Quote Originally Posted by DrPhil
I purchased Arentz's book on Pt/Pd print and am going to give it a try. Several folks have suggested that I purchase all the chemicals separately instead of as a kit. If I am to do this I need to decide what developer and clearing agent to use. B&S and Photographer's Formulary both include different chemicals in their kits. Thus, my question is what are the pros and cons of each choice.

The B&S kit includes Ammonium Citrate as a developer. Formulary uses Potassium Oxalate. Arentz list them both as developers. Is one preferable to another? Is one considered tried and true? I understand the Potassium Oxalate is never discarded. Is this true for Ammonium Citrate?

What about a clearing agent? B&S includes EDTA in their kit. Formulary uses Citric Acid. My understanding is that citric acid is stronger(more efficient?) than EDTA.

My plan is to start with a tried and true setup as a baseline for experimentation. Crane's Platinotype seems to be the paper that is best suited for this. The coating solutions also seem straightforward. I am going to start with the A+B+C method prescribed in Arentz's book.

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
I don't know about the speed of ammonium citrate but there is very little if any difference in printing speed between sodium citrate (which I believe is a lot less expensive than ammonium citrate) and potassium oxalate and if you use them both at room temperature the tone and warmth is about the same. If you use the developers at 100 F. potassium oxalate will give more warmth (more brownish look) than sodium citrate but I prefer more neutral tones and tend to use citrate more than oxalate.

As for clearning agent I have found citric acid to be more effective than EDTA, and at $1.65 per pound in pails of 30 lbs from the Chemistry Store it is very inexpensive. Hard to believe that the Kodak Hypo Clearing Agent could be less expensive than that. You can also get sodium citrate at the Chemistry Store.

I prefer the Na2 methoid of contrast control over the A-B-C method. Both will give good results with negatives of normal contrast for pt./pd. but the Na2 method gives more flexibility for contrast control.

As for papers one of the very best is Cot-320 by Bergger. I use it right out of the package and get excellent Dmax and very good sharpness.