Boiling water to lessen impurities?

Discussion in 'Black and White' started by robert_d., Jun 11, 2001.

  1. Hi All.

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    Thanks for those who responded to my posts.

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    My materials; paper is almost a year old and the chemistry probably a few months or so.
    I did a check on my equipment and I have checked the ideas that one responder had about alignment of enlarger, leaks, etc. Everything passes on that. I'm thinking maybe it could be the water?
    Will boiling water take out most of the impurities? Buying water is alot, like $3.00 a jug here for an average brand, evian being more.
    I mixed new fixer up and I still get the same results, unevenness, patched results. My print results are lifeless in detail and tone.
    Im not able to do the zone system test in with my materials, the consistency is totally off on the zone tests as well.
    I have also replaced the enlarger lamp and I still get the same results.

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    Here is what I'm using:
    HC 110 (dil b) Indicater stop bath Rapid fix by kodak
    hypo clear by kodak photo flo-2000
    dektol 1:2 for the printing.

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    Processing is with regular water, no filtering:
    Development of tri-x 320 rated at 200 ISO

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    presoak: 1:00 constant agitation
    5:30 minutes at 68 degrees +/- 0.5 deg
    Initial agitation at first 30 seconds, then 4 inversions every 30 seconds
    Stop: 30 seconds continuous mild agitation 1/4 oz to 16 of water
    Fixing: 7:00 with fresh bath same agitation as with film developing
    rinse: 1:00 continuous
    Hypo clear: 2:00 constant mild agitation, 1:4 dilution
    Wash: 10:00 from sink, mild pressure, refill and empty rate about 12 times per minute at 10:00
    Photo-flo 1:200 at 1:00, mild agitation for 30 seconds initially then a 30 second rest period.

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    film is then removed from reel then hung in a dustfree spot in the bathroom, drying is done by air, usually a good 2 hours for air dry.

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    Printing: Omega b66 enlarger with ph140/75w bulb.
    Printing for a grade three contrast, no filtering in drawer.
    Paper is Ilford multi 3 vc glossy paper.

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    Printing in dektol for 2:00 continuous tray agitation.
    factorial development is applied after a certain amount of print developed per solution.
    Stop: 30 seconds 1/4 to per 16 oz of water.
    Fixing: 3:00 minutes in rapid fix 1:7 dilution
    no hypo clear all rc
    wash: 5 minutes 65 - 75 degrees
    refill rate of wash bin is two times per minute.

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    drying: hair dryer on medium, full dry in 90 seconds.

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    I have tried reducing the grade of the paper and get complete deadness in the tones.

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    If anyone has any suggestions to this problem that would be reat.

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    Thank you all for your time in reading this letter.

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    Robert D.
     
  2. Mysteries are great fun, unless you happen to be the one with the
    problem! Do you know anyone who will loan you a "good" negative, or
    do you have anything shot in the past that you know prints well. I'd
    see if you can still make a good print from a known good neg. That
    will at least insure you're working on the right end of the problem.
    Some of what you describe could be subtle camera motion or focus
    problems- they rob snap and contrast before you notice actual blur.
    Your processing sounds fine. I'm not a fan of presoaks, but lots of
    people do it without issue. What kind of tank do you use and exactly
    how do you agitate? Full inversions? Time per inversion? What does it
    sound like? Is the tank completely full or partially full? How big a
    tank? Does your water smell or taste funny? If you draw a quart or so
    into a clean glass jug, does anything settle out of it? How much
    deposit do you get when you boil it? Is it hard to get soap to
    lather, or hard to rinse it off? Does anything settle out of your
    Dektol? Could you have gotten a bad batch of HC-110? (hey, anything's
    possible) Has anyone ever broken a mercury thermometer in the area
    where you store your film or paper? Do you store anything else with
    your film and paper. Lots of questions, admittably to get ideas going.
     
  3. Bubba, dont buy Evian! that stuff is more expensive than gasoline...
    go to the supermarket and buy distilled water, cheapest brand
    probably your supermarket has their own brand.
     
  4. It seems to me that boiling water drives off only volatile impurities, at the same time reducing the volume of the water and thereby increasing the concentration of the solid impurities left behind. If you boil, you probably should filter, too - maybe with coffee filters.
     
