B&W Developing Question


I Burn Easily :(
Feb 4, 2004
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Queensland, Australia
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Hi guys.

For my birthday I was given money to get my B&W film developing "dark room" started...

I already had a tank and I purchased a dark bag.

I was hoping to get D76 developer but found out it only comes in powder form. I don't have the patience for this, so I asked the store and they recommended Kodak HC110.

I got Kodak Stop bath
Ilford Rapid Fixer (they didn't have any kodak)
and Kodak Photoflo

Now, I learnt to develop at tafe and the steps were as follows...

Wash (2 min)
Wash (4 min)
Photoflo (30 sec)

Now, As I didn't get the hypoclear (didn't have liquid) - I know I have to wash for longer - but how much longer do I do it for?

And do I still do the photoflo for 30 seconds after the wash?

Also - At tafe we do the developer, stop and fix in the light tight tank (paterson developing tanks) - and then take it out and put it into larger open (daylight) tanks....

I am kind of limited in funds at the moment - can I just do all of the steps in the paterson tank, or does it need to go into a larger tank after the fixer?

Thanks for your help :) am off to shoot some films tomorrow so I can develop them :D
and what do you know..... ilford website basically just answered those questions.

It doesn't mention use of hypoclear and tells me how to wash the film in the spiral tank.

Sooo there you go!
personally, I never used hypoclear or photoflo... I just wash it for about 7minutes after the fixer.

I'm sure you can do all the steps in the same tank. Daylight ones are just there because the film is not light-sensitive anymore and doesn't need to be protected. But they're far from essential.
With b&w I usually do everything in the light tank and never had any trouble with that.

Actually HP5 is slowly becoming my favorite film too. You might want to try FP4 if you go that way. IMO, Ilford has the best b&w :)
thanks Alexandra.

The reason I say HP5 is because I am doing a diploma of photography at the moment and they told us to buy 5 rolls of HP5 - and I have only used one of them...

Actually, I think I have 4 FP4's aswell....

both 35mm as I ran through the 120 fast.

But when I have some money - I will try some different films...

The guy at the store said he really likes the HC110 developer - have you ever used it? I like it already as it says 2.5 minutes. LOL (as opposed to D76's 9 or something)
I do everything in the tank as well, but once you get wetting agent in/on it (Photoflo in your case, Ilfotol in mine) I've found it hard to completely get rid of it. Had a nasty moment last weekend, when I found myself doing some unplanned juggling with a very slippery tank.

D76, which is the same as Ilford ID-11, takes minutes to prepare, gives excellent results and is really cheap. The liquid concentrates are convenient, but if you just want a good 'normal' developer they strike me as an expensive way of getting one.
fadingaway1986 said:
The guy at the store said he really likes the HC110 developer - have you ever used it? I like it already as it says 2.5 minutes. LOL (as opposed to D76's 9 or something)
I tried D76, but not HC110... The store I buy everything from has only Ilford stuff.
I'll soon be ordering some things online, so I might order some HC' too.
It's gotta be pretty damn strong stuff it it only takes 2.5min...
Well, let me know about the results you get, anyway :)
thanks guys

Thom - The D76 isn't a LOT cheaper - we mix it at tafe and I find it a real pain (having to have it the exact temperature and putting in really precise amounts of water - honestly - I don't have the patience)

So for the photoflo - are you saying you would suggest I put that in its own container so I don't have problems with trying to get it off?
Another question actually...

What do you do with the chemicals once they are exhausted.

At tafe we tip them down the sink - but someone told me they actually have a chemical trap.

So is it safe to tip them down the stink? Or would it be better to tip them in the garden?
Hi "Fading away"
Good to hear from you again with more questions. I have been processing
B&W in ID11 for the last 40 years [ThomThomsk is correct, ID11 & D76 are exactly the same chemistry] The benefit of these is that I only changed my
developer about once every couple of years, I simply buy the replenisher. I haven't ever used HC110, but as "Alexandra" says "It's gotta be pretty damn strong if it only takes 2.5 min" Personally that's too short a time to process. Not enough time to do correct agitation. Remember processing is a time and temperature process, get it accurate. I actually use a large tank with my seperate chemistry in each of three tanks in the large tank, so the temperature of all the chemistry is exactly the same. Be careful going from a warm developer to a cold stop and fix, it can effect the film, though shouldn't have a problem in Queensland. Once it's fixed there's no problem going to a normal tap temperature for the wash. You can wash the film for 5-10 minutes without the need for "hypoclear" Definitely use Photoflo or similar, but you only need a couple of drops in about 1/2 litre of water, that's probably why ThomThomsk has a slippery problem. If you can develop solely in one tank and stop and fix in seperate tanks, it's beneficial as it doesn't take much fixer left in the developer tank to contaminate the developer. I may add more later if time permits. Philip.
Hi again,
You may chuck your developer out, but you can use the stop and fix for a while. If you put your fingers in the stop you will feel the acid in it. [compare with putting your fingers in water] The fixer if mixed correctly should be able to be used for a couple of dozen films. If it is taking more than say 2-3 minutes for the film to clear, [the milkiness disappears] then chuck it and remix. The principle for fixer is "however long it takes to clear is 1/3 of the fixing time. go to it Fadingaway.
Hi again.
I am thinking of diluting it 1:7 instead of 1:3 (it gives the info for both of these) 1:7 is 5 minutes as opposed to 1:3's 2.5 min.

Yep. I know about keeping the temperatures around the same.

So you reuse your developer?

At tafe we use once and throw it away. (D76 1:1).

I think for the time being I will stick with using it once and throwing it away - and become more creative once I have had a bit of a play
Forgot to mention - the only downside I can see with diluting it 1:7 is it says the life of it is only 2 months as opposed to 6 months...

I am worried about the life of some of these chemicals - I doubt I will use them all in a couple of months.
I like to use hc110 as a one shot, I do dilution b (1+31) - not sure the exact amounts for 35mm, Ive only been developing mf of late in it, but its pretty easy to calculate 15ml of hc110 and 485ml water per roll ;)

Im also not a hypo clear person, I use a wetting agent after the fix, but I just add a couple of drops to a jug of water, throw the film in there and do some mild agitation and soaking (Kind of a swirling action) and then hang it, and use my fingers as a squeegie. Seems to work so far.

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