Another quick updates. Joboman doesn't have any motors available at the moment.....looks like I am going to go for some form of replacement and make it fit. The little motor I have sourced locally is close, but not quite. As long as I can get the shaft in the right spot, I should be able to cut and shut to get it in. If it is a success, I'll post back and show exactly how it was done, in case others want to give it a try.
Once this is all sorted and working, can I suggest writing an article or a web page for this? Plenty of people will be keen to keep these things going for as long as possible.
I'm fearing the day my CPE-2+ gives up the ghost!
Lee, that is quite interesting what you say about your experience in Köln with your CPE2.
I have been using the slower 25rpm speed for film since I bought my CPE2.
The hardest film to develop correctly is C41, mainly due to it’s very short developing time of 3’15”. Many processing faults will and can occur, with that very short developing time.
I had access to Kodak C41 control strips and the use of the densitometer at the industrial photo lab where I worked, the control strips were taken out of the freezer; within 1 hour they were in my Jobo.
Because I was doing one-shot C41, I actually had more consistent and generally better control strips than the lab dip and dunk bath. Which annoyed the ding out of the boffins running the baths, E6, C41, B&W, EP2 and R3 (Kodak’s reversal paper process).
I’ve never ever seen a commercial dip and dunk or roller transport film processor, B&W or colour process, that pre-soaked film. I have never pre-soaked any of my films on my Jobo.
I have processed thousands of C41, E6 and B&W (including reversal) 135 rolls and about a thousand sheets of Kodak Color Print 4x5” film, which had to be spot on as I was making a 4x5” transparency for four colour reproduction. Kodak Color Print film was a C41 process, processing had to be equal too, or if possible, better than E6, mainly due to the short 3’15” processing time.
I have the original 2509 reels without the later modifications and 1501 reels. I only do four 4x5” sheets to a reel though, my tests showed six sheets to a reel caused problems. Which is about the only processing fault, other than operator error, I’ve ever had with my CPE2.
Originally Posted by Mick Fagan
My times were on the long side, using Rodinal and HC-110 at higher dilutions with a variety of films, but mostly Panatomic-X, Verichrome Pan, some Tri-X 135, and 4x5 Plus-X and Tri-X. The surge marks were consistent from batch to batch. The 2501 reels are 'open', with notched radial supports and no solid spiral elements. They have to be loaded on a special loader that provides a full spiral to keep the film on track. But after the reel is removed from the loader, there are just the notched radial spokes supporting the film. Those created the flow pattern that left uneven development surge marks. The 2509 also had a consistently placed flow pattern at about the place where the 2509 retainer clips should break it up. I haven't processed color film with Jobo equipment.
After I moved into an apartment in Bonn where I could use a large heated bathroom for processing and printing, I didn't need the Jobo and quit trying to solve the problems, or throw more money into the equipment. I just reverted to my stainless steel reels and tanks.
My more recent test with good results at the higher 65rpm speed and a pre-soak was with Rodinal 1:100 (same as in '82) but with Pan-F substituted for the discontinued Panatomic-X. I've never owned or tried the 1500 series tanks and reels, nor the 2502 reels, which have the full spiral rails. Shortly after I bought my setup, the newer reels came out, and the Expert series drums, which required that I replace the entire processor. I never spent the money on those after returning to the US in '83. Jobo USA was, however, very helpful in selling me the parts to convert to US voltage and frequency; a transformer, heating element, and fuse, which I installed myself. I had excellent results with Ektacolor and Cibachrome printing in the Jobo.
The Jobo Quarterly, 1994-1999, has a lot of info on the changes in recommendations over time. Apparently it was a Jobo USA publication sent to registered US purchasers, but since I bought in Germany, I was unaware of it. And it only started up 12 years after I had my problems, and when I was full-time care for a toddler and an infant. All Jobo Quarterly issues are currently (2011/6/1) online at: http://www.jobo.com/jobo_service_analog/jq/ but they have disappeared for periods of time during transitions at Jobo. It's well worth reading.
If I were doing larger batches of film and had a permanent position to leave the Jobo up and ready, I might have more interest in using it. I'm currently working on some ideas for rotating any standard size stainless steel tank standing on end on a driven 'lazy susan' type setup, with adjustable intermittent agitation using a microcontroller and no tempering bath. I just have to steal the bearings off my son's skateboard when he's not looking. I now prefer a Summitek Cradle for sheet film tray development.
