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  1. #11
    Mark Fisher's Avatar
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    All good advice thusfar. Very gentle rocking is the key. Also, some papers (Fomabrom and Slavice unibrom) are more susceptible to this from my experience. It can be a very nice creative tool if you can learn to control it.

  2. #12
    Bob Carnie's Avatar
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    Sounds to me like the enlarger is pushing out to much light at the edges, which is normally not the case. Is there something in the light path that may be letting more light at the edges, or are you giving an extra exposure to the edges.

    hard to imagine it being in the developer/agitation issue.

  3. #13
    ic-racer's Avatar
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    With the materials I have used, when the developer-laden paper sticks up out of the developer the development speeds up (kind of the oppositie of what you would think would happen). So , I suspect your paper is not laying flat in the tray and the edges are getting close to the surface.

  4. #14
    Andrew Moxom's Avatar
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    I've had this happen on some papers if my tray was too small. You basically get more agitation at the edges as a result and this accelerates the infectious development process ahead of the center of the paper. For 8x10 prints, I use a 9 1/2" x 11" Paterson tray I've had from the UK for many years (as they used to have paper that size)
    Please check out my website www.amoxomphotography.com and APUG Portfolio .....

  5. #15

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    Dear Chris,

    When I print (lith or conventional) I actually agitate very aggressively, particularly in the beginning. I place the print face down in the developer and move it constantly with tongs for at least the first 20 seconds (and normally longer). I fully appreciate that others have a different experience, but film or paper, the only time I've had agitation issues is when my agitation has been insufficient.

    Neal Wydra

  6. #16

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    It's turbulence.

    Something to consider with lith. It really does not matter if the edges get more development early on, when you can't even see an image yet, or later when you are getting ready to pull. Reaching infectious development is a cumulative process.

    Try this: expose a test strip that is easily handled. Let only 1/2 of it submerge in the developer for maybe 30 seconds, then submerge the entire strip and agitate until you have development. See what happens.

    I develop face-down for the majority of the time, agitating the print, not the tray. I suppose if the tray is large enough, it would not matter. You can actually walk away from it for a minute or so, face down, if the pan does not have gnurls or grooves.

  7. #17

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    Sorry to resurrect an old post, but I did some more lith printing last night after a hiatus due to darkroom frustrations.

    There were a few posters who mentioned agitation or turbulence being the culprit, and my hats off to you! Lith printing seems to be particularly sensitive to this phenomenon.

    Below are two prints developed one after the other. The left one was agitated only by flipping the paper every so often. The right one was left face up and the tray was rocked both front to back and side to side.

    The differences in the edges are obvious, but the interesting part is that in a straight print, the people in the swings cutting across the frame are uniformly lit. In the print agitated by rocking, though the overall effect is darker, the people towards the center of the frame are noticeably lighter.

    In the one agitated by turning the paper over, the overall effect is lighter, but the people are more uniformly dark all the way across the paper. It is certainly a more even print.

    Tech details.. Fomabrom 111 grade 3 (not Variant III. That's the multigrade stuff.) Fotospeed LD-20 diluted 1+1+18. Developing times were right around 15 minutes with 3 stops over a straight print.

    Sorry for the terrible picture! Digital taken with my cell phone.. yuck.
    www.cjphillipsphoto.com

    "Technology is a big destroyer of emotion and truth. Opportunity doesn't do anything for creativity. Yeah, it makes it easier and you can get home sooner, but it doesn't make you a more creative person. That's the disease you have to fight in any creative field.. ease of use." - Jack White

  8. #18
    sly
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    Thanks for getting back to us on this. The effect is pretty obvious here isn't it? It could be used if you wanted a print that was darker around the edges, lightest at the middle. I'll keep that in mind next time I'm lithing.

  9. #19
    Mark Fisher's Avatar
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    BTW, you probably won't see this on most other papers. The ones with the most aggressive infectious development. Fomabrom is definitely the most aggressive! I can't make any other paper except Slavich Unibrom do this. Also, I have to say that I like the image with the darker edges better (: Really nice image

  10. #20
    Dan Henderson's Avatar
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    First: I think this is a great composition. I love the circles and arcs. Second, I have used Fotospeed lith developer a lot and with one exception I have not experienced this issue. I agitate by lifting the corner of the tray almost constantly throughout development, (same corner even) so I don't see agitation being the issue. I always put the paper in the tray face down, agitate for one minute, flip the paper over and continue agitation until done. I avoid touching the print or poking it with tongs to avoid marring the surface. I normally use Fomatone 131 for lith printing and have never experienced this problem with that paper. The only time I have seen anything approaching your problem is on the rare occasion when I have used Slavich Unibrom paper because I wanted a more graphic, gritty print with little color.

    So I am in the same camp as Mark Fisher: some papers may exhibit the problem, others may not. I suggest trying some Fomatone and see if your problem is resolved.


    web site: Dan Henderson, Photographer.com

    blog: https://danhendersonphotographer.wordpress.com/

    I am not anti-digital. I am pro-film.

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