Mixing Ilford Rapid Fixer

Discussion in 'Film and Processing' started by graflite, May 15, 2006.

  1. Hi all, please forgive my ignorance but I am new to using anything
    but Kodak Powder Chemicals. I have never used liquid concentrates
    for processing so I'm clueless. I picked up my first Ilford
    product, 500ml bottle of their Rapid Fixer. Ok, so I understand I
    should use it at 1:4 for film and 1:9 for paper.

    My question is, how do I mix this 500ml bottle to get 1:4? Do I mix
    it with, say, a gallon of water to get 1:4 or does a gallon get me a
    stock concentrate which must then be further diluted 1:4 (or 1:9)?

    Any help for a liquid novice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks
    in advance!!!
  2. What's in the bottle is the "1" part. Mix with 2000ml of water to get 2500ml of film fixer.

    Myself, I used to mix it in batches of 500ml (100ml concentrate, 400ml water), since none of my developing tanks (at that time) needed more than 500ml of fixer. The advantage is that the concentrate has somewhat better keeping properties than the working solution.
  3. 1:4 means 1 part chemical to 4 parts water. So the total parts are 5. or in 1:9
    total parts is 10. For 1:4 using the whole 500ml, the total amount would be
    500ml fixer concentrate+ 4 x500 ml water for a total of 2500ml. For 1:9 500ml
    fixer concentrate and 9x500ml = 5000ml

    For lesser amounts say 250ml concentrate 1:4 would be 250ml fixer
    concentrate + 4x 250ml = 1250ml.

    I hope this helps.
  4. Your confusion is pretty understandable. Part of the problem is that the use of 1:4 and the like is somewhat ambiguous; does the 4 pertain to water or to total solution? Well, most people use the second number to mean water. But to avoid this issue I like to use 1+4 etc.--1 part chemica plus 4 parts water--less opportunity for confusion.

    Say you need 600 ml to develop film (what I use in a 2-reel Paterson tank). You mix to 1+4, for a total of 5 parts. Take 600 ml and divide by the 5 parts and you get 120 ml for each part. So then you need 600 ml - 120 ml = 480 ml of water. So mix 120 ml of fixer with 480 ml of water to get 600 ml of working-strength fixer. (And per Ilford's alternate instructions, I use 1+4 for paper too--it just works faster, fixes more prints, and arguably lasts longer bottled.)

    One more thing: I strongly suggest that you not mix up the whole 500 ml of concentrated fixer all at once. As with the powdered forms, most concentrated liquid chemicals (not sure about Ilford Rapid Fixer) last better at full strength, instead of diluted for use. Just mix up the amount you need. One of the beauties of liquid chemicals is that they work fine when you use less than the whole container of concentrate (unlike, e.g., Xtol).
  5. I simply dump the Ilford bottle of rapid fix into a large bottle. Then I fill the same Ilford container with water four times and dump into that large bottle.

    Been doing it that way for years and it works well. I wouldn't change even if I found it was "wrong". It seems to last forever until the fix becomes exhausted.

    FWIW, I process film only as I scan negs and output digitally.

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