Monday, June 19, 2017

Parodinal, another alternative

Parodinal is a clone of the famous developer Rodinal, from AGFA. It has a very long shelf life and can be used in concentrations from 1:10 to 1:200. However, when diluted it should be used in the next hours. It may be used for paper in the strongest concentrations and for film or plates for the more diluted baths.

Taking this formula as starting point, let us translate it to 500 ml, doubling the contents:

30 g Paracetamol
100 g Sodium Sulfite
40 g Sodium Hydroxide

I had many difficulties to get Sodium Sulfite at local suppliers. So, I started thinking about alternatives using Potassium Metabisulfite instead. Using a chemical balance calculator like this one, I realized that following equation is valid:

K2S2O5+NaOH = SO3K2 + SO3Na2+H2O

The first term is Potassium Metabisulfite and Sodium Hydroxide and the second is Sodium and Potassium Sulfite and some water.

From 80 g Potassium Metabisulfite and about  30 g Sodium Hydroxide, one gets about 100 g Sulfites that may replace the 100 g Sodium Sulfite given in the formula above. This leads to following new recipe:

30 g Paracetamol
80 g Potassium Metabisulfite
70 g (40+30) Sodium Hydroxide

It works very like Rodinal, same times and dilutions.

Following photos were made with an Agfa Clack camera, using Ilford Delta 100, developed with this last recipe in dilution 1:100 for 60 minutes in stand development:

Saturday, June 3, 2017

More coffee, please!

Like I promised, I changed the last universal developer recipe like this:

800 ml water
3 g Potassium Metabisulfite
6 g CD4 (color developer for C-41)
30 g Soluble coffee
35 g Potassium Carbonate
1,5 g Potassium Bromide
Water to make 1 Liter

I developed for 12 minutes with constant agitation at room temperature, bleached and fixed. Perhaps I could have done 15 minutes too, the results would not be so different, I think.

Because coffee is acidic I raised slightly the Potassium Carbonate content and I got evidently better negatives and the difference can be appreciated by sight.

One of the 8 photos made with an Agfa Clack and expired Fujicolor Superia 100:

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

After one year...

One year ago I had to stop my experiments. I am restarting, and I have new results about developing color with coffee... and CD4!

I had, after many not convincing results, established a formula for my universal developer with wich I got some good pictures, color and B&W:

800 ml water
3 g Potassium Metabisulfite
6 g CD4 (color developer for C-41)
20 g Soluble coffee
30 g Potassium Carbonate
1,5 g Potassium Bromide
Water to make 1 Liter

Develop for 15 minutes for both C-41 and B&W at room temperature with constante agitation.

I never had a confirmation off the need of coffee in this recipe. So, I tried to reduce the content of coffee and increase the content of the color developer CD4. But the results showed, clearly, that the coffee content is important. Some people argued with me that beeing coffee a B&W developer, it would compete with CD4, stilling silver that would contribute to more color when developed by CD4.

But the theory was not confirmed by the praxis. Here is a photo developed with the recipe above:

Photo developed with Caffenolcolor
And here is a photo developed with 10g/liter of CD4 and only 10g/liter of coffee:

Less coffee and more CD4
It is obvious that the first photo is more color saturated than the second, and perahps the coffee content should be even increased...

Have a nice time with coffee!

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Another approach to Dignan's 2-bath developer for C-41

What seduced me with Dignan's divided developer was the absence of time and temperature control when doing C-41 at home, without expensive equipment.

I am using the method for quite a while now, but I still have some in-satisfaction about colour shifts, grain, shelf life, etc..

I already tried to solve colour shifts using different recipes for bath B, decreasing or increasing pH. The grain has been always there, no matter how I agitate or not. Shelf life was 1 month for bath A and pictures were becaming weaker and weaker.

Let me remind you of the composition of bath A:

1 g of Sodium Bisulfite
9 g of Sodium Sulfite
11 g CD4
Water to - 1 liter

I couldn't get Sodium Bisulfite, but I read somewhere that Metabisulfite in 1:1 proportion would do the same. So I used 1g/l of Potassium Metabisulfite.

I tried to use more Potassium Metabisulfite, 2g/l, to prolong the shelf live and indeed, it worked. I could use the same batch of bath A during 6 months with little changes that I compensated with longer bath B until 1 hour.

The use of more Potassium Metabisulfite seems to require longer bath B anyway.

The last insight I had about the divided C-41 developer was this one: Why not helping the second bath with a little of bath A in it? This could have as result a better overall development and, who knows, better negatives?

In fact, I started using 20ml/l of bath A in bath B and then increasing to 50ml/l. Yes, better colours and better density of the negatives. And with constant agitation I had much less grain than before.

But, and this could cut to zero the advantages of Dignan 2-bath developer, if we need 50 ml of bath A for each film, after 20 films we spent 1000 ml that would also have developed 20 films without split development.

But no, bath B with 50ml/l of bath A may develop 2, 3 or more films, so making the process very attractive.

Monday, May 23, 2016

New findings on C-41

I have been using split development for color films with some success but sometimes it fails too. I like very much the idea that we just use a small amount of CD4 in the first bath and get more films developed than one could achieve with a one-bath developer.

Some causes of failure are:
  • The first bath looses strength and leads to underdevelopment
  • Different films need different second baths, different pH
    (Fuji tends for instance to give greenish negatives)
  • Grainy pictures (also because agitation is manual and sometimes we don't agitate enough)
 I am working in an alternative but I still have to test it with at least 2 other films, Kodacolor and Fujicolor normally available today.

By now, I am getting good results with Fujicolor-Eterna-250D, besides a very tolerant film that can even be developed with hair dye as I already showed here while other films give very bad results.

These pictures have a very good color in just automatic scanner settings and a fine grain.
So, as soon as I have more confidence with the alternative to the split developer, I will make a new post. By now, pacience is needed, but the idea is to include in the second bath a certain amount of the first.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Worldwide Pinhole Photography Day

For a long time I didn't post because I had no time for further experiments but soon I will return with more funny things, I hope!

Today is the Worldwide Pinhole Photography Day, so I want to show you an interesting experiment I made. Normally in a pinhole film photograph you will almost never see moving objects. To get a sharp photo you have to use a small hole but a small hole means less light and for the most films you need to expose for seconds. And every movement will produce blurred images or only fogged areas or nothing if the object moves very fast.

One could think how to overcome this problem by using very fast films and pushing the development. This is what I made using an old Agfa Synchro Box without lens. In its place I putted a pinhole of 0.5mm, giving a f number of more than 270. The camera has a speed of about 1:50 in instant setting. I used a 3200 ISO film to take some instant pinhole photos and developed in parodinal developer in dilution 1:50 for one hour, stand. Yes, there appeared some images. The film was very dark (fogged by a so long development) but all 8 pictures, taken in a sunny day with some clouds could be scanned and gave usable photos.

In a near future, however, I will try to repeat this experiment with a much smaller camera format like 35 mm or less, using a very small focal for the pinhole. So, instead of a f number of 270, I can use about 100. For instances, using a 0.2 mm hole, I calculate a 24 mm focal length, giving a f number of 120. This f number allows speeds of 1/50 for 3200 ISO and pushing to 6400 or more, even 1/100 in a sunny day.

We will see!!!

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Tiny first result with hair dye and modern C-41 film

The negative of the picture above was made on a Fujicolor 200 film and developed for 1 hour with the same developer that gave in just 15 minutes a much dense image using Fuji Eterna 250D, a movie film long expired. I already posted that image, but here is it again:

I think that modern films just need a higher pH, so I will be trying that as next.