Thinking about mixing chemicals at home

Linda

A
Linda

  • 1
  • 1
  • 43
I want to join the Circus

A
I want to join the Circus

  • 1
  • 1
  • 63
Lith on Bromide

A
Lith on Bromide

  • 0
  • 0
  • 82
Stone monoliths

Stone monoliths

  • 3
  • 1
  • 146
Bottoms Up

A
Bottoms Up

  • 3
  • 0
  • 89

Recent Classifieds

Forum statistics

Threads
180,635
Messages
2,493,566
Members
95,120
Latest member
mkaelin
Recent bookmarks
0

josephaustin

Member
Joined
Feb 20, 2005
Messages
116
Location
The Old Domi
Shooter
Multi Format
What kind of scale do you need to mix your own developers? Is it really more ecconomical? Do homemade developers last longer, work better? Just trying to decide on the pros and cons of trying this out.
 

Claire Senft

Member
Joined
Dec 7, 2004
Messages
3,239
Location
Milwaukee, W
Shooter
35mm
several reasons

You can save money. You can try formulas such as pyrocat HD that you can not buy at the photo store. Generally for b&w chemicals .1 grams for accuracy will work well. A scale that reads in .01 grams should serve virtually all needs. There are some color formulas that might require higher accuracy. A scale that will handle 200 grams maximum will work well for most people. If you want very critical accuracy you can go to a store that specializes firearms they will have scales for reloading cartridges (bullets). It has been a while since I have done any reloading the scales read in grains and will resolve .1 grains. there are 453.8 grams per pound...7000 grains per lb. Very few photo formulas, if any, will be stated in grains.

A couple of months ago bought a scale on Ebay. The seller was selling new scales. I measures to .1 grams and has a 500 gram capacity. The priice was less than $30.00 It is a battery powered scale. It is made by digital scales. The model is digiweigh. It will fit in a shirt pocket.
 

Nick Zentena

Member
Joined
Nov 21, 2004
Messages
4,668
Location
Italia
Shooter
Multi Format
Depends what you're mixing. I was pretty happy using kitchen spoons for B&W. But then the smallest thing I measured was 1/4 teaspoon. I picked up a scale for colour. Not very expensive and very accurate.

Money? Maybe. It's one of those things that start out with it depends. I wouldn't go down this path to save money.

Last longer? Mine are made up no more then 30 minutes before I use them. I never make stock solutions of developer.

Pros:

You make whatever you want up. Formula or batch size. It never changes unless you change it.

Cons:

You need to stock some chemicals.
 

dancqu

Member
Joined
Sep 7, 2002
Messages
3,654
Location
Willamette V
Shooter
Medium Format
I'm somewhat off and off and on when it comes to work
in the darkroom, chemistry and all; my off-the-shelf
chemistry growing old.

Shopping for gear and chemicals is interesting and
educational. I've an Acculab .01 gram resolution and
accuracy scale. It's 200 gram cappacity is more than
enough. A week or so ago I compounded a one tenth
batch of Ansco 120 - Beers A print developer and
used a small portion of the batch, diluted 1:19,
with good results on a roll of Pan F+ 120. Dan
 

eric

Member
Joined
Sep 7, 2002
Messages
1,585
Location
Southern Cal
Shooter
Multi Format
josephaustin said:
What kind of scale do you need to mix your own developers? Is it really more ecconomical?

Like anything, the initial setup will cost ya. I've started out mixing my own d-76h and ansco130. I did some research and with just a few more chems, I can make a clearing bath, and d-72 (dektol like). I've don't mix my own pmk cause I'll have to buy other stuff that I don't need so I just get that from formulary.

Since I like analog, I got one of those triple-beam scales. Use muffin cups to measure things out. Do not use them on muffins afterwards.
 

Donald Qualls

Subscriber
Joined
Jan 19, 2005
Messages
10,103
Location
North Carolina
Shooter
Multi Format
Claire Senft said:
If you want very critical accuracy you can go to a store that specializes firearms they will have scales for reloading cartridges (bullets). It has been a while since I have done any reloading the scales read in grains and will resolve .1 grains. there are 453.8 grams per pound...7000 grains per lb. Very few photo formulas, if any, will be stated in grains.

