PDA

View Full Version : Devices for developing 4x5 with little chemistry???



macandal
20-Oct-2016, 13:02
After using a number of devices to process my 4x5 sheets, I've come to the conclusion that the best processing device is that which allows me to process film using the least amount of chemistry. At present, I am using one of those nikor tanks that is capable of handling 12 sheets at a time. I like it, the downside is that it uses one liter of chemistry to do 12 or fewer sheets. What I'm looking for is some kind of device that comes in two sizes, one for small batches (6 sheets or fewer) and one for larger batches (over 6 sheets) that uses the least amount of chemistry. Does such a thing exists or is this just wishful thinking?

Thanks.

Leigh
20-Oct-2016, 13:39
Generally speaking, rotary processing (JOBO) uses less chemistry by far than any stationary method.

You must ALWAYS use at least the minimum volume of concentrate specified by the developer manufacturer.
So if a 100ml bottle is spec'd to develop 10 rolls of film, you must use 10ml for every roll being developed.
This always applies to the volume of concentrate used, regardless of the dilution.

A "roll" in this context is any combination of film that can be proofed on a single 8x10 sheet of paper.
So that includes a 36-exposure 35mm roll, one 120 roll, four 4x5 sheets, or one 8x10 sheet.

Here's the JOBO instructions for their smallest tank:
Note that 270ml will do six 4x5 films. I added the red line at the top of the liquid level.

http://www.atwaterkent.info/Images/Jobo001_annot.jpg

HOWEVER...
If you use a compensating developer in any rotary system, you completely lose the compensating effect.

- Leigh

Willie
20-Oct-2016, 13:49
Keep it up and you'll eventually hit the magic answer just like the farmer who figured out a way to take care of his horse using ever less feed.
The horse died.

Alan9940
20-Oct-2016, 14:06
Mario,

You may want to check this out:

https://shop.stearmanpress.com/collections/photography/products/sp-445-compact-4x5-film-processing-system

I have one (from the original Kickstarter campaign) and it works great using only 475ml of chemistry.

macandal
20-Oct-2016, 14:21
Mario,

You may want to check this out:Alan, I saw this one last week. Over here in San Francisco, the place where I go to print, Rayko Photo Center, they showed me one of these. Apparently they are going to start using them. Something to keep in mind. But the question is, do they have one for 12 sheets?

macandal
20-Oct-2016, 14:22
Generally speaking, rotary processing (JOBO) uses less chemistry by far than any stationary method.

You must ALWAYS use at least the minimum volume of concentrate specified by the developer manufacturer.
So if a 100ml bottle is spec'd to develop 10 rolls of film, you must use 10ml for every roll being developed.
This always applies to the volume of concentrate used, regardless of the dilution.

A "roll" in this context is any combination of film that can be proofed on a single 8x10 sheet of paper.
So that includes a 36-exposure 35mm roll, one 120 roll, four 4x5 sheets, or one 8x10 sheet.

Here's the JOBO instructions for their smallest tank:
Note that 270ml will do six 4x5 films. I added the red line at the top of the liquid level.

http://www.atwaterkent.info/Images/Jobo001_annot.jpg

HOWEVER...
If you use a compensating developer in any rotary system, you completely lose the compensating effect.

- LeighSo, this is model 2521/2523 (why two numbers?) for six sheets of 4x5. Is there one for 12 sheets?

Thank you.

Randy Moe
20-Oct-2016, 15:24
After using a number of devices to process my 4x5 sheets, I've come to the conclusion that the best processing device is that which allows me to process film using the least amount of chemistry. At present, I am using one of those nikor tanks that is capable of handling 12 sheets at a time. I like it, the downside is that it uses one liter of chemistry to do 12 or fewer sheets. What I'm looking for is some kind of device that comes in two sizes, one for small batches (6 sheets or fewer) and one for larger batches (over 6 sheets) that uses the least amount of chemistry. Does such a thing exists or is this just wishful thinking?

Thanks.

What is the advantage of less solution? Why pursue the absolute minimum, which I believe SergeiR has found?

Ken Sinclair
20-Oct-2016, 16:28
Mario...

