Tri-X & R09 - stand development temperature

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yossi

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Hello everyone,

I have just received some R09 from the mail and want to try out stand development of Tri-X with this developer. I read that standard temperature is 20 degree C.
As it is hard in my area (Singapore - average temp is 34 deg C !!) to maintain 20 deg C for hours. So my question is: in stand development, if the temperature is not kept constant at 20 deg C, (say range from 20 - 25 deg C), would the result be adversely impacted?

TIA for your sharing.

yossi
 

madNbad

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I have been using Rollei R09 One Shot diluted 1:25 to develop Tri-X and found a lot to like and some short falls. Mostly, it could do better in the highlights but I haven tried a higher dilution. The instructions on the bottle indicate seven minutes for 1:25 and fourteen for 1:50, so if you tied 1:100 it should be around a half hour. If you keep the tank in a water bath and monitor the temperature that will help mitigate the temperature problem.

This is Tri-X in R09 1:25, seven minutes. M4, 28 2.8 Elmarit-M ASPH V1:

 

koraks

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want to try out stand development

It's a free world and choice is yours, but:
1: Don't expect any magic. There isn't any in stand development. There are rather subtle effects you may get, but...
2: ...don't complain if you run into (massive) problems with uneven development. These are common with stand development.

If you want to enhance acutance or somehow do something in terms of harnessing contrast by using local developer depletion, I'd suggest starting with agitations every 5 minutes or so and picking a development time that's somewhere in-between the time for normal agitation and stand. Sorry, can't make it more specific than this; you'll have to determine a suitable time and agitation regime based on your own testing. See the (much debated, by some outright denounced) work in this area by people like Steve Sherman https://www.powerofprocesstips.com/

I'm not taking position in this reduced agitation debate at the moment, but I do admit that I'm currently employing such a scheme specifically (and exclusively) for large format negatives for carbon printing to see if it enhances acutance. https://tinker.koraks.nl/photography/pvc-development-tubes-for-sheet-film/
If anything like this makes much sense for 35mm or 120 film - I don't know if the potential drawbacks are worth the supposed benefits. You decide. Optimization of acutance is a common 'trick' (chemically controlled) in C41 color film. It can also be overdone, resulting in pretty horrendous results.

If you are relatively new to film processing, I'd strongly suggest letting these kinds of experiments wait until you've gained more experience in processing film and most importantly judging the results thereof. I speak from personal experience here; I've always done a lot of experimenting, and virtually all of the experimenting I did in my first year or two years of processing film I misinterpreted the outcomes of and basically didn't understand the first thing about what was going on. The experiments sometimes worked, sometimes not so well, and when they didn't work out very well, I generally only found out years later (as I didn't know what to look for!) I learned a lot in hindsight, so there's some value in all that work, but not at the time of conducting the experiments.

Of course, this is somewhat of a personal perspective, but I see relative newcomers to film processing falling into a very similar trap pretty much all the time and the outcomes (both photographically speaking and in terms of knowledge acquired) are usually poor. They read somewhere that stand development is somehow supposed to be good for you so they do it. So far, I've seen precisely *zero* concrete evidence of real benefits of stand developing 35mm and 120 film intended for either optical enlargement or digital scanning. I'd be gladly shown this evidence so I can adjust my opinion. I've seen *many* examples of rolls of film that were in principle exposed reasonably well, turned into a pretty much wasted sorry mess that even a Photoshop guru can't fix, because stand development was supposed to work magic.

I think I made it clear that I'm skeptical and that my opinion based on the extant evidence (including my own) leans to not recommending stand development.

Having said all that: if you think about what stand development does, the logical conclusion follows that it's not extremely sensitive to temperature. That is to say, within reasonable limits. Chemical activity will be higher as temperature rises and this also has something to do with fluid dynamics and phenomena like convection. Especially if you start out at a lower temperature and allow it to rise during development, you may notice effects that you could attribute to this (although I doubt in your case you will actually nail this down; it would take a lot of systematic testing and perhaps computer modeling to figure this out). Long story short: I'd try to keep temperature somewhat constant, not worry about a drift within let's say 4 degrees C or so, and allow for higher temperatures in shortening development time a bit. By how much - you figure it out. Again, it takes systematic testing.

