rapid, non-hardening alkaline fixer, questions on formulae

Discussion in 'Darkroom Developing and Printing' started by Shakti V. via PhotoKB.com, Oct 8, 2006.

  1. I've researched on two other fixer formula because F-24 is a slow fixer. I
    want a rapid fixer.

    Here are the formulae:

    Neutral rapid fixer
    ammonium thiosulfate (60% solution) 200ml
    sodium sulfite 15g
    sodium metabisulfite 5g
    water to make 1 liter

    + However, I've read that ammonium in fixer is not for open trays because of
    the ammonium fumes.

    ~

    So, here is another formula, the TF-2 Alkaline Sodium Thiosulfate Fixer

    Distilled water 1000 ml
    Sodium Thiosulfate 250 g
    Sodium Sulfite (anhy) 15 g
    Sodium Metaborate 10 g

    TF-2 will wash out of negative and print materials more rapidly than will an
    acid fixer. In jackspcs.com, it was not indicated how long PRINTS should be
    fixed in this specific fixer (but it was indicated it should be washed for 30
    minutes).

    My questions are:

    1. The resource for the neutral rapid fixer formula didn't indicate the
    length of time for fixing FB prints. How long should FB prints be fixed in
    neutral rapid fixer?

    2. Which fixer (neutral rapid fixer, or TF-2 alkaline) would you recommend?

    3. If TF-2, how many minutes does it take for FB prints to be fixed in this
    fixer? Someone told me it takes 10 minutes to fix prints with TF-2, but an
    online source stated it fixes films (3-5 minutes) and prints (no. of minutes
    not stated) faster than usual fixers; so I thought, if it fixes faster, then
    it should not be 10 minutes like a regular fixer. How long, really, does TF-
    2 take to fix FB prints?

    4. I assume that since ther is no alum in either formula, then these fixers
    are non-hardening fixers. Is my assumption right?

    5. Would you know other rapid fixer formula/e that would work with FB prints?
    If you do, and if you recommend that fixer, please post the formula here.

    Bear with me as I am only beginning to learn mixing my own chemicals. I
    really hope you could help me. Thanks.
     
