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Got out the enlarger today. Little Boy.

Chose a neg I had been promising everyone for years and decided to run a few great prints out for Christmas.

Orient Seagull RC/VC II
Arista Paper Dev (1:9)
Kodak Ind Stop (1:63)
Kodafix (1:7)
All at 68F

Exposed once at f/8 for 14" as I had when I printed this neg previously.
2 minutes in the soup and barely any detail.

Well, the Paper Dev looks like Old Brown so I opened a new bottle and, given I had not printed last time on OS RCVCII I decided to run a test print on fresh Dev.

2 minutes, same thing, even on the 64" portion of the print.

Now, THE PAPER WAS NOT CLIMATE CONTROLLED. I kept this stuff in my closet. Exterior to house wall. No climate control other than ambient through the door seams from my bedroom. All the chems I used, though two years old, were just opened.

It's the paper, isn't it?


Edit: The good news. But I got the stuff out. I really am back. Woo Hoo!!!!!!!!!!
 

Sirius Glass

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Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound,
That saved a wretch like me.
I once was lost but now am found,
Was blind, but now I see.
 

Jerevan

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And then comes the refrain with the doo-wop background choir: "Wubba, wubba, wubba. Bing, bang, bong..."

Good on ya, Christopher! :smile:
 

r-brian

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Try a little longer in the developer. A while back I tried a Arista developer with my Oriental paper, their super black or something (it's been a while). Used my standard times and, like you, barely got any image. Called Freestyle, talked with their tech person and could not come up with anything. They sent me a bottle of a different developer. Kept trying the first developer that day. Nothing a 2 minutes but at 2 1/2 minutes suddenly the image popped. Something about the Oriental required much more development time.
 

momus

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Oh oh. I have some papers that are not in the fridge, and I KNOW that during the last 2 years the house has gotten really hot a few times when I forgot to turn the a/c on when I left for the day. Guess I know what to expect now. If nothing else, your post has given me a heads up, and I'll buy some new stuff and stick in in the fridge. I already learned my lesson w/ developer on this issue. After 3 weeks, I add time to my D76, and after 5 weeks I throw it out. Who knew the papers would go the same route? Well, once burnt, twice learned it seems. I'm in Florida, so the heat thing is extreme.
 
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Christopher Walrath
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I have one more unopened box of paper. I might give it a try before tossing it out too. I have used Arista Dev on Orient Seagull in the past at 1:9 and had an image form within 30 sec. The fresh dev clued me onto the paper. Of course, I haven't bought anything in three years. So it is all, paper, film and chemistry, three years old. Might just kill it all and buy new. And the good stuff too. Well, Ilford chems, I love the way the Orient Seagull portrays the light.

Ah, we'll see.
 

winger

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Was it just freshly opened developer or freshly purchased developer? 'Cause since paper isn't cheap, I'd try brand new developer first if that isn't what you did.
And isn't it still a great feeling to do it, even if it doesn't work right? Welcome back!
 

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I would have thought that with old paper you would get grays instead of whites. That's fogging. With any printing session, I always start by making test strips. Even if I think I know the right time. Your developer might be good if it was kept in the original unopened container. Not so with the paper.

Hope this helps,

-- Mark
 
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Christopher Walrath
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Second time around with the test strip?

Old opened box of paper.
Newly opened and clearish, albeit three year old, developer. I might just try the unopened paper later before I toss it all and start from scratch.

Thanks, guys.
 

Rick A

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Chris, you should have image unless the developer is bad. The old paper will show fogging and be gray if it is expired.I have some Forte that is nearly 10 years old and doesn't show signs of age fog, and was stored in my DR on a shelf the entire time. You may just need new developer.
 

Sirius Glass

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I vote for new developer. The old developer has partially or completely oxidized.
 

bdial

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Paper is pretty resilient, a few years ago I bought a collection of DR stuff that was stored in a semi-trailer on a farm. Included in the lot was a box of MGIV that had spent at least two years there. It was fine.

As others have noted, if you aren't seeing any tone or minimal tone showing up, with adequate exposure, the cause is most likely the developer. Get some fresh and you should be good.

:smile:If you don't believe us, we'll be glad to test it for you…it may require several sheets to make an adequate test though:whistling:
 
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Christopher Walrath
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I believe you. White edges under the easel blades. Yuck around the image edge and faded detail in the print. Developer it is.
 
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Christopher Walrath
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That was four year old Arista. I had gotten some Ilford Multigrade in early 2011. I'll try that next.
 

Rudeofus

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Of course it's tempting to go through the whole stash of old developer before plunking down money for a new bottle, but in your case I'd say get a fresh bottle before you waste more paper on futile and frustrating tests. The paper is most likely fine, I've used ancient discarded boxes of b&w paper and always got an image, sometimes a bit foggy but definitely an image. You didn't even get fog so your paper should be 100% fine.

Once you're back in the dark room game you can still test old dev bottles one at a time and use them up, and you will always have a dev to fall back to if these old bottles of dev have indeed gone bad.
 

removed account4

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chris

before all is lost
take a scrap of paper, close the box
turn the light on
and stick the paper in the developer
it should turn black ..

do you have any instant coffee and sodium carbonate ( washing soda ) lying around and want to have a little fun
( you know while you wait for your new developer to be shipped ) ?
you might check out this: http://tom-overton-images.weebly.com/caffenol.html
tom is an apug member and mad scientist ..

good-stuff
john
 

Roger Thoms

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Second time around with the test strip?

Old opened box of paper.
Newly opened and clearish, albeit three year old, developer. I might just try the unopened paper later before I toss it all and start from scratch.

Thanks, guys.

Chris, definitely get some fresh developer. And don't toss the paper even if you determine the paper is bad, instead find a carbon printer to give it to. Some carbon printers transfer onto fixed out photo paper.

Roger
 
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Christopher Walrath
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Thanks, John. I know TomO. Never thought to just do that though. Thanks everybody. I think you all are right. Paper is good. I can do a quick test with the paper turning black in the Ilford tonight. If it does then I will go with it. If not, then new developer it is.
 
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Christopher Walrath
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Yup. Ran a test strip in the Arista, which was slightly miscolored (not clear), and nothing.

Ran a test strip in the Ilford Multigrade, bingo. I have developer. I print this coming weekend.
 

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Now you are up and running again.
 
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