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Thread: Hypo clear?

  1. #1

    Hypo clear?

    G,Day all
    I am just getting back in to film photography and setting up a darkroom.Years ago when I taught darkroom courses we all use hypo clear after fixing and I notice now it seems to have gone out of use .Can someone bring me up to date on to use it or not.
    Thanks
    Michael
    Last edited by MichaelGJ47; 20-May-2020 at 20:43.

  2. #2
    Eric Woodbury
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    Re: Hypo clear?

    Hypo clear, or sodium sulfite, is still used to decrease wash time post fix, especially with fiber based papers. See the directions with your paper of choice.
    my picture blog
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  3. #3

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    Re: Hypo clear?

    Nothing beats a good, full wash, but with hypo based fixers it can save a little time... Rapid fixers don't really need it...

    A downside can be a slight haze over low key prints under some conditions like warm water summer washes etc when there is greater swelling of the print emulsion where it leaves a trace over image...

    But not needed when a full, good wash is available...

    I think it's 40gm/liter of sodium sulfite which is almost identical to Kodak HCA... Other peroxide based baths can also be made up, but a good wash does it too...

    Steve K

  4. #4
    Moderator
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    Re: Hypo clear?

    Assuming a non-hardening rapid fixer: yes for FB prints, no for RC prints or for film.

  5. #5

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    Re: Hypo clear?

    I use Kodak Hypo Clearing Agent routinely after Kodak Rapid Fixer when developing Tmax and similar films to help to remove the last bit of the purple dye used in these and similar films.
    For fiber base paper it's part of my routine.

    Ilford has great website based instructions on how to use their materials. Fixer protocol has changed dramatically from the "old days"

    Ilford has just introduced a new 5th generation multigrade RC paper. If it's been a while you may want to go directly to the source Ilford Photo, look at the instructions. RC paper is quite good today, so easy and fast. And you don't need to fool with hypo clearing agent with RC.

  6. #6

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    Re: Hypo clear?

    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelGJ47 View Post
    G,Day all
    I am just getting back in to film photography and setting up a darkroom.Years ago when I taught darkroom courses we all used hypo clear before fixing and I notice now it seems to have gone out of use .Can someone bring me up to date on to use it or not.
    Thanks
    Michael
    A wash aid like Hypo Clearing Agent (Kodak) or Wash Aid (Ilford) is used after fixing and before the final wash. Using it for film helps reduce wash time, but is not really necessary. With staining developers, a wash aid can remove the stain, so don't use it with those.

    RC papers don't really need the wash-aid either, since no fixer gets into the paper base.

    For fiber-base prints, however, a wash aid is really helpful, not only for reducing wash times, but for ensuring a thorough removal of fixer traces.

    Kodak Hypo Clearing Agent comes in powder form. You mix a stock solution, which is further diluted for use. Some have problems using the entire batch before it goes bad due to age.

    Ilford's Wash Aid comes in a liquid concentrate which is diluted before use. You mix it as you need it.

    If you want to mix your own wash aid, and your tap water is not too hard or full of dissolved minerals, you can just use sodium sulfite and bisulfite (the active ingredients in both the Kodak and Ilford products). I mix mine with simple spoon measurements (precision isn't so critical here): 1 Tbsp sodium sulfite and a pinch of sodium bisulfite (or metabisulfite) per liter.

    There are lots of threads on how to use wash aids here and over on Photrio. Kodak's older regime is different than Ilford's processing sequence for optimum permanence.

    Hope this helps,

    Doremus

  7. #7

    Re: Hypo clear?

    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelGJ47 View Post
    Years ago when I taught darkroom courses we all use hypo clear befor fixing ...
    I do hope you didn't actually mean you were using hypo clear BEFORE fixing, as that would be pretty pointless.

  8. #8

    Re: Hypo clear?

    yes I meant after fix before wash

  9. #9

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    Re: Hypo clear?

    Hello to all,

    I use Photographer's Formulary hypo clear for helping washing my film.
    I noted that even after few runs (so, before being exhausted) it develops some white ropey residuals floating.
    Is that a sign of exhaustion or not really? Should I filter the solution or discard it and make a fresh one?

    Sometimes I used Kodak Hypoclearing (which is way more expensive) and I haven't seen any residual.

    Thank you for your answers
    A good picture requires taking risks

  10. #10

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    Re: Hypo clear?

    Quote Originally Posted by Roberto Nania View Post
    Hello to all,

    I use Photographer's Formulary hypo clear for helping washing my film.
    I noted that even after few runs (so, before being exhausted) it develops some white ropey residuals floating.
    Is that a sign of exhaustion or not really? Should I filter the solution or discard it and make a fresh one?

    Sometimes I used Kodak Hypoclearing (which is way more expensive) and I haven't seen any residual.

    Thank you for your answers
    Even Kodak Hypo Clearing Agent in working dilution will develop bacterial/fungal "slime" after a time. The best practice is to mix what you need for one batch/session and discard it after the session is over. Storing the working solution even for a few days in the right conditions will grow slime.

    The same applies to citric-acid stop baths.

    Best,

    Doremus

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