View Full Version : Processing Dry Plates

4-Feb-2019, 18:03
My film processing has been going great! I've done about 30 sheets of FP4+ & HP5 now, and all have come out very well. I was thinking of getting a couple of months experience processing film before tackling dry plates, but now I'm pretty sure I'm up to it ahead of schedule. I do have some questions of course.

I have HC-110 developer, which I've read works well with the Lane plates. My fixer is Photographers' Formulary tf4, and I'm not sure that's what I need. I think I need something with a hardener? I was thinking of doing tray develop since I do have a red light, but space would be a problem. I'm now thinking of buying the holder for my SP-445. My worry about it is agitation. Jason said to agitate gently, but how do you do that with a tank? And, what is the procedure for processing? Do I do exactly the same thing (with adjusted time) as I do for FP4+? I.e., devloper for x minutes at x temp, then a water stop bath for ~5 minutes, then fix for ~5 minutes, then rinse for ~5 minutes plus Photoflo? What then? Anything else to coat them after drying? Where do I get the little paper envelopes to store them in? Has anyone been doing Lane plates in the SP-445, woith HC110? I could use suggestions.:)

Kent in SD

Nodda Duma
4-Feb-2019, 21:28
I develop mine in the SP-445. Works great. I do exactly what’s printed on the back of the box. I slosh it around pretty good during inversion. If you have batch 15 or newer, the emulsion’s not going to move.

I’ve used TF-4, but not for plates. I think you would have issues. I would recommend buying a rapid fixer. No hardening needed now (since batch 18).

Use Ilford’s method for archival rinse.

The Ortho plates are just as tough as newer regular batches as well.

Have fun!

5-Feb-2019, 21:25
So, what a rapid fixer? Remember this is all new to me.:)

Kent in SD

6-Feb-2019, 07:30

Randy Moe
6-Feb-2019, 17:06
I see Massive Dev App has an option for J Lane Dry Plates!

6-Feb-2019, 17:20
Thank you Randy. Totally missed it!

Kent in SD

Randy Moe
6-Feb-2019, 18:08
By the way, my Hat avatar was shot with a NOS 100 year old 5X7 dry glass plate, click on it and it will become obvious.

8-Feb-2019, 22:15
Took a look and I have about two boxes of batch 14 & 17. Some of it exposed & not processed, some still sitting in holders. I went ahead today and ordered a small bottle of Kodak Rapid Fixer with hardener from Blue Moon. I figure it would be cheaper for me to go ahead and but a bottle and process them myself. Will try ONE of those earlier plates gently in the SP-445 and see how it does. If the emulsion comes off I guess I'm going to learn how to use trays real fast! My latest batch of plates is #24 but I haven't tapped it yet. Blue Moon told me tf4 is a rapid fixer. If the consensus is tf4 won't work with the current batch of plates then I'll try the Ilford fixer, I guess. I shoot mostly Ilford film anyway. So, I should have my SP-445 plate holders and the Kodak RF by the middle of next week.

My plan for the older batch of plates is HC-110 at dilution B (using times from massive chart,) then water stop bath, then Kodak RF for 6 minutes, followed by archival wash. Sound OK? I still have most of a box of batch 12a which was screwed up (swirly emulsion) that I could shoot some practice frames with.

Kent in SD

Nodda Duma
9-Feb-2019, 05:01
Kent, good luck! I’m going to be developing some batch #4 plates today for another photographer so I’ll be in the same boat as you. I plan to pre-harden and tray develop one plate to see what the frilling is like.