Old Tri-X (Expiration Dates Late 1990's - 2003)

Discussion in 'Black and White' started by john romano, Jul 27, 2009.

  1. I've searched Photo.net, and found all sorts of ideas to use benzotriazole, Edwal Liquid Orthazite, etc.
    I have a large number of 120 rolls of old Tri-X (the film with lots of silver content), but it needs some help.
    In testing for fog, it's coming in with base fog of .52 to .60. Also, using a three minute pre-soak, the film "looks" overexposed. Printing is pretty good, as I am printing through the fog. Shadow detail has been somewhat acceptable, but the film still needs a little help getting rid of some fog, if possible.
    Any ideas with tried and proven methods?
    Thanks so much.
  2. John, are you using an acid stop bath after development? Benzotriazole is a pretty effective method of reducing fog. Also use a developer with Paraminophenol. Rodinal is a pretty good developer for low fog. Also a gram of borax to a liter of Rodinal will work pretty well. You can use household borax, but not Boraxo. Some people use a quarter teaspoon of Ascorbate to a liter of Rodinal, and while it helps with grain, I think borax is a more effective method of adding a buffer to the developer.
  3. Michael:
    I've been using Kodak Indicator Stop Bath.
    Should I not?
  4. I use HC-110 dilution H with old film and the fog is held down.
  5. Larry:
    I used HC-110 Dil B and the above numbers were the results. Maybe it could have been worse?
    Thank you.
  6. Hmmm I wonder how it was stored then? Yess an additive would me needed then. I used to have thes Edwal anti fog pills but I have not seen them in years...
    Benzotriazole is what they were they looked like little artificial sweetener tablets.
    Sorry I was not of help.
  7. Indicator stop bath is great.
  8. I also have some expired/exposed film that I intend to process soon.
    When I was a member of a photo-space, generally I didn't use stop bath because I was using Rodinal to develop both TRI-X and HP5 at a dilution of 1:50. This dilution was as active compared to 1:25. So, instead I was using a plain water stop. Another reason was that I didn't like the odour of it.
    So, I was wondering if anyone knows how does using stop bath help reduce the potential effects of fog in the negative? Also, as a general rule is it preferable to use stop bath on older expired film as opposed to fresher film?
    Thankyou for any insight into this.
  9. Edit: spelling error above - I meant to write 'wasn't as active compared to 1:25'.
  10. Thanks for all of the feedback.
    Would some Borax or Benzotriazole help with HC-110?
  11. I ran a test this weekend, based upon feedback from everyone and what other research I came across.
    I exposed 6 rolls of Tri-X 120 with an expiration date of 07/1997. The first 5 rolls were exposed at ASA 400, and the last roll was exposed at ASA 200. The film has been in the freezer all these years, and it has no (or very little) dye, with a high silver content (the old good stuff). Developer used was 1/2 U.S. ounce of Kodak HC-110 (syrup), Edwal Orthazite added in varying amounts (per below), and distilled water to total 500 ml. All processing was performed at 68 degrees fahrenheit. Kindermann Roll film tank used (500 ml).
    Pre-soak: 2 minutes (distilled water) 30 seconds agitation in beginning.
    Developer: 7 minutes 30 seconds. Agitation for first 60 seconds, then agitate every minute with 5 tank inversions.
    Stop Bath (Kodak Indicator): 45 seconds. Agitate 45 seconds.
    Fixer (Clayton R19 Rapid): 3 minutes 30 seconds. Agitate first 30 seconds, then agitate every minute with 5 inversions.
    Wash: 20 minutes
    Wetting Agent (Kodak) used.
    Roll #1: No Edwal Orthazite used. Densitometer measured Film Base plus Fog at 0.60
    Roll #2: 1 ml. of Edwal Orthazite added to developer - Densitometer measured Film Base plus Fog at 0.52
    Roll #3: 5 ml. of Edwal Orthazite added to developer - Densitometer measured Film Base plus Fog at 0.40
    Roll #4: 10 ml. of Edwal Orthazite added to developer - Densitometer measured Film Base plus Fog at 0.30
    Roll #5: 15 ml. of Edwal Orthazite added to developer - Densitometer measured Film Base plus Fog at 0.29
    *** Noticeable loss of film speed with this roll ***
    Roll #6: (exposed at ASA 200) 20 ml. of Edwal Orthazite added to developer - Densitometer measured Film Base plus Fog at 0.19. Negatives looked good. Zone I measurement at 0.12 over FB+Fog. Other zones measured well within acceptable range.
    Next weekend, I'll shoot another roll at ASA 160 to see if it produces any benefit.
    I wanted to share this information with other members in Photo.net. I hope this helps other members.
    Thanks for all of your help.
  12. Umm where are you getting the Edwal?
  13. Larry:
    I purchased a 4 oz. bottle from Freestyle. Since it worked, and I am going to need much more of this, I found a larger size is available. However, Freestyle doesn't carry it. B&H does, so I ordered a quart today. I wish Freestyle had the larger size I wanted.
  14. Cool I have some Plus X from 94 in a 400 foot bulk reel.
  15. What is "normal" film base + fog for this era tri x?
    Thanks John for posting your results
  16. Bruce:
    I took out some old negatives (TXP 6049) from just before that era, and measured Film Base + Fog. I remember using HC-110 B during that time for Tri-X.
    The FB+Fog measured .16 to .18. These seemed a little high to me, but I could tell that my developing controls were weak during that time. The negatives looked over-developed.
    I hope that helps.
  17. Thanks again John, wish I had a densitometer.
    This thread is of interest because I'm always coming across expired film and learning the best ways to deal with it is helpful.
    Reading the answer about the stop bath has me wondering.
    Which type would be better for less base fog, an acetic acid type or a non hardening/TF 4 type?
    Also I'm confused concerning what stage you would add the benzotriazole? To the developer?
    I assume you would not need it if you use HC-110 or Rodinal? Is this a correct assumption.
  18. i've always found that overdeveloping.....ie pumping up the contrast a bit.....helps the best with expired film. Of course. as Bruce indicates....a densitometer would be the best tool for judging the whole thing.
  19. Bruce:
    I believe acetic acid type works best. Two different people recommended it to me.
    The problem I was having was that the amount of the fog on the film was shifting the tonal values of the images.
    After using Orthazite to minimize the fog, the difference in the prints was just about astounding. The values were not muddy anymore.

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