse, they would get a little more diluted with use.....
    Paul Schmidt
    See my Blog at http://clickandspin.blogspot.com

    The greatest advance in photography in the last 100 years is not digital, it's odourless stop bath....

  7. #7
    AgX
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    Quote Originally Posted by wogster View Post
    Formalin (a version of Formaldehyde for those who don't know) is extremely toxic and if even a drop gets spilt it means a full evacuation of the building and a professional Hazmat team response for cleanup.

    Hazmat Team...??

    I can vividly remember having to work with tissues drained with formalin for hours at university. If I had hinted at a hazmat team, I would have been considered totally nuts...

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    Paul;

    Most importantly is the fact that your statement about toxicity is a typical overreaction to chemicals and chemistry. Formalin has been used for over 100 years in various industrial processes and it is only now that they are saying it is a suspected carcinogen. It does cause respiratory distress and problems, and should be avoided, but it is not in the same class as cyanide which your description describes better. Cyanide is instant death! Formalin at the same level is watering eyes and shortness of breath until fresh air is reached.

    Wrong stabilizer = bad dye stability in film.
    Change to new stabilizer = I Don't Know - sorry. Neither Kodak nor Fuji announced this with much fanfare.

    Last but not least, formaldehyde = formalin. The pure gas is called formaldehyde, the solution is stated to be formaldehyde 38%, 3% etc, or Formalin solution with a percentage.

    PE

  9. #9
    wogster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Photo Engineer View Post
    Paul;

    Most importantly is the fact that your statement about toxicity is a typical overreaction to chemicals and chemistry. Formalin has been used for over 100 years in various industrial processes and it is only now that they are saying it is a suspected carcinogen. It does cause respiratory distress and problems, and should be avoided, but it is not in the same class as cyanide which your description describes better. Cyanide is instant death! Formalin at the same level is watering eyes and shortness of breath until fresh air is reached.

    Wrong stabilizer = bad dye stability in film.
    Change to new stabilizer = I Don't Know - sorry. Neither Kodak nor Fuji announced this with much fanfare.

    Last but not least, formaldehyde = formalin. The pure gas is called formaldehyde, the solution is stated to be formaldehyde 38%, 3% etc, or Formalin solution with a percentage.

    PE
    I don't know, I work for a delivery company that deals with dangerous goods, and that is the procedure for formalin, does not apply to all formalin containing substances though, There are a few other things on the list, as for cyanide, it's on another list, the not for carriage list.

    So when they changed the stabilizer they changed the dyes or couplers as well, seems like this should have been made public, so people would know.
    Paul Schmidt
    See my Blog at http://clickandspin.blogspot.com

    The greatest advance in photography in the last 100 years is not digital, it's odourless stop bath....

  10. #10
    AgX
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    They did (in a way...)

    On their site there was a page:

    "Photochemicals - Questions and Answers
    KODAK FLEXICOLOR Final Rinse and Replenisher FAQ's"

    where the situation was explained.
    That page has vanished meanwhile.

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