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  1. #41

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    I turn on the lights immediately (5 seconds) after putting the paper in the fixer tray, without seeing any bad effect. I believe that 10 seconds in the stop bath has made the developer totally ineffective.

    I am impatient in the darkroom and squeeze time out of the process where ever possible. For example, I leave RC test prints in the developer for only about 45 seconds, then 10 seconds in the stop bath, then 5 seconds in the fixer, then the lights come on. This makes the darkroom process more enjoyable for my impatient personality.

    For the keepers, I use fiber paper and everything slows down as can be expected. The final print is developed for 2 minutes, but test strips for only about 1:15 to determine proper exposure. These shortcuts save a lot of time without sacrificing quality.

  2. #42
    RalphLambrecht's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Loren Sattler View Post
    I turn on the lights immediately (5 seconds) after putting the paper in the fixer tray, without seeing any bad effect. I believe that 10 seconds in the stop bath has made the developer totally ineffective.

    I am impatient in the darkroom and squeeze time out of the process where ever possible. For example, I leave RC test prints in the developer for only about 45 seconds, then 10 seconds in the stop bath, then 5 seconds in the fixer, then the lights come on. This makes the darkroom process more enjoyable for my impatient personality.

    For the keepers, I use fiber paper and everything slows down as can be expected. The final print is developed for 2 minutes, but test strips for only about 1:15 to determine proper exposure. These shortcuts save a lot of time without sacrificing quality.
    How do you make sure that the final print is identical to the last test print, if the processing is so different between the two?
    Regards

    Ralph W. Lambrecht
    www.darkroomagic.comrorrlambrec@ymail.com[/URL]
    www.waybeyondmonochrome.com

  3. #43
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    If the prints look the same, what difference does it make if they are identical?

    Inspired by this thread, I started turning on the lights as soon as the print hits the fixer. It's very liberating, but takes some getting used to. It's mind over matter. If you don't mind, it don't matter.

  4. #44
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    Just dip it in for like 10-15 seconds if it's only a test strip.
    www.EASmithV.com

    "The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera."— Dorothea Lange
    http://www.flickr.com/easmithv/
    RIP Kodachrome

  5. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by BetterSense View Post
    If the prints look the same, what difference does it make if they are identical?
    Then why not 1:15 for a developing time all around?

    One of the biggest keys to fine print making is consistency. I would go so far as to advance consistency as one of the most important aspects of actually having a bit of control in arriving at an intent with ones work. Everyone gets to do what they want, of course, and can justify it any way they want.

    I however, for one, would never consider arriving at an exposure using a method that varies in some way from the way I expose and develop my final print, and if I was teaching someone to print, I would discourage such a practice. YMMV.

  6. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by JBrunner View Post
    Then why not 1:15 for a developing time all around?

    One of the biggest keys to fine print making is consistency. I would go so far as to advance consistency as one of the most important aspects of actually having a bit of control in arriving at an intent with ones work. Everyone gets to do what they want, of course, and can justify it any way they want.

    I however, for one, would never consider arriving at an exposure using a method that varies in some way from the way I expose and develop my final print, and if I was teaching someone to print, I would discourage such a practice. YMMV.
    Amen to that!
    Could not have said it better than that myself.
    There are no shortcuts in fine photography.
    Regards

    Ralph W. Lambrecht
    www.darkroomagic.comrorrlambrec@ymail.com[/URL]
    www.waybeyondmonochrome.com

  7. #47

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    This will respond to J Bruners and Ralph Lamprecht's comments about consistency.

    First, a test strip for me is simply that. With Ilford or Adox (old Agfa) RC glossy paper, I typically aim for test strip exposures of about 16, 13 and 10 seconds (usually about f8 for the lens with 6x6 Tri-X negatives). With dektol at 1:2, the paper starts coming to life in about 10 seconds and is probably fully or nearly fully developed at about 30 seconds. My 45 second time is more than enough for my test strip to sufficiently steer me to a final exposure time. I do not make a test strip at my estimated final exposure time.

    Frankly, I doubt I could tell the difference between an RC print developed for 45 seconds vs. 60 seconds. I do not believe any more density appears in the final 15 seconds, but just in case the blacks are affected subtely, I develop full size prints for 60 seconds as the manufacturers data sheets call for.

