[pure-silver] Re: Weird Film Issue

  • From: Jean-David Beyer <jeandavid8@xxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: pure-silver@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Tue, 08 May 2012 12:28:10 -0400

BOB KISS wrote:
>       Please give us your take on this:  I know that pin holes occur from
> the interaction of a carbonate (e.g. sodium) with acid, like the acetic acid
> stop bath, but I also thought that this we very temperature dependent.  When
> using a developer-stop bath process, I have always processed at 68-70 F and
> have never experienced pin holes with the 8 different films I have used over
> the years.  I mostly use PMK with a water rinse and this is a non issue with
> this dev but there are times I want the effect of other devs.  
>       I recall a student who said that I was being compulsive to insist
> that he process at 68-70 F using D-76 and stop bath.  He said he didn't want
> to spend the time and money keeping his darkroom cool and cooling the solns
> before processing.

I process my films (35mm and 4x5) in a Jobo CPE-2 processor. I have a
Lawler pressure-temperature regulating mixing valve that will go as hot
as I want, but will not go down quite to the cold water supply
temperature. So I calibrated all my processing at 75F. This handles most
of the year. In the hottest days of summer, I put one of those frozen
ice packs in the water jacket and wait until the water jacket is down to
75F. I then remove the ice pack. If I am processing only one tank of
film, that is enough. If I need to do more tanks, I may put the ice pack
back in the water jacket to ensure the developer remains at 75F. I do
not air condition the darkroom anymore because the a/c quit and it is
too complicated to replace it.

The chemistry bottles sit in the water jacket. I measure the temperature
by keeping my Kodak Process Thermometer (the stainless steel mercury
one) in the developer bottle and take what I get in the others. I wash
everything in the temperature of what comes out of the mixing valve,
which is 75F most of the year and can get up to 80F or so on bad days.
This works fine for TMax type films that are all I use these days. No
pinholes. I do use SB-5 stop bath and Xtol developer 1+1. I do not know
what is in that, but sodium carbonate is very unlikely to be one of the

>  He insisted that he could just adjust the dev times and
> process at 80 F or higher.  Well, his rolls of 120 negs looked like they had
> been shot with birdshot...so many tiny clear holes, they were all ruined.  A
> rather expensive lesson he will never forget.  
>               CHEERS!
>                       BOB

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