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  1. #1
    JLP
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    Daylight (Tank) developing of 4x5

    Thanks first to APUG and the great many resources this site gives access to.
    Just recently became a subscriber and now need a little advice.

    Using MF the last couple of years after many years of 35mm but have now jumped into the deep water and bought a 4x5 (Shen-Hao)

    My question is: What is the best tank for film development (Know it is very subjective) I do not have a completely dark wet room, only a dark loading room.
    I use Jobo's tanks for 120 and 35 but can see that the Jobo for 4x5 is to large for hand agitation.

    Any suggestions will be appreciated.

  2. #2
    AZLF's Avatar
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    I just looked at the name on my daylight 4x5" tank. I thought it would say "Yankee" but in fact it is an "FR" daylight tank.I seem to recall that Yankee was the name of one made for years that looks about the same as this one. I picked it up off ebay about a year ago. It is about 5" wide and 6" tall and the 4x5" sheets go in "portrait" style in ten curved curved plastic film guides. It is certainly bigger than a Nikor style roll film tank but not too difficult to hand agitate. I have never developed more than 5 sheets at a time in it so far but you can do ten in a sitting. It does take more developer to fill it than even a larger multi roll stacking type tank but hey, this is LARGE FORMAT you recall. I don't think I paid more than $10.00 it.

    The one thing I would caution about is to keep track of the film orientation when loading it so that when you agitate you are causing the developer/fixer to move through the sheets of film rather than splashing up against the broad side of the first/last side sheet of film. The slots the film sheets rest in are not very wide and I think is is possible that if you were to agitate in the latter manner the liquid moving against the film could dislodge the first or last sheet and cause it to bend out of the slot and come in contact with the next sheet thus causing uneven development or spots on the negative where the sheets were in contact.

    But other than that the tank has worked very well for me and I am in about the same condition you are in terms of lack of darkroom. I use a bathroom at the back of my house after dark with the door closed for loading and unloading and develop at the kitchen sink. I do have a large film loading bag I could use in daylight but it is a real pita to use as I have not built a wire frame for the inside of it as of yet.
    http://www.apug.org/gallery/showgallery.php?cat=500&ppuser=10716
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  3. #3
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    I have a Combiplan tank. It wasn't the easiest thing to work with at first but I have do pretty well with it now. For me the two hardest things to do, was getting the sheets loaded correctly and then making sure that the lid was completely closed. If the lid wasn't secure, I would get these annoying "dribble" leaks. so I just made sure that I went around the lid twice with pressure to make sure it was secure.

    g

  4. #4
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    I use a Yankee tank and stand development with Rodinal. Works just great.

  5. #5

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    Good Evening, JLP,

    Just search the Forum; we've had various discussions on the different ways to process sheet film. Try "BTZS" or "drum" or "Unicolor" or "Chromega" or "Jobo" and you should find a ton of posts.

    Konical

  6. #6
    JLP
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    Hi and thanks all for the responses.
    At least i don't have to leave the house to load film and can wash in my bathroom.

    Will try the different search advices.

    Thanks again.

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by JLP

    I use Jobo's tanks for 120 and 35 but can see that the Jobo for 4x5 is to large for hand agitation.
    Which Jobo tanks are you using? If you're using the 2500 type tanks then all you need is a new reel.

    The 2500 tanks can be hand agitated but they use a lot of chemicals that way. It's easier to get the midsized 2551 tank and roller base. Bases [unicolor or beseler] aren't that expensive on the used market.

  8. #8

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    Dear JLP,

    I tried trays, FR tanks and hangers before getting some Jobo 2500 series drums. They make developing sheet film as easy as roll film. I built a little drive system using a drill press and parts from a local scavenging/surplus house. It's so easy I even use it for a single sheet of 4x5.

    Neal Wydra

  9. #9
    JLP
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    Currently using a 1520 for my 120 rolls. Would that take a 4x5 spool?

  10. #10
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    I use the Combiplan. I hated it the first time I used it, it fills slow and the negs wouldn't stay in their holders, but the I learned a few tricks. Agitating on the short axis keeps the film from being shaken loose by the sloshing developer, and starting my timer at the instant I poor the developer in helped a lot. I get much better results now than when I tray processed. No more scrathed negs too.

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