    Shakti V. via PhotoKB.com, Oct 8, 2006
    #1
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  2. Most conventional fixer formulas can be converted to
    "rapid" fixer by replacing the Sodium Thiosulfate with
    Ammonium Thiosulfate in the correct amount.
    The simplest fixer formula is just the thiosulfate and
    Sodium Sulfide. 5 grams per liter of Sulfide is enough to
    protect the Thiosulfate but some additional will prevent
    staining by carried over developer, around 15 grams per
    liter.
    There two reasons for making a fixing bath acid: one is
    for the hardener, alum hardener works only when acid; the
    other reason is to prevent carried over developer from being
    active. If a plain water stop bath is used with a neutral or
    alkaline fixer it must be thorough enough to wash out the
    developer. However, if there is enough sulfite in the fixing
    bath it will prevent carried over developer from causing
    staining although it will continue to develop just a little.
    Fixing time for either film or paper depends partly on
    the nature of the emulsion and varies with any kind of
    fixer. Rapid fixer _at film strength_ fixes paper fairly
    quickly but the time varies from around 30 seconds for some
    types to over a minute for others. The only way to test for
    this is to fix samples for varying times and test them for
    residual silver halide. The standard tests are either a 1%
    solution of Sodium Sulfide or a 1:9 dilution of Kodak Rapid
    Selenium Toner. The toner test works only if the emulsion
    has been well washed. Instructions for making up the Sulfite
    test can be found in several Kodak publications but I am not
    sure its on Kodak's web site anywhere. The test solutions
    "tone" any residual halide just as they would image silver.
    If the prints or films are completely fixed the test
    solution will not produce a stain. Any yellow or brown stain
    indicates incomplete fixing.
    There is a lot of misunderstanding about wash times.
    Neither Sodium or Ammonium fixer has any advantage this way.
    In a normal acid fixer with white alum hardener washing
    times are extended because two conditions tend to bind the
    thiosulfate and the reaction products of fixing to the
    emulsion. One factor is the alum hardener. Alum tends to act
    like a mordant when in an acid environment binding the
    thiosulfate rather tightly to the emulsion. The other factor
    is pH. Photographic gelatin has a "natural" pH, or
    Isoelectric point, just on the acid side of neutral. When
    acid it tends to bind thiosulfate because of the electric
    charges of the atoms. When made neutral this binding force
    is eliminated and the gelatin tends to repel the Thiosulfate
    ions and also the Thiosulfate complexes that result from
    fixing. At neutral pH alum hardener still functions as a
    hardener. The electric charge binding can be eliminated by
    making the emulsion alkaline but the hardening action of the
    alum is destroyed.
    A plain Thiosulfate and Sulfite fixer is about neutral,
    additional alkali really is not necessary.
    Wash times for fixer which is neutral and has no alum
    hardener in it are about half those for hardening acid
    fixer. Note that thiosulfate is bound up in the support of
    fiber base paper by other forces, notably frictional forces.
    The nature of the fixing bath does not affect this a lot so
    fiber paper still needs long wash times compared to RC or
    film.
    The use of a neutral Sulfite wash aid, like Kodak Hypo
    Clearing Agent, will change the pH of film or paper to
    neutral and also has the property of displacing Thiosulfate
    ions and fixer reaction products by an ion-exchange
    function. When a sulfite wash aid is used wash times are
    considerably shortened even when an alkaline fixer is used.
    Film washes out in 5 minutes, double weight fiber paper in
    about 20 minutes. The wash aid will also dislodge some
    reaction products of incomplete fixing which otherwise do
    not wash out even in very extended washes.
    Ammonium fixing baths do have some Ammonia odor. The
    neutral fixers have less than acid fixers but it is still
    there. These fumes are NOT dangerous but may be irritating
    for some people. I don't know of a solution for this. Acid
    fixing baths of all types tend to evolve some Sulfur Dioxide
    gas, this is the "sharp" odor associated with fixing baths.
    It can be very irritating to some people and can set off
    Asthma, etc. Neutral or alkaline baths produce much less of
    this gas than acid baths.
    There are a number of ready mixed neutral or alkaline
    fixing baths on the market. They are used in color
    processing and are also sold separately. Some fixers are
    sold with the hardener in a separate container which can be
    added or left out at will. Kodak Rapid Liquid Fixer and
    Hardener comes this way. The hardener bottle also has
    additional acid in it. Without the hardener this fixer is
    still acid but less so and has less odor.
    To insure complete fixing a two bath system is
    recommended, especially for Sodium Thiosulfate fixer. One
    begins with two fresh fixing baths and fixes for half the
    time in each. The second bath remains relatively fresh and
    can complete the chain of reactions necessary to make all
    the unused Silver Halide in the emulsion soluble so it
    washes out. The capacity of a single fixing bath to do this
    is very limited, a two bath system has on the order of ten
    times the capacity of a single bath.
    BTW, because RC paper has a very thin emulsion it washes
    out completely in about 4 minutes even when using an acid
    hardening fixer. The use of a wash aid is not necessary.
    I hope this is helpful.
     
    Richard Knoppow, Oct 8, 2006
    #2
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  3. Shakti V. via PhotoKB.com

    UC Guest

    Just use Rapid Fixer with hardener. Forget all this nonsense.
     
    UC, Oct 8, 2006
    #3
  4. Shakti V. via PhotoKB.com

    nailer Guest

    On Sun, 08 Oct 2006 21:25:17 GMT, "Richard Knoppow"

    ------------------------------
    #>
    # Most conventional fixer formulas can be converted to
    #"rapid" fixer by replacing the Sodium Thiosulfate with
    #Ammonium Thiosulfate in the correct amount.
    # The simplest fixer formula is just the thiosulfate and
    #Sodium Sulfide. 5 grams per liter of Sulfide is enough to
    #protect the Thiosulfate but some additional will prevent
    #staining by carried over developer, around 15 grams per
    #liter.

    $$$$$$$it pays to learn the difference between sulfites and sulfides.


