Paper Developer Chemicals, Which Ones?

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jaydebruyne

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Very soon I'm going to start printing my own negatives.

I'll be using Ilford multigrade IV Pearl paper printing B&W prints.

I have no clue about which developer, stop and fix to use. I'm assuming they are different to the film development chemicals?

Any pointers would be gratefully received.

Cheers
Jay
 

Gerald C Koch

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Only the developer is different for papers vs films. Use a print developer like Kodak Dektol or Ilford Bromophen.
 

MattKing

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Only the developer is different for papers vs films. Use a print developer like Kodak Dektol or Ilford Bromophen.

+1

Although you can use fixer at a higher dilution (eg 1 + 9 vs 1 + 4)- which works particularly well for RC paper. The fixer instructions will explain.

For clarity, while you can work from the same initial product, you should not use exactly the same liquid for both film and prints.

As an example, I am currently working through a 5 litre bottle of Ilford Hypam fixer.

For film, I mix up a 1.25 litre bottle of working strength (1 + 4) film fixer that I use and re-use appropriately for film. When I have used up the film fixer's capacity, it gets donated to friends who reclaim the silver from it.

For prints, I mix up what I need each time, using a 1 + 9 dilution. At the end of each session, I either discard the fixer or, if I have used it to near capacity (rare) I add it to the fixer that goes to my friends who reclaim the silver from it.

The working strength film fixer is never used for prints, and the working strength print fixer is never used for films.

You may want to use your stop bath at a higher dilution as well - it smells less.
 

Dr Croubie

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When I went to buy my first bottle, the guy behind the desk didn't know much so I just grabbed the Multigrade liquid dev.
The next time I was in the shop his more knowledgable (boss/partner?) was in there, so I asked him the difference between Multigrade and Bromophen, he said that the Bromophen was slightly warmer. I'll check out Bromophen next when the Multigrade is finished.
But yeah, apparently there's not as much difference as you get differences in film developers.

For the rest I'm just using Ilfostop and Rapid Fixer, hasn't done me any harm yet...
 

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jaydebruyne

jaydebruyne

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Bromophen it is :smile:

So nearly everything has been ordered! All I need now really is a timer... *excited*

Thanks for all the help, it's very much appreciated.

Jay
 

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Since I prefer neutral to cool, I use Eukobrom from Tetenal for my developer. As for the other chemicals, it's explained above much better than I can give you.

For timing, I use an online metronome played loud enough to hear and use that. I set it to 60BPM, and count beats. Of course, I don't have a real darkroom, so my workflow is slightly different from most.
 

Dr Croubie

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For timing, I use an online metronome played loud enough to hear and use that. I set it to 60BPM, and count beats.

I've got a good app on my ipod called 'Develop!' that is great for films. Tried it in the darkroom, not so good, that screen's bright and fogged my paper something chronic. But I can still use the same app, set it to interval timer and beep every second indefinitely, then put it somewhere I can hear it and the light won't get out. Works pretty much the same as the metronome...
 

kintatsu

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I've got a good app on my ipod called 'Develop!' that is great for films. Tried it in the darkroom, not so good, that screen's bright and fogged my paper something chronic. But I can still use the same app, set it to interval timer and beep every second indefinitely, then put it somewhere I can hear it and the light won't get out. Works pretty much the same as the metronome...

I'll have to look into it. Do they make it for the Android? My wife plays her TFC so loud, that it can be difficult to hear the metronome.

I like having the tick every second for timing prints. It's also great for the way I develop film in trays. I tried a couple apps for my tablet, but several settings couldn't be adjusted.
 
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jaydebruyne

jaydebruyne

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I've got a good app on my ipod called 'Develop!' that is great for films. Tried it in the darkroom, not so good, that screen's bright and fogged my paper something chronic. But I can still use the same app, set it to interval timer and beep every second indefinitely, then put it somewhere I can hear it and the light won't get out. Works pretty much the same as the metronome...

So you don't use an enlarger timer? You switch it on and off manually?
 

paul_c5x4

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I have no clue about which developer, stop and fix to use. I'm assuming they are different to the film development chemicals?

Any pointers would be gratefully received.

