View Full Version : Purple T-max negative - Help!

25-Jul-2010, 17:33
Hi, I just developed a sheet of 8x10 tmax. I've shot it before. After fixing (rapidfix), it is super purple. The whole neg looks ok, just purple colored. What is it? Do I need to fix in something else? Ignore?


Richard M. Coda
25-Jul-2010, 17:42
Your fix might be expired. Mix up a new batch and fix again.

25-Jul-2010, 17:51
Thanks, I fixed again in some fresh, still purple. But as I washed, it slowly is losing the purple. I googled and read something along those lines with T-max. So I'm going to wash really well.

25-Jul-2010, 17:56
Second on re-fixing...

I've seen this with T-max from exhausted fixer....I re-wet in plain water, then full normal fixing time with new fix batch...rewash...


25-Jul-2010, 20:20
OK, thanks. But it was fixer used once before, mixed up yesterday. I printed a few sheets of paper only. It's 1:9 rapidfix. I notice the purple came up when I turned on white lights. It went away in the washing. We'll see how the negs last.

Richard M. Coda
25-Jul-2010, 20:28
1:3 for FILM... 1:9 for paper. No? Also, you shouldn't mix fixer for paper and film... mix separate batches.

Jim Burk
25-Jul-2010, 21:16
T-Max needs almost twice the fixing time as other film. Use full strength for 12-15 minutes, then wash well.

I had this problem when starting to use T-Max.

25-Jul-2010, 21:43
You can speed things up by using Kodak HCA and keeping the wash water warm - 75 to 80.

25-Jul-2010, 22:39
You need the stronger fixer as noted.

Also, letting the film sit in plain water for several minutes and then dumping before washing helps.

Using HypoClear or similar seems to help as well.

Turning the lights on has nothing to to with the purple color except allowing you to see it.

26-Jul-2010, 05:40
I am not sure whether you use tray or hanger to develop your film, but I use tray method. I notice that your best solutions are spread out in various replies above. I used to have this issue with tmax about an year back. I resolved it by,
1. Using a lukewarm presoak in water for 15 minutes. I use a laboratory tray rocker set at 30 rpm. I follow this step with cold water for 5 more minutes.
2. I started using large volumes of fixer (stored in 1 liter bottles to the brim and sealed airtight). I let the fixer work for 10 (Ten is a must) minutes.
3. I always let my film to continue rocking in distilled water with photo-flo for an additional 5-7 minutes before hanging it to dry.

Interestingly, I did notice that most of the pinkish/purplish dye were removed by the presoak and developer followed by the photo-flo rinse, rather than the fixer (I know I appear to be contradicting myself - but for photographers, esp. for large format photographers every shot they make is precious and hence they have a set of rituals of which may are useful and some are useless to go with their work).

I've also noticed that after you notice the color tinge when you hang the film for drying, whatever you do can never completely get rid of it. Lots of developer who use concentrated developers like HC-110a or 1:25 rodinal often see this issue, which does indicate that developer has a lot to do with removing the dye.

Hope it helps. - Arun

Richard M. Coda
26-Jul-2010, 07:21
Yup, forgot about the pre-wash... you will see all that purple AHL stuff rinse away in the pre-wash.

My regimen... (in Jobo expert tanks)

5 min prewash
30 sec stop
5 min fix (Kodafix, not rapid fix) 1:3
1 min rinse
2 min Edwal Hypo Eliminator
Five 1 min rinses
30 sec Photo Flo

26-Jul-2010, 08:00
A prewash and hypo clear should get rid of the purple cast.

Drew Wiley
26-Jul-2010, 09:07
I always do about a minute of water before putting the sheets in the developer, then
at the end just use TF4 fixer. Any remaining dye cast washes out in only a minute or

Andrew O'Neill
26-Jul-2010, 09:56
I fix with Ilford's rapid fix for 5 minutes. If it's still purple/pink (which is usually is), just let it sit in a tray of water 'til it's all gone. You can speed it up with HCA. If that doesn't work, then you need to mix up a new batch of fixer.

26-Jul-2010, 11:10
Thanks all, I hope I didn't screw up the negs, I better print them fast, before they disappear? I think I ended up with about 6 min in the 1:9 rapidfix....so far the dry negs look ok.

Kevin Crisp
26-Jul-2010, 11:26
I use rapid fix at the recommended strength for film and it takes longer, quite a bit longer, to fix TMAX. I haven't measured it, but I suspect I am fixing it for 10 minutes with some agitation. The film will still have a pink cast, which washes out in 15 to 20 minutes. Your negatives are probably fine, just refix and wash. I have not tried a washing aid to cut down the pink-removal time.

Brian C. Miller
26-Jul-2010, 12:11
Fuji Neopan Acros also has a dye that washes out after the fix. It just takes time for it to soak out.

Bruce Watson
26-Jul-2010, 13:15
The whole neg looks ok, just purple colored. What is it?

APUG has a huge sticky thread (http://www.apug.org/forums/forum37/33868-pink-magenta-cast-t-max-new-tri-x-other-films-not-blue-green-cast.html) on this topic.

Bottom line, it's one or more of the dyes used to control spectral response and it's harmless. More washing makes it go away (which is why a pre-soak helps). Alternatively, you could just leave the film out where it catches a couple of hours of direct sunlight -- the UV will zap it.

I did some testing with TMY-2. Using a Jobo 3010 tank, I found that four changes of water (500ml, 20C, about 30rpm, reversing, intervals of 1, 1, 2, and 4 minutes) would result in complete washing (according to the Formulary's residual hypo test kit). Yet some of the dye remained. So I started giving a fifth turn in the tank, and for double the time (eight minutes). Since the film was already "clean" this additional wash does nothing but remove dye, but it's pretty effective at that. How much it removes seems to be a matter of how long it's in the wash -- eight minutes removes considerably more than four minutes.