    ------------------------------X

    # Ammonium fixing baths do have some Ammonia odor. The
    #neutral fixers have less than acid fixers but it is still
    #there.

    acid fixers have less of ammonia odour than neutral and alkaline. Pure
    chemistry. In acid solution ammonia tends to form ammonium ions
    (odourless).

    ----------------------------X


    my advice - just stick to plain thiosulfate/sulfiTe solutions. Modern
    materials do NOT need extra hardening.

    Use sulfite bath afterwards.


    Ammonium thiosulfate works faster than sodium equivalent, but smells.
    Isnt it smarter and safer to use sodium salts and extend fixing time
    by 50%? Cheaper too.
     
    nailer, Oct 9, 2006
    #4
  5. Shakti V. via PhotoKB.com

    Digitaltruth Guest

    An alkaline rapid fixer will speed up your washing time by a
    considerable amount. Our Silvergrain Clearfix Alkaline Fixer is an
    improvement on older alkaline fixers, as it has no precipitate and has
    an enhanced buffering system. This is a true rapid fixer based on
    ammonium thiosulphate. For more information please read the technical
    data sheet:

    http://www.digitaltruth.com/store/silvergrain-fixandwash.html

    --Jon Mided

    Digitaltruth Photo
    http://www.digitaltruth.com
     
    Digitaltruth, Oct 9, 2006
    #5
  6. I know the difference, evidently you can't tell typing
    errors from actual mistakes.

    The literature indicates that Ammonium Thiosulfate is
    less sensitive to accumulated Iodide ions than Sodium
    Thiosulfate. This may have an advantage in fixing film which
    usually has a large content of Silver Iodide. There may be
    little advantage for paper where there is less Silver Iodide
    although variable contrast emulsions are supposed to have
    quite a bit.
    There is probably little advantage except shorter fixing
    time for Ammonium thiosulfate in a two bath system.
    An advantage of neutral or alkaline Ammonium Thiosulfate
    fixer is that it does not bleach. Acid Ammonium fixer is a
    mild bleach for metallic silver and can cause problems where
    fixing time is carefully controlled. In fact, Kodak's
    recommendation for removing dichroic fog is acid rapid fixer
    with Citric acid (15 grams per liter of working solution)
    added.
     
    Richard Knoppow, Oct 9, 2006
    #6
  7. Shakti V. via PhotoKB.com

    Rod Smith Guest

    (Details snipped.) FWIW, the formula you posted is Ryuji Suzuki's
    creation; its Web page is:

    http://wiki.silvergrain.org/wiki/index.php/Fixer

    I mention this because it's not clear if you got it from there or from
    some other source with less information.
    The extent of the ammonia odor varies from one formula to another; with
    some, it's pretty strong, but for others it's barely noticeable. I don't
    know about Suzuki's Neutral Rapid Fixer, since I've never used it. I have
    used a commercial variant, Silvergrain Clearfix Alkaline
    (http://www.digitaltruth.com/store/silvergrain-fixandwash.html). It has a
    very subdued ammonia odor; however, it's not identical to the posted
    formula. The two might vary in the strength of their ammonia odors.
    This formula is published in Anchell's _Darkroom Cookbook, 2nd Edition_
    (formula #134). Anchell specifies a 10-minute fixing time for prints, so
    this doesn't qualify as a rapid fixer in my opinion. This isn't
    surprising, since rapid fixers are usually made using ammonium thiosulfate
    rather than sodium thiosulfate.

    FWIW, I've used the rapid variant of TF-2, known as TF-3. It's definitely
    got a strong ammonia odor. Despite this fact, I've used it in trays. It
    wasn't a pleasant experience, but it was actually less bothersome than
    acid fixers, which irritate my nasal passages although they don't have as
    strong an odor.

