Arista Ortho Lith Film Problem

Discussion in 'Darkroom Developing and Printing' started by Ron Gans, Dec 30, 2006.

  1. Ron Gans

    Ron Gans Guest

    I've been trying out Arista Ortho Lith Film, as an alternative to
    Bergger, for negatives used for platinum prints. Sometimes the negs
    work really well (although the mix of developers is rather odd).

    BUT, on many occasions, weird circles appear on the surface of the
    negative. They do not appear in the same place. The neg can be a
    contact print positive or can be the final enlarged negative. The
    circles look like areas of less density. Their sizes vary; they are not
    from the original negative.

    Generally, the amount of (film) dektol is in the range of 1:36 to 1:72;
    but my technicque is very uniform; there is continual agitation.
    Sometimes the neg is perfect; but it's really a crap shoot.

    Has anyone had this experience? Is it a matter of quality control by
    Arista? Or something I am doing?

    Thanks to all.

    RON
     
    Ron Gans, Dec 30, 2006
    #1
    1. Advertisements

  2. Mysterious circles, eh?

    Do the circles crop up if you develop unexposed
    film and/or film that has been fogged to a uniform
    gray with no image?
    Is this to mean you are diluting stock Dektol 1:36 instead of
    the customary 1:2?
    Are you processing lith [as in Kodalith] film to
    get a continuous tone image?
     
    Nicholas O. Lindan, Dec 30, 2006
    #2
    1. Advertisements

  3. Ron Gans

    Ron Gans Guest

    I've not tried unexposed film yet.

    The stock Dektol is in the range of 1:36 (up to 1:15, 1:10) instead of
    1:2. And yes this is for continuous tone and it works, no question
    about it. In fact, it works rather well, crop circles aside. Of course,
    you have to fiddle a lot with exposure times, but that is always the
    case.

    The fact that it is so much cheaper than bergger, which I have been
    using exclusively for a while, weighs greatly in its favor.

    The same neg in the enlarger produces an enlarged neg on one occasion
    with these circles (they look like water spots or finger prints, but
    are certainly not from my hands) and then no circles. I'm very certain
    the technique and chemicals are the same each time (as much as you can
    be sure).

    RON

     
    Ron Gans, Dec 30, 2006
    #3
  4. Ron Gans spake thus:
    Bubbles? That'd be my first guess.


    --
    Just as McDonald's is where you go when you're hungry but don't really
    care about the quality of your food, Wikipedia is where you go when
    you're curious but don't really care about the quality of your knowledge.

    - Matthew White's WikiWatch (http://users.erols.com/mwhite28/wikiwoo.htm)
     
    David Nebenzahl, Dec 30, 2006
    #4
  5. Ron Gans

    Alan Smithee Guest

    Exhaustion? What total volume are you using? I know that once the dilution
    rate goes up you're suppose to compensate by increasing the overall volume
    of the developer. Are the spots in anyway related to the scene on the
    negative (i.e. mid-tones, highlights etc.).
    Incidentally, are you making the enlarged neg from a positive. I'm just
    curious for my own future work in this area.
     
    Alan Smithee, Dec 30, 2006
    #5
  6. Ron Gans

    Ron Gans Guest

    For an 8x10, the volume is about 1L. For 16x20, 2L. But I continually
    agitate the neg, so I cannot see how these very well defined circles
    would appear. If exhaustion were the issue, it would seem to me that
    the entire neg would be affected. I've seen that with Arista. The
    developer is always single use. The rest of the neg is OK.

    And, yes, these are enlarged negs from positives.

    RON
     
    Ron Gans, Dec 30, 2006
    #6
  7. Ron Gans

    Alan Smithee Guest

    That sounds like enough volume. If not air then probably a flaw in the lith
    film then. Send it back to the supplier. Bad batch.
     
    Alan Smithee, Dec 30, 2006
    #7
  8. Ron Gans

    Ron Gans Guest

    Thanks. I contacted them (Freestyle). Besides that, and hopefully, it
    is not a severe quality control issue, the film is OK. Very
    tempermental, but I can produce a good platinum print, so that's what
    counts. And, it comes in very large sizes (30" x 100').

    Does anyone know of another similar Ortho type film like this, besides
    Bergger?

    RON
     
    Ron Gans, Dec 30, 2006
    #8
  9. Ron Gans

    Alan Smithee Guest

    How do you reverse your original to make the positive? Or are you shooting
    on reversal black and white (Scala?). Nothing is nothing to do with the
    original problem I'm just curious. I intend to start working with lith film
    this year and I was going to use Liam Lawless' reversal procedure. Have you
    tried this method. Are there advantages to using your current method?
     
    Alan Smithee, Dec 30, 2006
    #9
  10. I would guess the problem is in the film. But I am
    not sure it is a problem for the vendor. The film
    meets spec if the circles don't appear when developed
    in Kodalith and exposed for line copy.

