Darkroom Confusion

Discussion in 'The Darkroom' started by samsdmf, May 24, 2005.

  1. samsdmf

    samsdmf TPF Noob!

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    Hey, I have recently set up a dark room in an unused attic room but quite simply its not going good> I have developed my film and it looks fine but when i go to put it on paper it goes badly wrong, I have set up the enlarger to perfect focus, turned all lights off and followed guidelines to use several short exposures and cover up with card and it looks like its projecting fine but when I put the paper in the developing fluid it just develops black, grey and white marks on the paper, like if you got a pice of paper and ran black and white paint down it.
    DOes anyone have any ideas what im doing wrong. Thanks in advance. Sam
     
  2. Unimaxium

    Unimaxium TPF Noob!

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    Could the paper have been accidentally exposed to other light than from the enlarger? Like if the box was opened in room light for example? That's my only guess as to what it could be.
     
  3. KevinR

    KevinR TPF Noob!

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    I don't won't to be too simple, but are you putting the paper down then focusing your enlarger with the paper there?
     
  4. samsdmf

    samsdmf TPF Noob!

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    Umm I dont think its any of the above because I opened the paper in the dark (and wouldt that turn the paper all black when developed rather than the effect im getting). And the image is perfectly sharp and prefocused before i go anywhere near the paper, Im thinking I have a dodgy batch of paper.
    Thanks for the help, I will try remixing the developing fluid even though i am pretty sure i got 1+9 pretty exactly.
    Sam
     
  5. KevinR

    KevinR TPF Noob!

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    Then here is a couple of things:
    How long do you feel is your exposure in seconds?
    What f-stop do you have the enlarging lens at?
    I am assuming you don't have an enlarging timer. If you are leaving the lens wide open at say f3.5 for example, and it is a decent looking negative, where talking about an exposure of less than 3 sec. If you are stepping down to f11, where most lenses are at their sharpest, then exposure whould be, and this is just an estimate, of 30-40 sec.
     
  6. PhotoDragon

    PhotoDragon TPF Noob!

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    Are you puting the paper in emulsion side up or emulsion side down? If you are putting it in emulsion side down then the light is passing through the paper before it can get to the emulsion. This will generaly cause the image to be at best blurry, at worst it will give you shades of grey to black. If you have a safe light in your darkroom then you want to look for the writing on the paper which will be on the non-emulsion side and that side goes down on the easel. If you do not have a safe-light then you have to go by feel. The emulsion side will tend to be not as smooth as the non-emulsion side when you run your fingers along the paper.

    Another problem could be heat exposure to your paper. You said that you have your darkroom in an attic room. I know attics can get pretty hot if not properly insullated and air conditioned. If your paper has been exposed to high amounts of heat for a period of time then this could cause a problem as well.

    Good luck
     
  7. ksmattfish

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

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    Even if you got the mix wrong, it should still develop fairly normally. I would try another pack of paper from a different distributor. Maybe the one you got sat next to the heater for a few years in the storeroom.
     

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