I have just tried to use Caffenol and so far the results are way too soft. To the point where I have decided to use it as a cold developer over night (will share the results tomorrow). My mixture was made as follows:
8 teaspoons of Nescaffe Original
12 teaspoons of Soda Cristals.
1 (1000mg) tablet of Vir C.
Water to 500ml
Film APX 400 developed for 11 min at 20 C. The results are so soft that I don't know if less than hour would do.
I am wondering if the soda is the right stuff. The one I got is 30% and I'm wondering if I can get it any better.
I am UK based so if anyone there from here with better results let me know. Also you can share what ingredients you use and where you buy them.
OK. Finally an acceptable result.
8 hours in the fridge with APX 400 and I'm actually pleased with the result. I will still continue testing at 20 degrees because not always I have 8 hours to spare.
Further tests with different emulsions will be necessary as well. But this is actually impressive. Coffee works!
Another overnight development.
8 teaspoons of coffee
4 teaspoons of soda crystals
water to 500ml
10 hours at 7 C, no agitation.
Negative looks fogged. Might be the camera issue as I used different camera, or lack of Vit. C, will check. Other than that the result is still a bit soft although the manufacturers markings on the film seam fine. Again the softness might be the camera.
You need to be consistent with your measurements, teaspoons and the like are meaningless.
I suggest that you try the two sites above, also the coffee that you use needs to be cheap and nasty as its the acid in the beans that does the work.
I have been down the same path, when it works it's great but being consistent seems to be the hardest thing to achieve.
Don't know how you are getting on with your coffee developing as your post was awhile ago.
I'm in the UK.
I began developing with the same ingredients as you..Washing soda crystals, Vit C tablets and coffee..
the results were pretty poor and hit n miss.
Things improved immensely when I sourced better ingredients.
Sodium Carbonate (Soda Ash)
Ascorbic Acid (pure Vit c powder)
You can get these on that auction site of you can't find them locally.
and coffee..I use the cheap coffee you get from that well known chain of stores where everything costs a pound..yea?
I also use the colour films from there too.
you can see results here. http://www.flickr.com/photos/leef33/
Lee, the results look good and I know what you mean about consistency.
I still feel that caffenol is more art than science, and especially with colour film. I can only conclude that it's the three emulsions not being developed in the correct balance, if that makes sense to you.
If you look I have some prints here, the one of the stunt plane is especially pleasing to me as the texture is soft. However there are a couple there of the new Queen Mary in Sydney Harbour, with looks odd and I believe that it's the imbalance in colour, it was taken late afternoon. It looks too harsh, and the water is a little odd looking also.
But it's great fun and I enjoy it a lot. What fixer do you use, I only ask because fixer has been causing me a few problems lately, it seems that I've been under fixing.
Just an update, about my caffenol film developing efforts.
The measuring has produced consistent results, however the were not consistently good. developing time was (and still is 20 mins at 20 Celsius ) but the fixing time has been increased to 14 mins. And I am now very pleased with the consistent results, both with B&W and colour negs.
I have recently upgraded to a Kowa six medium format camera and the results are stunning, I feel that I have now reached my goal in B&W photography.
A very happy chappie.
Iantoz, good to read you are very happy.
I too found once I was measuring I got repeatable results. I guess that this should not hav been a surprise