How many rolls of film from Kodak Flexicolor C41 1 gallon kit in Rotary proc. (like Jobo)

Discussion in 'Film and Processing' started by catcher, May 24, 2006.

  1. I've looked at the Kodak online information sheets (z-131, and z-100), but I
    haven't been able to find a clear answer to this question. I'm probably just
    missing it, so maybe somebody can help me.

    First, according to section 1 of the z-131 publication, the 1 gallon flexicolor
    kit is designed for UNreplinished systems, so used one-shot without

    In the Z-131 publication, section 3 on batch processing, it lists developer
    capacity at 14-15 rolls of 135-36 (double that for bleach, fixer and
    stabilizer). But, as far as I can tell, I think that's for a dip and dunk type
    system, or something similar. The info sheet doesn't give any capacity
    information for rotary processors, like a jobo (unless I"m just missing it,
    which is possible). This might be important because rotary processors generally
    use less solution volume per roll.

    14-15 films doesn't seem like much for a 1 gallon kit, and if that really is
    all you can get out of it, then it's more economical to keep using the Tetenal
    press kits, or something similar. And again, according to the publication,
    this kit is designed to be used without replinishment, so you can't up the
    number of rolls by replinishment.

    So I'm sure I must be missing something. Can you really only get 14-15 rolls of
    135 36 exp. out of the one gallon kit? That doesn't seem very economical.
    From BH, not including S&H, the kit is $40, which is almost $3 per roll. I can
    safely get 8 rolls from the TEtenal press kit, which comes out to just over $2
    per roll. But I find it hard to believe that the smaller, powdered kit would
    be more economical. Maybe I'm just wrong about that though.

  2. Aaron, I don't have my specs from my previous Jobo but all you have to do is use the Jobo specs for the amount of chemical per tank type(s) and calculate the cost per roll on that basis. I don't think Kodak is the place to find the answer. I think you'll find it's a lot less than $3 per roll.
  3. Aaron,

    Yes, you can use replenishers with both the one gallon C-41 and 5 liter E-6 kits!

    Where the confusion arises is that when you mix up the kit, you have what I call "pre-started" tank solutions, meaning that as soon as you start developing film, you start replenishing right away.

    For example, with your gallon C-41 kit you mix up the entire gallon of color dev, bleach and fixer into one gallon jugs. Then, you "stuff" your Jobo drums full of solutions, regardless if you have even a single 12 shot roll.

    While the solution is out in the drum, pour the correct amount of replenisher (columns 1 & 3 from the chart below) into the gallon jug; then when the process step is done, pour the semi-spent chemistry back into the gallon jug, letting the excess spill out and down the drain.

    By the way, you can store the gallon jug of C-41 developer and replenisher containers in the refrigerator, or even the freezer: I keep my developer chilled, and 1-2 quarts-liters replenisher chilled; with the rest of the replenisher in quart-liter bottles in the freezer.

    Fixer and bleach can be stored at room temp; and in fact bleach needs areation to oxidize, so use an aquarium pump and bubble stone.
  4. thanks for the responses. I'm still waiting for my jobo CPE2 to come in, so I haven't actually tried this yet. Maybe this will be clearer when I see it.

    What you say makes sense, except for one possible problem. Let's say I'm using the Jobo 1510 tank + 1530 extension module. For rotary processing, the two tanks combined will hold 470ml of solution for 4 rolls of film. But the question is this: Will 470ml of solution be enough developer for 4 rolls of 135-36 per Kodak's instructions. For instance, according to Kodak's E6 publications, I would need a minimum of 556 ml of developer to properly develop e-6 film, even though jobo (for purposes of even development I assume) would only require 470ml. Does that make sense?

    So, you're right that I should just go by jobo capacities (in which case out of a 1 gallon kit (approximately 3.75 Liters) I could run aproximately 30 rolls of film--which would be MUCH less than $3 per roll. That assumes aproximately 500ml of solution for 4 rols of C41. But the question is what the minimum requirement of kodak is. I'm sure it's in the documentation, I must just be missing it. Anybody know where to find that?

    And Dan, I didn't know about the replinishment stuff. I misunderstood that. So thanks for the help.

    I've been following, by the way, your posts on refridgeration/freezing which I've found very helpful. I've just picked up the E6 kit so I'm trying to figure out the most economical way for me to mix/store chemicals. Freezing may be a real possibility.
  5. My problem is that I can't find any Bleach III Replenisher anywhere.

  6. Kodak specifically says its C-41 developer has a capacity of 4 rolls of 135-36 per liter or 15 rolls per gallon. This is without reuse of the chemical. If you follow JOBO's capacity number which is 4 rolls per 1501+1530 tank you will have a problem as you already found out. This combination of tanks can hold only 470ml of juice. But it can be loaded with 4 135-36 rolls. If you do try to process 4 such rolls with only 470 ml of juice you will have a very good experience of finding out process failure means. Been there. Done that. But I found many disagreement from a number of members of this forum. They claim no problem. Well, I have had enough of failures using this configuration with 470 ml on my Jobo ATL-2300. You will have to experiment to see if it will work for you. Try it with unimportant films. I wish I were wrong. I wish I could use much less juice for many more rolls but there must be a limit where you simply have to yield to the chemical's capacity.

