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Thread: Xtol + Pyrocat

  1. #1

    Xtol + Pyrocat

    This might be a crazy idea. I want to develop a film with both xtol and pyrocat.

    I like xtol's capability for the max ISO, also like pyrocat's micro-contrast and smoothy grain effect. If I develop a film, starting with xtol, followed by a thin pyrocat step (before stop bath), will I get both advantage?

    If this does not sound that crazy, what would you recommend to split the step?

    Totally from a wild guess, I'm thinking this:
    1. Run xtol with the develop time for half of the desired ISO (say, 1600 for TMAX 400).
    2. followed by a thin pyrocat (1+1+250?), with half the develop time to achieve the labeled ISO (say, ISO 400 for Tmax 400).

    Can someone throw in your suggestion to maximize my yield? Thanks.


  2. #2
    Wayne venchka's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007

    Re: Xtol + Pyrocat

    At The Unblinking Eye there is a brief description of using Xtol with Rodinal. Combined. Perhaps that might be the way to go. It would require some serious experimentation.

    Mixing Rodinal and Xtol
    by Sam Elkind

    I read with interest the Nov 28th exchange on the BW Film Developing forum about Vit C developers and the Rodinal variation. On that forum, I have on occasion mentioned a blend I use that gives excellent results with (at least) Tri-X, Delta 100, Delta 400, and Verichrome, in both 135 and 120 formats. I think people have an initial reaction that the idea sounds preposterous.

    The blend uses both Xtol and Rodinal. The origin for me was that Xtol results were too flat, while Rodinal results were too grainy (no surprise). A couple of years ago, I was searching for an ideal developer and after some tests I settled on this blend. Following is the result of my testing (quantities set to my 500 mL tank):

    Xtol = 100 mL
    water = 400 mL
    Rodinal = 4 to 5 mL

    Times @ 24 degrees C. are:
    Tri-X (200) = 9 minutes.
    Delta 100 = 10.5 minutes.
    Verichrome = 8.5 minutes.

    This blend may be useful to you and perhaps others. I think you will find the grain is quite acceptable, even in 35mm negs, and that tonality is attractive, especially in highlights. In the context of the exchange on the BW forum, in which you made reference to Gainer's Rodinal variation, I thought you might find this combo of interest.
    Deep in the darkest heart of the East Texas rainforest.

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