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  1. #1
    analoguey's Avatar
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    Contact printing with 4x5 -grey prints

    I started contact printing (4x5) recently. Burned through a few papers before realising my room light was too bright and switching to a less powerful light source.

    Also switched to testing with 120 negatives to see if it was my negatives.

    I got some good prints of those and even tested with a couple of 4x5 and got acceptable times (10s) and decent prints too.

    However that bulb went kaput and I'm back to testing with the brighter bulb - the last few prints came out middling grey with clear blacks only at the edges.

    So I'm a little confused now whether it's the because of underexposure or any other issue?

    All prints were on Ilford rc grade 3.

    Development usually about 1:30m stop 00;10 and fix 0:45-1:00. Final wash of 2mins.

    All Kodak chemicals. Dev is 1:8 dektol (fresh)

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    How do the negatives look? Are they really thick?

  3. #3

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    You say the last few prints were grey without strong blacks; did the initial prints with the new bulb look ok?
    If so, then it's probably a problem of developer exhaustion.

    1:8 is a lot of dilution for Dektol, it's usually used at 1:2 or sometimes 1:3

  4. #4
    analoguey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Harding View Post
    How do the negatives look? Are they really thick?
    Not really, mostly average with good definition.

    Quote Originally Posted by bdial View Post
    You say the last few prints were grey without strong blacks; did the initial prints with the new bulb look ok?
    If so, then it's probably a problem of developer exhaustion.

    1:8 is a lot of dilution for Dektol, it's usually used at 1:2 or sometimes 1:3
    They looked okay with 120 - with even darker negatives.
    It might be exhausted, I have anyways dumped the dektol to make new working solution.

    1:3 is actually too strong - temp is usually close to 30c I get little or no time before over development, 1:8 is just fine.

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    At a dilution of 1:8, which is approximately 3x weaker than 1:3, your soup will only last for 1/3 the square inches of developing as mentioned on the instruction sheet. I think

  6. #6
    Bob Carnie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bdial View Post
    You say the last few prints were grey without strong blacks; did the initial prints with the new bulb look ok?
    If so, then it's probably a problem of developer exhaustion.

    1:8 is a lot of dilution for Dektol, it's usually used at 1:2 or sometimes 1:3

  7. #7
    analoguey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kawaiithulhu View Post
    At a dilution of 1:8, which is approximately 3x weaker than 1:3, your soup will only last for 1/3 the square inches of developing as mentioned on the instruction sheet. I think
    Hmm. Link? I have tried to find one via Google or apug but havent been lucky


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  8. #8

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    Kodak's datasheet indicates that Dektol is good for approximately 32 8x10 sheets per liter at their recommended dilution (1:2)
    So, that would be 32 sheets per .5 liter of stock solution. A liter at 1:8 might be good for as few as 4 8x10 sheets, if I'm doing the math right. Also, at 30C the developer will oxidize faster.
    You may want to mix the working solution with chilled water, or possibly even use the tray in a chilled water bath. Or else dilute less and get used to really fast developing times.

    Reference pdf here;
    http://www.kodak.com/global/en/profe...3cp/e103cp.pdf

  9. #9
    Bob Carnie's Avatar
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    Where did you come up with a 1:8 dilution for Dektol??

  10. #10
    analoguey's Avatar
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    Not necessarily 1:8 but I think both 1:7 and 1:9.
    Here on apug itself. 1:9 referencing Ansel and 1:7 as recommendation

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