View Full Version : J&C Developing Tubes - Any comments?

Benno Jones
8-Mar-2005, 13:11
I don't see any mention of J&C's developing tubes on here anywhere. Does anyone have any experience with them? I'm thinking of trying them for 8x10 development. I've never developed 8x10 and I've only done 4x5 in daylight tanks (not Yankee, but similar). Anything I should know?

Benno Jones
Seattle, WA

steve simmons
8-Mar-2005, 13:34
We have an artice on tray processing which is much easier than people think. The article is in the Free Articles section of our web site. You can deveop 4-6 sheets simultaneously for different tims.

steve simmons

Benno Jones
8-Mar-2005, 13:38
Thanks Steve, I've seen the article. I've avoided tray development because I'm what's generally referred to as 'all thumbs'. If it's possible to fumble something and screw it up, I manage to do it on a consistent basis. ;-) You should see the blood stains on my 4x5 (long story).

Anyway, I should have searched the APUG site before posting, found my answers there.


Benno Jones
Seattle, WA

Melchi M. Michel
8-Mar-2005, 14:01

Before you get these tubes, might I suggest unicolor drum development? There is a great article on using these drums (by GreyWolf) on this site. Like you, I once used daylight tanks to do 4x5. However, after reading the article, I decided to see whether I could find a used tank and motor to try it out. I found a set on ebay for about $20 and have not looked back. Drum development is wonderful; I now use less chemistry per sheet, get more even development, and find it much more practical to develop a just a few sheets at a time.

Bob Fowler
8-Mar-2005, 15:09
I have to agree with Melchi, I get great results with the 8X10 and 11X14 Unidrum on a motor base. I used to do trays - never again!

Maybe I shouldn't say "never"...

Gem Singer
8-Mar-2005, 16:09
Hi Benno,

I purchased four J&C tubes, along with four extra caps. I have developed about half a dozen 8X10's and I'm about to try the J&C tubes for developing 4X10 film. So far, the results look good. I have yet to try them with 5X7 or 4X5 film, but I will in the near future. They are relatively inexpensive and simple to use. Just make sure that the emulsion side of the film faces the inside (center portion) of the tube when you load them.

My wife says that they are modified ordinary plastic mailing tubes. I found that I needed to remove the sharp edge around the inside top opening of the tube for fear it would scratch my film. I used a sharp knife, and it was a simple procedure to bevel it back to a smooth surface.

The caps hold (approx.) 500ml. of solution. I use one capfull for the developer, the second capfull for the stop bath. Then I, remove the film from the tube and place it in a tray of fixer. I found a way to re-use the capfulls of developer and stop bath, if I desire. This is not a procedure that can be carried out entirely in daylight. However, perhaps you can work out a way of loading the films into the tubes inside of a changing bag and carrying out the entire procedure with the lights on. I have a darkroom, so I took the easy way out. Good luck.

Brian Ellis
8-Mar-2005, 19:10
Never heard of J and C tubes. Do they have a web site?

tim o'brien
8-Mar-2005, 19:15

Donald Qualls
8-Mar-2005, 20:25
The J&C tubes are nothing more or less than storage tubes for arc welding rod, with the possible addition of an o-ring to provide a water- and light-tight seal when the cap is tightened. Unlike some other suppliers, however, J&C at least doesn't charge an arm and a leg, and they've done the work of finding the things in black.

I'm not a major fan of a developing process I have to carry out in darkness, not least because I have only a changing bag, not anywhere I can set out a line of trays or even deal with liquids in tubes and caps in darkness. I use daylight fill tube-tanks of my own construction. They're not terribly efficient of developer (working on it), but they're cheap and easy to make.

Philippe Gauthier
9-Mar-2005, 09:52
Another vote for Unicolor drums: less chemistry used, even and constant results, quicker, can do something else in the darkroom while the machine works... Got my motor base + three tubes + a couple of 8x10 and 11x14 trays for the quivalent of 6-7 US dollars in a photo swap. One of my best buys ever.

I just wish I had the plastic thingie that's used as a separator to hold four 4x5 sheets in a 8x10 drum. I'm limited to two sheets per batch without this because the sheets will overlap. Any idea where to get some or what material to use to easily make some? I'm not much into handicrafts...

Donald Qualls
9-Mar-2005, 11:51
Philippe, it seems to me I've read where someone used pieces of the spine from report folders (sorry, I have no idea what those might be in French) -- clear plastic folders with a clip-on spine that holds the papers inside. A short section of the spine, bound back to back with another, makes a clip that will hold two sheets; three such will separate four 4x5 sheets in an 8x10 print drum, though they will intrude somewhat on the image area (not much more than the hanger clips used by some commercial processors, however).