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Am 25.3.2019 um 00:50 schrieb TheDot:

Are the bags hard to use? Having only developed in a darkroom setting, I imagine this will need some trial and error?

You'll get used to it , once you practice. I did not like the sweaty hand I got in the bag, so I darkened my cellar. Don't forget to take of your watch in case of the luminescent dials. 

 

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On 3/24/2019 at 11:50 PM, TheDot said:

Are the bags hard to use? Having only developed in a darkroom setting, I imagine this will need some trial and error?

When using changing bags:

before taking the film out of the cassette, check you have got all parts of the tank inside the bag where you can feel them, in case some part was put in the wrong side of the double vip-up bag so that you can’t get to it.

check that you have fully zipped up both inner and outer bags. I made a mistake recently, working in subdued light and unzipped the first zip instead of zipping up the second. It was ok as I was also in the darkroom as double security from the light.

when putting the lid on the tank check that part of the bag has not got caught up, my bag is quite soft and silky inside and flops down on the things I am holding.

if using Rollei infrared film put a pair of scissors in the bag, you cannot tear that film. The first time I used it I could not tear the film off the spool. Best to put scissors in the bag with a new type of film just in case.

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1 hour ago, Paulus said:

You'll get used to it , once you practice. I did not like the sweaty hand I got in the bag, so I darkened my cellar. Don't forget to take of your watch in case of the luminescent dials. 

 

And bear in mind Sods Law says your mobile phone will ring (read GLOW) just as you have all the film out in the open. Not happened to me, yet, but I'm very mindful of the consequences. 

Gary

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Posted (edited)

Perhaps consider a home C41 processing kit for Ilford XP2 Super film, which allows a film scanner to use automated dust and scratch removal via its infrared channel (Digital ICE)? This is the route I will take if my Monochrom camera body becomes unrepairable and I go back to using my M6 full time.

Edited by Nick_S

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Another word of warning for the dark bags - be careful not to cut them when using the scissors with the film! The inner lining of my bag now has a number of gaffer tape patches after I cluelessly managed to do this 😅

Also, if you are in a hot area it probably pays to use the biggest bag that you can find. Here in summer it can hit 30c indoors with the AC on full power, and a larger bag gives a bit more time to load the film on to the spiral before condensation from sweat starts to make the film bind to the plastic (alternatively use metal tanks and spirals).

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Why use a scissor? 

I always cut the piece of the film outside the bag ( the start ) The only thing I use in the bag is a bottle opener to open the film metal. The end of the film one can tear loose, not cut. Never had a hole in my bag this way. 

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8 hours ago, Paulus said:

Why use a scissor? 

I always cut the piece of the film outside the bag ( the start ) The only thing I use in the bag is a bottle opener to open the film metal. The end of the film one can tear loose, not cut. Never had a hole in my bag this way. 

You would need a lot of pulling to tear the Rollei film off the spool.

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vor 14 Stunden schrieb Pyrogallol:

You would need a lot of pulling to tear the Rollei film off the spool.

Sorry, I thought we were talking about the films used in a Leica.  With those films it works. 

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On 4/7/2019 at 1:03 AM, Paulus said:

You'll get used to it , once you practice. I did not like the sweaty hand I got in the bag, so I darkened my cellar. Don't forget to take of your watch in case of the luminescent dials. 

 

I learned the hard way about removing watch. Mine is Luminox and pretty bright.

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In the open, I insert the tip of the film on my plastic reel till it catches and then carefully put it in the bag (not to pull it out of the cassette more). In the bag I simply have to keep ratcheting to load rest of the film. At the end I simply cut the ends with scissors with blunt end (stole from my kid). Never had an issue. 

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On 4/9/2019 at 11:27 AM, film3 said:

Agfa Rondinax 35U. It's so easy...

I second for Rondinax 35U.

This is my only one daylight tank, and only one to process my films.

Didn't believe that I had processed hundreds of rolls, one by one 💪

 Wonder how many "turns" I've done for those hundreds films.

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The whole process is simpler than it sounds. I use / do the following...

