Rodinal - original recipe?

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Hi,
Recently, I came across an old formulae book(circa 1980s) that contains a formula, claimed to be the original Rodinal one. I'm not certain to any degree that this is so, but I have a friend who once worked for ORWO. She told me that the company was at times required to divulge the formulations of it's various developers or fixers to the Russian Academy of Science. The book I found was from Bulgaria and it claimed that the source of the recipies was "НИКФИ". I guess the abbreviation may roughly be translated as "The Soviet scientific research institute for photography". The recipe stated in the book(translated in English) is the following:

Solution 1
1.Water(40C) - 500ml
2.Para-aminophenol - 50gr
3.Potassium Metabisulfite - 150gr

Solution 2
1.Water(cool) - 300ml
2Sodium Hydroxide- 100gr

Solution 3
1.Water - 50ml
2.Potassium Bromide - 5,0gr
3Sodium Benzyl sulfonate - 0.2gr

Preparation: Solution 2 is slowly added, in a thin stream to sol.1,while stirring continuously At first, the mix is opaque with needle-shaped crystals in it. As sol.2 is added completely it should clear out and turn translucent( the last 50 ml of sol.2 should be added drop by drop on an interval of a minute or so) It is important to note that solution 2 is of great importance to the shelf life of the developer. Once the precipitate has completely dissolved, the addition of sol.2 should immediately cease. Sol.3 is then added. Once that is done the mixture should be topped up to a liter.

I don't know whether this formula is the real one since I couldn't really search through all of APUG's threads.I'm also curious about parodinal. I think of implementing the recipe I found with the parodinal formula.

Cheers!
Nikola
 

Athiril

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parodinal is absolutely excellent once you get the hang of it.

cheap, and easy to make, and very fast if you do it in hot solutions.

You may wanna give these a look over with starts with basically the same recipe as you have:
(there was a url link here which no longer exists)
(there was a url link here which no longer exists)


My method of parodinal is to take a mortar and pestle to crush the tablets to powder, mix the powder in methylated spirits (straight cheap denatured alcohol), filter the solution with the crap that sinks to the bottom through a coffee filter into another container.

Then use sodium hydroxide to convert the paracetamol to 4-aminophenol.

You need water for the sodium hydroxide to work - 50/50 blend with water/spirits works well, but less spirits the more you can dissolve in your solution with other stuff as well. So evaporate the spirits off or boil them off (dont use a glass jar it will crack and break and the spirits will go everywhere in flames, a lab beaker is required if you do that), I've also tried burning it off, seems to work fine too.

Mix it back up with water (you dont have to get rid of all spirits) to the required solution amount which you should calculate.

ie:if you dissolve 15g of paracetamol (30x500mg tablets) in 250ml (the equivalent working strength of rodinal to parodinal for 15g of paracetamol - allegedly according to digitaltruth and other sources) of spirits (ive done it in 125ml and just doubled the solution after), you will lose some through the filtering - take that into account - lose 20%, take 20% off the final solution amount (so after evaporating spirits, water up to 200ml etc if lost 20% of the spirits in filtering).

You can add what else you want after - ascorbic acid, sodium sulphite etc.

There's plenty of parodinal threads :smile:
 

pavelt2tk0

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Hi,
Recently, I came across an old formulae book(circa 1980s) that contains a formula, claimed to be the original Rodinal one. I'm not certain to any degree that this is so, but I have a friend who once worked for ORWO. She told me that the company was at times required to divulge the formulations of it's various developers or fixers to the Russian Academy of Science. The book I found was from Bulgaria and it claimed that the source of the recipies was "НИКФИ". I guess the abbreviation may roughly be translated as "The Soviet scientific research institute for photography". The recipe stated in the book(translated in English) is the following:

Solution 1
1.Water(40C) - 500ml
2.Para-aminophenol - 50gr
3.Potassium Metabisulfite - 150gr

Solution 2
1.Water(cool) - 300ml
2Sodium Hydroxide- 100gr

Solution 3
1.Water - 50ml
2.Potassium Bromide - 5,0gr
3Sodium Benzyl sulfonate - 0.2gr

I don't know whether this formula is the real one since I couldn't really search through all of APUG's threads.I'm also curious about parodinal. I think of implementing the recipe I found with the parodinal formula.

