Thanks for the feedback everyone.Originally Posted by Tom Hoskinson
1. Yeah, I'm processing the film on reels. As far as I can tell, the damage isn't occuring during the processing, but instead when I look at my negatives (emulsion side down) on my light box. Viewing my unsleeved negs on my light box is part of my normal routine, and I have never noticed damage to them before (when the negs were fixed by a conventional fixer). Oh, and the damaged negatives were totally dry when I examined them on my light box -- they had been hanging in my bathroom for around twelve hours.
2. I use photo-flo and distilled water for my final rinse. I don't wipe the film before drying at all. No water spots so far, knock on wood.
For the sake of convenience and a non-chemically-stinky bathroom, I think that I'm just going to continue with the TF-4 and just avoid handling my negatives AT ALL when they're unsleeved. I just hope that they don't get scratches when I'm pulling them into and out of sleeves and negative carriers when I'm printing! I also might try a more modern film that incorporates its own hardening agent, but it's hard to beat $1.29/roll for the Arista. :-)