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View Poll Results: Do you develop your own BW?
Yes I do. 567 94.03%
No I don't. 7 1.16%
I will one day, I promise. 29 4.81%
I tried it and won't do it again. 0 0%
Voters: 603. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 02-05-2005   #26
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This is SUCH a timely thread...I was getting the screaming ****s with my b&w developing (a new thing for this Velvia user) because I am always getting slight scratches from the squegeee. And yes, it is a good quality one, it's obviously just my technique. Or something.
Anyway, I love the way there are about 12 different solutions to the one problem!
I'm going to try some of these, I have a couple of rolls to soup up tonight.

Vince, any particular brand of washing up liquid?

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Washig Up liquid
Old 02-05-2005   #27
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Washig Up liquid

Earth Choice (phosphate free) Aussie made! Lemon flavour.
2 x drops per litre of water .I use an eye dropper .

After the final rinse (with the washig liquid),I use a damp chamois leather and lightly run down each side of neg once ( I have used numerous squeegeeeeeeese and have always managed to get a tram line running down neg at some stage,chamois much SOFTER) and leave to dry in a dust free enviroment.

Keep the leather clean at all times and damp (keep damp in a plastic wrapper)
try not to place leather down at any time other than back in its wrapper so not to attract any foriegn debris which could SCRAAAAAAAAAAAAATCH If in doubt always use a replacement.

I have converted a tall kitchen cupboard (narrow) with a hair dryer mounted into the bottom (from side).....Door opens from front......holes at top of unit to allow hot air to escape.........the negs are attached to a hanger at top and bottom,(not to tight as to stretch film) ,so they dont fly about..............hair dryer set to minimum level........hey presto negs dry within 10 minutes...dust free,WRINKLE and SCRATcH free.....ready for the lightbox

Hardest part is to get my wifes hairdryer back without her knowing
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Old 02-05-2005   #28
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Tim forgot to mention!!! when dropping in the washig up liquid dont let it BUBBLE....ie always drop the liquid into the water not water onto the w..up liquid.

Now I must get back to the washing up
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Old 02-05-2005   #29
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I use the same Jessops wetting agent, and have no problems at all. But I guess we have quite pure water here in Norway..
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Old 04-24-2007   #30
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I've been processing my own B&W for over 40 years now..

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Old 04-25-2007   #31
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I used to have world class drying marks until I moved to a softer water area, and bought a squegee for a friend, tried it on 1st film in new location and found my film dried in a flash (almost) and had no marks. ???? much soul searching

So try distilled or de ionised water for a final rinse, and 2x recommended dose of 'photo flow' or equivalent. I foam the water with the film still in the plastic reel, and then clip to shower rail, stainless clip at top normal close peg (pin) at bottom.

If you want it to dry quicker clean the photo style squegee carefully and give single wipe down immediately you hang it up.

Your mileage may vary, I use the soft tap water instead of distilled, kettle goes 18 months before much signs of a residue.

Not had any drying marks...

For the last 13 months I've only used a Kiev (or Contax), apart from folders, Fed's, Zorki's, M2, etc.,... and a digital to record dismantle sequences...
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Old 04-25-2007   #32
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I sometimes get irregular white specks (that's how they look after scanning, anyways) along the lower 1/4 of the negs.....but I'm not sure if the negs are upside down or not when in the tank; never checked. I always thought it was dust or some kind of flakes of dried chemical coming off the plastic reel when I wound the film on it.
Sounds like it may be a mineral deposit issue; I'd just wash for 15 minutes with a steady stream of tapwater then use a few drops of Ilford wetting agent and squeegee. No drying marks, but those specks are annoying as hell and all have to be PS'd out. They do not wipe or wash off......maybe I'd better try some distilled water.
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Old 04-25-2007   #33
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The water here in London is quite 'hard' and thus leaves nasty white marks quite easily. I find I can minimise these using a squeedgy although I always rinse the blades in the wetting agent solution before squeezing to lessen the liklihod of scratches!

I might try the distilled water route though...

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Old 04-25-2007   #34
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Surprised no-one has suggested Photo Wipes. This has been my tried and true method since 1982:

Wetting agent & water, mixed as directed (I used Kodaks for years, but Sprint now- cheaper) I put the wetting agent in a 1 reel metal film tank and take the film from the washer (still on reel) and drop it in. Slight agitation- I turn the reel in the tank 1 or 2x. Then pull out the reel, unload the film and dry off the top of the strip with one half photo wipe folded in half again. I then take another 1/2 Photo Wipe folded in half again and wipe the film with gentle pressure in one continuous motion from top to bottom. A wood clothespin on the bottom and hang from the wire in my closet with a plastic clothespin with a hook on the top.
The Photo Wipe removes all the surface water, films dry quickly without drying marks.

I use the Photo Wipes only once for the length of the film- the same piece works for many rolls of drying the top. The wipes aren't cheap, but have likely saved me hours over the last 25 years in rewashing or cleaning films. I never need to clean a neg- only blow or brush off dust on occasion. My studo is anything but clean, but the films are dry enough when they hang that dust doesn't seem to bother them.
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Old 04-25-2007   #35
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Yes I do my own, and have just tried some Ilford SFX. I can't decide if the red filter was affecting the sharpness of the photos (it's not the clearest of filters), the SFX (plus red filter) was showing some IR-like glow (unlikely, going off sample photos), or if it's just focussing errors (not unlikely).

