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Thread: Stouffer's 4x5 step wedge for exposing negative?

  1. #1
    jvuokko's Avatar
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    Stouffer's 4x5 step wedge for exposing negative?

    Hi,

    this is a bit dumb question, but how do you manage to put 4x5 step tablet with a film on the film holder (sandwitch -style)? This is the most common style that I have seen and is taught by books (except BTZS).

    But I cannot put it on my holders, the step tablet itself will fit fine like does film. But film plus step tablet. No way, the holders are just too tight!

    Earlier I used small step tablet, but full 4x5 size is a lot better.... If I manage to put it in the holder.

    What are other options? Use of darkroom and enlarger, but as I use also orthopan and full orthochromatic films, the color of enlarger light source can affect results too much.
    Also by exposing wedge thru camera, all camera inducted problems come to taken account like in real life.

    How about just putting wedge against transparent glass fit it on the negative holder, illuminate it evenly from back and take photograph from it?
    Ofcourse, the bellows extension factor must taken in to account.


    What's your method?

    Thanks,
    Jukka

  2. #2

    Re: Stouffer's 4x5 step wedge for exposing negative?

    make a slide with Laminating sleeve, exactly same size with the slide of holder, this lami- slide holds wedges in the center, use strong black tape to block the transparency area outside the wedge, and to enforce the slide. So when you want to test film, pull out the normal slide, and insert the lami-slide in, wedge in slide will just cover the film, then expose.

    Since wedge is not tightly stick with film, image you get will be a little fuzzy, but that is OK for densitometer, and you can ignore density that laminating sleeve bringing in, it can be treated as film base and zeroing.

  3. #3

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    Re: Stouffer's 4x5 step wedge for exposing negative?

    Jukka,

    The only 4x5 step wedge that I know that Stouffer makes is their project wedge (e.g. TP4x5-21). I believe this intended for use in your enlarger for paper testing (hence available in different formats), and that is what I purchased mine for.

    You already know about the smaller step wedges, but with film holders designed to hold your film flat you will not / should not have any additional space, otherwise your film will flop around and could be out of focus or with uneven focus.

    An alternate might be to tape the 4x5 step wedge directly onto the outside of your film holder in front of the dark slide and gently put that into your camera making sure it does not come off. You might be able to remove the lens to inspect it to ensure it remains in place. The edges of the steps may not be hard, but then that is not what you need.

    If the back of your camera is removeable you might be able to tape the 4x5 step wedge directly onto the film holder with the holder in place on the back.

    Hope that helps,

    Len

  4. #4

    Re: Stouffer's 4x5 step wedge for exposing negative?

    Stouffer got 31 steps wedge in 4x5 size, just 1/3 stop for each step, very easy to use when do the film test.

  5. #5
    Nicholas O. Lindan
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    Re: Stouffer's 4x5 step wedge for exposing negative?

    Quote Originally Posted by jvuokko View Post
    Use of darkroom and enlarger, but as I use also orthopan and full orthochromatic films, the color of enlarger light source can affect results
    Another option is to use a color correction filter to balance the enlarger's light to daylight. An 80A should work close enough. It will also give you 2 stops of light loss which will help slow the exposure times.

    Since the step tablet is being contact printed in the camera the camera flare won't be incorporated into the results. In any case, flare is a very tricky proposition - very different if you have a black spot on a white field or a white spot on a black field.

    I have had success in 35mm mounting a 35mm frame-sized tablet in a slide mount and photographing it with a slide duplicator. You might try something similar by taping the step tablet to the window with some translucent backing material and taking a picture of it.

    A problem with using daylight is that it can be variable and it is hard to get as consistent exposures as you would like for film testing. An enlarger is a much more constant source.

  6. #6

    Re: Stouffer's 4x5 step wedge for exposing negative?

    film test with wedge sleeve slide is quiet easy, prepare your film holder as usual, normally I will prepare for 12 films, that is six holder.

    then use your camera/lens combination, focus to infinity, and then place the camera/lens close to a window with semi transparent glass, make sure that sun light on the glass is even and bright.

    lens toward the window. meter the semi-trans glass, put it on Zone X, then place your film holder, pull out slide out, insert lami-slide in, expose, pull out lami-slide, insert normal slide, done! next film!

    within 5 min, I can expose 12 films, all in same expose condition, all you have to do is change the film developing time, and dilution of developer.

    to me, I will make 12 films into 3 group, with 3 dilution, and 4 developing time (4,6,8,10), you will have 3 curve, enough for n-2~n+2

  7. #7

    Re: Stouffer's 4x5 step wedge for exposing negative?

    well, if your window is all transparent, prepare an acrylic plate which is semi white, about 20x20cm, put it on the window.

    when you place lens toward window (or plate), make your lens as close as possible, better front end touch the window (plate), or you can use a lens hood to make it closer.

    for the sun light, film test should be at a sunny day, and about 11am~2pm, when there is no cloud, and the sunlight is steady bright at least 10min, enough for your test!!

    good luck to you!

  8. #8

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    Re: Stouffer's 4x5 step wedge for exposing negative?

    Quote Originally Posted by jvuokko View Post
    Hi,

    this is a bit dumb question, but how do you manage to put 4x5 step tablet with a film on the film holder (sandwitch -style)? This is the most common style that I have seen and is taught by books (except BTZS).

    But I cannot put it on my holders, the step tablet itself will fit fine like does film. But film plus step tablet. No way, the holders are just too tight!

    Earlier I used small step tablet, but full 4x5 size is a lot better.... If I manage to put it in the holder.

    What are other options? Use of darkroom and enlarger, but as I use also orthopan and full orthochromatic films, the color of enlarger light source can affect results too much.
    Also by exposing wedge thru camera, all camera inducted problems come to taken account like in real life.

    How about just putting wedge against transparent glass fit it on the negative holder, illuminate it evenly from back and take photograph from it?
    Ofcourse, the bellows extension factor must taken in to account.


    What's your method?

    Thanks,
    Jukka
    Save yourself a lot of work and use the BTZS method.

    Don Bryant

  9. #9
    jvuokko's Avatar
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    Re: Stouffer's 4x5 step wedge for exposing negative?

    Thank you for the tips.
    Now I have some good starting points

    Enlarger with 80A sounds good also. I am not sure whether I will settle up with enlarger or continue use of camera (like I have done with narrow step strip, T2110) with LF film tests.

    Enlarger method has obvious advantages because I allows easy exposure of roll films without using whole roll per test. As I use MF and 6x9 backs among with LF gears, I have to use enlarger anyway.

  10. #10
    ic-racer's Avatar
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    Re: Stouffer's 4x5 step wedge for exposing negative?

    Personally I'd use the smaller step wedge, to concentrate the test toward the center of the lens field.

    Inexpensive sensitometers are not hard to find, having one is much handier than using an enlarger. Realize that all they are is just a controlled light source and you supply the step wedge you want to use.

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