Quote Originally Posted by MartinP View Post
One thing that might be worth checking is the temperature you are processing at and it's consistency. A medical-thermometer and a bi-metallic strip thermometer are rather sub-optimal for process control. Find yourself a calibrated darkroom thermometer and set up the machine using that at each stage. It may help I think?

Where it is possible to compare the pH of the developer to the figure provided by Kodak, then of course do that too.
Yeah I might look into borrowing equipment to compare pH but since it is the Flexicolor SM and you just mix from concentrate I am pretty sure I have mixed it correctly. No starter or replenisher involved. It is possible though that the freshness between developer mixed a week ago and freshly mixed mattered, but I sure hope it wouldn't cause things to be that far out of tolerance when stored in Jobo bottles.

I can check the temperature of the tank the Sidekick uses to heat the chemical up before loading into the drum. When I calibrated it to 100F (by adjusting a potentiometer on the circuit board) I used both a digital fever thermometer, a metal darkroom thermometer and a glass color darkroom thermometer I have. They all seemed in good agreement.

The two main things I can vary in my process are the developer time (currently set to 3:15 on the machine, and I think timed from when the chemical starts loading to when it thinks it will be done draining) and the temperature.

The Sidekick, since it doesn't have a tempered water bath to spin the drum in, uses a combined of a presoak with tempered water and hot air blowing on the drum to warm up the film and drum before putting the chemicals in. The drum itself has a temperature sensor on it that it uses to maintain the temperature. (It doesn't seem that one needs to be calibrated unlike the heating tank.)

I got them to overnight my new test strips to me so I will start again tomorrow. I will try and check to make sure the drum is being well drained during each step so that there is no carry over over the pre-soak water into the developer, and developer into bleach etc. And then if I am still out of spec I will try adding some time to the development (after double checking the temperature is indeed 100F)...