I've gotta buy a rangefinder for Eva. My guesswork's hopeless, and isn't showing signs of improving either.

Oh, and washing-up liquid's good for solving the problem of drying marks on film.

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Old 04-25-2007   #36
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Originally Posted by colyn
I've been processing my own B&W for over 40 years now..
That's about how old this thread is, too

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Old 05-02-2007   #37
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Ive had very good results with a little rinse aid in the last rinse water then take it out of the spool and into a basin of cold water. Attach the clips and i take it upto the bath where its hung and lightly squeegeed! Making sure the squeegee is very very clean first!

Though it maybe because in Scotland we have very soft water, perhaps thats why ive never had drying marks. Just scratches once from a dirty squeegee!

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Old 05-02-2007   #38
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Luckily I live in a soft water area. A wash in Photo Flo and some squeegee action using my fingers does the job. The one time I used a "proper" squeegee it scratched my negs, and one of the pictures on that roll is one of my favourites, so never again.

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Old 05-04-2007   #39
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When I do my final darkroom build (complete with sink, of course) I'm installing a faucet with a built-in water filter in it. Should help me considerably. I'm actually going to try using the water from our kitchen faucet to develop some film later on this weekend...it has a Pur filter on it.

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Old 05-05-2007   #40
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Do the final rinse in de-ionised water with 4/5 drops of wetting agent per film.

If you enjoy cloning out scratches in Photoshop use a squeegee.
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Old 05-05-2007   #41
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I use Kodak Photo-Flo. After hanging up the film I pick up the water drops with two ordinary household sponges that have never been used for anything else. I keep them in a ziplock bag, so they stay moist with Photo-Flo treated water. I put one behind the film, one in front, and move them very lightly and very slowly down the film. I go slowly because it takes a finite amount of time for water to move from the film into the sponge. It's not instantaneous. By going slowly I get all the surface water off in one pass. Pressure is kept extremely light to avoid scratching. No problems ever with St. Louis water in 40 years, but if I moved someplace & had problems, I would use distilled water.
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Old 05-07-2007   #42
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Rinsing the film in alcohol as a last bath should help. The alcohol displaces the water in the film. As an added side-effect you get a completely dry film in five minutes.

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Old 05-07-2007   #43
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100per cent rubbing alcohol? aka surgical spirit?
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Old 05-07-2007   #44
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I use 96% Polish vodka used for making fruit punch. (Needless to say that there's a lot of punch in the punch.) No problem. Surgical spirit should be fine.

Denaturised alcohol at 70% or so should be fine, too, but I hear that some denaturisation agents leave a residue and some don't - try yours with a piece of film first. Tetenal used to sell alcohol for this purpose under the "Drysonal" label.
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Old 05-16-2007   #45
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alcohol dries out surfaces very quickly. I am not sure it's a good idea to use very concentrated alcohol as final bath, might make the film crack or something.
Just try it on your hand. It feels VERY strangely dry after an alcohol wash.

When I started using real wetting agent(amaloco, 2.5 euro per 50 ml - or is it 100ml? enough for ages) dissolved in distilled water, i stopped getting drying marks. Nothing else helped (did not try the "cheap shampoo" trick though).

Anyway - 100 % alcohol does not exist. ALcohol always traps water from the air and it is very difficult to separate it. Just as a side info.
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Old 05-17-2007   #46
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Yup. A teensie drop of wetting agent in distilled water works every time. And it's super cheap. Why bother with more difficult or more expensive methods that may or may not work?
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Old 07-27-2007   #47
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Originally Posted by Pherdinand
Anyway - 100 % alcohol does not exist. ALcohol always traps water from the air and it is very difficult to separate it. Just as a side info.

I'm no chemist, so take this with a grain of salt, but I remember reading the way to purify your alcohol was to place it in a freezer at minus 20C or so, for a while, then introduce some ice cubes into the liquid. The ice will attract the water and trap it, thus removing the water from the alcohol. Result - very pure alcohol!

I now do my final rinse with de-mineralised water (no additives), then hang the negs to dry outside the house, in the evening. A slight breeze is perfect. The air outside is significantly less dusty than the air inside the house, and the negs dry more slowly, with no dust strapped in the water on the negs before drying. Since adopting this practice I have had zero water marks.

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Old 07-27-2007   #48
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One of the tips I have read on the Roger and Frances pages, is to dry the strips of film in diagonal, so that the water goes onto one of the edges and flows away faster. It might not remove the problem but it should help.
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Old 07-27-2007   #49
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OK, here's my bit...

I use diluted Fairy Liquid as a wetting agent (I'm not paying through the nose for tiny bottles of fancy photo soap), and I never ever use a film scratcher (or "squeegee" as those diabolical manifestations are more commonly known). I never get drying marks, but I'm lucky to live in an area with very soft water - if I didn't, I'd do my final soak and wetting dip using distilled water.

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Old 07-27-2007   #50
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I use Fairy Liquid as well. Apparently it's bad for the emulsion but frankly I'm sure I'm doing worse things in the developing anyway. I also use deionised (car radiator) water for the final rinse. Squirt in a few drops of washing up liquid after the water's gone in and the water will run out beautifully.

I used to use a chamois - got dust and scratches all over my negatives. Now I just let it dry naturally.
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