B&W film completely clear

Discussion in 'The Darkroom' started by Radu Furnea, May 9, 2019.

  1. Radu Furnea

    Radu Furnea TPF Noob!

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    Hi all,

    I've been developing for a couple of years (not too often) and last time I did, the film turned out completely clear. Here is all the info:

    Film: Kodak TMax 100 exposed at 100ISO
    Development:
    1+25 Rodinal, 20C, 6:30 minutes, with agitation each minute. I've had this bottle since early 2018.
    1 min stop bath just water
    5 min fix in correctly mixed Ilford fixer (second usage)
    3 cleaning baths, 2 minutes each with continuous agitation
    1 minute AdoFlo continuous agitation

    The film turned out completely clear, as if it wasn't exposed to light at all. Also, during the cleaning baths the water had that purple tint, which was unusual.

    I'd like to mention that about a month ago I have developed using this exact same technique and solutions on the same film using the same camera and glass and it turned out fine.

    Any help towards why this might have happened? Hope my second and last roll from my tip to Athens won't be completely ruined like this one. :(

    Thanks


     
  2. Ysarex

    Ysarex Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Your diagnosis is likely -- it wasn't exposed to light at all. You need to check the film edges for frame numbers and brand/film ID. Those are factory exposed and if they show on the film edges then your film was developed.

    The most common cause of unexposed film is that it never went through the camera -- a misload. The film didn't get properly attached to the take-up spool and when you were advancing the camera the film didn't advance. You can check for this problem when you first start a roll by watching the rewind knob turn when the camera is advanced.

    The next possible cause of your problem is a mechanical camera failure. Your camera's shutter has failed for example. Extreme underexposure can also be the problem but your should be able to see something on the film in that case.

    Joe
     
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  3. Radu Furnea

    Radu Furnea TPF Noob!

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    Hi Joe, thanks for your detailed reply.

    In my frustration I have thrown the film in the bin right away so no chance of checking the numbers unfortunately. I have tested the camera right away and the shutter is working mechanically, and from what I can remember, when I took the film out it opposed the usual resistance (not much the first few spins, a lot at the end), and it also clicked right when it snapped off the take-up spool.

    From what I understand, you are completely ruling out the chance it was the developer/fixer solutions.
     
  4. Ysarex

    Ysarex Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    The fixer is certainly not the problem -- the film would be opaque if the fixer was expired. So there's a chance of bad developer, but it's less likely than the other options. If your bottle of Rodinal wasn't well sealed it could oxidized, but it's highly concentrated to begin with. I've used lots of Rodinal and certainly used Rodinal that was a year old. I would assume even if the Rodinal was going bad it would have produced some image in the film. Certainly you want to test or replace it before processing another roll.

    Joe
     
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  5. compur

    compur Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    After processing did the film have the edge ID strip or was that clear too?
     
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  6. Christie Photo

    Christie Photo No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I think Joe nailed it. It sure sounds to me like no light ever struck the film.

    What camera did you use? Does it have a dark slide of some sort?

    Is it POSSIBLE you simply developed a fresh, unused roll?

    Hmmm....

    -Pete
     
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  7. 480sparky

    480sparky Chief Free Electron Relocator Supporting Member

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    Did any of the film's leader that WAS exposed when loaded into the camera come out opaque?
     
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  8. vintagesnaps

    vintagesnaps Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    I've done that... been in a hurry and rewound film too fast and didn't wind the tail all the way in, then later found a roll and went uh-oh, is it a roll I already shot or haven't used?? Sent it in and got it back and nope, nothing on it. At least labs don't usually charge for that!

    I don't know what camera you used, if it was mechanical and you can usually feel the tension as more film is getting wound around the spool or not. If not feeling tension at some point I'm going to realize the film must not have latched and isn't advancing.
     
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  9. Radu Furnea

    Radu Furnea TPF Noob!

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    Yes, the leader was completely opaque.

    I felt the tension, and now I tend to believe I might have developed a fresh roll somehow, by mistake... If that's the answer to the mystery then I've chosen the wrong hobby. :)

    I have used a Canon AV-1 with an Osawa 28-80mm Macro lens. To be honest, now with all the advice from all of you, much more experienced photographers, I tend to believe that either the camera did not expose the film at all, or that I developed a completely fresh roll of film, somehow. I will develop the rest of the rolls at some point and I will update all of you!
     
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  10. OldManJim

    OldManJim No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    "I felt the tension, and now I tend to believe I might have developed a fresh roll somehow, by mistake... If that's the answer to the mystery then I've chosen the wrong hobby"

    You'll be happy to know that you're the first person who has ever done that!:chargrined: It happens more often than we like to admit. I keep a special tray in my film refrigerator for developed film just to separate it from unexposed film.
     
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  11. 480sparky

    480sparky Chief Free Electron Relocator Supporting Member

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    We still need the answer to this question.
     
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  12. Radu Furnea

    Radu Furnea TPF Noob!

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    Hi Sparky, missed this one.

    In my frustration I have thrown the film in the bin right away so no chance of checking the numbers now unfortunately, but according to my shaky memory they were there. Which now makes me more certain that I developed an unexposed film...
     
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