Don't know where to start!
I'm interested in starting C-41 development and color printing, but like the thread subject states, not too sure where to start. I guess I need advice on chemicals needed, and if anyone know where they're available in Montreal that would really help. I currently have a "B&W equipped" darkroom, and have recently gotten a Vivitar enlarger with a color head, but it's a bit weird. The head is a Unicolor Mornick Super-Bright Dichroic Color enlarging system Model III. It has dials for yellow and magenta, but no cyan. Also, there's some sort of lever that looks like it would switch something, but not sure. Can I color print with this?
Any help, links, pointers would be appreciated.
Get a Tetenal (Jobo) C-41 Press Kit and try it out. This simple kit will allow you to give it a try and see if it is something you really want to get involved with. If you have enough at home to do B/W, you should be able to use the kit as it is all complete.
Take a look at this thread which has a link to the instructions.
Once you get your negatives developed, look for a shared darkroom for printing. That's where the hard part begins.
That will work fine. When printing negatives you always have to correct away from cyan. It's best to leave it alone, even better if you don't have it. The absence of the Cyan dial will limit you from doing weird things like duplication film and Ilfochrome slide printing and internegative work but will be absolutely fine for RA4 work.
Originally Posted by nextreme
For C41 you want a thermometer: preferably accurate. When I do it I get a large tub of water at 102 degrees. I heat the chemistry up in a stainless steel espresso milk steaming thing by double boiling over my stove. I pour in at 102 to steel tanks and agitate first 30 seconds and four lifts every 30 thereafter.
For RA4 printing I use trays with kodak chemistry at room temperature. Use the Developer Replenisher RT without starter and the bleach fix as normal. I look at it and abide by the color corrections chart and it seems to work fine. Start with test strip for time, and then do confirming strips till you're done. The annoying part is the 2 minute development in the dark. Gets long on confirming strip #5.
BTW, your lever disengages the filters to brighten up the image for focusing. Don't forget to re-engage them afterwards
I wrote some articles a while back:
Denis, thanks for that. I've looked at those kits online at Freestyle, but I'm not sure it can be shipped to Canada.
tiberiustibz, thanks also. I like your articles, just what I needed. I'm glad also for confirmation the color head I have will work.
For a thermometer, I'm using a digital indoor/outdoor thermometer by immersing the outdoor sensor into water (up till now). It works really well, and is very accurate (no problems so far). Hope immersing in chemicals won't be a problem.
I will also be using trays. The Developer Replenisher RT you suggest I use, is that something only sold in large quantities? I found something (on the Adorama site) called Kodak Extacolor Developer (Kodak product no. 1478817). This is the 1 gallon size, I was thinking I'd email Kodak and ask if there's somewhere I can get this in Montreal locally, and if not then in Canada (questioning shipping from the states). And also, I should stick with Kodak Paper, as the Fuji one is now better suited to digital printing?
I use plastic tank and reels, so I might hold off on developing the film myself, until I get steel ones.
Again, many thanks
Nextreme, see my PM about all that; what I would suggest for C-41 is to rely on a good lab like Lozeau or Photo Service, unless you want to explore push/pull and cross processing. C-41 is long and boring to do.
You can start pretty cheap with a Unicolor drum set with motor base and a bucket of hot water. That's what I'm still using. Get a Paterson Colour Thermometer (they're more precise than the B&W ones; more expensive too). Lozeau still has them, I think.
I never managed to get the small hobbyist C41 kits from Lozeau, because all they stock in C41 is Fuji Frontier supplies. OTOH, they stock small RA-4 kits (dev and blix). Photo Service has a couple of things, including some E6 chemistry.
Using film since before it was hip.
"One of the most singular characters of the hyposulphites, is the property their solutions possess of dissolving muriate of silver and retaining it in considerable quantity in permanent solution" — Sir John Frederick William Herschel, "On the Hyposulphurous Acid and its Compounds." The Edinburgh Philosophical Journal
, Vol. 1 (8 Jan. 1819): 8-29. p. 11
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If you're doing trays at room temperature, it's best to use the Developer Replenisher RT without starter. If you're processing normally, you can use whatever you want. The RT is sold in 10 liter size (2.5 gallons) which is fine because you can mix up a liter at a time, it lasts fairly long in concentrate form. You want the blix as well, sold in 10 liter sizes. I believe the regular developer will work fine in a pinch.
The Kodak Supra Endura is the only paper I've tried that works well in room temperature. The Fuji Type C gives you nasty nasty magenta crossover. In fact I'll sell you a box if you want The Type P simply doesn't give good colors.
Shipping is not cheap on chems because of bogus hazmat charges. It's easiest to pick them up on location.
Are there instructions to mix 1L of working from the concentrate? I was wondering about that, would make things a lot easier.
I managed to find the chemicals locally (thanks to Michel). I believe they have a 5L developer kit and a 10L blix in stock.
I was sort of hesitant with the 10L size though. Can the blix also be mixed 1L at a time?
I've also been reading a lot of posts regarding paper. It seems like the Fuji product is optimized for a digital/machine exposure?
Also, for a second it looked like Supra Endura was being discontinued, but it's only the roll product, right?
10 liters of chems will do about 120 8x10 as oneshot chemistry. So buy the two 10 liter kits, with an accurate graduate you can easily mix up a liter or two at a time. The working solutions will keep for 2 moths in squeezed full soft drink bottles. There still seems to be lots of cut stock in the Canadian system, don't forget, Kodak will discontinue production quite a while before they run out of paper.
You can still buy Supra Endura. I just bought 300 sheets of it just in case of emergency.
Originally Posted by nextreme
There are instructions on Kodak's tech publications for mixing. I think on the 10 liter kit it just lists volume of the chemicals on the bottles so just divide by 10. It's something like 700mL water plus 50A, 27B, 50C then fill to one liter. Don't hold me to that though.