Thanks for the o-ring part number, George. I will look for those so I can put some in a drawer in my darkroom and lose them too.
I've got the W/D unit working with the main unit now. Everything looks like it is working properly, but the first sheet of RC paper I sent through it bunched up in the upper wire cage area of the dryer just underneath the last set of rollers at the exit. The good part was that the paper was dry! I'll send another sheet through and leave the cover off and try to seey why it's hanging up there.
What mm/min setting would I use on the main unit for RA-4?
250 mm /min I seem to recall gives 45 seconds through 1 tank, which as 38C is what you want for regualr RA-4 settings. Don't fret if it takes a while to stabilize.
I have done b&w fibre prints on my roller processor once. I used oversize RC fogged paper that was fixed out in advance, to act as 'carriers. Set the exposed f/b print into a water bath to make it floppy, them slap it on a carrier, and feed it into the machine.
my real name, imagine that.
Good news on getting it together Skip. I managed to find my cp-32 user's manual. It's only for the main body and it is for a later model but the 32 and the 31 are essentially the same. I'll check on the speed settings for you and report back.
As for your test sheet catching at the dryer stage a few things come to mind....
The 12" fujimoto requires that you load your paper emulsion side up. If you load emulsion side down not only do you risk uneven, incomplete processing but there's also a risk of crimping and binding between racks. Also, if your dryer temp is set too high the paper will curl too rapidly causing the sheet to leave the intended path as it enters the dryer rack.
Kodak specs the temp. for running their RA-RT chems at 35 degrees c. I've heard of running the blix a little warmer for better activity. Not sure why one would run the developer any warmer than 35 (I suppose you might get more saturated colors but with today's ra papers I'm always wanting less saturation).
When I reassembled the main unit after fixing one of the pumps and the leak in tank 3 last week, I forgot to attach the power leads to the fan. Without the fan running, I was getting a lot of warm moisture accumulating on the paper guide under the lid. The paper would stick to it and it wouldn't slide into the rollers. I had to tear it all down, open it up, attach the fan power leads, and put it back together.
When I set up everything afterward, I very carefully leveled the main unit and W/D unit and made sure they were even and square to each other. I also increased the speed of the paper to 280mm. I left the heat setting on the dryer at 6. I ran two sheets of RC paper through, and it all worked perfectly. I set the first bath at 38ºC. The other two baths are running about 31ºC, so I need to tweak them a bit. The instructions for the W/D unit say to run the water at 25ºC to 30ºC, so that means I can just run straight cold water, which is 27ºC during the summer.
About the paper speed for RA-4 processing - the CP-31 manual has a chart in it that says to set 420 mm/min for 30 second processing, 280 for 45 second, 210 for 1 minute, 140 for 1 min 30 sec, etc. I really don't understand this. If 420mm/min gives you 30 seconds, then it makes sense that slowing that by half to 210 would give you 1 minute. Why would 280 give you 45 seconds? Shouldn't it be 315 mm/min?
In the Process RA-4 — Using KODAK EKTACOLOR RA Chemicals — Publication Z-130 number 2, Using KODAK EKTACOLOR Chemicals in Photofinishing Labs, Kodak gives processing times for continuous processors of 45 seconds for developer and blix, and 1:30 for wash. Those times are for immersion, plus crossover time (6 seconds or less) to the next tank. So I've got to set the processor speed to give any particular point on the paper 45 seconds in each bath, counting crossover. Since I'm doubting the accuracy of the figures in the table from the CP-31 operation manual, I know of no way to determine this other than using a stopwatch and measuring the time that it takes the leading edge of the paper to go from entry into bath 1 to entry to bath 2.
Since I have only four baths, and I need for the wash time to be double the processing time, I can't use a prewet or a stop bath. I have to have developer in the first bath, blix in the second, and wash water in the 3rd bath and in the W/D unit. Does that sound reasonable for RA-4 in the CP-31?
Reasonable? The setup you describe is the proper sequence for ra4. There is no need for a prewash.
Are you running ektacolor ra-rt or ektacolor ra 12? If the former, run it at the prescribed 35 degrees celcius if you're aiming at standard processing times as set forth by the z-130 manual. If you somehow ended up with ektacolor ra 12 chemistry (I somehow doubt it as it's only available in 25 and 50 lt. kits) then 38 degrees is ok.
You're right - the mm/second calculations look like they missed the attention of the editor.
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Thank you frotog. Yes, I've bought the RA-RT chemicals, so I'll process at 35 degrees.
I'm going to try to get the replenisher set up today. I don't know what kind of processing the previous owner was doing, but the replenisher tubes for tanks 1 and 3 have chemical stains, dark reddish brown on line 1, light tan with some slight crystaline residue on line 3. The tube for tank 2 looks clean and clear. I'm considering replacing all the replenisher tubing, but it means disassembling again. I'll start with just rinsing them as well as I can.
If anyone has ever set up the replenisher, I could use some help.
How do you prime it? Do the pumps have to be below the CP-31 main unit, or just the replenishment containers?
The instructions say: "CAUTION: When installing the replenishment container, make sure the container is located as high as or lower than the main body. A failure to do so may cause the replenishment pump does not operate properly."
I understand this to mean that the containers of replenishing solutions should be no higher than the main unit. The instructions say nothing about positioning the pump itself, so I put it on a shelf above the main unit, but only one of the pumps will draw up solution (water, for now). The other two are trying but not making it. This makes me wonder if the replenisher pump unit itself also needs to be below the main unit.
Anyone know for sure?
Replenisher unit is self priming. The toggle switch on the back will run it manually. Use that to fill the tubes running from tanks to main unit.
I have my main units on the bench, replenisher on a shelf below it, and tanks on bottom shelf, below replenisher unit. I think the reasoning for the locations is due to strength of the pumps and how they prime, etc. the way I have it set up, all three prime fine and run great. If the 2 pumps not pulling have filters, try removing those or trying with new tubing. Sounds like a clog somewhere. The pumps are rotary magnetic pumps, if that information is of any use.
Inside the main replenishment unit are small potentiometers for setting replenishment rate. I belive the are 5ml per number, with numbers ranging from 1 to 9, so 5 to 45ml replenishment rate. I have mine set to 2 (10ml), and it seems to be plenty of replenishment volume. I mostly do 8x10 but also some 11x14. I had it set way too high initially and was churning through chemistry needlessly.
I have the manuals somewhere if need be, I can probably scan and post them.
Ed, thank you. I have the manuals for the main unit, the washer/dryer unit, and a parts list. What I have for the replenisher is just three pages stapled together. I suspect that was pretty much it for the replenisher. So I think I'm set there. I just wasn't clear on what it meant about positioning of the unit relative to the main unit.
The volume adjustment dial inside is set on 3, which should be 15ml. I'll be printing mainly 8x10, so I'm going to back it down to number 2 to deliver 10ml.
I'm off to try your suggestions and check for clogs.
Filters were OK. There are some black and grey one-way valves on the inlets to the pumps. Two of these were stuck closed, probably due to chemicals drying inside of them. I took them out and soaked them in hot water and got them to work again.
Putting the pump unit below the main body and the replenisment containers below that enabled the pump to prime properly. The pumps are working properly now. I just need to redesign the space to allow for that configuration safely.