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Thread: Pur water filtration instead of Distilled water?

  1. #11

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    Re: Pur water filtration instead of Distilled water?

    Tucson water is so damned hard you could pave a street with it! It ruins everything after a while. And tastes bad - particularly as they blend in more Colorado River water. We're seriously considering putting in a whole house filtration system. We have a Reverse Osmosis system in the kitchen for drinking water and that;s what I use for film processing.

    And just to make it more fun the "cold" water is close to 90 degrees in the summer. I wish they made Ilford XP2 in sheets.

  2. #12

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    Re: Pur water filtration instead of Distilled water?

    Quote Originally Posted by Peter De Smidt View Post
    One thing to be careful about with filters is a particle release when the filters are new. I once installed a whole house filter, and I ended up with a very fine particulate on my negatives, one which I had never seen before. I bypassed the filter, and the problem immediately went away. Maybe I got a bad one.

    Currently, I use RODI water for mixing chemicals and final rinse. I have a system that I use for other things, and since I have it, I might as well use it. It's worked perfectly, but it's probably overkill.
    The other thing I have seen happen is by changing the flow rate in a plumbing system, sometimes things that are caught in it can be passed out of the system into your solutions, so if possible, try to have your filter as close to the outlet...

    Also, sometimes due to electrolysis (due to different electrical potentials of differing metals in system), there is an attraction to a anode which holds iron particles etc that can be released when water pressure is cut, air introduced, and flow restarted... Not too old plumbing with differing metal fittings/piping can cause release problems...

    One lab I wrenched on had major problems with this, even not using the water for just a long weekend, and finally was fixed with new replacement fittings, and plastic piping between differing metal fittings...

    Steve K

  3. #13

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    Re: Pur water filtration instead of Distilled water?

    Here in Atlanta, I only use Steam Distilled water from the grocery store for my B&W final Photo Flo rinse, all the other stages of development use tap water with no problems.

    Back in the '80s, I was doing some freelance photography for a small ad agency that had their own darkroom. The firm was in an office park that was a couple years old. I discovered if I put tap water into a clear glass graduate and waited, a layer of sand (or similar) would settle out at the bottom, if I waited a while!
    ... and people were drinking that water!

  4. #14

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    Mar 2017
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    Re: Pur water filtration instead of Distilled water?

    Just for clarification, as a newbie to film development: If my tap water is fine (it's a bit hard, but not bad at all, and has enough iron in it that after a few months it might start to leave deposits in the tub), is there any reason to worry about using it for mixing chemicals and washing the film?

    And, man! 90 degree 'cold' water?! Yikes! Mine, at least this past weekend when I developed film for the first time, was exactly 68 degrees. Very convenient.

  5. #15

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    Re: Pur water filtration instead of Distilled water?

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Kinzer View Post
    Just for clarification, as a newbie to film development: If my tap water is fine (it's a bit hard, but not bad at all, and has enough iron in it that after a few months it might start to leave deposits in the tub), is there any reason to worry about using it for mixing chemicals and washing the film?

    And, man! 90 degree 'cold' water?! Yikes! Mine, at least this past weekend when I developed film for the first time, was exactly 68 degrees. Very convenient.
    Old metal plumbing is old metal plumbing... Dry down some amount of water from when you first turn on a tap in a clear or white vessel and look for black, blue, rust or sand/dirt, or get a iron test kit and test... If you do any plumbing work, look inside the fittings to spot discoloration, corrosion, pitting, run your finger inside and see if it picks up particles... Make sure that there are no different metal fittings or pipes connected directly together, but if you have to, run at least a foot of plastic pipe between to separate those potentials... Use plastic hangers and pipe grommets near valves that connect to metal sinks to make sure feed pipes do not ground directly to sink... If in doubt, replace metal pipes, fittings in the darkroom... Other parts of the system might have dissimilar metal to metal connections, and can be a release source...

    Sometimes in worst case situations you might see a brass valve or copper pipe that has severely corroded or turned black on the outside, that is a loud alarm that there is a severe electrolysis problem in your system!!! They make anti-electrolysis coupling fittings for pipes, water heaters etc, but some distance plumbed in plastic works well...

    Not trying to be too anal retentive, but one lab had such a collection of metals, that just turning on the water on Tuesday morning would darken a bucket of water, and it turned out that the pipes and fittings were dangerously thin inside, and leaving cloudy water...

    Out here in the LA (western) drought, some of the plumbing I fixed over the last few years has suffered due to hard, bad water and seats on valves have gotten really cut up from much particulate grinding them into constant leaking... My film lab water filter had a large handful of sand and swirly dark particles in it after water main construction in my area, just after 1 week of changing the element!!! I drink this stuff!?!!

    Steve K

  6. #16
    village idiot BennehBoy's Avatar
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    Re: Pur water filtration instead of Distilled water?

    I also use a Brita filter.

  7. #17

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    Re: Pur water filtration instead of Distilled water?

    The cost of distilling your own vs driving to the store and back? For me making my own costs less. 90 miles driving to get distilled water at a store.
    On filters. Have a whole house filter and then a separate filter (5 micron) I screw on the spigot in the darkroom sink. That one I can easily put on and take off. General cleaning and washing the sink, it is off. All prints and negatives, it is on. Am on well water and having two filters helps a lot.
    If you have a filter be aware the carbon cartridges help taste but do give off bits of carbon that can ruin negatives.
    Am saying "I" because I use the darkroom. My Uncle is the one who built it and he is the main user.
    I tend to procrastinate on stuff. One of these days I'll do something about it.

  8. #18

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    Re: Pur water filtration instead of Distilled water?

    I guess I'm lucky having -- and drinking -- Denver water (AKA, melted snow). There are HUGE "treatment" plants all along the Missouri/Ohio/Mississippi/etc. rivers AFTER the water leaves each city. I have often wonder how the people in Louisiana can actually drink the water down there -- assuming you can actually called the repeatedly treated liquid, "water".

    I would guess that one easy test to run would be to "drain" your water heater. That really only means draining a gallon or so out of it. It's recommended as good, general maintenance once a year, to remove residue that collects on the bottom, and reduces efficiency -- i.e. uses more energy. It's really simple. I've tried it a few times over the years, but never had anything come out except clear water. In many places, all kinds of crud comes out. So if you run this test, you'll clean out your water heater, and get a quick estimate of what your film is "up against"!

  9. #19
    Randy Moe's Avatar
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    Dec 2011
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    Re: Pur water filtration instead of Distilled water?

    Snow is recycled water

    Don't Eat The Yellow Snow

  10. #20

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    Re: Pur water filtration instead of Distilled water?

    "Recycled"? Of course -- but distilled, as well. And out here in Colorado, there just might be a little bit of gold or silver in it, by the time it gets to me!

    I'll send all of you poor "down-streamers" a gift, later today.

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