If the above is a little hard to follow and brings more questions than it answers, you probably got the point I made earlier!
 
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yossi

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Thanks koraks for the great advice. Yes, I am new to film processing. I am learning and ready to experiment different recipes, as I believe experience comes from mistakes.

I will of course use the standard dev time recommended by the developer co. as well as well-known formula that has been proven to work well. Still, it is interesting to know what benefits and issues "stand development" could bring.

Thanks again for your explanation about temperature variation during development. That is helpful for me to know.
 

koraks

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I believe experience comes from mistakes.

Evidently, and we all say this from time to time. But in this context, I feel it's necessary to emphasize that we only really learn if we make mistakes and understand them. I think when you're relatively new to this, it's easy to make lots of mistakes. It's not easy to learn effectively from them.

Moreover, I also think it's difficult to stay motivated if all you have is millions of mistakes all over the place :wink:

Anyway, don't let me keep you from trying out stand development or whatever other technique you find interesting. It's only by trying you can decide if you like something. That it didn't work for me, doesn't mean it's not for you. I've seen work from someone who consistently used stand development, all the time and for everything he shot, and his images looked fine for the most part. There were rarely blatant issues with uneven development and technically his images were quite nice. On a critical note, I don't think they were any better because they were stand developed...there was no unique quality to them that traced back to development technique. But hey, it worked for him!
 

Don Heisz

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For what it's worth, you can make normal D76 developer work at higher temperatures by adding Sodium Sulfate to it. Amounts can be found by searching online, probably. That's not sodium sulfite.

I'm with @koraks regarding stand. Stand development is very tolerant of any number of temperatures but has a tendency toward uneven development. Some people get better results than others (probably overexposure is your friend for stand development).
 

pentaxuser

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This thread has made me think. Here's where my thoughts tale me. I had always thought that while the usually stand time with Rodinal is 1 hour, an extended time beyond that make little or no difference because the amount of developer is so little that in effect you develop until you get to developer exhaustion which at 20C is about an hour. Presumably this the developer exhaustion point is reached more quickly if the temperature is higher but it will be the same developer exhaustion point

If this reasoning is correct then doesn't that lead to the conclusion that within reason developer temperature is irrelevant?

So if the water temp is not such that it will damage the emulsion then my logic says that the OP need not worry about 34 degrees C?

If 34 makes a difference then can anyone say what kind of things he needs to do?

pentaxuser
 
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koraks

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the amount of developer is so little

But how little, exactly. There must probably be a slight excess because you'd otherwise run into problems with excessive exhaustion. Raise the temperature, and that excess is going to cause overdevelopment. Anyway, it's all a lot of second-hand guesswork and theorizing. Actual testing would be necessary and my bets are that (1) overdevelopment will take place, even with stand, if taken to excess and (2) problems with uneven development are probably going to be amplified if temperature transients occur during development (e.g. start at 22C and allow it to raise to 28C or so).

If you're interested in this: William Mortensen allegedly allowed his negatives to develop overnight in the fridge. He had a somewhat unorthodox approach to exposure and development. I think he has been pretty much ridiculed for how he approached the matter, but his thoughts on this can still be quite interesting to ponder about.
 

Don Heisz

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William Mortensen allegedly allowed his negatives to develop overnight in the fridge.

There's actually someone on here who said he was doing the same. Can't remember who...
It was @Paul Howell in this thread.