    If you try to reuse the developer, in order to process more rolls as per Kodak, you can do it by extending development time. Well, you may get OK result by adding development time. But you will need to use
    more developer to make it work. Lets say if it needs 470 ml for the first run you may want to double that to reuse it on the 2nd run.
    Replenish is definitely a better use of the developer. Good luck.
  7. Dave,

    It also depends on the film: It takes as much as 50% more C-41 developer replenisher for some types of film (such as Royal Gold 400) as others (such as Portra 160NC/VC): Please see the replenishment chart I posted above or here at:

    I don't know what went wrong as to why 470 mL of juice gave you poor results, because even at the higher replenishment rate (bottom half of table) only 270 ml (about 9.5 ozs) is actually consumed out of the 16.5 ounces of juice.

    In any case, you should verify the pump volumes (and recalibrate if needed) by catching and measuring the effluent: If you don't feel like running a load of film, simply run a cycle with water in each of the six bottles.

    Of course, if you're replenishing, this is (almost) a non-issue, since you're stuffing the drum to overflow, anyway.
  8. Dan, I don't understand what you mean 270 ml consumed. There is not such a number in your entire table. How many rolls and what format is it processed by 16.5 oz of juice? I am sorry I am totally lost by the table and your statement.

    I did check my processor and found the pump fine for all 6 stages. I used to manually process my c-41 films. I always used 500 ml to process 2 135-36 rolls or 1 120/220 with no problems. My cheap stainless steel tank can be filled with 500 ml and loaded with 2 135 reels or 1 120/220 reel. The result was always good. But I have never got satisfactory result when switching to Jobo ATL-2300 on which I followed Jobo's capacity number, 470 ml (1501+1530 tanks) for 4 135-36 or 2 220 rolls. These Jobo numbers are telling to double the number of films with less (470 ml) juice. If it works it is too good to be true.

    Well, Kodak does say to process 4 135-36 rolls by 1 liter of developer without reuse. This is clearly saying Jobo's number is twice of that.
    Jobo does suggest to check chemical's capacity with the manufacturer. So Jobo's tank capacity is just the max of what their tanks can be loaded. The volume of chemical it will take, however, is not potent enough to process that many rolls though.

    Well, the processed film would look plenty of density visually. But color balance would be way off and would be very grainy. After processing with same amount of developer but only a half number of rolls my films all came out as good as I expected.

    I agree that replenishing is the way to go and save. But still I will process only 2 135-36 or 2 120 (1 220) rolls per 470 ml of developer
    by using Jobo 1501 + 1530 tanks. By the way, my atl-2300 was a police department equipment auctioned off when they switched to digital. The processor was (still is) in perfect working order fully loaded with lots of tanks and spare parts.
  9. Dave,

    The replenishment (chemical exhaustion) for four rolls of 135-36 Royal Gold 400 is 4 x 66ml = 264ml.

    If you pump in 470ml of liquid, that means 264m is exhausted and 206ml is not exhausted, so it **should** work just fine.
  10. Dan, thanks a lot for all your replies on this thread. But I still don't see how it would work to process 4 135-36 rolls with 470 ml of developer. Even if I replenish by dumping all 470 ml and replenish it with 470 ml.

    The problem is 470 ml does not provide sufficient chemical coverage over the film surface. Once the development goes into the middle of the entire 3 min. 15 sec. the PH of the juice and concentration of a lot of other components would become too low or out of balance for the rest of the development time. You need a higher volume of the developer to keep the developer within a near constant working state while some of the juice is being consumed.

    I guess if my tank is big enough then using 1 or 2 liters would make no difference. Well, only actual experiment could prove it. I hop I am wrong and I am able to use less chemical for more rolls.
  11. Hmmmmm...

    I didn't think of pH shift that way: Do you have a pH meter to verify it?

    Another issue may be the 15xx tank you're using: I bought the reels for mine... Used them once... And after too much fumbling loading a roll of 120, I said "f**k it" since I have the 25xx reels & drums.

    The problem you MAY be seeing relates to agitation -- Perhaps too much, or too little?

    What is puzzling me is that Jobo recommends only 330 mL of juice in my 3005 drum, which holds five 8x10 (80 square inch) sheets... And a 136-36 roll is also 80 square inches. In other words, 400 sq inches uses 330 mL, while you're running 320 sq inches with 400 mL -- And having problems.
  12. Dan, I do have a PH meter. In order to prove my "guess" of the PH shift I will need to waste 2 rolls of 220 films and pull them out of the middle of the development and read the PH value. It's possible but kind of a hassle...

    I don't think it's an agitation issue. I did try to slow down the rotation of the drum from 75 to 50 RPM. But it made no difference to my eyes from the result. Jobo 15xx drums should be OK in terms of processing but the quantity of juice it can hold may be the cause of the problem.

    Kodak's document clearly says its C-41 developer capacity is 15 rolls for 135-36 or 10 sheets of 8x10 films for a gallon developer. I wonder if Jobo actually recommends 330 ml to process 5 sheets of 8x10. It's more like 330ml for one sheet.
  13. Just processed 1 roll of Kodak 400 UC 220 last night. I combined two Jobo 15xx tanks into one that was almost two feet long so that it could hold 850 ml of juice. That's a fairly large tank for processing only one 1501 reel loaded with only one 220 roll. 850 ml of developer was pumped into the drum precisely. Well, the rsult was super!!! Scanned a few frames and got the colors right on. Histogram looked perfect and completely full from left to right.

    Same film and other Portra films have been done many times before, but in a 2 rolls in one 1540 drum configuration with 470 ml of chemical. The result was never good, not even close. I had tried in same tank same 220 film but one roll only with a same 470 ml of developer the result was still poor.

    Apparently Kodak is correct about its C-41 developer capacity, which is about 5 220 rolls per gallon. Different films may be slightly differnt but not really much difference. The processing run I did last night with 850 ml for one 220 roll was right on.

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