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EdC
1-Feb-2017, 13:07
I'm gradually setting things up to get back into film processing again, after being out of it since dinosaurs walked the earth. While doing so, I've found some things on the shelf that are genuinely old, such as full and partial bottles of Rodinal that are likely over 30 years old. One of these bottles has a price tag of $4.99 on it. I also stumbled across some of the Zone VI film developer, as well, which appears to be unused. From what I've read on the forum, the unsealed Rodinal should still be good. I am not so confident regarding the partial bottle, and with the relatively cheap price for new, can't see that there's much point in giving it a try. Couple of questions here:

1. If the unsealed Rodinal is still good, is the shelf life when opened likely to be shorter than normal?
2. Anyone have any experience with the Zone VI film developer?

Thanks,

Ed

Kevin Crisp
1-Feb-2017, 13:09
Maybe I am the exception but I have had refrigerated Rodinal concentrate go bad. Unless the Zone VI powder looks darned close to off white I wouldn't bother with it. Kind of like brown Dektol that has aged.

Now when the Rodinal went bad, it went really bad. An overexposed strip of film looked essentially clear, so you can try it.

EdC
1-Feb-2017, 13:26
Maybe I am the exception but I have had refrigerated Rodinal concentrate go bad. Unless the Zone VI powder looks darned close to off white I wouldn't bother with it. Kind of like brown Dektol that has aged.

Now when the Rodinal went bad, it went really bad. An overexposed strip of film looked essentially clear, so you can try it.

To clarify my comments above, the Zone VI film developer is liquid, in plastic bottles.

Thanks,

Ed

barnacle
1-Feb-2017, 14:04
I had issues with ~20 year old Rodinol which had large crystals rattling around in the bottom of the jar; development times were, um, erratic to say the least. So I bought some fresh.

Neil

Kevin Crisp
1-Feb-2017, 14:10
Interesting. The only liquid I remember from Z6 was the bentriozole.

loonatic45414
1-Feb-2017, 19:27
Toss it & buy new

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BetterSense
1-Feb-2017, 20:32
I have also had Rodinal go off on me; quite disappointing when it happens unexpectedly. It lasts longer split into smaller glass bottles. For what it costs I would buy new.

loonatic45414
2-Feb-2017, 06:01
Let me further qualify my remark...

Even if it "was good enough" there will be significant change in the developer that you may have to change your exposure & development strategy to get a decent image. Even if your results are good enough, they will be inconsistent once you do buy more chemistry. You'll not only waste precious time but perhaps some excellent images in the process.

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Tobias Key
2-Feb-2017, 06:06
I work by the 'if in doubt, chuck it out' method. It's never let me down.

greginpa
2-Feb-2017, 07:56
I've mentioned this before elsewhere, but I have just finished a bottle of Rodinal with a neat red bakelite cap and rubber cork that was as old as the hills, all of the films mentioned on the box label are long gone, it was half empty when I got it and had muck in the bottom. It worked like a charm. Times were spot on and results as expected. I used it 1:25 and 1:50 and occasionally 1:100 for sheet film in trays and for 35mm and 120 in tanks. I cleaned out the bottle and put my replacement in it for luck.

EdC
3-Feb-2017, 07:52
Thanks for everyone for the feedback! I should have explained further that I was planning on making use of the old Rodinal for practice with test negatives so that I could get used to working with developing tanks and rotary processing. However, with some of the feedback above, it seems to me that I would run the risk of possibly creating problems for myself in the results. I wouldn't want to be getting substandard results and not know if it was the development technique or the chemistry, or both. Time is precious enough without making things more complicated. So, just need to figure out the best way to dispense with the old chemistry. Where I live, we do have a household hazardous waste disposal day later on this year. Since I have to take some items there as it is, it wouldn't be any extra work to include the older chemistry.

Thanks,

Ed

Jac@stafford.net
3-Feb-2017, 08:23
I dispensed fresh bottles of Adox Rodinal into multiple 2 ounce brown bottles which have air displacement caps (http://www.kombuchabrooklyn.com/wp/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/DSC_6847.jpg). Fill to the top, screw on the cap, no air bubble. It lasts forever.

