View Full Version : Question concerning usage of Pyro developer

Kaden Kratzer
26-Apr-2009, 17:36
I have never used Pyro before. I mainly use Xtol with T-MAX and HP5
and HC110 with TRI-X. I would be interested in using Pyro for the first
time. My method of developing 4x5 negatives is thet tray method.

In a short search I notice that there are different types of Pyro Developer
and got pretty confused about what type of Pyro to use with what film
and whether its appropriate for the developing method I am using.

Help demystifying this issue.

Thanks in advance. :)

John Bowen
26-Apr-2009, 17:43
I use Pyrocat HD 2:2:100 in trays with Tmax 400. I've gotten really good results. This combination allows me to build the negative contrast necessary to successfully print on Canadian grade 2 Azo.

Pyrocat HD is pretty inexpensive and can be purchased from the formulary and I believe, Bostick & Sullivan.

Gene McCluney
26-Apr-2009, 18:39
Your should always use gloves when tray processing in any Pyro developer as it is toxic and absorbed through the skin.

Chris Strobel
26-Apr-2009, 19:16
I started with, and still use, in trays, PMK from photographers formulary with fp4 and fp5.Not only do I wear nitrile gloves, but also wear one of those double canister respirators.Be sure to wipe up any spills after your done.

26-Apr-2009, 19:18
I've had good results with 510 pyro and Tri-X.

Search APUG.org for more information.


Gem Singer
26-Apr-2009, 19:34
I second the use of Pyrocat-HD (in glycol) from Photographer's Formulary.

It will give excellent results with all of the films that you mentioned.

Follow the mixing instructions carefully. It is not dangerous to use and it's only toxic if you drink it. So don't drink it!

Drew Wiley
27-Apr-2009, 09:13
Pyrocat came out a little gritty for me with HP5. I still prefer PMK for tray use. Tried
PMK-Max recently. Good results but not any better than regular PMK, and quite a bit more expensive. PMK is ordinarily used 1:2:100 (A/B/H2O). I make enlargements, so you might get a very different opinion from contact printers who need longer scale negatives. Although both pyrogallol and pyrocatechol can act as staining developers,
the effect is somewhat different due to the differing color of the stain.