View Full Version : How to effectively dry large format film?

8-Jul-2016, 16:12
Hi all,

I'm planning on developing some 5x4 and later on 10x8 sheet film using a jobo processor and the expert drums.

I have bought a small plastic 'greenhouse ' for keeping the dust off while drying.

I'm wondering now what is the best way to dry the film sheets so they don't curl up?

Are the stainless steel Kodak type hangers the best bet or are there other options?

I don't have the stainless hangers so would like to know alternatives if there are any.


Light Guru
8-Jul-2016, 16:57
The stainless hangers are for developing. I have never had a problem with curling of 4x5 film, i just hang them by a small clip at the top in my dryer and let them dry.

Add a computer fan to the top of your dryer box for faster drying.

Robert Oliver
8-Jul-2016, 18:09
give it a 30 second soak in photo-flo in Distilled water
Hang up high in a dust free area using metal roach clips (centered so sheet hangs straight) Clothes pins work as well, just be careful to clip only the edge.
every minute or so, aid drying by touching the bottom of the negative with a dust free cloth/tissue (i use chem-wipes) to pull water off the negative from the bottom.

Since I started doing this, I haven't had any issues with water stains or hard water deposits on my negatives (which were a real problem in my previous process)


Ron McElroy
8-Jul-2016, 18:36
I use plastic clothes pins and hang the negatives up in the darkroom. I have never had a problem with dust because of the humidity in darkroom that also slows the drying time so there is no curl as well. Roll film I dry in a cabinet.

Randy Moe
8-Jul-2016, 18:58
https://c5.staticflickr.com/9/8772/27567922804_5627aaaf22_b.jpg (https://flic.kr/p/J15NZS)#6 (https://flic.kr/p/J15NZS) by moe.randy (https://www.flickr.com/photos/tincancollege/), on Flickr

I hang 2 sheets of 4x5 and one sheet or larger to Kodak Film Developing Sheet Hanger #6. These things are magic, they grip tightly but do not warp or show marks after dry.

Last night I used 2 to slosh develop 14X36" X-Ray. One hanger on each end and no way was the film coming off. Then I hung it with the same clips and my 3 foot film sheet is absolutely flat.

I usually dry film while I sleep. Gives me a reason to get up.

8-Jul-2016, 19:20
I just use wooden clothespins one grabbing the corner of a film as far in the corner as possible to keep the crimp out of the image. Clothespins are on a string like commonly used for drying prints.

My LF film does not curl. It seems to have a thicker base than the small format films.

I do quick final rinse in distilled water to prevent any minerals or particles in the water from drying on the film. A quart of distilled water is a small cost for clean negatives.
My film comes out of the final rinse without me touching it with my skin. Skin oils leave spots/streaks on film if they are on wet film.

9-Jul-2016, 01:53
Thanks for the answers everyone. Good tips, I will buy some of the clips mentioned.