Cheers!
Nikola

Hi Nikola,

The same recipe is also given in Russian books, and the source claimed to be ORWO or Foma. The only thing - check the transliteration - it is probably benzene sulfinate in the solution 3. There is a long discussion in the Articles on apug regarding Rodinal recipe. But it seems the this one is the most close to the truth. All others are also close, but this is the only one with benzene sulfinate (it is claimed to be the preservative which prevent oxygen diffusion into the stock solution) At least, I always make it according to this recipe, and development times along with other visible properties are the same as for original Agfa Rodinal.
 

jim appleyard

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According to Anchell, p-aminophenol HCl was the only dev agent in origianl Rodinal. With the addition of pot bro, Anchell claims that Agfa (or whoever now makes it) has added a second dev agent. Who knows?
 
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Nikola Dulgiarov
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I've gone through many of the pages regarding parodinal, and I wonder whether I could first transform all of the paracetamol to p-aminophenol with just enough NaOH and then proceed just as in the recipe i listed. I checked up the amido hydrolysis reaction and it appears that 6.926 grams of paracetamol react with 1.832gr of NaOH to yield exactly 5gms of p-aminophenol. If I were to mix such amounts of NaOH and acetaminophen, that the result would be only a solution of p-aminohenol and sodium acetate, with no bases, can I add 15gr of metabisulfite and proceed as in the recipe above?
 

Alan Johnson

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I agree with your figures for the reaction of acetaminophen with sodium hydroxide to prduce p-aminophenol.I have done this reaction ,leaving the mixture in a full sealed bottle for 3 days.However I went on to make a solvent developer by adding sodium sulfite then boric acid to reduce the pH,I did not try to make Rodinal.But I can confirm that a developing agent is certainly produced by this reaction and there is no obvious reason why Rodinal type should not be made by this method,though this remains to be verified experimentally.
Parodinal IMO contains an excess of both hydroxide and sulfite.
 

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Why do you need to make parodinal? p-aminophenol (not p-aminophonol HCl) is freely available in any quantities, and it will give you the same result as original rodinal even shelf life will be at least couple of years....
 

Athiril

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Some countries (like Australia) it is unobtanium along with many critical ingredients for the most basic of recipes.
 
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Nikola Dulgiarov
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I live in Bulgaria, in a rather remote area, where acquiring such chemicals is a hard and rather expensive task. Ive been asked for roughly 250$ for 75 grams of p-aminophenol which is , for me, ridiculous! Thus I'd rather make parodinal (rodinal isn't vailable either). What's more, I've made parodinal by Donald Quall's recipe, and I am asking whether it will be better to first make the paraaminophenol solution and then mix in the alkali.
 

Alan Johnson

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There was a mistake in my first post above.
p-aminophenol is almost insoluble in water,you cannot make a neutral solution of it.To make Parodinal it is necessary to follow Donald Qualls' instructions.
But you can make a solution of sodium p-aminophenolate from acetaminophen (tylenol,paracetamol caplets) which is what I think I did,by doubling NaOH.
C8H9NO2.......+...2NaOH...........->.....C6H6NaNO.....+C2H3NaO2..+H20
Paracetamol.......Sodium hydroxide......Sodium aminophenolate...etc..etc
151.17g.............. 2x40g....................
This opens the possibility to make from paracetamol developers that will work with p-aminophenol as developing agent.
To make Rodinal type as given in the original post it would be necessary to re-calculate the amounts based on sodium p-aminophenolate rather than p-aminophenol but it could be done I would think.
 
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Nikola Dulgiarov
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Well, in the recipe I posted, sol.A is said to have a needle-shaped precipitate.I think that's the p-aminophenol. Once sol.B is added until the mix clears, probably it has converted the p-aminophenol to Na aminophenolate. My idea is first to create the p-aminophenol, even if it stays as a precipitate and then continue on to mixing it as in the recipe. I'm just waiting for my delivery of paracetamol, so I'll give it a try.
 