Over the past 60+ years I have used both tray and my much experienced Kodak 'hangers' in hard rubber tanks.

Might I be allowed to direct you towards the BTZS developing tubes. I have been using the 'original' style grey tubes for developing both my 4x5 and 8x10 negatives for the past 18 years allowing me to use of a 'minimum' volume of my developer of choice.

I started out with 'home-made' tubes using black ABS tubing from the hardware store. I feel that the less expensive home-made proved to 'me' that the concept worked.... and 'saved' me from excessive chemical 'waste'

I then acquired a set of the BTZS-made "grey" tubes... and have nothing but "good" things to say about the system.. I get to process my films with a minimum to no 'waste'. While I now mostly prefer Pyrocat-HD developer, I have also used, with success... both D76 and HC110 in the tubes.

That being said.... I have no experience with the 'newer' model BTZS tubes... but will and must admit that I would both hesitate and probably hate, having to 'go back' to tray and/or tank development of my sheet films.

Ken

photonsoup
20-Oct-2016, 16:33
I do one or two sheets at a time in Jobo 2521 and 2820 drums. As far as I can see they are physically identical. I use HC110B one shot with 45ml water/1.5ml HC110.
With the film holder you do up to six sheets at a time in 270ml.
Two film holders will fit in a 2551 drum allowing up to 12 sheets in 560 ml.
Or a 3010 drum will do up to 10 sheets in 210 ml

I think you can use them without the Jobo machine by spinning them in a sink of water like oversized BTZS tubes. I've not tried it myself

Tim Meisburger
20-Oct-2016, 17:20
The most efficient is a Paterson Orbital tank, which can use as little as 70ml to develop four sheets of some film, and all paper. 70ml is not enough to give even development for some films like FP4, so for that you need to cut off the fins and use about 200ml. Use is one shot.

Andrew O'Neill
20-Oct-2016, 18:09
I've been using BTZS tubes (the old grey ones) for almost 20 years for both 4x5 and 8x10. Only 60ml of solution is required for 4x5 and 250ml for 8x10. The other nice thing is I can develop for different times, dilutions, or six different films, all at the same time, if I ever feel that ambitious! :)

Randy Moe
20-Oct-2016, 18:24
But does rotary with low volume chems produce a better neg?

Nobody defends cost savings with low volume, do they?

Washing is the water consumer for all methods.




I've been using BTZS tubes (the old grey ones) for almost 20 years for both 4x5 and 8x10. Only 60ml of solution is required for 4x5 and 250ml for 8x10. The other nice thing is I can develop for different times, dilutions, or six different films, all at the same time, if I ever feel that ambitious! :)

Leigh
20-Oct-2016, 18:24
So, this is model 2521/2523 (why two numbers?) for six sheets of 4x5. Is there one for 12 sheets?
Yes, the 2551/2553 drum will do 12 sheets using 540ml of chemistry.
This is the largest drum that can be used on the CPE-2 processor.

There are two types of drive couplers, identified by the last digit of the model number
1 = magnet coupler
3 = cog lid

Cog drive is used with the lift, Magnet drive is used without the lift.
I don't like the lift (personal opinion YMMV).


- Leigh

Jacopo
21-Oct-2016, 00:26
After using a number of devices to process my 4x5 sheets, I've come to the conclusion that the best processing device is that which allows me to process film using the least amount of chemistry. At present, I am using one of those nikor tanks that is capable of handling 12 sheets at a time. I like it, the downside is that it uses one liter of chemistry to do 12 or fewer sheets. What I'm looking for is some kind of device that comes in two sizes, one for small batches (6 sheets or fewer) and one for larger batches (over 6 sheets) that uses the least amount of chemistry. Does such a thing exists or is this just wishful thinking?

Thanks.

