No More Diluted Xtol?

Discussion in 'Black and White' started by custom film holders for flatbed scanners, Jun 4, 2003.

  1. I had sent a message to Ilford's tech line today inquiring about
    recommended development times using Xtol 1:2 with some Ilford films.
    They emailed back that Kodak no longer recommends (since last year)
    using Xtol in diluted strengths, so Ilford no longer publishes
    recommended times for different dilutions other than the occasional

    I guess I have been living in a cave and not doing yearly downloads
    of the Xtol data sheets. Xtol 1:2 has been doing well for me for
    years. Am I going to see some miraculous improvement by going back
    to stock solution or 1:1 strengths?

    Just curious. Thanks.
  2. that's the only way I've ever used it--as a replenished developer at full strength, albeit seasoned.... Supposedly, from what I've read anyways, it was designed to be a longlasting deeptank developer. You can pretty much use it forever, well not really, but you use the same soln. to replenish with and it lasts a long time in a tank... Could be they don't recommend weaker dilutions becuase of pH problems or maybe spec. gravity issues or something like that since so many people have had problems mixing it up. The reason why I was messing around with it, was to see how long it would last & still work clean in a tank, and I got about a year and a half at least... in the end, I stuck with TMAX RS though--which I use straight/replen. as well...
  3. Sounds like Kodak shrugged off quality control problems rather than fixing 'em.

    FWIW, that matches my limited experience with Xtol. Worked okay full strength, not worth a damn diluted.
  4. I used Xtol 1+2 & 1+3 right from it's least 200 gallons through the commumity dakkroom I ran. There was never any problems as long as people used the minimum 100 mls stock per 80 square inchs of film. Kodak stopped reccomending dilute Xtol in part because people could not get that 100mls right. I continue to use it and I'm sure many others do.
  5. I have had wonderful results 95% of the time with APX 100, D400 and D3200 in 1-1, 1-2 and 1-3 Xtol dilution depending on specific application.

    I've always assumed the failure rate (unexpectedly low or high contrast) was my own fault (I was raised Catholic)
  6. A couple of years ago, Kodak had packaging problems with XTOL, especially in the 1-liter size. Some people have reported problems (failures) even with the 5-liter packages. XTOL is a relatively low alkaline developer (its primary developing agent is ascorbic acid) and XTOL is very sensitive to pH changes.

    In order to address these problems, Kodak stopped making the 1-liter packaging, and they discontinued publishing development times for dilutions higher than 1:1. This happened about 2 years ago as I recall.

    If you are not having problems with higher dilutions of XTOL, there is no reason why you should stop using it at those dilutions. Published development times are not particularly useful anyway, so I would not let that bother me. But Kodak does not want to take the blame if you have a development failure at higher dilutions.
  7. Published times are indeed still available on the Massive Development Chert for higher dilutions, but NOT for films that were introduced after Kodak stopped publishing times for 1+2 and 1+3. This applies, for example, to new Ilford Delta 400 and Fuji's Acros 100.

    Does anyone have suggested dev times for these films for xtol 1+2 and 1+3?
  8. I've used lots of Xtol diluted 1:2 and 1:3 for several years now. It is my standard developer. I get great results -always- with Ilford and Kodak films. Xtol1:3 with Delta 100, 400, FP4 and HP5 are all wonderful together. Keep the minimum stock solution amount in mind when you dilute, 100ml per roll as already mentioned above. I use 125ml stock per roll as I store my stock Xtol in 125ml glass bottles so I have a totally fresh, pre-measured dose ready to use - one bottle per roll of film. The old Kodak data sheets are still a good guide for the higher dilutions which I find to give better negs than straight or 1:1. I like the longer developing times of 1:3, the crisp grain, smooth printable highlights, full film speed, great tones. If diluted Xtol works for you now, why change? Write me for times for those four Ilford films and dilute Xtol.
  9. Hi,

    I stopped using X-tol diluted because on a few occasions using 1:3 dilution I ended up with thin negatives.I use tap water not distilled water, so the problem may be there. If you have been using it diluted without any problem I don't see any reason to change.

  10. I used it 1:1 (never the faulty small packs) to strong result... it with Delta 3200 (at 1250) was one of my favorite combinations, regardless of speed. I never had to suffer a bad pack of Xtol, and always had very satisfactory results with it at 1:1 with my films (FP4+ and D3200, mainly, some Tri-X.)

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