View Full Version : Almost ready to take my first LF picture

Zach In Israel
20-Jun-2007, 23:07
I have a camera, with a lens, and a film holder. I have a box of Velvia 100F defrosting. I have a nice landscape waiting outside my back door. I just have one problem, I need to figure out where to get the film developed. The lab that I was pointed at is only open Sunday - Thursday (Normal israeli work week) and I work no where near there. The frustrating thing is hat the place that I used to work is around the corner from there.

I may just get some B&W film and learn to develop it at home.

Clay Turtle
21-Jun-2007, 05:18
Either that or find a some E-6 chemistry as like B&W it is only 4 steps & it is a bit more feisty about temperature deviations. I used to develop my own 35mm rolls in the same tank that I used for B&W. Generally I use photo processors to develop chrome because the shelf life & lack of volume is prohibitive but the 4 step kit is practically as easy to use as b&w developers.

Scott Knowles
21-Jun-2007, 05:37
Why not use the film to learn the camera and field work side of LF photography and the box of undeveloped film accumulating in the fridge will give you reason to solve the development problem? Nothing like the anticipation of knowing how well you did to resolve the issue. I only started in 4x5 photography this last January and waited until March and had two dozen sheets (all my film holders) to take to the lab before going. I had to do something to take more photographs. And the group of exposed sheets provided some good insights into what I am doing right and wrong. Good luck.

Walter Calahan
21-Jun-2007, 07:52
Don't forget a tripod.

Why not send your E6 to the lab from work via courier? It's extra cost, but . . .

Zach In Israel
21-Jun-2007, 09:36
Oh I have a pretty hefty bogen tripod, mostly it gets used for my 15x70 binoculars (Astronomy).

As for the courier, I live in the middle of no where and work from home. (I also don't have a spare film box yet). I may try to get some E-6 Chemistry, but I'm worried about the temperature control.

I also only have one film holder, though a friend has some old ones he may pass on to me.

Ted Harris
22-Jun-2007, 04:14
Get some Polaroid T55 and a Polaroid holder. It produces an excellent, easy to scan negative that will yield very nice prints with minimal fuss and no worrying about a darkroom and temperature controls.

Jiri Vasina
22-Jun-2007, 12:42
As for the temperature control, with C-41 that I develop myself, I use large water bath (bathtub and a large box of some 20l) - slows the temperature change - and a thermometer with 0.5°C precision. Works reasonably well for me...

22-Jun-2007, 14:55
I am in the same boat as you but I am using b&w, just waiting for the film to arrive then I am good to go. I was originally going to get a roll pack and shoot on 120 so I could get it developed locally, but decided that developing myself would be a rewarding experience. post your results when you are done!

Jiri Vasina
23-Jun-2007, 12:18
Home developing of C-41 is not difficult at all (and I think E-6 won't be different either). Just today I had my run of 10 rolls of 120 and 20 sheets, developed by inversion, tempered in the bathtub (as described above, I added either hot water from the pipes, or a bit of boiling water if I needed to raise the temperature more). Negatives came out nice (yeah, I need to scan them yet, but they do look very nice). The only downside is the time - it took me a bit more than 5 hours to process them all...

Donald Qualls
23-Jun-2007, 13:10
Actually, I processed two 35 mm rolls of C-41 yesterday, at room temperature, in Dignan NCF-41 (http://silent1.home.netcom.com/Photography/Dilutions%20and%20Times.html#2-bath_C-41). Took me under an hour from mixing the Bath B for the developer to hanging the film to dry. The only chemical I use that might be hard to obtain in Israel is CD-4; sodium sulfite and bisulfite are used in swimming pools and winemaking, respectively (and you could adjust the pH with sulfuric acid -- battery acid will work fine -- after using only sodium sulfite, if bisulfite is hard to find), while sodium carbonate is a common laundry chemical (and what I use is laundry grade, White King brand) and potassium bromide isn't hard to come by (and could probably be substituted with a tenth as much potassium iodide, which is an additive for table salt).

I haven't made my own bleach yet, but potassium hexacyanoferrate (to choose the less "threatening" name for potassium ferricyanide) is easily obtained and safe enough for school children to use in making "sun prints", and a little table salt added in will make a fine rehalogenating bleach. The inexpensive Kodak Flexicolor fixer is slightly acidic, and differs very little from common rapid fixers sold for B&W use, while the Kodak Final Rinse is very inexpensive (but might be hard to ship internationally because it's a liquid); I don't know how (if at all) it differs from the wetting agents commonly used as the last step in processing B&W film, but based on price, there might be little more to it.

Zach In Israel
4-Jul-2007, 22:24
I'm about to order a E-6 kit, My lab just raised the prices to 75 NIS per sheet or roll. (Thats about $18). So getting the kit seems to make a hell of a lot of sense. Still need to find a method of temp controll.

