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D-76 & other Agents
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shutter up



Joined: 03 Aug 2002
Posts: 10
Location: S.W. Central Iowa

PostPosted: Mon Sep 16, 2002 4:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Can anyone provide me with their own experiences or tips on measuring out developers/fixers/..etc for small amounts.
Rather than mixing the gallon worth and storing solutions? I'm only processing a couple of 4X5's @ a time and only use about 200 to 300ml of water. Is a tablespoon worth of agent too much? Not enough?
Any tips or suggestions would be greatly appreciated!!!!
Rob
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Henry



Joined: 09 May 2001
Posts: 1439
Location: Allentown, Pennsylvania

PostPosted: Mon Sep 16, 2002 8:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kodak discourages the practice of mixing small quantities as you are suggesting. I've found a good way to preserve developer in solution. First, use a glass jug (if you can still find them anywhere in today's plastic world)---I don't trust plastic because of permeability issues. Next, and this is the crucial step, every time you remove your 200 or 300ml from the jug, take a soda straw and exhale through it into the jug about 5-10 times. This will put a layer of carbon dioxide in contact with the liquid surface and retard or prevent oxidation of the developer. I've kept D76 alive for several months using this technique, which was widely printed years ago in the photo mags.
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KeithNP



Joined: 30 Nov 2001
Posts: 26
Location: Loma Linda, CA

PostPosted: Mon Sep 16, 2002 9:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think you could get better results with another technique. The problem is that exhaled air still has a fair amount of oxygen in it (thats why mouth-to-mouth works...). One technique would be to get a can of nitrogen (they sell them at some of the more classy wine shops to - you guessed it - stop an opened bottle of wine from oxidizing). The other technique is a little trickier, but works really well. Put the chemical in a bottle with a large (several inches) airgap. Put a deflated balloon in the neck of the bottle and then blow it up. As it fills, it will displace the air in the bottle, forming a tight seal.
You can also get little cylinders of CO2 for making soda water, or inflating bicycle tires, or blowing the dust off your keyboard, but I worry that the CO2 will dissolve into the solution (as carbonic acid) and lower the pH. Depending on the chemical, that might have an effect on its properties. With small amounts of chemicals, that pH change would be more rapid (less buffering effect).

As for the original question about how much solution to use, look online for some small graduated cylinders or pipettes. They will allow you to measure small amounts accurately. Then all you have to do is divide the original concentrations down to get the smaller amount. (10cc in 850ml = 1cc in 85ml etc.)
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Les



Joined: 09 May 2001
Posts: 2682
Location: Detroit, MI

PostPosted: Mon Sep 16, 2002 10:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

When my B&W business was going great guns, I would buy ektaflo developer (but this would work with D76) and put the concentrate in indiviual bottles. I was able to by the brown glass pharmacy bottles---the ones with the funny 3 followed by roman numberals-- through my local pharmacy. a place called American Science and Surplus may have them cheaper.

this way I had a 'one shot' amount for my 8x10 trays. It worked well.

Now a word of caution about D76. As it ages, the pH changes and that effects the contrast. My "film Developer's Cookbook" isn't at hand at the moment, but Grant Hutchings suggests leaving out the Metol. The new formula is called D76H and can be purchased through Photographer's Formulary.

Another option is to change to Rodinal. this can be used as a one shot developer, the dilution is great, and therefore economical and Rodinal in concentrate lasts a long time too.
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LelandRay



Joined: 24 May 2001
Posts: 115
Location: Mississippi

PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2002 12:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm about to commit sacrilege...

When my B&W processing slows down a lot, I use Kodak TMAX concentrate. I just mix it 1:4 with water, as recommended. The concentrate doesn't last forever, but it's better than having a whole gallon of D76 go stale.
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Les



Joined: 09 May 2001
Posts: 2682
Location: Detroit, MI

PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2002 1:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dear Leland Ray.

I've used Tmax dev with great results for their roll film, but I tried it with sheet film and got a tremendous amount of dichroic fog. How did you keep from getting it.?