Loading Tools:

1) Large dark bag (I also use this when traveling to load LF film).

2) Paterson tank/s (Universal takes 2x 135 or 1x 120 film/s) [I have several, including 1 small one for processing 1x 135 film].

3) Bottle opener / cassette opener [when using  my EOS, I don’t bother opening th cassette, as I can set it to leave a leader when rewinding].

4) Small pair of scissors to trim the end of the film square to feed into the reel.

Loading:

1) Lay the bag out on a flattish area [I do mine on the sofa].

2) Place the components in the bag in an order / area where you know where to find them. Note that (at least with the Paterson set) the reel/s must be totally dry, or you may have problems feeding the film/s. Also check that the pawl ball bearing are moving freely. [for me the layout is tank / tank-funnel / cap down the left side; reel/s with axle tube next to tank; film/s in middle; scissors / opener on right side - you can practice feeling your way around these items without loading a film. It becomes very easy very quickly].

3) Close and seal the bag zip.

4) Position yourself comfortably, having removed watch etc [Gary is correct about the phone - It’s happened so often to me that I wonder if there’s a CCTV that I’m not aware of. I’ve also had a fly with a sense of humour land on my nose, which produces a head dance that must look good on the CCTV].

5) Open the first film, placing the opener back to the right side of the bag.

6) Find the end of the film, and use the scissors to trim square-ish. I use my fingers as a guide - No need to be accurate - and I also chamfer the corners to make it easier to feed.

7) Feel for the 2 raised lead-in pieces on the 1st reel, line them up, and feed the film in enough to pass the pawl ball bearings. Start ratcheting the 2 sides of the reel, with thumbs on top of the 2 raised lead-in pieces to ensure the film doesn’t jump out.

8 ) Continue feeding until you get to the end (cassette comes up to the reel, and resists pulling back). Tear the cassette off (unless you are using Rollei infrared, where you may have to cut the end of the film). Rathchet the remaining film into the reel.

9) Repeat for the 2nd film, if there is one.

10) Feed the reels onto the axle tube, and load the reels into the tank (flanged end of the axle tube to bottom of the tank.

11) Fit the sealing tank funnel into the tank, twisting it to lock in place. Try to gently reverse it to check that it is locked. The tank is now light-safe.

12) Fit the cap on the tank, and then you can remove your hands and open the bag.

This all sounds much harder than it is. With dry reels, 2 films can be loaded in a few minutes, and it is very easy to do (unless you own a fly with a sense of humour).

Developing Tools and Consumables:

I do my developing at a small sink in a small shower room. I use:

100ml graduates

600ml graduates

1000ml graduates

1000-1200ml plastic Tupperware-ish jugs with sealing lids to store working solutions

3000ml plastic jugs for when I plan on doing a lot of developing

Small funnels

100-200ml measuring cups

1000-1200ml plastic jugs

Paper coffee filters for when my source chemicals are getting a bit lumpy (chemistry term)

Developer [I usually use R09 (Rodinal) @ 1:50 one-shot, or Ilford DDX @ 1:4 or 1:9] - Mix enough to at least get through the session.

Stop [I use Ilfostop and mix 1000ml @ 1:19, so that I can rotate the 600ml tank requirement over time - If left for a long time, Stop will get mould on top].

Fixer [I use Ilford @ 1:4 and mix 1000-1200ml, so that I can rotate the 600ml tank requirement over time. You can check solution strength and how long to fix for by testing in daylight - drop one of the end clippings of film into the fixer solution and see how long it takes to turn clear, with a bit of agitation every 30sec. Multiply that time by 2.5 - 3.0 to get how long to fix for].

Photoflo [I use Ilfodol @ 1:200 (5ml teaspoon in 1000ml) - Keep an eye on this solution as, over time it will start to gather ‘floaties’, which you don’t want to settle on your films. Throw away once you see this happening].

Developing:

It takes me 20-30 minutes to develop a film run, start to hanging up to dry. Variation is partly on film being used and what I’m trying to achieve, and partly on how distracted I get during the process. The key (despite the distractions) is consistency. As mentioned, Massive Dev Chart website is a very good starting point. Use it, see how the results turn out, then adjust to suit what works for you.