Hi Mario, for a small batch of 4x5 sheets you can try a Paterson Tank loaded with a MOD54, it needs 500 mL of liquid for 6 sheets or less,
check the link,
http://mod54.com/collections/mod54-processor-1/products/mod54-mk27-paterson-3-reel-tank

Bye,

Jacopo

jose angel
21-Oct-2016, 03:15
Hi Mario, for a small batch of 4x5 sheets you can try a Paterson Tank loaded with a MOD54, it needs 500 mL of liquid for 6 sheets or less,
check the link,
http://mod54.com/collections/mod54-processor-1/products/mod54-mk27-paterson-3-reel-tank

Bye,

Jacopo
Jacopo, my MOD54 ask for one liter (1000ml) of developing solution. Even a bit lower volume will not fully cover the sheets. I`m not aware of any change on this.
BTW, my best, low volume processing system is a small tray. I know sometimes is really hard to have a "truly dark" darkroom... anyway, if you want to work aside under white light, place the tray inside a light tight box (like those plastic ones for paper storage/dispenser). I also use a JOBO processor, but sometimes (or most of the times) I tend to avoid it. I prefer the compensating character of low agitation processing.

jose angel
21-Oct-2016, 03:41
Yes, the 2551/2553 drum will do 12 sheets using 540ml of chemistry.
This is the largest drum that can be used on the CPE-2 processor.

There are two types of drive couplers, identified by the last digit of the model number
1 = magnet coupler
3 = cog lid

Cog drive is used with the lift, Magnet drive is used without the lift.
I don't like the lift (personal opinion YMMV).


- Leigh
Agree with Leight; I have two complaints with lifts and CPE2 processors:
!. The lift looks really flimsy and
2. Fully loaded, the motor seem to run near its limit. If the processing extends just a bit, it will show weakness.

ruilourosa
21-Oct-2016, 05:58
I did not cut my Orbital fins and usually use 200ml of chemistry! not a problem with several developers, color included! Why are people cutting fins? scratches? marks?

Cheers!

Bruce Watson
21-Oct-2016, 06:28
After using a number of devices to process my 4x5 sheets, I've come to the conclusion that the best processing device is that which allows me to process film using the least amount of chemistry.

Interesting conclusion. But if that's what you want, Jobo is for you. Get a processor that can handle the expert tanks. The 3010 tank handles 10 sheets. I've put thousands of sheets through mine, using the minimum chemistry recommended by Kodak (XTOL stock of 250ml for 10 sheets of 5x4 film, diluted 3:1 for 1 liter working strength developer, or diluted 1:1 for half a liter of working strength developer). Using less XTOL stock than this risks developer exhaustion which can leave interesting visual artifacts in your images. I highly recommend you follow the KODAK guidelines for minimum stock developer / 80 sq in of film.

There is a smaller expert tank for fewer sheets (6? IDK) but there's really no advantage in getting the smaller tank if you have the 3010. Just load it with fewer sheets. It works just fine with a single sheet loaded (but you do have to use sufficient volume of chemistry to cover the sheet, Jobo's documentation shows the minimum volume to cover).

Randy
21-Oct-2016, 07:29
I can safely process 16-18 sheets of 4X5 at a time in 8X10 trays, but I do use about 1500ml of developer (usually highly diluted "Rodinal"). If I am doing 6-8 sheets I usually use 5X7 trays. Been doing it that way for 30+ years. As long as my finger tips don't rot off I guess I'll just stick with what I know.

Ken Lee
21-Oct-2016, 09:11
Chemistry costs less than film, paper, equipment, time, food, lodging, travel, etc.

A more frugal approach than Large Format might be to shoot with a phone and upload to the web :)

vdonovan
21-Oct-2016, 10:09
Alan, I saw this one last week. Over here in San Francisco, the place where I go to print, Rayko Photo Center, they showed me one of these. Apparently they are going to start using them. Something to keep in mind. But the question is, do they have one for 12 sheets?

If you are in San Francisco, you can see both the SP-445 and the MOD54 at Glass Key Photo on Haight Street. They've got both in stock. I have both, and while I've liked the MOD54 for years, now I really like the SP-445.

I agree with other posters, however. The goal in choosing and using a processing solution should be even, accurate, and consistent development. Developer is cheap compared to film, so being stingy with developer is actually not cost effective if it gives bad results. I try to use the minimum recommended, plus a little extra.

macandal
21-Oct-2016, 12:48
I agree with other posters, however. The goal in choosing and using a processing solution should be even, accurate, and consistent development. Developer is cheap compared to film, so being stingy with developer is actually not cost effective if it gives bad results. I try to use the minimum recommended, plus a little extra.I understand that developer is cheap, but my tank uses 1 liter (~34 ounces) of developer, and when you only have to do 2 or 3 sheets, cheap as it may be, that hurts. That's why I'm looking for a specific device that can process 6 and 12 sheets. I think I'm going to go with the Jobo 2521, 2551 tanks.

