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Thread: Pyro

  1. #11
    Drew Wiley
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    Re: Pyro

    Pere - I grew up with Indians, and was even around Indians so old they were still making arrows and chipping points for them, largely for sake of nostalgia rather than actual use. But they were darn good at straightening the arrow shaft first. I even have a big soapstone "egg" with a slot in the middle they used for this purpose. Soapstone holds heat extremely well; so they'd heat up their special stone then spin the shaft material in it until the arrow blank was truly straight. Otherwise, they'd likely go home home hungry instead of striking the game they were aiming at. So the arrow does matter, and not just the Indian. If it didn't matter, they would have been a dumb starving Indian.

  2. #12

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    Oct 2015
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    Re: Pyro

    I've done PMK in Expert Drums on my Jobo many times. The trick to controlling any oxidation problems is dumping the developer half way through the development time. For example, I mix 2L total solution, pour 1L in to begin development, then at the halfway mark I dump that first liter and pour in the fresh liter. Never had a problem working this way.

  3. #13
    Drew Wiley
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    Re: Pyro

    There were all kinds of tricks : displacing the oxygen with argon gas via a little fill tube into the tank, using large volumes of chem so no air remains, greatly lowering RPM to reduce agitation, several tweaks of pyro specifically for sake of rotary processing, such as Rollo Pyro. I simply find trays not only a lot more convenient and straightforward, but also requiring considerably less volume of developer, and hence more economical. I sold my Jobo expert drum to someone on this forum who responded earlier, who has made good use of it. But when I did use it myself, it was on my own roller base, which has a much wider range of RPM than a Jobo, along with a far stronger gearmotor.

  4. #14

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    Re: Pyro

    Quote Originally Posted by esearing View Post
    For me Pyro allows more subtle control than I have with HC110, especially when I need to expand or contract the negative. You can use it diluted with minimal agitation, stronger for rotary, or as a standard developer even with single sheet development. Key is to zero in on dilution and time for your needs.
    my 1liter of HC110 is 5 years old, half full, and has turned toward orange but still works. I use it mainly for roll film.
    You can stand develop with HC-110. Just did it last weekend with Delta 100 to help the highlights in a scene. 1+120, agitation for 1 min and let stand for 1 hour. I took two negatives and printed both. You can tell the difference.

  5. #15

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    Re: Pyro

    Quote Originally Posted by Scyg View Post
    Wow. Thanks everyone. This is great. I haven't done alternative printing since college (many moons ago), but having a versatile negative like that can't hurt, just in case the 19th century gods move me in the eggy direction once again. I think I'll start with Pyrocat HD and work my way out from there if I like it.
    Having a dual purpose negatives one of the great advantages or pyro, many of the carbon printers have moved to digital negatives, and the curve is then modified in Photoshop, so in that case there is no need for a dual purpose negative.


    Anyway traditional carbon printing sports a nice authenticity !!!

  6. #16

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    Sep 1998
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    Austin, TX
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    Re: Pyro

    You have been given a lot of great information here. I've been a pyro user for 20 years for many of the above reasons cited. However, as pointed out by Pere Casals it's all about the photographer mastering their craft and tools. My suggestion is that you find a developer, film and paper that you like use it exclusively. Avoid the temptation of trying different t film, developers, etc. Learn those tools and then later if you want you can try other films/developer.

  7. #17
    Scyg's Avatar
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    Jan 2017
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    Re: Pyro

    Not to worry. I've used two developers (Rodinal and more recently HC-110) almost exclusively for the last three decades. I'm no chemistry jumper. Still, thought I'd check the stuff out myself. I have a package of Pyrocat HD on the way from Photographers' Formulary, and intend to give it a good workout.

  8. #18

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    Re: Pyro

    Quote Originally Posted by Scyg View Post
    Wow. Thanks everyone. This is great. I haven't done alternative printing since college (many moons ago), but having a versatile negative like that can't hurt, just in case the 19th century gods move me in the eggy direction once again. I think I'll start with Pyrocat HD and work my way out from there if I like it.
    Good approach.

  9. #19

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    Re: Pyro

    Quote Originally Posted by Scyg View Post
    I've used two developers (Rodinal and more recently HC-110) almost exclusively for the last three decades.
    Let me add an advantage from pyro...

    Pyro produces less Bromide than regular developers for the same density, because a fraction of the final density is from stain and not from silver development.

    As pyro development generates less Bromide (for the same density) then there are less chances to generate bromide drags in very low agitation processing in tanks.

  10. #20
    bob carnie's Avatar
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    Re: Pyro

    Quote Originally Posted by Alan9940 View Post
    I've done PMK in Expert Drums on my Jobo many times. The trick to controlling any oxidation problems is dumping the developer half way through the development time. For example, I mix 2L total solution, pour 1L in to begin development, then at the halfway mark I dump that first liter and pour in the fresh liter. Never had a problem working this way.
    This is what I do as well...


    I also should point out that with PMK which I am use to I find the most significant factor is the tannin effect or the hardening of the film as it develops which stops the highlights from bleeding or migrating creating a more defined highlight... I have seen a single bulb in a room when you see the filament. and the details of the bulb , this would not be possible with some other developers which I also use..
    Its kind of like the effect I see these days with the hardening affect of Ammonium Dichromate, UV exposure and pigmented gum, the layers are obvious,.. If you look closely at a PMK negative you will see the concentric rings of hardened emulsion you need to handle the negative in the right light to see this .

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