Can water be used as a stop bath for B&W paper?

Discussion in 'Film Discussion and Q & A' started by Hawaii Five-O, Nov 13, 2008.

  1. Hawaii Five-O

    Hawaii Five-O My alter-egos have been banned. :( Now I must be

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    When I develop my film, I use water as the stop bath. Will water work on the paper as well?
     
  2. greyhoundman

    greyhoundman TPF Noob!

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    It will not stop it very quickly. And a lot will carry over to the fixer.
    You can always use dilute white vinegar.
     
  3. Helen B

    Helen B TPF Noob!

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    If you are developing for maximum black ("completion") you are probably developing to near completion, so the exact timing isn't usually critical in the same way as it can be with film - which is not usually developed to anywhere near completion.

    There is still the problem of carry-over of the alkaline developer into the fixer, as greyhoundman mentioned. Do you use RC or fibre-based paper, and what sort of fixer do you use?

    Best,
    Helen
     
  4. Paul Ron

    Paul Ron TPF Noob!

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    Stop bath is nothing more than acitic acid... which is what vinigar esentially is. So a little vinigar n away you go.

    Also... If you get hungry n want a light snack, shred up some lettus n add a bit of olive oil. Nothing goes to waste.
     
  5. Hawaii Five-O

    Hawaii Five-O My alter-egos have been banned. :( Now I must be

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    I might have to try some diluted white vinegar.:thumbup: Right now I am using RC paper to practice on, but would like to use the fiber based after I get used to print photos again. I'm using Kodak's fixer

    I do like salads RonPaul, but what about the Dektol:greenpbl:
     
  6. Paul Ron

    Paul Ron TPF Noob!

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    Dektol loves salads as well.

    You can use vinigar for both your fim n paper regardless of what paper it is. It just stops the developer action by neutralizing the Alkali. Vinigar just doesn't have an indicator in it. Same acid though.
     
  7. Hawaii Five-O

    Hawaii Five-O My alter-egos have been banned. :( Now I must be

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    Cool, I'll have to pick up some vinegar tomorrow:thumbup:
     
  8. Helen B

    Helen B TPF Noob!

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    Here are some general guidelines for stop baths and fixer combinations when printing:

    Most of the time prints are developed to completion - there is usually little or no requirement to stop development. If you aren't developing to completion you may not be getting the full range of tones from your paper. Lith printing is an exception.

    If you are using an alum acid hardening fixer you should use an acid stop bath, because carry-over of alkali may result in a white precipitate from the alum hardener on the print.

    You can use citric acid in place of acetic acid if you want an acid stop. In some ways citric acid is better than acetic acid - it isn't as strong an acid and it has a buffering action.

    If you do use a water stop bath then you can change it regularly.

    Possibly the best way of fixing fibre-based prints if not lith printing is to use an alkaline or neutral fixer, and use it as a two-bath fixer. Two-bath is more economical than one-bath, and an all alkaline process leads to lower wash times. You can use a water stop with no problems.

    Best,
    Helen
     
  9. Early

    Early TPF Noob!

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    Acidic acid> vinegar because vinegar often has impurities in it, or so I'm told. Acidic acid is very cheap, and it's handy to have around a darkroom.

    Personally, I've always preferred an acid stop because it stops development on a dime, or a least quicker than a water bath. It's one less variable I have to concern myself with.
     
  10. Blyack.Hype

    Blyack.Hype TPF Noob!

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    thats what i use...vinegar...fixer...hypo clear..and the photo flo

     
  11. Dwig

    Dwig TPF Noob!

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    With RC papaers, a quick water rinse and then into the fixer will work, but it will substantially reduce the life of the fixer.

    With fiber-based papers, its not a good idea. It can lead to some uneven densities in the mid range and lighter, and. after a few prints, will start to compromise print permanence. It will also severly compromise the fixer as the developer carry over is substantial.

    Stop bath is cheap and paper is expensive. Poor Richard took his stand on such things 100 years before photography: "Penny wise, but pound foolish".
     
  12. Torus34

    Torus34 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    To sum up:

    For paper, the term 'stop bath' is something of a misnomer. Paper development goes essentially to completion so there's no process to stop. What the bath does is reduce the amount of active developer which gets carried over into the fixer. Developer 'uses up' fixer, and the less of it that carries over, the stronger the fixer remains.

    Stop bath is relatively cheap. If you must use vinegar use the white distilled type. It contains fewer additional chemicals. And it's usually the cheapest. Dilute as required.
     

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