  5. Greetings,

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    As previously stated, boiling water will not help, however capturing
    the steam and allowing it to condense will result in distilled
    water. While you could make your own distilled water, it's much
    cheaper to buy it; I've seen it sold for less that $1.00 a gallon.

    <p>

    Regards,
     
  6. Robert,
    This lack of uniformity you mention seems a lot familiar with 120
    films I've developed over the years for some different clients, and
    once or twice, for myself. In all the cases, film was old and/or
    exposed to high humidity situation, such as being used just after
    been out of the fridge. On these cases, paper and emulsion seem to
    develop some estrange reaction wich affects resulting image.
    Have you tried your methods with some other film?
    Good luck.

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    Cesar B.
     
  7. I haven't tried other film yet, just tri-x. When I first bought the
    film i didn't refrigerate it till later some time. Then i removed it
    and it's I'd say about a good month maybe that it hasn't been
    refrigerated.

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    This is great. I appreciate these feedbacks. I do feel more at ease
    knowing that the water isn't much of the problem. I will stick at 68
    degrees though to stay within the modest ranges of times.

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    If it's unavoidable I maybe could use the 75 degrees or higher and
    cut the ratio of the mixture, I'll have to experiment on this.
     
  8. Experimenting is mot the thing to do if you are trying to find the
    reason of your problem. Stick to the most simple procedure and try to
    respect the rules. Use distilled water for the preparation of all
    your chemicals AND for the fimal rinse of your film. If you cannot
    get any distilled water, get a simple water filter that will at least
    remove the solid impuruties of your tap water and some of the
    chemicals used for sanitary reasons. DO NOT use water that is sold
    for drinking, it also contains several other things apart H2O...
    Use Photo-Flo or Agepon before drying your film, this will help you
    avoid drying marks...
     
  9. So there is a difference between distilled and purified drinking
    water? If that's the case I may be going after the wrong item.

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    I have heard of filtration systems like Brita and so forth, would
    these be a good alternative to filtering?

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    Thanks for your time.
     
  10. Drinking water (particularly anything that tastes halfway decent) has
    a lot of minerals in it. Try drinking some distilled water and you
    will know what I mean.

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    For mixing developers (film or print), it is best to use distilled
    water or filtered water. I just bought a gallon of distilled water
    for $0.59 at Kmart. The Brita water pitchers with filter work fine.
    I wouldn't worry about the water for any other solutions, except for
    the final film rinse, which should be distilled water mixed with
    Photo-Flo wetting agent.
     
  11. Having worked in a biology lab, and mixing many different chemicals
    into solution, I would suggest using the distilled (aka deionized)
    water. As said before, you can purchase the water relatively cheap.

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    In the research laboratories. It was mandatory all solutions were
    made with AT LEAST double distilled water (taking distilled water and
    distilling it again). Distilled water still has traces of minerals or
    particulate matter... not good when the solutions are to be used in
    experimental data which are eventually published. The double
    distilled water, however, was provided by the university and was not
    to be wasted.

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    Many research laboratories used the extra precaution of nano-pure
    water (not to be confused with purified water through a filter).
    Basically the same as double distilled water, the nanopure water also
    is free of dissolved gases such as CO2, Nitrogen, etc... that
    distilling doesn't address (distilling can separate solids from
    liquids or liquids from liquids, not gases from liquids).

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    Basically, I use the regular distilled water and it works great. I
    know you can purchase the nanopure water, but it's very expensive
    stuff.
     
  12. Distilled water can be cheaply obtained if you have a condenser
    clothes dryer.

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    I had a very pleasant surprise after my wife convinced me that buying
    a expensive european clothesdryer was a good idea (I think it was a
    payback for the hassy kit). Anyway when the guy came to install it,
    he showed us how to work the dryer (it can do all kinds of amazing
    things) and he mentioned that the moisture is collected to prevent
    the house from steaming up.

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    Turns out that the "waste" water is distilled to a purity that it can
    be used in car batteries (or the home darkroom).

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    Now when I need to process some film, I put on a load of towels, get
    a couple of liters of distilled water and I'm away.
     

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