C41 developing and chemical question
Old 03-19-2019   #1
2wenty
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Question C41 developing and chemical question

Hey guys I have a question regarding c41.

Is the fixing process a "to completion" step? Is it possible to over fix? So far if I follow the time set by fuji (for fuji hunt chemicals) 6.30 doesn't seem long enough. I haven't been able to get my colors consistent. Im starting to think the bleach and fixing needs to go longer.

Also if I use water rise after the developing process will this act as a stop? Id like to prolong my bleach if possible.

thanks
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Old 03-19-2019   #2
nukecoke
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1. Don't worry about over-fix. I usually let the blix solution work longer (sometimes even 5+ min) than instructed and haven't seen bad results.
2. I use water rinse as stop after delveping though it is not necessary.
3. Don't get too obsessed with getting "consistent colours" with C41. Take advantage of digital scanning and editing instead.
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Old 03-19-2019   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nukecoke View Post
1. Don't worry about over-fix. I usually let the blix solution work longer (sometimes even 5+ min) than instructed and haven't seen bad results.
2. I use water rinse as stop after delveping though it is not necessary.
3. Don't get too obsessed with getting "consistent colours" with C41. Take advantage of digital scanning and editing instead.
Thanks. Im using separate bleach and fix though. Also the colors are too far off for my liking, it can't really be corrected in post all the way for some shots. Portra for me looks terrible. Just doing whatever I can to get the best results possible. I know its possible. I just have to dial it in. Ive gotten really good results before but its not consistent.
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Old 03-19-2019   #4
Ko.Fe.
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Colors will vary from film to film, with different emulsions.
Also colors depending on the developer temperature.
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Old 03-19-2019   #5
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How accurate is your temperature? In my (limited 50 rolls) experience, temperature and time of the develop stage is the most important factor by far. Temperature to the degree, tiny variations can cause the colours to come out a bit off.
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Old 03-19-2019   #6
dmr
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2wenty View Post
Is the fixing process a "to completion" step? Is it possible to over fix? So far if I follow the time set by fuji (for fuji hunt chemicals) 6.30 doesn't seem long enough. I haven't been able to get my colors consistent. Im starting to think the bleach and fixing needs to go longer.

Also if I use water rise after the developing process will this act as a stop? Id like to prolong my bleach if possible.
I've been told that it's impossible to overfix. I take this as meaning any reasonably-long fix time is ok, as in don't leave it in for 5 days or so!

I've gotten in the habit of mixing the chemistry as one-shot or two-shot, and if I do two-shot I'll usually do an acid stop instead of a rinse on the first roll.
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Old 03-19-2019   #7
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Ive developed hundreds of rolls and have it down pretty well, but I need to make it even better.

Im using a jobo machine, so temp is consistent, but might not be totally accurate. I need to play with that too. Im mostly getting a nasty red cast on kodak films and sometimes green shadows with fuji. From what Ive been reading I might need to bleach and fix longer.

Usually my first batch on chemicals out decent. Then is kinda goes to hell from there. Also sometimes the chemicals sit for a little while. Im assuming the bleach and or fix start to die and I need to extended those times.

Also is it certain that I can use water right after the developer to stop? Id like to prolong my bleach as much as possible by not having cross over.
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Old 03-20-2019   #8
brbo
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I've found the bleach in Fuji X-Press C-41 kit to be virtually impossible to destroy (by doing sensible development in Jobo).

Standard C-41 doesn't use a stop. I always go directly to bleach after developer. Wash between bleach and fixer.

Are you sure there is no chance of contamination of your developer. I know my bleach and fixer will survive anything, but I religiously clean ANYTHING that touches my developer (reels, Jobo tank, thermometer, bottles...).
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Old 03-20-2019   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brbo View Post
I've found the bleach in Fuji X-Press C-41 kit to be virtually impossible to destroy (by doing sensible development in Jobo).

Standard C-41 doesn't use a stop. I always go directly to bleach after developer. Wash between bleach and fixer.

Are you sure there is no chance of contamination of your developer. I know my bleach and fixer will survive anything, but I religiously clean ANYTHING that touches my developer (reels, Jobo tank, thermometer, bottles...).
Developer should be fine. The only thing its going to get mixed with is the residue from the initial film heat up/pre rinse.

I guess Ill see what happens on the next batch.
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Old 03-21-2019   #10
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Just a few pointers. Apologies if anything is obvious...

1. Make sure you’re washing enough between steps. Look at the wash times and divide that by 30 seconds. That gives you the number of water changes. I.e. 8 changes for a four minute wash. You can go longer for each step, but make sure you use enough changes.

2. With a Jobo, start your timing of the dev from when you start pouring the chemicals. Stop the timing from the moment the bleach is added, which acts as a stop. It should be 3m 15s for standard C41 chemicals.

3. Definitely extend the fix and bleach times. Manufacturers seem to quote minimum times. I go at least a couple of minutes longer.

4. Don’t mix your funnels or measuring cylinders to avoid cross contamination.

5. And (nothing to do with this thread) don’t get stabiliser on your reels! It leaves a residue which eventually makes loading them really difficult. I pour my stab into a plastic jug, take the film off the reel and manually dip it into the liquid.

6. Bleach needs oxygenating to work properly. Have you been doing that? If not, it should be shaken vigorously for 30 seconds in a part-filled bottle before use. Do this again if the bleach hasn’t been used for a week or so.

Hope you sort your problem out. I know how frustrating colour shifts can be with C41.
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Old 03-21-2019   #11
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Could some of your problems be with the film?

When I did develop color with C-41 I got my best results, at least that’s what I liked, with about a 10% over development. The negatives produced prints with more vibrant colors. For each gig I made sure to use film from the same batch getting more consistent results. I used a stainless steel tank and put it into a bowl of water to maintain temp through the developing process.

Now all I do is Ilford XP 2 Plus with C-41. I use Arista chemicals from Freestyle.

All my color is digital now. Your issues just reassured me I made the correct choice.

Where in L.A. do you live? My daughter and her family live in LaCanada. Decades ago, serving in the military, I had an apartment in Long Beach for about 7 months, my last stop before separation from active duty.
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