View Full Version : slosher tray technique.

23-Jun-2007, 15:06

I'm wondering if those of you who use a slosher tray to process film would post your technique. Do you reduce the dev. time 10-15% as suggested with tray processing?


Greg Lockrey
23-Jun-2007, 15:18
A lot of that depends on how much you "slosh" the film. You have to be able to be consistant in you timing and force of agitation.

Louie Powell
23-Jun-2007, 16:10
Your question implies that there is some sacred development time, along with a recommendation for reducing the time with some kinds of processing. I don't follow that particular religion. Instead, I have done some tests to determine the time required in my darkroom and with my techniques.

In open trays, continuously flipping negatives, I used a development time of 6 minutes in HC110, dilution B.

With a slosher, I use an intermittent agitation pattern - continuous for 30 seconds, and then 5 seconds every thirty seconds after that. My initial experience was that the processing time in a slosher with this agitation cycle was about the same as for continuous shuffling in a tray.

I wanted the ability to reduce development time (for N-1 and N-2), and a 6 minute base time was just too short. So I changed over to dilution H (same amount of concentrate, twice the H2O).

In dilution H, and with my agitation cycle, my processing times are:
N: 11 minutes
N-1: 8 minutes
N-2: 5.5 minutes

23-Jun-2007, 23:45

This is what I've run into. HP5+ in Xtol 1:1 6 at a time in a tray flipping film every 10 seconds required me to reduce the recommended 12min dev. time by 15%.

Today I developed HP5+ today in Xtol 1:1 in a slosher. I agitated by raising the "top" of the tray and then the "bottom" at 60sec; the left side then the right at 45sec, "bottom" to "top" at 30sec; and right to left at 15sec. The time in dev. was the full 12 min. Still, the film looked a little thin.

I'd be stoked if I could do a test with a densitometer, but I don't have access to one. It's not that I think there's a "Sacred" dev. time, I'm just going with what I have.

Since I metered the same way as I normally do and the developer is fresh, I'm assuming its the slosher technique.

Yeah. Thanks for your input.


brian steinberger
24-Jun-2007, 08:59
I think that using a slosher is no different than using any other method of processing. You need to run tests to determine a N development time.

For me, I agitate constantly for the first minute by rocking each side of the tray in a circlular motion, then once per minute but gently rocking each side of the tray one time in 10-15 sec. Hint: Dont lift the tray too high when agitating it, it really doesn't take much. I recommend taking some bad negatives that you have lying around and trowing them into the slosher in a tray with water and agitating to see just how the process works. It's the first thing I did when I got my slosher and I highly recommend it. You can really gauge how much agitation it needs.

I've found that the best way for me to test is to simply shoot some shots, dev. them for a chosen time, then go from there. If they're too dense, I'll reduce dev. time the next time. If the negs need for shadow detail, I'll decrease the EI. I used to waste my time with shooting gray cards, and white walls, and working with densitometers, but found shooting your own scenes and keeping good notes is the best way to go. GOOD LUCK!