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Just purchased several rolls of Efke100 to 'play' with. I'm a 'tried and true' Tri-X and HP5 gal so this will be a bit different for me. I shoot straight natural light/indoor/outdoor (no flash or studio work) so I'm curious to see the difference in these films (Tri-X and Efke).

For those of you who have worked with this film...anything you have to comment on it about? Any 'do's and don'ts'? Have any examples from from using Efke?

Dorothy--
 

Francesco

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Dorothy, my only experience with Efke 100 is their sheet film. Best film I have ever used. It is very fragile (easily scratched or gouged) but well worth the effort and, in my opinion, minimal expense. Nearly 80 percent of the images in my website are from Efke 100 negatives.
 

David A. Goldfarb

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As Francesco says, handle the film carefully when wet, but it's a beautiful film. I also recommend a 2-min presoak to remove the blue-green dye, which doesn't seem to come out in the fix/wash so well.
 
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Dorothy Blum Cooper
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Francesco and David...thank you! I appreciate those snippets of information on handling and processing.

Francesco...you have some beautiful work on your site. I enjoyed viewing your photos. Also...the images of you with your camera look as though they had come from the pages of the old Life Magazines from many years ago. Great shots!!

I can't wait to work with this film! Thanks again you two!!
 

Tom Hoskinson

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I agree with Francesco and David - Efke 100 is a great film! I have shot a lot of it as 120 roll film. I also shoot it in 4x5 and recently in 8x10 sheet sizes. I expose and process it the same way in all 3 formats. Like Francesco, I develop it in Pyrocat-HD. I also pre-soak in water for 2 minutes.
 

doughowk

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Use it in 2X3 & 4X5 formats and am considering switching to it also for 120mm. Only problems I've had with it is in development occasionally getting bubbles in negative. Been developing in 2 yr old Diafine & not paying much attention to water temp. Am switching to Rodinal & semi-stand for hopefully more consistent results.
 

Francesco

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Dorothy Blum Cooper said:
Francesco...you have some beautiful work on your site. I enjoyed viewing your photos. Also...the images of you with your camera look as though they had come from the pages of the old Life Magazines from many years ago. Great shots!!

Glad you like them Dorothy. I am also glad that you got that impression of those photos of me. You are the first to agree with my assessment of those photos. My family and friends think I look like a small time crook from the 1930s.
 

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Blue/Green dye? S'funny, my Efke 100 has a dark red dye.

So far I've found it a good (and cheap!) film which I have only just started using but I've found it very fragile when wet, so handle with care. It also seems to be thinner than other films making it curl up when dry.
 

roy

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Francesco said:
My family and friends think I look like a small time crook from the 1930s.

Francis, your family will understand the reality but how did you convince your friends ?!
 

David A. Goldfarb

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Dark red dye?--Very strange. Maybe it's the result of some chemical reaction with whatever you're processing it in, but if you presoak Efke PL100 (and I believe all three emulsions are the same), the water comes out blue/green.
 

juan

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I've also used Efke PL100 in sheet film, and agree with what the others have said about it's fragileness. I, like Doug, had problems with it developing pinholes. It could be the water (we live in the same town) here. Or it could be temperature, as my tap water is seldom lower than 80F.

I haven't had a problem with the pinholes since I did two things - I now use plain water for the stop bath, and I make sure the solution temperatures are consistent.

I used Tri-X and HC110b for many years and liked it at the time. Since I've begun using PL100 and Pyrocat HD, I've never looked back for my view cameras. I am still looking for a 400 speed film for hand holding my Speed Graphic, so I may go back to Tri-X for that.

I'd be interested in hearing how you like Efke 100 with HC110.
juan
 

fingel

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I have had good results using a hardening fixer with Efke film. Fixer with hardener seems to have fallen out of favor, but I find it almost a necessity with the Efke emulsions. I usually process it 6 sheets at a time in a Jobo tank (but do it manually like smaller format roll film) and use PMK (no aftersoak) and Kodak Fixer with hardener and have never had a problem with scratches (knock on wood) :smile:
 

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When I tried Efke 100 in 35mm, I found that I had to rate it way down to get good shadow detail. I haven't seen this mentioned by others so it might just be related to my own processes and methods. Just thought I'd toss it in.
 

Tom Hoskinson

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Flotsam said:
When I tried Efke 100 in 35mm, I found that I had to rate it way down to get good shadow detail. I haven't seen this mentioned by others so it might just be related to my own processes and methods. Just thought I'd toss it in.

I haven't tried the 35mm version, but the 120 and sheet film versions produce excellent shadow detail when developed in Pyrocat-HD with minimum and semi-stand agitation. You do need to expose for the shadows, of course.

I do not find any need to use a hardening fixer with Efke 100. I use Photographer's Formulary TF-4 alkaline, non-hardening fixer.
 

Flotsam

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Tom Hoskinson said:
I haven't tried the 35mm version, but the 120 and sheet film versions produce excellent shadow detail when developed in Pyrocat-HD with minimum and semi-stand agitation. You do need to expose for the shadows, of course.QUOTE]

I've never tried it. But doesn't that method tend to enhance the shadows anyway?