    I once got continuos tone results from Arista
    Lith film from some combination of exposure and
    developing error. But I was looking normal
    lithography results and so it was noted with not
    more than a passing "Gee, that's weird".
     
    Nicholas O. Lindan, Dec 30, 2006
    #10
  11. Ron Gans

    Ron Gans Guest

    Just make a contact negative; you get a 1:1 positive, called an
    interpositive.

    I didn't know about Liam Lawless's method. I tend to avoid pyro; I've
    heard that its both quite poisonness and temperamental. I'm sure people
    here disagree.

    I used Bergger for everything in the past, but Bergger paper costs
    about twice as much as Arista. HOWEVER, considering how difficult
    Arista is to use, I'm thinking I might have to return to Bergger.
     
    Ron Gans, Dec 31, 2006
    #11
  12. Ron Gans

    Ron Gans Guest

    You've made a good point; this might not be a problem for the vendor;
    just my problem.

    I was thinking about the Arista vs Bergger, which is much more suited
    to this and more reliable in many ways. The Bergger costs twice what
    the Arista costs, but if you eat up that time in constantly testing
    things out, it might not be such an advantage after all.
     
    Ron Gans, Dec 31, 2006
    #12
  13. Ron Gans

    Ron Gans Guest

    Did I say Bergger costs twice as much? I wasn't thinking properly.

    16x20 Arista costs $2/sheet; 16x20 Bergger blue sensitive sheet film
    costs $13/sheet.
     
    Ron Gans, Dec 31, 2006
    #13
  14. Ron Gans

    dan.c.quinn Guest

    There are many ortho lith films available. From Google enter,
    Valley Litho . Your local printer's supply may have a good
    selection. Dan
     
    dan.c.quinn, Dec 31, 2006
    #14
  15. Ron Gans

    Alan Smithee Guest

    Alan Smithee, Dec 31, 2006
    #15
  16. Ron Gans

    Ron Gans Guest

    I've done that; I do not like that method. For one, several rather
    unpleasant chemicals. At least with this method, the chemicals are
    relatively friendly.
     
    Ron Gans, Dec 31, 2006
    #16
  17. spake thus:
    Not any more; you're thinking of the Good Old Days.

    Nowadays, all you're going to find at your local printer's supply is
    going to be along the lines of activator/stabilizer-type chemicals,
    blanket wash and plates. I wouldn't be surprised to find no film there
    at all.


    --
    Just as McDonald's is where you go when you're hungry but don't really
    care about the quality of your food, Wikipedia is where you go when
    you're curious but don't really care about the quality of your knowledge.

    - Matthew White's WikiWatch (http://users.erols.com/mwhite28/wikiwoo.htm)
     
    David Nebenzahl, Dec 31, 2006
    #17
  18. And, if you throw away half the Arista there went
    any hard-money savings.

    I am not sure what time is worth when pursuing a hobby as
    the purpose of a hobby is to have something enjoyable to
    do while wasting time. If the Arista is making you miserable
    then switch without a second thought.
     
    Nicholas O. Lindan, Dec 31, 2006
    #18
  19. Gag...

    There is something wrong here, it's not apples:=:apples.

    It sounds like the Bergger is an orthochromatic continuous
    tone film.

    Lith film is cheap because it is a very thin coat of a very
    simple emulsion on a thin base with no anti-halation or anti-
    curl or anti-static this and that. The film is designed for
    one time use: expose/burn a printing plate and discard.
     
    Nicholas O. Lindan, Dec 31, 2006
    #19
  20. From Unblinking eye:

    "0.5% potassium dichromate and 0.5% strong sulphuric acid
    ...
    An alternative bleach that is less toxic can be made with
    ...
    potassium permanganate and sulfuric acid"

    The first is chromic acid: really nasty stuff. Even when
    neutralized, pouring chromium down the drain is not ecologically
    correct. The saving grace of this formula is that it is only
    1%. Google for ways of disposing of chromic acid - though the
    amount of chrome in the average car & home makes the amount
    used in photography peanuts.

    The second is potentially explosive if concentrated and is
    verboten in most laboratories where it has sometimes been
    made up as a cleaner for laboratory glassware [a use it
    really excels at]. If too much permanganate is added
    to sulfuric acid the resultant is explosive -- really explosive.
    Google for more information.

    Both bleaches are highly corrosive. They will eat through
    most anything except glass and paraffin.

    What happens if a 'civilized' bleach such as ferricyanide is
    used for this method?
     
    Nicholas O. Lindan, Dec 31, 2006
    #20
    1. Advertisements

Ask a Question

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

You'll need to choose a username for the site, which only take a couple of moments (here). After that, you can post your question and our members will help you out.