I use tap water, and don’t worry about the temperatures. I’m in Malaysia, but my developing is inside an apartment, so probably around 24 C.

Prepare what you need before you start. I have the Developer, Stop, Fixer, and 3x 600ml bottles of water (for the rinse) ready at the sink, and the Ilfodol solution sitting behind me (it’s not time-critical).

My agitation process is slow hand-to-hand rotations of the tank (like horizontally undoing a large threaded jar), whilst gently tipping end-to end about 30 deg each way.

My Paterson Universal 2-film tank process is:

1) 600ml of water into tank and continuous agitation for 1 min. Tip out water (may have dye, depending upon film emulsion).

2) 600ml of working Developer solution into tank. Agitate for 30 sec continuous, then 5 sec (3 rocking sequences) every 1 min for the required total developing time. Tip out (reuse or dispose, depending upon whether one-shot or not).

3) 600ml of working Stop solution into tank. Agitate for 1 min continuous. Tip back into jug for re-use.

4) 600ml of workin Fixer solution into tank. Agitate for 1 min continuous, then 5 sec (3 rocking sequences) every 30 sec for the required total fixing time. Tip back into jug for re-use. Note some films, particularly if under-exposed, will colour the Fixer pink / crimson.

5) 600ml of water into tank and agitate 7x (Ilford say 5x). Tip out.

6) 600ml of water into tank and agitate 14x (Ilford say 10x). Tip out.

7) 600ml of water into tank and agitate 28x [I like numbers] (Ilford say 20x). Tip out.

8 ) Remove cap, sealing funnel, and reels. Films probably look dark on the reels, as you can’t see through the multiple layers.

9) Set up a jug or container with the Ilfodol solution at a height where you are able to roll the film back and forth, hand to hand in a ‘U’ shape, dipped in the solution.

10) Break open the first reel and do the slow hand-to-hand semaphore dance for 2 min. This ensures the film is well-coated in the photoflo. At the end of the time, stretch your arms out wide and drain the Ilfodol off the film back into the container.

11) Hang the film up to dry. I use pegs or clips at the top, hanging off a cotton thread in the shower, and attach a small weight to the bottom (paper clips) to keep them straight-ish.

12) Repeat 10 & 11 for the 2nd film.

Notes:

The first time you do this, you’ll realise how much easier it is than it sounds - It’s just very wordy to describe.

I give the tank a couple of bangs on a hard surface after each agitation sequence, to ‘ensure’ no bubbles are left on the films.

The agitations witty the Developer are gentle and slow. With the Stop, Fixer, and water, it doesn’t matter so much.

Don’t worry about seconds, and how long it takes to go between stages. This is a very ‘organic’ and forgiving process. I have even had a film that I’d exposed 25 years ago and forgotten about (and didn’t know what the emulsion was) produce usable results from stand developing.

You don’t need to get every last drop out as you move between sequences. There will be a little dilution through cross transfer, but it is negligible.

Consistency is the key. Get consistent, then get creative.

Jump in. The basic set-up is very low-cost and simple. Kitchen measuring cups and jugs are just as effective as graduates etc, so there is very little capital outlay. A change bag works well for me - As noted by others, I’d advise getting a large one, giving more room to play.

Trust me (if you can) - You’re going to enjoy this. The first successful film you develop will bring back that same buzz you had years ago, and will have you wanting to go out and shoot more. Returning to film was the best photographic move I’ve done in the last 30 years, and developing at home has been a key enabler / enthusiasm-builder. As Gary suggested, jump into the ‘I like film...’ thread to see great photo’s, great banter, and a collection of very supportive people who will positively help you with any questions you have.

I also develop C41, but the process is, to me, less enthralling - more routine. B&W is the biz!

ENJOY

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Posted (edited)
On 4/9/2019 at 7:27 PM, film3 said:

Agfa Rondinax 35U. It's so easy...