Now that they are reformulating Tmax films, I don't know if that will continue.



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shutter up



Joined: 03 Aug 2002
Posts: 10
Location: S.W. Central Iowa

PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2002 1:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you for all the replies!! This is the feedback I was looking for and will help greatly!!!!!!!!
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LelandRay



Joined: 24 May 2001
Posts: 115
Location: Mississippi

PostPosted: Fri Sep 20, 2002 8:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ooooops, Les.

I actually haven't tried TMax developer with sheet film; since a single run is going to take half a gallon of chemistry anyway, I don't worry much about waste. Two runs to the gallon, so the developer doesn't have time to go stale. I was assuming (you know what they say about assumptions) that the results would be the same for sheet film as for roll film, which is 90% of my shooting / processing.

Guess I better start reading and writing a bit more carefully.

Leland
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Les



Joined: 09 May 2001
Posts: 2682
Location: Detroit, MI

PostPosted: Fri Sep 20, 2002 10:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nooo Problem.

I can remember when this first came out they said that with a 120 single roll tank, you could do two runs at the normal time then add a minute and do two more runs.

Four rolls out of 16 oz of developer!

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"In order to invent, you need a good imagination and a lot of junk" Thomas Edison
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clnfrd



Joined: 26 Mar 2002
Posts: 616
Location: Western Kentucky Lakes Area

PostPosted: Sat Sep 21, 2002 12:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

For what its worth...I remember when I was a kid visiting a local photog's darkroom. He mixed his developer in large brown jugs...placed a syphon hose with a clip on the end into each one...and poured an oil of some sort, probably mineral oil, onto the liquid surface. The oil stayed on top, of course, and kept the solution insulated from oxidation. He could add replenisher, and was careful never to let the level get low enough to syphon out the oil. Fred.

[ This Message was edited by: clnfrd on 2002-09-20 17:53 ]
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alecj



Joined: 09 May 2001
Posts: 853
Location: Alabama

PostPosted: Sat Sep 21, 2002 1:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I use HC-110 and find it easy to measure out small amts for processing a few sheets. I don't like holding dev. over - I use mine one-time. Its still cheap enough, used that way, to justify the effort. Cheaper than other devs too.
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Lensman



Joined: 20 Jan 2002
Posts: 63
Location: British Columbia

PostPosted: Mon Sep 23, 2002 5:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Using DEKTOL as a fast developer for film. I used this at a newspaper when speed was essential in developing and printing.
Try undiluted/straight Dektol at 70 degrees F. for ONE MIN in a tray. Constant agitation by moving tray slightly.
OR- Dektol 1-1 at 3Min.@ 68deg. F.
Results were pretty good.
Discard after use.

I can't recall for sure, but I imagine one could use the same developer for a print from the 'wet' negative.

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Les



Joined: 09 May 2001
Posts: 2682
Location: Detroit, MI

PostPosted: Mon Sep 23, 2002 6:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I just hope you like lots of grain! Back when it was fashionable, we used to shoot recording film (asa 1000) one stop under and then develop in Dektol 1:3 for 5 min I think. Had an interesting look, which is not the same as D-76!

Now we just lay the "19th Century Auto chrome" plug-in filter over the image and FTP it to the magazine.

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"In order to invent, you need a good imagination and a lot of junk" Thomas Edison
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Nick



Joined: 16 Oct 2002
Posts: 494

PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2002 11:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is exactly one reason some people make up developer from basic chemicals. You make what you need when you need. It's a little more effort but not alot more. Well IMHO not a lot more.
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jpmose



Joined: 29 May 2001
Posts: 164
Location: Atlanta, GA

PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2002 8:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Another problem with your suggested use of "spooning" out the powder for individual uses are the weight variances of different ingredients. This can cause one or more ingredients to settle, resulting in an uneven mixture. I remember trying this back in my early days of darkroom practice (when I was a young lad in 1972) and getting very strange results.

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JP Mose
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