Kirk Gittings
21-Oct-2016, 19:49
Mario...

Over the past 60+ years I have used both tray and my much experienced Kodak 'hangers' in hard rubber tanks.

Might I be allowed to direct you towards the BTZS developing tubes. I have been using the 'original' style grey tubes for developing both my 4x5 and 8x10 negatives for the past 18 years allowing me to use of a 'minimum' volume of my developer of choice.

I started out with 'home-made' tubes using black ABS tubing from the hardware store. I feel that the less expensive home-made proved to 'me' that the concept worked.... and 'saved' me from excessive chemical 'waste'

I then acquired a set of the BTZS-made "grey" tubes... and have nothing but "good" things to say about the system.. I get to process my films with a minimum to no 'waste'. While I now mostly prefer Pyrocat-HD developer, I have also used, with success... both D76 and HC110 in the tubes.

That being said.... I have no experience with the 'newer' model BTZS tubes... but will and must admit that I would both hesitate and probably hate, having to 'go back' to tray and/or tank development of my sheet films.

Ken

ditto

Kirk Gittings
21-Oct-2016, 19:52
I've been using BTZS tubes (the old grey ones) for almost 20 years for both 4x5 and 8x10. Only 60ml of solution is required for 4x5 and 250ml for 8x10. The other nice thing is I can develop for different times, dilutions, or six different films, all at the same time, if I ever feel that ambitious! :)

ditto

Tim Meisburger
21-Oct-2016, 20:42
I did not cut my Orbital fins and usually use 200ml of chemistry! not a problem with several developers, color included! Why are people cutting fins? scratches? marks?

Cheers!

200ml is probably okay, but if you use enough liquid it will hit the fins during rotation, causing swirls, and this can cause uneven development, meaning you get better development with less solution. I cut mine off when I was getting uneven development of FP4 with 70ml, but it was probably not necessary. I used to use 70ml with Shanghai and it was fine, so seems different films react differently.

Tim Meisburger
21-Oct-2016, 20:44
I understand that developer is cheap, but my tank uses 1 liter (~34 ounces) of developer, and when you only have to do 2 or 3 sheets, cheap as it may be, that hurts. That's why I'm looking for a specific device that can process 6 and 12 sheets. I think I'm going to go with the Jobo 2521, 2551 tanks.

Switch to d-23 and plain hypo!

Duolab123
21-Oct-2016, 22:22
I understand that developer is cheap, but my tank uses 1 liter (~34 ounces) of developer, and when you only have to do 2 or 3 sheets, cheap as it may be, that hurts. That's why I'm looking for a specific device that can process 6 and 12 sheets. I think I'm going to go with the Jobo 2521, 2551 tanks.

I have used and own tank,reels, hangers, expert tanks. Easiest is Expert on a CPP 2 with a lift. Used if you can find a deal $1000 on up. The Jobo reels work great, I use IR googles to load. Hangers and HC 110, Cheap (replenish) , fast foolproof . If you fond of the elegant Nikor tank get a bottle that holds 36 ounces, use HC 110 dil B and replenish. It will last for months if you develop every week or so and replenish.
I don't replenish with Jobo, I'm afraid of developer oxidizing. Still the absolute least amount of chemistry is using replenisher in small or large tanks. The old Kodak replenishers usually called for adding 1 ounce of replenisher for each 8x10 sheet. Thats about 8 mL of working solution per 4x5 sheet that is consumed in the process.
Best Regards Mike

Milonian
21-Oct-2016, 22:42
Not sure if the question has been answered but the SP445 tank (Stearman Press) only comes in one size that takes up to 4 sheets of 4x5, so it will not answer the need in the OP to handle up to 12 sheets. Other than that it is very good IMHO. Not affiliated in any way with Stearman - just a happy new user!