    As for fixing, I am not concerned if my test strips are under fixed and would not hold up over time. They are in the waste basket within minutes of fixing. I have never seen a difference in a final print fixed for 3 minutes vs. the test print fixed for 10 seconds before turning on the lights.

    In my opinion, these procedures do not sacrifice quality, they simply save time.

    With fiber paper, everything slows down some, but I apply the same thinking. Test strips are developed for a little over a minute, full size prints for 2 minutes.

    Again, this works for well for my impatient nature.

  8. #48
    RalphLambrecht's Avatar
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    Loren

    Please don't change your way of working because of what I write if your results are as intended, but a few things caught my eye.

    Quote Originally Posted by Loren Sattler View Post
    With dektol at 1:2, the paper starts coming to life in about 10 seconds and is probably fully or nearly fully developed at about 30 seconds.
    There is such a thing as 'full development' but it takes a long time. Midtones and highlights darken further at least until the paper fogs. I can clearly see a density difference in the highlights between a print developed for 1 or for 2 minutes.

    Quote Originally Posted by Loren Sattler View Post
    I do not make a test strip at my estimated final exposure time.
    Impatient or not, you should. You cannot guess what the final print looks like from a small test strip. I'm afraid, with your method, you are just accepting a guess. I make a final full print in 1/12 stop around the estimated exposure time and another set in 1/4 grade around the estimated contrast. This often changes my final settings.

    Quote Originally Posted by Loren Sattler View Post
    Frankly, I doubt I could tell the difference between an RC print developed for 45 seconds vs. 60 seconds. I do not believe any more density appears in the final 15 seconds, but just in case the blacks are affected subtely, I develop full size prints for 60 seconds as the manufacturers data sheets call for.
    I don't think I could either, but I can tell 1 minute from 2! The manufacturers' data sheets are made for impatient commercial lab workers, not for fine-art printers. They are just as reliable as the miles/gallon prediction of your car manufacturer. Data sheets are a good starting point, final values should come from customized testing.

    Quote Originally Posted by Loren Sattler View Post
    I have never seen a difference in a final print fixed for 3 minutes vs. the test print fixed for 10 seconds before turning on the lights.
    I don't know how 10s fixing is even possible. It takes me longer to submerge, collect and drain the print. Anything less than 30s gives uneven fixing. You don't need to fix for more than 2 minutes. After 8 minutes the fixer starts to bleach the print visibly, but fixing times that long are purely academic anyway. Underfixing is the most common cause for print decay!

    Quote Originally Posted by Loren Sattler View Post
    With fiber paper, everything slows down some, but I apply the same thinking. Test strips are developed for a little over a minute, full size prints for 2 minutes.
    There is a gigantic difference between 1 and 2 minutes development for FB printing. You must see that . I prefer factorial development for FB. After the print midtones are fully visible, I apply a factor of 6 to 8 to calculate the total development time. Usually, I end up with 3.5-4 minutes.


    I prefer 1 excellent print a year over 100 mediocre prints a day.

    Happy printing.
    Regards

    Ralph W. Lambrecht
    www.darkroomagic.comrorrlambrec@ymail.com[/URL]
    www.waybeyondmonochrome.com

  9. #49
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    I just want to get back to the original question here...

    "When I take the B&W print out of the stop bath and place it into the fixer tray, how long does it have to be in the fixer before it is "light safe". Is it immediate or do I have to wait the entire time it is in the fixer?"

    [EDIT...long winded and pointless debate deleted... go ahead, boys and beat each other up...]

    The way I was taught, and the practice I have followed is that after an appropriately exposed, developed and stopped print is placed in the fixer, all development stops and the lights can be turned on. The print can then be evaluated and appropriate notes/adjustments made ready for the next print... All prints are allowed to fix completely. This was not considered a shortcut or bad printing, but common practice of an effective workflow. I have not seen any sign of continued development of a print once it is in the fixing bath. If there is empirical evidence to the contrary, I am open to the discussion.

    Cheers,
    Tom, on Point Pelee, Canada

    Ansel Adams had the Zone System... I'm working on the points system. First I points it here, and then I points it there...

    http://tom-overton-images.weebly.com


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