The TriX+Rodinal Adventure
Some time ago I posted asking for advice on the combination of Kodak Tri-X 320 and Rodinal. Well, it took me a while but I have my first results and I am amazed!
It took me a while because:
1) I had to special order Rodinal from the local bulk photography store. It took them two weeks.
2) I had an old health problem revisit me, which grounded me for ten days.
3) Had to get some shots.
4) I had to plan ahead. After asking three-four Internet forums, I still didn’t have any safe times to go by. The Ilford table of dilutions didn’t include the Rodinal ones, so I had to calculate a new table up to 1-100.
In any case. I got a film which I shot for tests, calculated everything and did the cooking. I must say I felt very nervous about going from a D-76 1+1 soup to a Rodinal 1-50 which was more like Lipton tea! I didn’t really trust that so high a dilution could do anything!
But it did! The images jumped out from the negatives! The grain under the grain focuser is just gorgeous! And the whole detail and life of the final print is astonishing!
I include a test shot.
(Back a few years ago, I had a dream that involved an old WWII BMW bike and a trip around the Mediterranean, not unlike Che Guevara’s South American one. This one belongs to a neighbor, lucky guy)
It was made with a Hasselblad 501CM and the 80 Planar lens.
I exposed for the shadows and metered at “straight” 320 asa.
The film was the new Kodak Tri-X 320 in 120 format.
I presoaked for about three minutes with tap water.
Rodinal 1-50, Temperature of 21 C, at 11 minutes, with an agitation at the beginning of 30” and then 10” every 1’, rotating the 800ml single 120 roll tank around by hand.
Stop bath by Ilford for a minute and fixed with Ilford Rapid for 12 minutes.
I also used Hypo Clear and Ilfotol for the final rinse after washing for ten minutes.
The print was made on a condenser 6x7 Kaiser System V enlarger with a Multigrade head at grade 2, on Ilford 20x25cm Multigrade IV RC satin paper.
(The print needs some work but this was a test)
Anything else I forget?
Oh, yes the scanner was an HP Scanjet 4570c.
There are some things to ask you.
1) The development time looks great, but since I lack the sophisticated densitometer I cannot really offer a scientific opinion if I should develop at a different time next batch. Should I go high a minute or two? Would that really help the image or just kill some highlights? It prints well on grade 2, but I could go grade 3.
2) What is the effect of dilution of Rodinal? How does 1-25,50,75,100 changes sharpness, contrast and such?
3) How long does Rodinal keep in concentrate after the bottle has been opened?
4) Should I have metered at a different speed? All speeds I found on any dev charts where either 400 or 200 asa.
5) About the fixing temp. The fixer wasn’t new, but I tested it with the Hypo Check. It really surprised me because I lifted the film out at five minutes and was still quite purple. At ten it didn’t look any less purple, but I continued at 12 minutes anyway. What’s up with that? The temp of the fixer must have been about 22 degrees Celcius.
So, what do you think?
I know now my favorite film and developer!
Last edited by arigram; 01-12-2008 at 08:52 AM. Click to view previous post history.
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