Kodak Medalist Paper

Discussion in 'Kodak' started by Tina, Sep 28, 2005.

  1. Tina

    Tina Guest

    My neighbor gave me a ton of old b&w stuff to see if I could use it...and I
    ran across a 25 pak of Kodak Medalist paper, it's still sealed and unopened,
    I don 't know anything about this paper or even if it's any good ...can
    someone enlighten me about this old paper...TIA

    Tina, Sep 28, 2005
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  2. If you are a complete novice, and have no money, just try printing on it. If
    you are lucky, it is not fogged. I have seen prints on it in old Kodak
    Dataguides and seems to be a very nice paper. I do not know when it was
    discontinued, but it was long ago. So it is not worth taking the trouble to
    calibrate it for serious printing. It might take 25 sheets to do a serious
    calibration (but probably not, if you have done something like it before).
    Jean-David Beyer, Sep 28, 2005
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  3. Tina

    Mike Guest

    Not sure when it was finally discontinued for the last time but it's a safe
    bet your paper is 20-30 years old. In it's day, Medalist was regarded as
    one of Kodak's finest papers, I recall Ansel Adams having nice things to say
    about it at one time. The nice thing about older papers is that they were
    rarely developer incorporated so had better kepping power that modern,
    improved stuff and my personal experience has been that graded papers have
    more shelf-life that variable contrast papers and that fibre base is more
    stable than early RC papers.

    In any case, play with it, you'll learn something either way.

    Mike, Sep 28, 2005
  4. Tina

    UC Guest

    It's old and likely no good. Throw it away.
    UC, Sep 28, 2005
  5. Tina

    Draco Guest

    Hi Tina,
    That paper is about thirty years old. Even if it was in a sealed
    envelope, heat or cold might have done funny things with it. Time also
    could have run out on the emulsion.
    In a safe-light room(darkroom) Open the package and take out one
    sheet. Cut it into smaller pieces. Don't know how large the paper is
    but, cut it to small strips of an inch wide and test expose it. First
    with no light. Then with a negative at different time settings. Just
    like a test exposure for the first printing of a new negative.
    The first one(with no light) put in the developer tray. If it darkens,
    then you know not to waste time doing the rest of the testing.
    Develope out times will be longer than todays papers. Plus the paper
    itself is paper. so it will need a longer development time and final

    Good luck with it.


    Getting Even isn't good enough.
    Draco, Sep 28, 2005
  6. Tina

    Tina Guest

    Thanks for all the info on it...I think it has a date of 1980 on it...when I
    do get back into my darkroom I'll give it a test to see how it does...

    Tina, Sep 28, 2005
  7. Tina

    Draco Guest

    You are welcome and again good luck.


    Getting Even isn't good enough.
    Draco, Sep 28, 2005
  8. Medalist was a general purpose paper for enlarging. One
    of its virtues was that the grades were speed matched. Its
    quite fast, about 4 times most current variable contrast
    papers with low to medium contrast filters. It was available
    in a very wide range of stocks and surfaces. It is billed as
    a warm black paper but the stuff I used was more like a
    neutral tone paper.
    Its possible your paper is still good. Tear off a scrap
    and develop it without exposure. At the same time tear off
    another scrap and do not develope it. Fix and wash both
    strips and compare them. Any fogging will be appearent. If
    the fog is slight add some Potassium bromide to the
    developer. For developers like Dektol you can add as much as
    5 grams of bromide to the working solution. This will slow
    down the paper speed and may affect its contrast a bit, you
    will have to try it to find out. Bromide will also tend to
    warm up the paper.
    Benzotriazole is even more effective for suppressing age
    fog. I have to dig out a book that is not at hand to give
    you amounts but I've also posted them to this group in the
    past so they may turn up on a Google search.
    I find that I still have three boxes of Medalist in
    storage. I have no idea how old they are, probably at least
    15 years. I will have to try them.
    Don't toss the stuff without trying it. Remember, its
    graded. The box should state the grade. It may have changed
    contrast with time, generally papers lose contrast as they
    get older. If you must use a lot of bromide it will tend to
    bring the contrast back up again.
    Otherwise handle it like any modern fiber paper.
    Recommended developers were Dektol or Selectol for warmer
    tones and the usual stop and fixing routines.
    Richard Knoppow, Sep 29, 2005
  9. Tina

    UC Guest


    I recently opened some Kodak Elite paper that was made in 1999 or so.
    It was bad already.
    UC, Sep 29, 2005
  10. 15 years ;-) In any event the first paper I ever used
    was Medalist, and it perfect to me then. I imagine would
    still be quite a good paper if Kodak was making it.
    Gregory Blank, Sep 29, 2005
  11. That may be because it was so NEW! A number of changes
    had to be made in emulsions due to some traditional
    ingredients being environmental polutants. Some of these
    were preservatives.
    I will say that my experience in the past is that Kodak
    papers were not as long lived as Agfa but I think no current
    paper will last as long as the ones of, say, 20 years ago.
    In any case, there is nothing to be lost by testing a
    scrap of this paper.
    Richard Knoppow, Sep 30, 2005
  12. Elite was the first paper Kodak made with reduced cadmium content -- it's
    not clear to me how, exactly, but cadmium was used to retard the aging
    process in black and white photographic papers. It had a notoriously
    short shelf life, under two years according to the expiration dates
    encoded on the box labels, and this was one reason it was never very
    popular, despite being an absolutely magnificent paper when fresh and
    properly used.
    Thor Lancelot Simon, Oct 1, 2005
  13. Tina

    UC Guest

    I cannot believe all this fuss being made about a 25 sheet pack of
    paper that is no longer available.

    Even if it's good, you cannot get it anymore.....
    UC, Oct 1, 2005
  14. FWIW, Tonight I tested two boxes of Medalist that are
    probably 15 years old, maybe older. Both were opened years
    ago and have not received any special storage. Paper from
    both boxes printed OK, no fog and I tested for fog using a
    sulfid toner. I think the contrast is down a bit but that's
    hard to be sure of. I would guess one paper grade but a
    negative that usually prints well on Grade 2 paper printed
    OK on this stuff. One box is single weight, gloss, grade 2,
    the other box is double weight G surface, Grade-2. I also
    tested some Agfa Brovira, about the same age. Its perfect.
    Test this paper. Its probably usable. If it shows any fog
    you can probably overcome it with some added Potassium
    bromide or Benzotriazole. Neither box of the Medalist I
    tested needed it.
    Richard Knoppow, Oct 3, 2005
  15. Tina

    Mike Guest

    And the nice thing is that Medalist should respond with a shift to warmer
    with Potassium Bromide and may look cooler if you use Benzotraiazole for an

    Anyone got a freezer full of Ilfobrom? (I don't mean Galerie.) Loved the
    look of this paper in Bromophen and Edwal's LPD (powder not liquid).
    Incredibly cool, almost purple image on a brilliant white base (sounds like
    an old Fred Picker ad from the Zone VI catalog doesn't it--BTW never met the
    guy but I sure liked the way he could flay the skin off someone he disagreed
    with--we need more guys with opinions--wait more guys with valid opinions
    reached by material testing--didn't mean He Who Shall Remain Nameless--and
    here I don't mean Lord Voldemort.)
    Mike, Oct 4, 2005
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