I've found a number of questions on various photo forums lately regarding a pink or cyan stain on negs remaining after developing/processing. Most answers relat e the problem due to inadequate fixing or exhausted fixer.
Most published advice regarding adequate fixing times in some way or another say to fix 'twice as long as it takes for the film to clear'. My question is, what exactly am I looking for? The most concise explanation I could find is Kodak's r ecommendation to fix twice as long as it takes until the film loses it's 'milky' appearance. I also remember reading somewhere that the proper way to determine fixing time is to put a sheet of undeveloped, unexposed film in the fixer and no te the time it takes for the film to lose it's 'milky' appearance and fix for tw ice that time. I guess 'milky' is, at least for me, a somewhat vague description . After about 35 seconds in Ilford's rapid fixer (1:4) with the test mentioned a bove my film (Tri-X ) does become 'clear' though with a definite pinkish cast. Does this mean that 70 seconds is the proper fixing time with this film/fixer co mbination? My usual practice has been to fix in Ilford's rapid fixer for 5 minut es then rinse in running water 2 minutes before moving to a HCA wash.
Regarding the pinkish cast, my understanding is that this is related to the anti -halation dye and not necessarily an indication of proper fixing times. I always find a pink color remaining within my pre-soak water and it usually is not elim inated from the film entirely during fixing. It is almost always completely gone after the two minute water rinse.
Could somebody please elaborate on proper fixing times for me?
While I've got my two minutes with the microphone, I'd like to give a hearty tha nks to all of those who regularly contribute their expertise to the large format forum. Without question, this is the best photo resource on the internet. Not o nly is the advice always on the mark, it always seems to be offered in a genuine spirit to help fellow photographers - a far cry from the often petty personal a ttacks found on other forums, even photo.net.