An icy day and so many firsts! Bad scientific methods!

ADemuth

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Jan 27, 2017
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361
Location
Great Bend, KS
There are no groundbreaking photos here, but I just wanted to share some successes that I'm personally proud of.

I've been wanting to get back into film for a couple of years, and I'm finally settled in a spot with access to film and cameras and developing equipment and chemistry and the like. I got 100' of film for Christmas (thanks in-laws!) and I got a Yashica GSN locally for $20 - it needed new light seals, but that was a 20 minute near-fix. I'm also wanting to be more flexible with my development. Film chemistry isn't super common in developing countries, so I want to get developing with caffenol (instant coffee, vitamin c and converted baking soda) to be a predictable method, I just came from a developing nation, and I hope to move to another in the next couple of years.

So, since 2 decades ago, this was my first bulk loaded roll (no biggie but I could have messed it all up :)), first time out with a rangefinder, first time out with a new self-repair, first time developing, first time (ever!) developing with kitchen chemistry, first time (ever) digicam-scanning negatives and post-processing them.

To the images!

P1176225.jpg
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We got 1/4" of ice last night and I decided to go out and shoot it because I like getting stuck in the somehow icy yet muddy backroads.
P1176226.jpg
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P1176227.jpg
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P1176231.jpg
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I've got a light leak, I guess, though it kinda works for this photo, and I scratched my negatives during development - gotta get a decent neg squeegee.
P1176233.jpg
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If you look to the left, you'll see some slight bromide drag - guess I need to agitate caffenol more thoroughly than commercial developers I've used in the past.



Thanks for looking and reading!
 
Last edited:

ADemuth

Mu-43 Veteran
Joined
Jan 27, 2017
Messages
361
Location
Great Bend, KS
I anticipate not always having access to a scale, so I'm measuring volumetrically.
4 tsp calcium carbonate ( I make mine by baking baking soda at 400F for a couple of hours)
1 tsp vitamin C - I have pure powder right now, but will experiment with tablets in the future
6 tsp of instant coffee
330 ml/11oz tap water - a little cooler than 20C/68F

Thoroughly mix each ingredient individually into the water in the order listed, waiting 5 minutes between each addition for the chemical reaction to finish and for the bubbles to dissipate. Add cold or hot water as needed to make 350ml/12 oz and bring the temperature to 20C/68F

Develop for 9 minutes: 60 second agitation initially, 10 second agitation every minute ( I think this needs to be full inversion agitation) Drain, rinse thoroughly to stop, fix with commercially available fixer according to its directions.
 

ADemuth

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Joined
Jan 27, 2017
Messages
361
Location
Great Bend, KS
It is incredible, and I am super pleased with the results of a first roll, especially when there were so many unknowns and potential failure points. The flaws are nice on a super short experimental roll like this one, but I'd like to have development down pat so I can leave the house with a film camera like I used to and not have to worry about messing up my pics in developement. The flaws would be more acceptable in my eyes if they were inherent to the developer. These flaws are due to poor technique and as such, can and need to be ironed out.
 
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Columbus, Ohio, US
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I agree that you want the best results out of the materials you are using and to nail the process down but, and this is just my own opinion, but sometimes a photograph is more than the resulting image. And, once you have your process optimized as best you can, the occasional bit of character really does add to the image, especially if the developing method is disclosed.
 

ADemuth

Mu-43 Veteran
Joined
Jan 27, 2017
Messages
361
Location
Great Bend, KS
Most definitely! I'm half tempted to leave the light leak on that camera - it seems to pop up at random and doesn't just kill the shot when it does. The light leak and short scratches and dust works for the dolls. Heck, part of the draw of alternative development, and film for that matter, is the chance for anomaly, anomaly being the key word. Most of my dissatisfaction in these stems from my sloppy darkroom work, something that will be a constant, not an anomaly, if unaddressed. I'm pretty happy with this batch, I just don't want all of my film in the future to look like this, but some would be ok!


I agree that you want the best results out of the materials you are using and to nail the process down but, and this is just my own opinion, but sometimes a photograph is more than the resulting image. And, once you have your process optimized as best you can, the occasional bit of character really does add to the image, especially if the developing method is disclosed.
 
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