Archive for the ‘Darkroom’ Category


Tuesday, January 4th, 2011 by

Well, I unpacked the enlarger, taped a few bin-liners to the windows and experimented a bit.

I used some old paper that was packed in with the enlarger and trays (making it at least 25 years old, probably well past 30), developed in Rodinal (the only suitable developer I had, since 30 year old developer is probably even more of a crapshoot than 30 year old paper), used a water stop and my normal fixer.

Note that this is a bad scan from an office copier. The actual print is much sharper and has no banding.

As you can see, the paper was heavily fogged1, but the image is still recognizable. Considering that I pretty much winged both exposure and development, and this is the second print I made (ever), I’m actually pretty satisfied.

Specs: Neopan 400@320, Rodinal 1:50; Ilford Ilfospeed #3, Rodinal 1:25

I just ordered some fresh paper and a proper paper developer. More to come…

  1. Interesting detail: The paper was probably older than the girl in the picture []

Further developments ((Worst pun ever, I know.))

Monday, October 5th, 2009 by

I recently went over my expenses for the Leica Year, and my development costs were rapidly approaching the cost of the Leica and lens. This was of course to be expected (and pointed out by Mike in the discussion following his original post, but the turning point was coming quicker than I expected.

Part of this is due to the fact that my lab charges more for B&W development than they do for colour (slide) development. (Or their contact sheets are very expensive). Costs run to over 10 EUR per roll. At over 2 rolls a week on average, that gets to over 100 EUR a month.

Luckily, when I chose my film, I went for a classic B&W film, so I dug up my parents’ old developing equipment and ordered some chemicals. This weekend, I developed my first few rolls. It was easier than I expected.

I used Agfa Rodinal, since it’s very cheap1 and lasts forever (reportedly). I used a 1+45 dilution2 and developed for 11 minutes, with 30 seconds agitation every 3 minutes. Followed by a water stop-bath and 6 minutes in RXA fixer (rapid, non hardening). Temperature was around 19 degrees, which is the temperature of the tapwater in my kitchen3.

I also caught up with my scanning this weekend, so from now on, I can develop and scan each roll in a reasonable time. Who needs digital?

  1. The `try the cheapest, upgrade if necessary’ tactic worked well for my film, so I applied it here as well. []
  2. I wanted something around 1+50 and my tank (Jobo 2400) has a 450ml capacity, so 450ml water + 10ml concentrate is easy to measure off, giving great reproducability. []
  3. Once again, taking the easy way out. []