Zach In Israel
5-Jul-2007, 01:09
I found a new lab, that is somewhat cheeper, so I have my first film loaded in the filmholder. I plan to take a picture of the valley to the east of my house, so now I just need to wait for sunset.

Clay Turtle
7-Jul-2007, 09:48
yes, temperature control is a big factor. I commonly use the Universal style tank for 120-220 roll film for single sheets. You use only the bottom roller to hold the sheet against the side wall emulsion toward the center. you measure out a few mls needed for single shot {ie; roll the tank for continueous agitation) which you use hot water bath & one of those electric warmers sold as a means of brewing a cup of hot water for tea or instant coffee. You will have to keep an eye on the bath temperature, pluggin it in & out tokeep constant temperature of the bath water.

Turner Reich
8-Jul-2007, 02:20
Yea, Yea, go for the developing yourself, it's sooo cool. Won't cost an arm or let, if you don't let it, and has all of the controls you could ever want. Not that color is bad, but B&W in your own darkroom, no matter how small, is the ticket. You can do both, you don't have to give one or the other up. Good luck Zack.

Zach In Israel
8-Jul-2007, 04:27
I have a huge amount of E-6 film in the freazer (mostly 120 format). And much of what I am doing these days is Deap sky photography (mostly widefields of the milkey way) for which most of the current good films are E-6. There hasn't beena good B&W deep sky film in a while. Tech Pan worked but you had to hyper it which was a big pain. Right now I don't know of any B&W fim that doesn't have really really bad reciprocity failure (Fuji Provia has almost none)

G Benaim
8-Jul-2007, 09:05
Zach, I know you're in the boonies, but you can get E6 done for 25sh at SBY in TA, they may even have a mail service. Give them a call, or check out their website, sbycolor or somesuch. I'm in TA if you need help w deving b&w or using a view camera. Enjoy.

Zach In Israel
8-Jul-2007, 11:17
Thanks, I may take you up on that at some point, i don't have a car now, so getting to TA is a bit of a pain, and doing so with the camera and tripod even more so. On the other hand I have a two pro photographers who live locally (and both of them used to own this camera). Actually Max Richardson's book on the western wall tunels was taken on this very Sinar.

I will send the film there or to Panorama in jerusalem soonish, but it will have to wait until some cash comes in the front Door. I also have some other film that needs processing.

Clay Turtle
9-Jul-2007, 07:07
One of the nice things about developing eingle sheets is that you can shoot both siedes of a film holder then process one if it isn't right then you can push or pull process the other sheet. As you use only the volume of chemistry to process each sheet [dependent upon the number of sheets {area} kit will develope] you use fresh {active} chemistry giving more uniform processing & as the volume being maintained at contant temperature allows you to use baby bottle warmer or some othe electrical heating product {with thermostatic controls} like an electric frying pan.

Right now I don't know of any B&W fim that doesn't have really really bad reciprocity failure (Fuji Provia has almost none And of course, you can always push b&w film like TMax or Ilford HP 4.

Zach In Israel
9-Jul-2007, 12:14
For night sky stuff pushing B&W probably won't help much, even if it does help a bit on contrast most B&W is blind to H-Alpha at 646.4nm (Deep red) Which is another thing that I want. As for night sky stuff a lot of nebulae glow pretty stronly at that line. If you look at the Orion Nebula (labeled M42 ) in this image you will see an example http://http://bp0.blogger.com/_jqS0VCv0gOw/RpEPHRgodPI/AAAAAAAAAAM/SSmxt8EGK0I/s1600-h/Orion_with_labels.jpg

This one was shot in 35mm actually

Zach In Israel
9-Jul-2007, 12:15
Here is the actuall image...

Donald Qualls
9-Jul-2007, 14:53
Kodak T-Max films are sensitive to a little past 700 nm; the same is true of Fortepan, if you can still find any. Ilford SFX is probably the best for H-alpha of the films currently manufactured; it's sensitive to about 750 nm (and fully panchromatic, unlike most true-IR films of the past). Rollei IR 400 (made by Efke, a 400 speed daylight rated version of their IR820) is sensitive further out than SFX, but it's a *lot* more expensive.

All of these films are a lot slower with the H-alpha filter than they would be without a filter, but that's to be expected; you're blocking off most of the light they can normally record.

For night sky, it's tempting to suggest one of the Fuji slide films -- IIRC, it's Velvia that requires no reciprocity correction to something like two hours (making it the fastest color film you can load for very dim light).

Zach In Israel
9-Jul-2007, 22:09
For night sky the Fuji slide films are quite good, in 35mm or 120 I use the provia 400, if I were to use 4x5 I would probably use provia 100, or maybe Astia as the provia 400 is not made in sheet film, and I don't think I could order enough for them to make a special batch ;)

Clay Turtle
10-Jul-2007, 04:41
Sometimes I find your post a bit confusing? I am not for sure what it is you are doing but I think you may find some kodak Portra 400 CN sheet film (color negative) out there that might be suitable?