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  1. #1

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    first darkroom, rolls haven't developed correctly- please help an amateur!

    I just established my first in-home darkroom (finally, after almost a year now) and I'm so excited to finally develop my first [successful] hand-developed roll of film. I've attempted to develop 2 rolls of film now but none have been successful, so I'm wondering if you can help me find the culprit.

    I used Kodak chemicals, which I diluted with 3.8 liters of water, as per the instructions.

    My first roll of Kodak 400 ISO was unsuccessful. I think what attributed to it was my broom closet. I noticed that once my eyes adjusted to the darkness that it wasn't totally light proof. I went through the whole process anyway, following the instructions that I saved from your class down to the T despite knowing that it might've been exposed anyway - by the time i realized it wasn't light proof, it was too late- i'd already opened the film canister. The end result - a blank brown roll of film, except for some line marking where each exposure ended and the other started.

    The second was another roll of Kodak 400 ISO film. This time, I traded my broom closet for my clothes closet which was more light proof than the broom closet. I made sure first that when my eyes were adjusted that i couldn't see my hands or anything for that matter. I proceeded with the whole process but this time, I measured the temperature of the developer, which was 23ªC. Instead of agitating it for 9 minutes like the first roll, I shortened it to 7:45 according to Ilford's temperature compensation chart. Still, no successful development. This time, it resulted in a striped roll of film - the top half of the film (lengthwise) turned out to be light gray while the other darker.

    I don't know what's going wrong. Is my temperature wrong? Is my developing time wrong? The fixer has a fixed time, so I know it's not that. Can anybody help me??

  2. #2

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    What exactly was the Kodak ISO 400 film? Tmax? TriX? or something else? I ask because there IS a B&W film that is to be processed C-41 (color process).

    If you accidentally exposed film in not-so-light-tight darkroom, your film should have been grey or black, not blank (clear?) as you say. The only reason why you'd have clear is if your developer didn't work, you fixed your film before developing, your film wasn't exposed at all, or you used entirely wrong film for the wrong process.
    Develop, stop, fix.... wait.... where's my film?

  3. #3

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    Actually, my first roll was brown and it was in fact a c-41 so I'm guessing that was definitely the culprit. Let's just say the first roll was all around a multi-dimensional failure -_____- The second roll was a Kodac 400TX- it doesn't say c-41 anywhere but is it?

  4. #4

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    400-TX is a Tri-X. It's a genuine B&W film. If you got half-and-half, you didn't have enough chemical in it at development stage, or fix stage.
    Develop, stop, fix.... wait.... where's my film?

  5. #5

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    What exactly is your developer and fixer? What brand, what name? What flavor (just kidding)?
    Develop, stop, fix.... wait.... where's my film?

  6. #6

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    The 400-TX turned gray, with a striped going across the length of the film - the top half, light gray and the bottom dark gray. Both the developer and fixer are Kodak Professional, in powder form. I diluted the powder as per the instructions on the package, with 3.8 liters of water.

  7. #7

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    Which developer from Kodak? D-76? XTOL? or something else?

    Well.... top and bottom doesn't mean much as you could loaded the film upside down. But, if you have half-and-half result, you didn't have enough chemistry at one step or another. Not enough developer will cause one side clear and the other side with image. Not enough fixer will cause one side milky or dark and the other side with image.

    Are you SURE you had enough chemical? Please specify what developer you are using.
    Develop, stop, fix.... wait.... where's my film?

  8. #8

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    Oh sorry- it was D-76. I'm following the instructions I used from my analog photography class, where I use 35ml of developer diluted with 600 ml of water.

  9. #9

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    NO!

    If you are using D-76 and mixed it according to the package instructions, you end up with either one liter or 3.8 liter (1 gallon) of developer stock solution depending on package size. You use it straight (without dilution) or dilute it 1:1 (one part developer and one part stock solution). Different dilution is possible but not 35:600. That's way too thin.

    You are severely under-developing it because you don't have enough "stuff" in it.

    I doubt you were using D-76 in your class....
    Develop, stop, fix.... wait.... where's my film?

  10. #10

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    You should download Kodak's technical spec sheet from here:
    http://www.kodak.com/global/en/profe...?pq-path=14024
    Develop, stop, fix.... wait.... where's my film?

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