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Thread: Open tray b&w develop process help.

  1. #1

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    Open tray b&w develop process help.

    What is the mininium diluted developer volumn needed for Paterson 8x10 tray to develop 4x5 and 5x7? With that volumn how many sheets can be safely developed ? Thanks.

  2. #2

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    Re: Open tray b&w develop process help.

    The volume shld really be decided on based on scratch avoidance rather than anything else. I like to have a good couple of inches depth when tray developing, so for 810 in an 11/14 tray I'll use 3 liters of solution and do two stacks of 6-8 sheets one after the other. So figure on two liters for an 8/10 tray, or so. Developer is cheap relative to time and money spent photographing, so not a good place to scrimp, IMHO.

  3. #3

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    Re: Open tray b&w develop process help.

    5x7 in an 8x10 tray might be somewhat difficult and prone to scratching the film. If I were tray developing 5x7, I'd use 11x14 trays.

  4. #4

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    Re: Open tray b&w develop process help.

    I do 4x5 in a tray that's barely large enough to fit the film in and use 100ml one shot. I would have expected higher edge density, but I get even development this way.

  5. #5
    Land-Scapegrace Heroique's Avatar
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    Re: Open tray b&w develop process help.

    Quote Originally Posted by JayY View Post
    What is the minimum diluted developer volume needed for Paterson 8x10 tray to develop 4x5 and 5x7? With that volume how many sheets can be safely developed ? Thanks.
    Do you have a developer spec sheet that describes its "useful capacity"?

    It's usually stated in terms that one can convert into a personal situation.

    For example, Kodak says the useful capacity for D-76 is: 16 8x10 sheets per gallon in a tray.

    With some quick math, you might convert this into [X] 4x5 sheets per [Y] ounces in a tray.

    (I usually discard the developer before its officially stated exhaustion.)

  6. #6
    Jac@stafford.net's Avatar
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    Re: Open tray b&w develop process help.

    Should the OP find one, he might appreciate a 'rocking' tray for single sheet film development.
    Here is one model, and here is a more popular one.

    I used the later before going to rotary drum processing. You only need just enough chemistry to do one film. A couple things about the later one - look carefully at the left side end for a hole. There is another on the other side near the front. Those are for conveniently dumping the chemistry quickly. Both models have retainers inside to keep the film in place, emulsion surface up, of course.

    Best of luck!

  7. #7

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    Re: Open tray b&w develop process help.

    Going with the minimum amount of chemistry per sheet you are asking for problems.
    Go with double so you have the safety factor in developing your negatives.
    Small trays mean much greater chance for edge density problems. Couple it with the bare minimum of developer you are talking about and you are asking for trouble.

    Larger tray, more chemistry - preferably one shot with the developer(use once and dump) and work on being consistent with the film in the developer.
    "My forumla for successful printing remains ordinary chemicals, an ordinary enlarger, music, a bottle of scotch - and stubbornness." W. Eugene Smith

  8. #8
    Jim Jones's Avatar
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    Re: Open tray b&w develop process help.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jac@stafford.net View Post
    Should the OP find one, he might appreciate a 'rocking' tray for single sheet film development.
    Here is one model, and here is a more popular one. . . .
    I've used the Heath rocking tray without problems, but only after removing the wire bail which may have been intended to facilitate lifting the film for removal. Using the minimum recommended amount of developer worked for me in this tray as well as in a flat tray with frequent agitation.

  9. #9

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    Re: Open tray b&w develop process help.

    Thanks all for the reply.. the Heath Rocking Tray looks promising. But for now, I will not cheap on developer and maybe will try “rocking” the Paterson tray, instead.

  10. #10

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    Re: Open tray b&w develop process help.

    Jay,

    As others have mentioned, the volume you are likely to need in a tray is somewhat independent of minimum volume requirements for developing the film.

    I process 4x5 in Paterson 5x7 trays and have zero problems with scratching or unevenness, so I suspect 5x7 in an 8x10 tray will work well too. If you develop multiple sheets at a time, shuffle along the short axis (I turn each sheet 180 with each shuffle).

    I use 500ml of solution in my trays and develop in batches of 4-8 sheets, with 6 being my preferred number. No problems with running out of developer activity using PMK or HC-110 in high dilutions one-shot. When only developing one or two sheets, I'll sometimes just mix 300ml of developer, but that is a bit less in the tray than I like.

    If you are trying to use your developer optimally, go about things the opposite way: determine first how much volume you need in a tray to comfortably and efficiently work without damaging your negatives and then calculate back to see how much film that can develop. I can imagine that a liter of developer in an 1x10 tray will develop 6-8 (or maybe more) 5x7 sheets easily. So that would be an ideal batch for you, depending on how many sheets you are comfortable shuffling at one time.

    If your developer has significantly more capacity than one batch, there are a couple of things to do to stretch it a bit. The first is to use the developer more dilute and adjust your development time accordingly. This takes some testing time, but works fine for most developers. The second is to reuse the used developer for a second batch, increasing the development time somewhat (10-15% usually) to compensate for the partial exhaustion. This is, IMHO, not as ideal as the first option, but many do it successfully.

    Hope this helps,

    Doremus

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