Lightening up too dark black&white reversal films

Lightening up too dark black&white reversal films

Perhaps others here also know the chronic problem of too-dark b&w reversal films. At least for me, b&w reversal films turn out much more often too dark than too bright. This happens especially in the case of expired films or obscure russian film stock etc., as well as in the case of negligence in development or lack of potassium rhodanide additive.

Often you just have a basic fog (so, bad Dmin) … There are many reasons.

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Simplified Color Processing Forms

Simplified Color Processing Forms

In 1978, so more than 40 years ago, the photochemistry legend Patrick D. Dignan published a highly interesting script with the title
“How to Compound … Simplified Color Processing Formulas.

Unfortunately, this script is extremely hard to find, and the Dignan family has no further copies either.
Darkroom mate Adrian C. from England was so nice and scanned his copy, Filmkorn now makes it available as a searchable PDF download!

The document is very interesting. While it does not list the exact formulas of the original processes, they would be very difficult to recreate. Rather, it offers a variety of simplified and tried-and-tested alternative processes with often startlingly good (or even indistinguishable) results.

The collection includes recipes for alternatives to the C-41, C-22, E-6, E-4, E3, Agfachrome and some paper processes (including a developer for Cibachrome!).

Great reading, and a printout shouldn’t be missing in any ambitious lab. You can learn a lot here.

A smoke detector for the darkroom

A smoke detector for the darkroom

Many amateur lab workers have their darkroom in the basement or in the attic, but at least in places that are otherwise rarely used. In addition, there is often a lot of electrical equipment in a small-format-film-suitable darkroom, such as a heat plate, heated bain-marie, film dryer, sunlamp, lighting – and other things like e.g. an exhaust air system, a water lifting system, a radio or a water boiler.

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Eastman 7222 Double-X: Reversal development

Eastman 7222 Double-X: Reversal development

Many small gauge film makers do not even know that there is a Double-X between the (now discontinued) Plus-X and the still very popular Tri-X. As the name suggests, its sensitivity lies between these two popular classics. However, it was introduced only in 1959, after the Plus-X (1938) and after the Tri-X (1954). In 1964, it was followed by the highly sensitive 4-X, which existed until 1990.

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New hoses for the Lomo tank

New hoses for the Lomo tank

The hoses of the Lomo tanks often become brittle over time or have kinks that remain. Unfortunately, the hoses of all Lomo tanks do not have a standard measure, so replacement is often unsatisfactory. Although 0.5″ garden hoses can somehow be made attached to the smaller tanks, those are far too stiff and make a controlled outpouring of chemistry difficult.

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3D printed Super 8 cartridge opener

3D printed Super 8 cartridge opener

I opened my first cartridge in daylight with a saw…

Everybody developing Super 8 films on their own sooner or later faces the task of opening the Super 8 cartridge to get the film into the development tank. The latter goes with some practice, the Lomo tank and a turntable in less than 30 seconds. When opening cartridges, opinions differ: Some break the ratchet inside the cartridge by a counterclockwise 360° turn and then pull the film out of the cartridge. Others, (to which I belong) open the cartridge and take the film wind out all over, and load it into the Lomo reel.

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The built-in turntable

The built-in turntable

Everyone who works with the Lomo tanks probably knows the problem of film jamming and improper winding, often leading to double layers, which then do not get developed properly.

Using a turntable has been mentioned many times as a valuable help against these problems, since its much more uniform rotation makes it possible to easily load the Lomo reel within a few seconds.

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