Quote Originally Posted by sperera View Post
does the aperture chosen affect contrast or anything else i cant remember??????
It shouldn't. Optimally, it affects only the exposure. In practice, there'll be a small effect on sharpness and vignetting, with best results near the middle of the aperture range.

2. Safelights....I have the red one....i read on the Ilford paper I have to use the amber/brown one....I had no choice....prints seem to be fine....any comments? Due to limited space safelight is not more than 1.5/2 metres away
Red safelights are safe with almost all B&W papers, the only exceptions being those with full-spectrum sensitization, which are made to make prints from color negatives. Those papers should normally be used with no safelights, or perhaps with a very specialized one. Amber safelights are safe with many, but not all, B&W papers. Basically, the amber safelights emit light further into the green range than do red safelights, which means they can fog some variable contrast (VC) papers. If a paper is safe with an amber safelight, it'll be safe with a red one.

1.5-2 meters away sounds like a safe distance, but this will vary with the safelight and paper. If in doubt, perform a safelight test.

3. anti-newton glass - crucial or no???? don't know the glass is the Sivogla AN i see on ebay for this and other enlargers......
Glass carriers in general help keep the negative flat, but whether they're "crucial" or not depends on how picky you are about your prints, and also on how large you print. (A small variation in sharpness you might not notice in a small print might become objectionable in a bigger one.) OTOH, glass carriers also provide additional surfaces to which dust can adhere.

If you use glass carriers, AN glass is helpful, but I'm not sure just how helpful it is. Certainly if you see moire patterns in your prints you should get some AN glass.

5. Resin coated paper ILFORD - fix times 1 min and wash times 1 min....thats what they say.....do you guys use more time??
Both these times vary with both the fixer and the paper. Some fixers, such as TF-4, work very quickly and have very short fix times (1 minute or less). TF-4 also has very short wash times. Broadly speaking, you get quick fix times with rapid fixers, which are usually made from ammonium thiosulfate, and longer fix times with fixers made from sodium thiosulfate. Rapid fixers usually ship as liquids and non-rapid fixers usually ship as powders.

You get short wash times with alkaline fixers that lack hardeners, used in conjunction with RC papers. Acid fixers, fixers with hardeners (which usually require acid fixers), and FB papers all increase wash times. Generally speaking, most recommendations I've seen are for 5-minute or shorter wash times with RC papers, with FB paper wash times ranging from 20-40 minutes. FB paper wash times can often be reduced by using a hypo clearing agent, but I don't think I've seen recommendations for under-20-minute wash times even then.