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Thread: Equivalent of Massive Dev Chart for Paper Developers ?

  1. #1

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    Equivalent of Massive Dev Chart for Paper Developers ?

    The Massive Dev Chart site has helped me a lot over the years and I was wondering if anyone has found anything similar for paper developers and papers.

    Regards
    Dave

  2. #2
    Pieter's Avatar
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    Re: Equivalent of Massive Dev Chart for Paper Developers ?

    My understanding is to develop papers according to the developer data sheet. Why would you need something like the Massive Developer Chart? If you need to cut the development time shorter than specified, you probably overexposed the paper. Try again--unlike a negative, you can do this as much as you want (or can afford to).

    On the other hand, I have seen prints with very rich blacks made by either doubling the time or developing at higher temperatures.

  3. #3
    Drew Wiley
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    Re: Equivalent of Massive Dev Chart for Paper Developers ?

    No point. Density is achieved visually relative to time/temp/dev concentration variables. And all that is interrelated to exact image color expectations prior to toning. What can be achieved intuitively in that respect, with a bit of practice, would be hell to precisely quantify. Too many variables. Maybe somebody like Fred Picker could religiously preach rigid set development times; but that's just like codifying how far a bunji cord is meant to be stretched every single time, invariably. There's more to the game than just DMax, and even that can come out differently on the very same VC paper depending on the amount of respective exposure to the separate emulsion layers. Like I've been saying all along, a simple test strip will tell you more in 30 seconds than reading an entire book about all the hypothetical options. Otherwise, if you ask about SPECIFIC paper and developer options, instead of some allegedly comprehensive data base, you might get some simple practical answers from people on this forum experienced in those very combinations.

  4. #4
    Nodda Duma's Avatar
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    Re: Equivalent of Massive Dev Chart for Paper Developers ?

    I followed the recommendations in the boxes of paper until I realized they all say about 1-2 minutes in whatever developer. So now I just develop for 1-2 minutes (specific time depending on how saucy I’m feeling that particular day) and figure out exposure accordingly. Then I write that info down including whatever developer happens to be mixed at the time on the sleeve the film or plate is stored in.

    If the contrast is really wonky then I develop for 5 minutes to get the blacks under control.

    So yeah like what Drew says after you’ve developed enough to know what can be done then it’s just developing by gut instinct and watching what happens. The dev chart for film is useful because you can’t usually watch things develop.

    That’s pretty much it. YMMV.
    Newly made large format dry plates available! Look:
    https://www.pictoriographica.com

  5. #5

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    Re: Equivalent of Massive Dev Chart for Paper Developers ?

    B/W photo paper generally develops to completion- camera films do not. That's why paper development times are relatively simple and standardized, while film development is not. True, you can alter print tonality by altering paper exposure and development time, but in most cases the changes are subtle (not necessarily unimportant).
    The science has been done for us already... it is well explained by (of course) Ansel Adams in his earlier series of technical books. Most likely in "The Print", but I'm too lazy to look it up now. Of course if you have a step wedge you can run your own tests, as Picker advocated- "then you'll KNOW".
    As for myself, I was hired as a B/W printer in a custom lab 40 years ago this month, and kept that job for three years until Kodak called. I still print my own work, and I'll always admit that there are better printers than I am (although I think that I have high standards).
    But long ago I decided to use the recommended two-minute development time (with standard paper developers and common FB papers). I find it more effective time-wise and paper-wise to control print densities by exposure, and keep the process consistent. It's not the only way... but it's simple, efficient, and repeatable. That's good enough for me.

  6. #6

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    Re: Equivalent of Massive Dev Chart for Paper Developers ?

    Thanks for the comments - makes sense now that I think about it.

    Regards
    Dave

  7. #7

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    Re: Equivalent of Massive Dev Chart for Paper Developers ?

    A 2 and 4 minute FB developing time on prints can look almost identical while wet, but the dark densities become pronounced when very dry (usually too much)...

    Stick with 2 minutes FB, and 1 minute for RC (RC gets mushy after that...)

    Don't dilute paper dev too much, or the prints look weak, keep dev temp over 65 (or weak contrast), and you will get good results...

    The other tweak is when mixing paper dev from scratch is formulas that can give warm, neutral, and slightly harder contrast look... I like the neutral printed full/longer scale...

    Warm & cold tone paper give different scales, and can be slightly adjusted using a scratch mixed developer...

    Steve K

  8. #8
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Re: Equivalent of Massive Dev Chart for Paper Developers ?

    I did try 'snatch' which is grab the print out, when the eye decides and throw it in strong stop

    somebody discussed that here, so I tried it

    I now do as above in fresh citric acid made from powder and pour it down the drain often
    2022

  9. #9
    Drew Wiley
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    Re: Equivalent of Massive Dev Chart for Paper Developers ?

    "Snatch development" is an expression used in certain circles, especially "lith printing", involving prematurely pulling the print out of the developer way before development has come to completion for sake of some special effect. I'm not a lith printer, but have done snatch development with certain graded papers in portrait work for a very subtle effect, along with warmer tone. I've never been able to achieve it with current VC papers - they just look blaaah if you try that. I'm a fanatic about exact image tone, and find that length of development is an important tool to getting there. No rote formula like "always two minutes" does the trick for me. I approach every single negative as its own distinct problem. It might be a minute, or a minute and a half, or two or three or four or five, depending. Tweak of temp also factor, all kinds of variables. Some people call thinking about all those variables a headache; but I think of them all as potential tools. It gets intuitive after awhile; relaxing, in fact.

  10. #10

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    Re: Equivalent of Massive Dev Chart for Paper Developers ?

    > I've never been able to achieve it with current VC papers - they just look blaaah if you try that.
    Agreed. It's a good way to get thin, mottled blacks. Snatching is appropriate with lith, but I don't see the point for normal printing.

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