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Rob Keppens in the Zenit Camera group has a very successful recipe based on a pre-war book he has.
http://users.telenet.be/bobkeppens/Retrodinal/formule.jpg
He calls it Retrodinal!:smile: and it is all K based compounds. However simple maths will convert to Na based salts and he even mixes/matches the K and Na salts in the one brew. Seems the film can't tell the difference?
Murray
 
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Nikola Dulgiarov
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Excellent recipe!I've checked up the mix and it looks precisely like rodinal. I'll try it out as soon as possible and tell you the results.
 

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Excellent recipe!I've checked up the mix and it looks precisely like rodinal. I'll try it out as soon as possible and tell you the results.
Nikola, I had another look at the formula myself and discovered Rob has not said how much water to add!:confused:
I am sure it is for 200ml but I have asked him and received no reply yet.
If you made it to 1 litre it already 1:5 dilution.
Will get back when he replies.
Murray
 

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Trask

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I will confess that I cannot decipher Mr. Keppens formula. Murray, if you can put it into standard formula designation, it would help me (and perhaps a few others) very much.
 
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Nikola Dulgiarov
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I'm very grateful for your posts and it seems that Retrodinal is yet another alternative, if you run out of anything else. Even so, I've done some tests with parodinal, and the results are of better quality that with the FOMADON developer I typically use, so I may soon start to use Parodinal and Retrodinal as regular developers(just have to perfect the preparation).
 

Murray Kelly

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I will confess that I cannot decipher Mr. Keppens formula. Murray, if you can put it into standard formula designation, it would help me (and perhaps a few others) very much.

The bottom half is what you want. The top portion is proof that the equations actually run.

Note he used potassium salts (K) not sodium (Na) salts
KOH.......................39g
Paracetamol........... 15g (30 x 500mg tabs)
Pot. metabisulfite.... 22g (or Pot. sulfite 32g)
KBr........................2.5g
aq.ad.....................250ml

All the usual rules apply - filter out the dregs and leave 48 hrs before use.
May look terrible but works fine.
To substitute sodium hydroxide (NaOH) use 28g
and for sodium metabisulfite use 19g (or 25g of Sod. sulfite)
It is permissible to switch K and Na salts but keep to the weights, above.
Murray
 

Martin Reed

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I have in collection the Rodinal recipe given to the allies at the end of WW2 when they over-ran the Agfa Wolfen factory. The quantity I seem to think is 1100 litres or thereabouts. I did put it up here years ago on another thread but the moderators had it down inside 10 minutes! As it's clearly public domain now I could have another go...
 

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I have in collection the Rodinal recipe given to the allies at the end of WW2 when they over-ran the Agfa Wolfen factory. The quantity I seem to think is 1100 litres or thereabouts. I did put it up here years ago on another thread but the moderators had it down inside 10 minutes! As it's clearly public domain now I could have another go...

Hi Martin,
Please do...I would just like to add it to my data collection if nothing else (P.M. maybe:D).....Evan Clarke
 

RobK

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Hi all,

(Better late than never).
Addendum Retrodinal :
The formula is for the use of metabisulfites not sulfites. (the first react acid, the second basic)
Metabisulfites in H20 will convert into bisulfites (222g -> 240g), I skipped this step because it is not needed in the calculations.
K2S2O5 -> 2KHSO3 + 2KOH -> 2K2SO3 (the water taken in step 1 is given back in step 2).
(About) every 222 g of Potassium Metabisulfites needs 112 g of Potassium Hydroxide to be converted into Potassium Sulfites.

This is not the end-product ; in the brew will be sulfonates, sulfates, fenolates etc...
I use this because Potassium Metabisulfite is easy to get here ; winemakers use it.
The restrainer is not necessary, Agfa started to add KBr somewhere in the 1930s, however in their 1910 they advised to use them under certain conditions.
It's even possible to add tetraborates (borax) to get even brighter images with somewhat finer grain. Superadditive mixes with ascorbates also work fine (but need a buffer then).

regards

RobK
 
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