Wasn't the pound redifined a while back as exactly 454 grams, like the inch was set to exactly 25.4 mm? True, very few formulae are given in grains, but conversion is easy -- you just gave the necessary numbers.

And then, for under $30, instead of measuring in 0.1 g up to 200 g, you can measure in better than centigram accurace (about 143 increments per gram) up to (on my reloading scale) 500 grains, which is something over 30 g. Yes, it'll take you several panfuls to weigh out the 100 g of sulfite for a liter of D-76 stock solution -- but aren't you more likely to make the 240 ml of 1:1 strength you'd actually use for a single roll of film, anyway? The reloading scale isn't very helpful for determining the mass of an unknown sample; it's designed to be set to weight and material added to the pan until it balances -- coincidentally, exactly what we want for mixing chemicals.

Oh, and my reloading scale doesn't require a battery (that would otherwise be prone to die at 10:00 PM on Friday night).
 

eric

Member
Joined
Sep 7, 2002
Messages
1,585
Location
Southern Cal
Shooter
Multi Format
chuck94022 said:
Oh no! Please don't tell me that "no digital" means no digital *scales*! :smile:

-chuck

No, they were just too expensive! I was using a postal scale (digital) but could never get 2.2 gr of something with it. And the triple beam is cool looking!
 

GeorgesGiralt

Member
Joined
Sep 16, 2004
Messages
525
Location
Toulouse, Fr
Shooter
Large Format
josephaustin said:
What kind of scale do you need to mix your own developers? Is it really more ecconomical? Do homemade developers last longer, work better? Just trying to decide on the pros and cons of trying this out.
Hi !
It may sound odd, but I do not save on chemicals when mixing my own. I save on film and paper.
I mix mainly paper dev, by 5 liters size. This ensures that I get consistent results for a whole print session (5 litre can process many more prints than I run into during a session, so it's no difference between that damn test strip and the final print). As these batch of chemicals are cheap, I toss the full 5 liter at the end of the printing session. Globally, the cost is quite the same than buying pre packaged chems, but as I save papers, i save money....
As to wheighing chems, I've,at first, bout an Ohaus digital scale powered with a 9v battery which died on me a week after the end of the warranty (it may have been used 10 times during the waranty period...) So, I bought, in Spain, a chinese copy of the old triple beam scale, which came with no battery, and the 3 extra wheights needed to go up to 2600 grams.
I buy my chems by 5 Kg for sulfite, carbonate, Hypo, etc... And by the KG for dev (metol, hydroquinone, phenidone) I put the dev. in glass pots sealed with saran wrap and closed with the original metal lid. As there is no air, as I store the jars in the dark, these fragile chemicals store well and can be kept for some years. The others chemicals are put in big plastic jars I've got for nothing at the chemical store (they dump them ) and are said to be safe (not porous to oxygen).
If you are a little carefull, and consistent when you wheight you will have perfect results, be able to be sure nothing change and have no problem with storage life (a problem Xtol suffered due to packaging problems).
This way, you will save on your nerves, films and papers, and be more happy.
And you will have something to tell at the next familly meeting ;-) Of course, they will try to put you in the hands of this strange doctor with it's pills, but.... it's fun to live dangerously !
Hope this helps !
 
Joined
Jan 17, 2005
Messages
1,357
Location
Downers Grov
I measure all chemicals to .1 gram except sodium sulphite. I weigh it once for 100 grams and use volumn from then on. 98 ot 102 grams per liter doen`t matter.
 
Photrio.com contains affiliate links to products. We may receive a commission for purchases made through these links.
To read our full affiliate disclosure statement please click Here.

PHOTRIO PARTNERS EQUALLY FUNDING OUR COMMUNITY:



Ilford ADOX Freestyle Photographic Stearman Press Weldon Color Lab
Top Bottom