I have one of these as well as a Rondix, a Jobo daylight tank and a Kodak daylight tank (so 4 in total). My favourite would be the Rondix, but the Rondinax is a great option. There is a modern option called a lab-box.

Edited by 105012

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My suggestion would be to use overaged or cheaply bought film for practicing. To avoid that film gets stuck in the spool, I found it helpful to cut the lead latch and round the corners before loading. Some film brands use very strong tape, which can't be ripped off easily, so there are gauze bandage scissors from an over-aged first aid kit, they have blunt tips.

Stefan

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I do film home development. I shoot Ilford FP4+ and Ilford HP5+ with Ilford DD-X film developer, Ilford Ilfostop + Ilford Rapid Fixer, used wuth Jobo 2 & 4 reel tanks. I keep the chemistry on temperature with a small 20 litre wine climate cabinet. I contactsheet my negatives and wetprint on Ilford Multigrade IV RC De Luxe glossy (1M) 9.5x12" (24x30.5cm).

 

 

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Jac, I don't understand the highlighted part. What do you mean? In my experience, in terms of developing a film, for best results one needs to follow the relevant film development guides.  

On 3/22/2019 at 10:56 PM, pico said:

If your intended practice is to scan negatives then you have left traditional darkroom printing and everthing it means. Once into the digital domain, ignore conventional film development guides. I am sure will find a lot of support for your effort, but not from old phartes like me.

I use a tent, specifically the Photoflex Changing Room. I like very much that I don't feel a bag over my hands when I work with the film. 

On 3/25/2019 at 12:50 AM, TheDot said:

Are the bags hard to use? Having only developed in a darkroom setting, I imagine this will need some trial and error?

 

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Fwiw, here's my setup.

I use HC110 for my films (incl. Ilford XP2 Super which is a fantastic combo, as explained by our own ChrisM) and Diafine. HC110 keeps forever. I think that bottle is around 5 years old. Diafine will give mushier grain but the results are usually very easy to scan. HC110 will result in slightly more contrasty negs with more "bite" to the grain. I'm sure someone can explain this better than I, but this is how it looks to me, generally. Diafine is wonderful from the perspective that it does not require different times for different film ISOs so you can chuck virtually any kind of film in the tank together, regardless their ISO or what EI you've shot them at.

As for the kit, I use a stainless steel Kindermann tank for five 35mm spirals or two medium format spirals and one 35mm spiral. I prefer a digital thermometer for quicker readout when trying to get the water to the right temp. And I use normal scissors (no problem in a tent), a bottle opener, four 1-litre measuring cups and a funnel.

The hanger and all the clips is for hanging the film in the shower to dry. One of the large clips as weight at the bottom of each film.

For measuring the developer I normally use one of those syringes one uses to give medicine to small children or the small measuring cup on the picture. I prefer the syringe because HC110 is very thick so a lot sticks to the side of the measuring cup. The demineralised water (blue bottle) is for the final wash with Ilfotol (after 5x filling the tank and 30 inversions with tap water). Diafine doesn't require any measurement because it's a simple two-bath developer with the same amount every time (full tank).

The best advice I got when starting was to decide on a process and stick with that one instead of trying to change things while learning. 

Br
Philip

PS. To paraphrase the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy "a towel is just about the most massively useful thing anyone wanting to develop film at home can have". It's great for wiping the tank if it has become wet so that it doesn't slip through one's hands and crash open on the floor when full with chemicals and undeveloped film, and it helps to wipe the sink clean when done or get rid of nasty brown HC110 stains on the floor. It can also be used as a whip to fend off uninvited guests and pets who keep pestering and interfering with one's film development efforts. 

 


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31 minutes ago, philipus said:

Jac, I don't understand the highlighted part. What do you mean? In my experience, in terms of developing a film, for best results one needs to follow the relevant film development guides.  

It is difficult to scan highlight detail from a negative but capturing mid to shadow detail is good, so overexposing and under-developing negatives can give you a scan with better range. Then in PP  boosting shadow contrast while maintaining highlight detail can yield good range.

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