b & w developing question

Discussion in 'The Darkroom' started by seanghatch, Jun 21, 2005.

  1. seanghatch

    seanghatch TPF Noob!

    Jun 22, 2004
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    So I tried to develop my first role of black and white film today, and it didn't work out. The role I used was bulk loaded by me. Afga 400. I developed it by the instructions on DIY Film Development on www.chromogenic.net, and I ended up with a roll of very light film. There was no trace of photographs, and the film turned out a very light color. Does this mean the film was totally exposed, or totally unexposed? And in either case, where are common places I went wrong?

    All I'm really concerned about is boy I hope I didn't misload the bulk film, I think all the other possible problems are more workable.
  2. Rob

    Rob TPF Noob!

    Jan 29, 2005
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    Hi there and welcome to the forum. There's actually a section for darkroom stuff which may be good for specific questions, but, to answer your question - very light negatives may not have been exposed at all, so one possiblity is that you've developed some film which hasn't been exposed. As it's a negative, the light bits are dark, so an exposed film would be black, and unexposed, light grey.


    Another possibility is that the developer was not given long enough to make the image come out, or that the developer was far too cold or you diluted it way too much. The chemistry can be a bit daunting, but I'm a fairly experimental type of chap and I make it all up as I go along.

    Usually there are basic instructions for the developer on the back of the bottle, I use Ilfotec, whose manual can be seen here: http://www.silverprint.co.uk/PDF/ilfotecd.pdf

    I think (it's been a while) last time I did it I used about a ratio of between 1:8 or 1:10 i.e 50ml of the developer and 400ml water in my little box for about five minutes at about room temperature, but you need to check your film requirements against the developer's properties (or experiment).

    There are far more knowledgeable people here than me on this subject, but hopefully I've given you something to think about?

  3. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

    Aug 25, 2003
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    Lawrence, KS
    Can others edit my Photos:
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    If you screwed up the bulk loading the film would be black, or have black marks (dense areas). I would think iso 400 film should have some marks, even if it was greatly underexposed. Pop the back of your camera open, and make sure you can see the shutter open when you press the button.

    Or possibly the film was misloaded, and didn't actually make it through the camera. What kind of camera are you using. With an older 35mm SLR that doesn't load itself you can see if the film is advancing because the rewind knob turns backwards a little as the film is advanced/shutter cocked.

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