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Thread: yellow staining

  1. #1
    Paul Cocklin's Avatar
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    yellow staining

    So I finally got some time to do some printing. I did some 11x14s tonight from a 120 neg. The fixer was fresh (just mixed) TF4 at a 1:3 mix, 500ml to 1500ml distilled water. Distilled was used for the developer and stop bath as well (stop was water only, no acid stopbath).

    I did 7 prints. The first 5 were fine; when I placed the 6th in the fix and agitated for the first ten seconds then turned the lights on, I could see that the safe edge had turned a fairly deep yellow. The image itself didn't seem to be affected much, if at all.

    I'm assuming that somehow the fixer became exhausted? I can't imagine why, I've certainly run more than 5 prints through 2 liters of working solution with no problems before. Gloves were worn and while there was probably some carryover from developer to stop to fix, I can't imagine that there was much. I dumped the fix just to be safe.

    Can someone tell me if this is indeed an example of fixer exhaustion? The weird thing is that I did one more print and while I got some yellowing of the safe edge, it wasn't nearly as much as the previous. The fixer itself was almost perfectly clear when I dumped it, maybe a slight tinge of yellow to it.

    Anyway, should I refix those two prints? And what about the previous 5? The safe edge is pure white, so I'm guessing I don't need to refix those.

    Any advice or suggestions appreciated.
    Paul

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    how big are your trays? If you're doing 11x14 prints in 11x14 trays, you'll get yellow around the edges, i've found. If that is indeed the problem and you only have 11x14 trays, I've been able to somewhat avoid the yellowing buy constantly agitating the print and not letting it sit, which seems to cause it to stain.

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    Paul Cocklin's Avatar
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    Hmm, well, I was doing constant agitation, and the developer tray and stop tray were 11x14 (slightly bigger), and the fix tray was 14x18. I've never seen this staining before, though.

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    Is your paper fresh, and has it been stored well? I have had this problem using older paper that came (free) from an unknown source. OK in the middle, but yellow edges. Sheets from the middle of the box were not as bad, either.

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    Paul Cocklin's Avatar
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    paper was recently bought (in the last 3 months or so.) but it was Kentmere Kentona so it could have been old paper, though it was a new 10 pack and the first 3 sheets used out of that pack were fine. After drying and careful examination, the heavily stained one did have some staining in the image area so I'm guessing it was fixer exhaustion through contamination of some sort. I'll have to clean the trays really well and mix up some new fixer.

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    Shawn Dougherty's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Cocklin View Post
    (stop was water only, no acid stopbath).


    Paul
    Paul, I solved this problem with Kentona by using a stop bath, Sprint in my case but I doubt the brand matters much. All the best. Shawn

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    Paul Cocklin's Avatar
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    Thanks Shawn, I think the only logical thing it could be was contamination because it was the last two prints I did that showed the staining. I can't figure out why the second-to-last would be worse than the last, but oh well. I've only got about 5 more sheets to go through, and I won't be using Kentona anymore (not for this reason, though). I've pretty much settled on Fineprint VC for my prints.

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    bill spears's Avatar
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    Some of the wiser ones may correct me here but it seems alot of people only use plain water instead of a proper stop bath - I wonder why ??
    Isn't the purpose of a stop bath to preserve the acidity of the fixer and prevent carry over of the alkaline developer ?? I'm assuming TF4 is an acid fix.
    If you put your fingers in developer then try to wash them in plain water it doesn't very well remove the greasy alkalinity of the developer. I always use acetic acid stop bath when processing, it doesn't have to be very strong, even a weak solution will cancel out the developer instantly.

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    Paul Cocklin's Avatar
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    TF4 is an alkaline fix.

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    bill spears's Avatar
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    Beat me to it Shawn !

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