As far as I know most if not all developers can be highly diluted then refrigerated for an extended period of time. I'm using DK 50 because I have it on hand. 1:50 is just a guess, if I was using Rodinal I would dilute 1:100. I will agitate for the for the first 30 seconds or so, then let it sit. William Mortensen would shoot a ring around, leave the negatives in the developer in a refrigerator until the negative was at near max D then print grade 0. In this case my thinking is that by keeping the film cold I have less change that the emulsion will come off. The film is now 72 years old. I will use a cold water rinse, use refrigerated fix, I normally use T4 for film but will a standard fix with hardener and fix for double the time to 10 minute. If I have a usable image will use Perma wash and cold wash. I built a water chiller that uses bagged ice, ever in the summer I get the wash down to 50 degrees. In general I am not fan of stand development, this is just a shot in the dark.
 

Andrew O'Neill

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Try semi-stand. It's safer, and has more benefits. As for temperature, I lived in southern Japan for many years, dealing with very humid summers. It took lots of ice, and an AC to keep everything under control. It drove me nuts, and at the end of the day, conventional ways won out. Do the best you can to lower your ambient and water temps. Work with whatever temperature you can maintain, and adjust time accordingly.
 

Paul Howell

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I've experimented with Morensen very cold temps, I used original Rodinal at 1:100, TMax 400 shot at 400, then in the refrigerator for 24 hours. It did work, high contrast negative which I printed grade 00 to tame the highlights. Did not seem worth the effort. Based on a post from another member I tired D76 stock at 92 degrees for 2 minutes, I used Ultrafine 400 grain film, No longer available) again it worked, contrast was high but not as high as the long cold stand. My roll was pretty even, others who used the same method had uneven development.

I live the Desert Southwest, my tap water is 90s degrees in the summer, I made a water chiller from a 5 gallon plastic bucket, a coil of copper tube in the bucket, a bag of ice, hot water at the top of the coil, cold comes out at the bottom, hooked up to an archrival film washer.
 

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pentaxuser

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So yossi, it would appear that there may be some danger with those high temperatures in Singapore. If you don't want to risk the possible dangers that higher temperatures might bring, then you can experiment with cold water from the fridge mixed with normal tap water at whatever temperature that is, to get to say 25C then use ice or a lot of refrigerated water to maintain this temp for an hour. It would seem that the nature of stand development will give you some margin for error in terms of the having to maintain an exact set temperature and risk greater than the standard 20C

As you say you learn from mistakes so it may be worth risking whatever the lowest temperature you can get without taking as much trouble as I describe above

What is sure is that you will never know until you try

Best of luck with whatever you do and if you do try stand at the higher temperatures of Singapore be sure to let us know how the negative turn out

pentaxuser
 

MattKing

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Stand development makes uneven with 120 but not with 35 assuming you use steel reels.

Bromide Drag excepted .....
 

pentaxuser

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Stand development makes uneven with 120 but not with 35 assuming you use steel reels.

So no matter what material the reels are made from stand makes for uneven development but only does so in 35mm if they are NOT made from steel?

What are the reasons for this? Has this always happened in your case without fail and what is the evidence that this is a known problem?

All this is new to me, hence my questions.

Thanks

pentaxuser
 
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yossi

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So yossi, it would appear that there may be some danger with those high temperatures in Singapore. If you don't want to risk the possible dangers that higher temperatures might bring, then you can experiment with cold water from the fridge mixed with normal tap water at whatever temperature that is, to get to say 25C then use ice or a lot of refrigerated water to maintain this temp for an hour. It would seem that the nature of stand development will give you some margin for error in terms of the having to maintain an exact set temperature and risk greater than the standard 20C

As you say you learn from mistakes so it may be worth risking whatever the lowest temperature you can get without taking as much trouble as I describe above

What is sure is that you will never know until you try

Best of luck with whatever you do and if you do try stand at the higher temperatures of Singapore be sure to let us know how the negative turn out

pentaxuser

Hello,

Thanks for the great advice. I will try that out for the next roll.

Last night (we are in different time zone btw) while I was reading all the above posts, I was trying out my first stand development.
Film: old ARISTA Premium 400 (long expired but cold-stored in fridge so still good). Shot at ASA1600.
R09 (1:100) I made 505ml but poured in only about 400ml (think this is a mistake.)
Normal agitation for first 4 min then sit for 50 min. (I just use this as a starting point and see how the result is like... )
I used ice cubes to try and maintain the temperature to be around 20 degree C. (probably around 20-22 during the whole duration.)

