Plastic Vs Steel Tanks

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by CMoore, Dec 28, 2017.

  1. CMoore

    CMoore Subscriber

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    Compared to plastic...I have only used my steel tanks a few times. But it does seem like it takes A Lot longer to get the liquid into the metal tanks.
    Is this what you guys experience also.?
    I am not sure of the exact time, but at least twice as long. It takes me so much longer that i was wondering about when to start my time on the clock.
     
  2. Konical

    Konical Subscriber

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    Good Evening, CMoore,

    If you're using a tank which holds only one or two reels (16- oz. tank), it probably won't make enough difference to worry about unless the developing time is extremely short. With tanks holding three or four 120 reels or as many as eight 35mm reels, the fill/dump times could become a factor.

    Easy solution: Turn off the lights, pop the tank top, fill with developer, replace the top, and turn on the lights. After development, dumping can be done in a similar manner. This is really only for the developer and water/stop bath fill parts of the process. If your film washer is close by, just lift the reels out of the developer and drop them in and let the residual developer wash away while you dump the tank and wash it out; if you prefer stop bath, dump it into the tank, drop the reels back in, and proceed as with the developer step. This is not really difficult to do in the dark. With fixer and wash aid, timing, as long as it is at least adequate, is normally not critical.

    Konical
     
  3. OP
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    CMoore

    CMoore Subscriber

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    Yes.....Right.
    That is exactly what i finely figured out the last time i used my steel tanks.
    It seems like the opening is so small that you have to go slow, and also that the developer creates a "Bubble" as it goes in the top of the tank, and that makes pouring hard to do as well.
    Anyway....yeah, doing the developer in the dark worked fine.
    Thanks Again :smile:
     
  4. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    hi cmoore
    my hallmate used to tell me that
    metal tanks transfer hand-heat and
    warm developer and film when you are agitating it.
    i never found this to be a problem but people smarter than me
    have ... so YMMV .. i have cold hands so maybe it doesn't count with me ?
     
  5. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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    Metal tanks fill more quickly if you tip them slightly.
    I use the small cap as a stand for one edge - adds about a 15 degree slant that makes things work better.
     
  6. I have used both but I like the metal tanks better. They fill and empty faster. Also they use Hewes reels. That said I use the plastic Jobo reels when using the Jobo processor.
     
  7. jim10219

    jim10219 Member

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    My steel Omega tanks want to leak a bit, so I have to tape the lids down. But they are really old, and other than that, they work really well. I imagine they’ll last 100 years if taken care of. The plastic ones don’t leak nearly as easily, but they’re also not as durable over the long haul. I also like the metal reels better. I think they’re easier to load and you don’t have to worry if you drop them on a concrete floor.

    I don’t think the real world differences between them are all that large. I’d be willing to bet that most people prefer which ever one they are most experienced with.
     
  8. bdial

    bdial Subscriber

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    You should be able to fill or empty a 2 (35mm) reel metal tank in about 10 seconds. If it's taking longer and you're are getting a lot of bubbling tip the tank more as you fill and pour into the low side of the center part opening.

    Actually, dropping a metal reel on a concrete floor is a very good way to ruin it, especially a thin 35mm reel, any bends can be difficult to spot and more difficult to correct, but will cause jamming when you load the film.
     
  9. voceumana

    voceumana Member

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    The Paterson plastic tanks fill and empty very fast--it is one reason why I usually prefer them over metal.
     
  10. OP
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    CMoore

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    Yeah, they are way faster than the metal tanks. With the Paterson, you can pour a container of liquid, straight down that big tube. :smile:
     
  11. markbarendt

    markbarendt Member

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    When you start and stop the clock is irrelevant as long as you do it the same way each time.

    Like Matt I find tilting the tank makes things easier and quicker.
     
  12. bvy

    bvy Subscriber

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    With a funnel, I can get 600ml of solution into a steel tank in under five seconds.
     
  13. Patrick Robert James

    Patrick Robert James Subscriber

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    This must be from your Sirius alternate universe theory.

    No metal tank I have ever used filled faster than a plastic one. I can fill a JOBO 5 reel tank in maybe three/four seconds. Literally just pour the developer right in. If you try that with a steel tank it burps and pukes all over the place. The Kindermann four reel stainless tanks I have, which I use for color, take at least 12 or so seconds minimum even when tilted. Still there are some advantages to using steel depending on the process you are using.
     
  14. Vaughn

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    I like the SS lids for my SS tanks. They can be much faster (pouring in/out) than the plastic lids, as the metal lids are usually designed to vent air out of the tank via a seperate opening as developer is being poured in. Lid design differs brand-to-brand, some are faster than others. As Mark suggested, it is being consistent in one's methods and timing that counts. I put an extra 15 seconds on the timer and start the timer just before I start to pour in the developer. By the time I carefully grab the tank and the jug of developer, pour it all in (one liter), and put the cap on the lid, the 15 seconds has passed and I have started my agitation.
     

  15. Since I got the Jobo processor I only use the Jobo tanks.
     
  16. rpavich

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    I remember that post. I'm going to have to give that a whirl. I was doing a 2 reel tank and took about 12 or 14 seconds to fill it.
     
  17. bvy

    bvy Subscriber

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    600ml in four seconds.
     
  18. I always like silent movies. :D
     
  19. mrosenlof

    mrosenlof Subscriber

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    I use steel tanks. Even for the big tank that holds four 120 reels, I pour through the lid. The timing just isn't *that* tight. At least not for B/W. I have a couple of Patterson plastic tanks that I rarely use. I think they pour faster, but I find steel reels easier to load.

    If using plastic lids, tilt the tank about 45 degrees when pouring in, that allows the air to vent out the top part of the light trip. My metal lids have two channels so air vents fine when the tank is vertical. For both types of lids, hold the tank horizontal to start pouring out and slowly turn to lid down as the tank empties.
     
  20. Chris Livsey

    Chris Livsey Member

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    The sound effects were amazing, short list for best short film next Oscars?
     
  21. bvy

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    The downside of tilting... Pour marks.
    _0413-12.jpg

    Granted, this is C-41, so times are fast at just over three minutes. But it's something anyone doing C-41 in steel tanks should know about. This is what inspired me to look for a funnel to fit a steel tank.
     

  22. That is a shame. It looks like you were on a trip to southern California. Kodak always recommended never using developing times less than five minutes for black & white. That as you stated in not possible for color work. I have not had those problems with the Jobo processor. I know that the processor and tanks can be pricey but one can not put a price on consistent reliable results.