Whilst you can use Ilford's PQ Universal for both film and paper developing, most will recommend separate batches of dev & fix. To start with, I'd suggest going for D76 for film and Ilford Multigrade developer for paper. You can use the same fixer for both films and paper, just mixed to different strengths (Amfix is dirt cheap).

As you are in London, I would certainly point you in the direction of Silverprint.
 

mr rusty

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So you don't use an enlarger timer? You switch it on and off manually?

I think a lot of people do, but its easier to have a timer that switches the enlarger on and off automatically. A quick search on that well known auction site for "enlarger timer" throws up a few. The jessops/patterson digital timers will probably go for not too much. I sold a couple of philips timers a while back and they sold for ~£25
 
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jaydebruyne

jaydebruyne

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I think a lot of people do, but its easier to have a timer that switches the enlarger on and off automatically. A quick search on that well known auction site for "enlarger timer" throws up a few. The jessops/patterson digital timers will probably go for not too much. I sold a couple of philips timers a while back and they sold for ~£25

Haha I'm probably the one watching both of those timers :wink: I'm hoping to get the Jessops, looks in better nick!
 

presspass

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Don't forget Sprint. The print developer is liquid, easy to dilute, and lasts well. I've been using it for more than two years with Multigrade Pearl RC and it does just what I need.
 
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jaydebruyne

jaydebruyne

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Don't forget Sprint. The print developer is liquid, easy to dilute, and lasts well. I've been using it for more than two years with Multigrade Pearl RC and it does just what I need.

I've just bought 5ltrs of the Bromophen so maybe I'll try that next :wink:
 

Gerald C Koch

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So nearly everything has been ordered! All I need now really is a timer... *excited*

While time is important for films it is less so for papers. Since prints are developed to completion it is better to watch the print rather than the timer. There is a point during print development when changes to the print slow down dramatically. It is at this point where development can be stopped. I usually give the print a few seconds more time in the developer but that is my preference.
 
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jaydebruyne

jaydebruyne

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Yeah, 80pounds is a tad out my price range for a timer.. I'm hoping the auction won't rocket at the last minute!
 

Dr Croubie

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So you don't use an enlarger timer? You switch it on and off manually?

When I first set up the darkroom I did it manually, for one print, until it annoyed me enough to go searching for a timer (I got the whole setup gifted to me in very dirty cardboard boxes from storage). There was an inline timer in there to switch the light on and off, so now I use that. I still use the 1s-beep metronome app for test-strips, counting them is easier with it...
 

pentaxuser

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OP, I have noted your questions for a few days now and while APUG is a great place for answers it may be that it is worth your while to buy a few books on film processing and darkroom printing. I'd recommend Tim Rudman's The Photographer's Master Printing Course and Les McLean's Creative B&W Photography. Many of the answers you need are in these two books and you might learn more from the books than asking many individual questions. At the very least the books may enable you to learn a lot and then the answers to your questions can add to your knowledge.

If I were new to analogue processing I'd get the Ilford range of Multigrade Developer, Ilford Fixer and any stop bath.These are as good as any and maybe better than most for a beginner and easily obtainable

To our U.S. friends, remember that what is easily obtainable in the U.S. such as LPD can be practically impossible to obtain in the U.K. where the OP is.

You seem to be able to obtain everything we can but much cheaper whereas we can't get some things you take for granted at any price

Best of luck with your new hobby,OP

pentaxuser
 
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jaydebruyne

jaydebruyne

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OP, I have noted your questions for a few days now and while APUG is a great place for answers it may be that it is worth your while to buy a few books on film processing and darkroom printing. I'd recommend Tim Rudman's The Photographer's Master Printing Course and Les McLean's Creative B&W Photography. Many of the answers you need are in these two books and you might learn more from the books than asking many individual questions. At the very least the books may enable you to learn a lot and then the answers to your questions can add to your knowledge.

Thanks Pentaxuser. I'm reading Larry Bartlett's book right now, but I'll add these other two to my list.

The questions I'm asking right now are mainly on equipment as I'm setting up my darkroom, else they're questions to answers I haven't yet found.

I'm a veteran on teaching myself through books so your book recommendations are greatly appreciated.

Jay
 
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