I know that many others have used the CPE-2 with no issues, and perhaps I could have worked out my problems over time. But I was only in Germany for a year, and I preferred to spend my time photographing and printing rather than working out a set of problems that resulted from using equipment that I no longer had to use. It's also apparent from reading the Jobo Quarterly that I wasn't the only one having problems with uneven development. And there's the fact that all the reels I was using were shortly replaced with redesigned models (which I was unaware of at the time), and the recommended rotational speed for film development was changed.
Lee, I agree with you regarding the earlier reels having no spiral parts, I have used them a very little amount and didn’t like them. But I don’t remember any processing problems with 135 film.
Regarding the 2509 reels, I believe I have replicated what you call a “flow pattern” when using 4x5” film and six sheets, developing only four sheets at a time, eliminates that entirely.
One day I’ll acquire a newer 2059N reel with the addition that allows good flow, I’ll test again and maybe then, do 6 sheets at a time.
I assume yours doesn’t have a lift; the lift is a marvellous addition.
I have nearly always used ID11 or D76 at 1+1 dilution and nearly always Ilford 125 and 400 ASA films in their various guises over the years, until I discovered Neopan 400. But I am still in love with FP4+ in sheet film.
In those days we really were working in the dark, regarding developmental changes to most equipment. One either heard about something on the grapevine when you met someone in a camera shop, read about it in a magazine, or received information from shop staff. I first heard about Jobo from a photographer when he overheard someone complaining to shop staff about a leaking drum when turned upside down. The fact that it was a system, like most camera bodies, was a real bonus to me.
Without using either a playpen or a leash to keep a toddler out of trouble, I feel you would have been developing in the dead of the night; the things we do!
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Thanks for the info Mick. The internet has certainly been a boon for keeping up with this kind of technical information, with tricks and tips. I haven't tried only 4 sheets on the 2509 reels. Perhaps I shall at some point, although I do 6 sheets in a liter now with a Summitek Cradle + 11x14 tray, and that would require two Jobo runs. I don't have a long film tank.
The Jobo was very common in Germany, and I'd sold them in two stores in the US before going over. Originally I'd been promised the use of a heated bathroom for processing film in the rooms we were letting, but the first time I did it, I was told to do it in the unheated basement. The Jobo was the only real solution, and their tempering box was not stocked locally and not much cheaper than the CPE-2. Mine didn't have the lift.
I also suspect that my choice of developers and dilution may have played some role in the problems I had, but I'm not really eager to spend a lot of time, film, and chemicals to nail that down. I was pleased that the higher speed and pre-soak did seem to solve the problems with one test run.
I appreciate the article posted. I have been setting my CPA to the P mark as per the instructions, but just assumed the rpm was 75. After reading the article, I tested it and it was closer to 100. Now I have it adjusted to 75 rpm, which gets the knob just shy of the 4 mark.
Something else just occurred to me, not having handled a 2502 rollfilm reel before, and just having looked them up online. The 2501 rollfilm reel, in addition to being 'open-sided' with only a few radial support arms, takes up to two rolls of 135-36 film on a single reel, loaded end-to-end. This means that the distance between layers of film loaded on the 2502 reel (which only takes one roll of 135-36) is approximately double of that of the 2501 reel. That and the open-sided design would go a long way to explaining why I was getting the surge/flow marks from the radial support arms as well as extra edge density on 35mm and 120 film. With closer spaced film and open sides, the developer would tend not to flow as readily at the center of the film and more readily at the edges with the 2501 reel, creating a difference in effective agitation from center to edge. That may also be the reason that the increased turbulence from the higher speed worked better with the 2501.
Given that the 2509 and 2501 reels were fairly quickly replaced with significantly different designs and different procedure recommendations, I'd have to say that I was working with 'beta' hardware all 'round, and that my results are probably not repeatable with the later 2509N and 2502 reels. I'll accept donations of the final releases of these products via PM. Bet I could reproduce my problems with the 2501 and perfectly good results with the 2502 reels side-by-side on the same run.
This thread is interesting. I also am worried that my CPE-2 motor will fail someday. It would be nice to pick up a replacement motor before that happens!
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