Result: I don't know how to describe, so link two scans here for comment. (feel really bad about all the dust spots on the neg. I definitely need to work on that department.)

52350140042_828d7714a2_k.jpg

52351429249_9ef855f00a_k.jpg



I kinda like the grains and the contrast but shadow details could be better. (I think maybe 50 min is too short? or 4ml of R09 is too little? )

Anyway, it is a fun experiment for me. Seeing that I could shoot a picture of my beloved cat in so dim lighting at ASA1600 and his eye appears so clearly in the final image is just sooo good. I aim to get better result the next time. Wish me luck.
 
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jtk

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So no matter what material the reels are made from stand makes for uneven development but only does so in 35mm if they are NOT made from steel?

What are the reasons for this? Has this always happened in your case without fail and what is the evidence that this is a known problem?

All this is new to me, hence my questions.

Thanks

pentaxuser

fyi steel reels allow smoother flow of chems during stand development without the loss of Rodinal's lovely edge effect (caused by the physical bulk inherent in plastic reels and by agitation.

Some are avoiding the OT ( stand development with Rodinal).

Not a new idea . No need to be defensive.



.
 

madNbad

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Hello,

Thanks for the great advice. I will try that out for the next roll.

Last night (we are in different time zone btw) while I was reading all the above posts, I was trying out my first stand development.
Film: old ARISTA Premium 400 (long expired but cold-stored in fridge so still good). Shot at ASA1600.
R09 (1:100) I made 505ml but poured in only about 400ml (think this is a mistake.)
Normal agitation for first 4 min then sit for 50 min. (I just use this as a starting point and see how the result is like... )
I used ice cubes to try and maintain the temperature to be around 20 degree C. (probably around 20-22 during the whole duration.)

Result: I don't know how to describe, so link two scans here for comment. (feel really bad about all the dust spots on the neg. I definitely need to work on that department.)

52350140042_828d7714a2_k.jpg

52351429249_9ef855f00a_k.jpg



I kinda like the grains and the contrast but shadow details could be better. (I think maybe 50 min is too short? or 4ml of R09 is too little? )

Anyway, it is a fun experiment for me. Seeing that I could shoot a picture of my beloved cat in so dim lighting at ASA1600 and his eye appears so clearly in the final image is just sooo good. I aim to get result the next time. Wish me luck.

Even at the higher dilutions, R09 is still showing strong grain and less detail in the highlights and shadow. I like it as a developer because it does bring out the grain. Currently, like many of us, I'm waiting on Adox Rodinal to come back in stock and have the opportunity to compare it to R09. Thanks for the examples and keep experimenting!
 

MattKing

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Those look like under-exposed negatives - which of course they are, if you metered at 1600.
The stand approach has held the highlights back a bit, which in this case is good, but the level of fog is rather high.
It won't do you any good to extend the time. Whether or not you are using a reduced agitation scheme, lengthening the time does very little to increase detail in the shadows.
 
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yossi

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Those look like under-exposed negatives - which of course they are, if you metered at 1600.
The stand approach has held the highlights back a bit, which in this case is good, but the level of fog is rather high.
It won't do you any good to extend the time. Whether or not you are using a reduced agitation scheme, lengthening the time does very little to increase detail in the shadows.

Hi Matt,

Yes, I concur that the negatives are under-exposed (or under-developed whichever is technically correct). I believe this is due to too little R09 developer in there (only about 4ml) and the stand time (50 min) is a little short. I will adjust these and try again next time.

yossi
 
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Next time please consider shooting similar subjects in similar lighting condition and try dilution 1:25 using regular intermittent agitation with time compensated for the two stops push. You can compare the results and arrive at a meaningful conclusion. And please post the scans as well as negatives. :smile:
 
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