LabRat
3-Feb-2017, 08:47
If in doubt, try it out... With any old liquid dev, there is a chance of dev failure, (I have seen Rodinal do it) so after making a working solution, take a strip of fogged undeveloped film and leave in dev for 2 or 3 minutes and see if the film turns dark grey/black... This is a crude test, but because Rodinal will not develop at all if past due, but will save film from dev failure... If it is really dark blue after mixing, that might be another sign it might not do the job, so do a strip every time, even if you used the concentrate recently...

Steve K

Michael E
3-Feb-2017, 08:47
If it's just for practice right now, why don't you give the old stuff a chance? If you were using it for important work, I'd caution you, too. But for tests and getting re-acquainted? What do you have to lose, except half a roll of outdated film?

EdC
3-Feb-2017, 10:00
Hmmm.... I think that Michael and Steve have brought up some good points. I have some old, old, Plus X 220 film which would be a good candidate to simply fog and then see how the Rodinal works. That would be a good use for it.

Thanks again!

Ed

Randy
4-Feb-2017, 06:31
A year or two ago I decided to make some contact prints (it had been at least 15 years since I had done any wet printing). I had some very old paper of various brands and some Dektol that I had mixed up - again, about 15 years earlier. I always kept my Dektol in 16oz plastic bottles filled to the top, so I had about 6-8 bottles. Anyway, I diluted 1:3 as I always had and it seemed to work just as I remembered. It had not even discolored.

BetterSense
4-Feb-2017, 13:57
I dispensed fresh bottles of Adox Rodinal into multiple 2 ounce brown bottles which have air displacement caps (http://www.kombuchabrooklyn.com/wp/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/DSC_6847.jpg). Fill to the top, screw on the cap, no air bubble. It lasts forever.

I use borosilicate scintillation vials. They come in packs of 100, and hold just enough for one tray development session. You can fit a 10ml syringe in them too, so I also suck out half when I need to develop roll film.

160788

rwhb1
5-Feb-2017, 00:23
Guys a tip from the UK! I use wine bottle vacuum stoppers. My logic is that by removing the air and having a vacuum inside the bottle must prolong life. It seems to work!

Russ

Jim Noel
5-Feb-2017, 10:45
Maybe I am the exception but I have had refrigerated Rodinal concentrate go bad. Unless the Zone VI powder looks darned close to off white I wouldn't bother with it. Kind of like brown Dektol that has aged.

Now when the Rodinal went bad, it went really bad. An overexposed strip of film looked essentially clear, so you can try it.

Whn you froze it you probably caused some of the chemicals in the formula to alter their structure causing them to become ineffective for the intended purpose.

D. Bryant
5-Feb-2017, 12:04
If it's just for practice right now, why don't you give the old stuff a chance?

Because you waste time which can't be replaced. Now if you need to test the viability of the developer or whatever that's another issue, but for practice - wasting your time.

loonatic45414
7-Feb-2017, 06:07
Just toss it & get some fresh D-76. Shoot the film with a 1/2 stop more exposure for the age & see what you get. Why waste old film by just fogging it & developing with something old?

If you have 10, 15, 20 rolls of the same old film or more & want to play scientist, have extra time and/or must satisfy your curiosity...

Take 4 clips (about 35mm wide off the back end of a roll of 120) line it up in a 35mm camera to shoot 2 exposures on each clip, at plus 1/2 stop and plus 1 stop, put the clips in a tray to develop, pulling each one out at -1 minute, 0, +1 and +2 minutes of recommended development time and placing into a very light stop bath. Fix & figure out which exposure & development works best.

Less time consuming, shoot a test roll, cut it into thirds & develop each at 0, +1, +2 minutes of recommended time.

I like D-76 1:1 or Xtol 1:1 for old film. It's easy on the highlights, allowing you to overexpose slightly which helps your shadows. Shadows don't do very well with old film due to reduced sensitivity. Depending on how it was stored, you may be surprised.

If you don't have a lot of time to waste - sell the old film on eBay for what you can get & buy fresh film with your developer. Putzing around with old stuff is usually a waste of time.

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loonatic45414
7-Feb-2017, 06:14
Okay, I saw you had 220, not 120. I still say if you have many rolls & they were refrigerated or frozen (or if you live in a cooler climate) give it a try by cutting a test roll into thirds after shooting. Vary the exposure & keep careful notes throughout.

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