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  1. #1
    markbarendt's Avatar
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    Hot Plates for water bath?

    Anybody tried using a hot plate as a heat source for keeping color chemicals at the right temperature?

    I'm using small tanks for film and trays for prints.

    I've looked at some circulating water heaters and water baths used in science labs but they are either real expensive or too small or somehow don't inspire any confidence in me that they could keep up.

    Right now I'm using an old electric hot pad and a modified fish tank heater to keep my water bath warm but I have a tough time keeping the chemicals at 100 degrees for C-41, tends to float down into the low 90's, I end up microwaving the developer for every run.

    I'm using the low-temp two-step RA-4 chemical kit from Ultrafine right now, but I'm getting more serious about RA-4 and looking at buying chemical kits that will need to maintain 95 degrees across three trays (Developer, Blix, & Stabilizer) and this is going to mean a lot more surface area to keep warm.

    I was thinking that an electric hot plate or two and large (non-disposable) turkey pans might make a cheap, adjustable, and workable water bath system.

    This http://www.cooking.com/products/shpr...cid=5388418602 also looks interesting but even the low setting is 130-150 degrees.

    Any experiences or other ideas welcome.
    Mark Barendt, Beaverton, OR

    "We do not see things the way they are. We see things the way we are." Ana´s Nin

  2. #2
    Rick A's Avatar
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    I think it would work IF you have control of the temperture. Going by the "L,M,H" settings alone might not be viable unless you can monitor the actual temps.
    Rick Allen
    Argentum aevum

  3. #3
    markbarendt's Avatar
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    I have thermometers for each tray/chemical.
    Mark Barendt, Beaverton, OR

    "We do not see things the way they are. We see things the way we are." Ana´s Nin

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    Rick A's Avatar
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    Thats good for monitoring the temps, but what about establishing the temp you need, and maintaining it IF the settings provided by the hotplate arent the ones you need? Could you find one that has a thermostat that reads in degrees, I believe that woud be ideal.
    Rick Allen
    Argentum aevum

  5. #5
    Photo Engineer's Avatar
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    Mark;

    Have you ever considered running RA4 at room temp? Kodak's RA-RT Developer Replenisher works from 68 F to 100 F. No heating or cooling needed. Just adjust the color balance and time for your darkroom temp.

    PE

  6. #6
    markbarendt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Photo Engineer View Post
    Mark;

    Have you ever considered running RA4 at room temp? Kodak's RA-RT Developer Replenisher works from 68 F to 100 F. No heating or cooling needed. Just adjust the color balance and time for your darkroom temp.

    PE
    No, I did not know that.

    So if I get

    This developer http://www.adorama.com/KKRADRRT.html

    This Bleach/Fix http://www.adorama.com/KKRABFR10L.html

    And

    This Stabilizer http://www.adorama.com/KKRASR10L.html

    I should be ready to go at room temp.
    Mark Barendt, Beaverton, OR

    "We do not see things the way they are. We see things the way we are." Ana´s Nin

  7. #7
    Photo Engineer's Avatar
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    You do not need the stabilizer for color paper.

    PE

  8. #8
    markbarendt's Avatar
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    While we're on the chemical topic...

    For C-41 I've used the Trebla kit but it's about gone and I was hunting at Adorama for all the chems. I came up with the following list:

    Developer http://www.adorama.com/KKFCDR5G.html

    Developer Starter http://www.adorama.com/KKFCDS.html

    Bleach Part "A" http://www.adorama.com/KKFCBRA125G.html

    Bleach Starter http://www.adorama.com/KKFCBSG.html

    Fix http://www.adorama.com/KKFCFR5G.html

    Stabalizer http://www.adorama.com/KKFCSRG.html

    My confusion here is that the Trebla kit had a one part bleach/replenisher, just add water.

    Adorama shows part "A" but no "B" at least on the web, the only other bleach thing they show is the Bleach Starter.

    Is this the full list or what?
    Last edited by markbarendt; 04-03-2010 at 12:40 PM. Click to view previous post history.
    Mark Barendt, Beaverton, OR

    "We do not see things the way they are. We see things the way we are." Ana´s Nin

  9. #9
    markbarendt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Photo Engineer View Post
    You do not need the stabilizer for color paper.

    PE
    Cool, thanks.
    Mark Barendt, Beaverton, OR

    "We do not see things the way they are. We see things the way we are." Ana´s Nin

  10. #10
    markbarendt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ralnphot View Post
    Thats good for monitoring the temps, but what about establishing the temp you need, and maintaining it IF the settings provided by the hotplate arent the ones you need? Could you find one that has a thermostat that reads in degrees, I believe that woud be ideal.
    Have not found one with a thermostat, I agree that that would be great.
    Mark Barendt, Beaverton, OR

    "We do not see things the way they are. We see things the way we are." Ana´s Nin

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