I'm using rotary purely for convenience but I'm really not comfortable with it. It just seems to build up the highlights disproportionately so I find myself heavily overexposing and underdeveloping to try to compensate.

Someday I'm gonna get me one of them fancy darkrooms, the kind with running water :smile:
 

PaulH

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When I dump my presoak water (dark blue) into my used Pyrocat, I turns dark red.
 

Foto Ludens

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I can't speak much for Efke100, but I use Macophot Up100+, which is said to be the same emulsion, or a very similar one.
The film, like efke, is very fragile, even when dry. An old TRL I previously used made small but regular gashes into the emulsion (probably due to old rolers). The pentacon six I now use made caused some scratches in a few rolls, but I think that is mostly due to the extremely dusty enviroment I was in...

I dry my film in stainless steel reels (hair drier & PVC tube set up), and if the film touches the inside of the reel (like that clip thing), it causes holes in the emulsion as well.

Having said that, it is great film. I shot it at e.i. 200, developed in Diafine. Looking back, I should have shot it at 100 or so, since my film is at least a stop underexposed. Some frames require selenium toning, some don't. You can check out the critique gallery to see what the result looks like (very good to my eyes). The tone is simply amazing, and grain is very small on a 9x9" print (6x6cm neg, though). From severely underexposed negs, that is amazing.

The dye on my film is blue. A deep purple on a water rinse, or a cyan color on diafine bath A (no water rinse).

Well, hope this helps you out. Although the film is not perfect, it is very worth the trouble.
 

titrisol

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What speed (EI) did you get by using Diafine?

doughowk said:
Use it in 2X3 & 4X5 formats and am considering switching to it also for 120mm. Only problems I've had with it is in development occasionally getting bubbles in negative. Been developing in 2 yr old Diafine & not paying much attention to water temp. Am switching to Rodinal & semi-stand for hopefully more consistent results.
 

voceumana

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Pinholes.

Going through some of my 4x5 negatives, some early ones had pinholes. My latest ones don't.

The early ones were Tri-X, and the later ones APX 100. But, the last ones were processed using a water rinse after developer rather than an acid stop bath, and also used alkaline fixer.

I suspect that the gas released during alkaline developer hitting acid stop bath or fixer may cause the pinholes.

The first time I tray developed an 8x10 negative, I gouged the negative with a fingernail. It was in the acid hardening fixer. Supposedly the negative is softest in the alkaline baths (developer) and harder in the fixer, but that's not at all what my tactile senses were telling me. The negative felt softer when it went into the fixer.

I haven't tried Efke sheet films yet, but I've had no scratches nor soft negatives when using the alkaline fixer combined with a water rinse after developer.

For 4x5 I use Jobo tank with inversion agitation. Takes lots of developer, but it works easily.

Charlie
 

James Bleifus

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Francesco said:
Dorothy, my only experience with Efke 100 is their sheet film. Best film I have ever used. It is very fragile (easily scratched or gouged) but well worth the effort and, in my opinion, minimal expense. Nearly 80 percent of the images in my website are from Efke 100 negatives.

Well, drat, drat and drat. I was hoping to prove Francesco wrong, not because I have some sort of disagreement with him, but because I hate how easily Efke 100 scratches (at one point I became so angry that I threw my remaining Efke in the garbage, only to dig it out a few days later. It never quite smelled the same afterwards. Throwing away film just doesn't feel right, sort of like burning books.), but I've since tried HP5, J&C Classic 200 and Arista.edu 400 and Efke 100 shames them all. Looks like I'll be using Efke 100 for as long as J&C sells it and developing it one sheet at a time.

Cheers,

James
 

noseoil

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If your are using PMK as a developer, the hardening fixer really isn't necessary. PMK (the pyrogallic acid component) acts as a hardening developer. It reacts with the gelatin and has a hardening effect.
 
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Dorothy,

I can't really say anything about the sheet film, as I haven't tried it yet. But I can tell you that I've had a great time using it in 35mm and 120.
My primary developer is Rodinal, and I like 1+50 and 1+100 dilutions. With this developer I have had best success rating the film at E.I.50, one stop over-exposure.
With that said, I quite succesfully (!) mistook a roll of Efke 100 for HP5 and rated it at E.I.400. After some serious overdeveloping, I got some pretty good looking negatives! So, this film is extremely flexible in my opinion, with some great exposure latitude. It also responds well to different developing cycles with adjustments for tonal range and contrast.
Lately I've started using Agfa APX and Kodak TMX a lot instead of Efke, simply because of the scratching tendencies - especially in combination with a non-hardening alkaline fixer. I think that's basically the only negative aspect of this film, however, and if you are very careful, you may never experience any problems.
One more thing, if you try 35mm, make sure to load your camera in at least subdued light, as the film canisters are not the most light proof devices on earth.

Good luck with trying Efke out. It is beautiful stuff!

- Thomas
Saint Paul, MN
 
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