    A commercial variant of TF-3, known as TF-4, is available. I've never used
    TF-4, but it's supposed to have a less powerful odor. It's also pretty
    inexpensive.
    I've not used either of them. Personally, I hate sitting there fixing
    prints for 10 minutes, so I use rapid fixers now, especially for prints.
    In theory, it won't make any difference for the quality of your final
    prints, assuming you use the products correctly. Thus, it's really a
    question of personal preferences for things like your patience for long
    fixing time, your tolerance of ammonia odor, your sensitivity to the
    sulfur dioxide produced by acid fixers, etc. You may just need to try
    multiple products to figure some of these things out; one person's
    "overpowering ammonia odor" may be another person's "barely noticeable
    ammonia odor" -- and similarly for other factors.
    Correct. This shouldn't make much difference for most products. The
    emulsions of Efke films are reportedly rather delicate and can benefit
    from hardeners, but for most films and papers it shouldn't make much
    difference.
    As I mentioned, I've used TF-3 (http://www.jackspcs.com/tf3.htm) with
    success, but it does have a strong ammonia odor. I've recently been using
    Silvergrain Clearfix. It's got a much more subdued ammonia odor than TF-3
    but is almost as fast-acting. Its Web site has unusually clear and
    extensive instructions. On the downside, it's pricier than some products.
    I'm thinking of giving TF-4 a try for this reason.
    I've mixed my own fixers from time to time, but for the most part, IMHO
    it's not worth the bother. Certain commercial products, such as TF-4 and
    Kodak's Flexicolor (C-41) fixer, are actually less expensive than anything
    you could mix up yourself, unless you find a good local source of the
    sodium or ammonium thiosulfate. (Flexicolor fixer, despire being marketed
    for color film, works fine with B&W film and paper, and has the advantage
    of being very inexpensive. I don't know the exact fixing time for B&W
    paper, though.)
     
    Rod Smith, Oct 11, 2006
    #7
  8. Shakti V. via PhotoKB.com

    Peter Irwin Guest

    I really doubt it takes anything like 10 minutes to fix paper
    in fresh sodium thiosulphate fixer. I just did a clearing test
    with a clip of Eastman 5302 film which has a bromide paper type
    emulsion. After a presoak in water of a few minutes, clearing
    time in fresh Kodak Fixer was 50 seconds. (I thought the film
    looked pretty clear after 40 seconds, but it nearly vanished
    at 50 seconds.)

    Peter.
     
    Peter Irwin, Oct 11, 2006
    #8
  9. I believe that fixing time for films in TF-2 (sodium thiosulfate based fixer)
    is 3-5 minutes. For prints, though, it wasn't specified, although a lot of
    users say that, to be safe, fix for 5-10 minutes, depending on exhaustion.
    Clearing times(i.e., 50secs.) should be mulitplied twice or more preferably,
    thrice, for film fixing time.

    As for the neutral rapid fixer, yes, the source was wiki.silvergrain.org. I
    am perplexed why they didn't post any other details like fixing time for
    prints and films, and dilution. Still, no one has given me an answer. Since
    the formula has 200ml only of ammonium thiosulphate, while TF-3 has 800ml
    (dilution 1:4, fixing time 1minute for prints), would it be a good assumption
    to dilute neutral rapid fixer 1:1, and fix for 1-2 minutes?

    To everyone,

    Thanks for your replies. I am now at a phase of wanting to learn the science
    of mixing my own chemicals. It will also be practical for me as it's
    becoming a desert here when it comes to supplies for traditional photography.
    Shipping is more expensive than my energy and raw chemical cost.

    I am now working on the TF-3 formula. I will post a new thread regarding the
    process of mixing it and the results. Please post your comments and
    suggestions there.

    Grazie.
     
    Shakti V. via PhotoKB.com, Oct 11, 2006
    #9
  10. Shakti V. via PhotoKB.com

    Tom Phillips Guest

    Films vary in clearing time, but I don't think
    I'd fix any film for less than 3 minutes, let
    alone 50 seconds. It's generally recommended to
    fix _TWICE_ the clearing time for film...Prints
    (in rapid fix mixed film strength) can be fixed
    30 to 60 seconds (FB.) Kodak actually says 5302
    film should be fixed 2 TO _10_ minutes at 65 to
    70 degrees F depending on the film/fix combo.
    Please see KODAK pub. E103CF.pdf
     
    Tom Phillips, Oct 11, 2006
    #10
  11. Shakti V. via PhotoKB.com

    nailer Guest

    On Mon, 09 Oct 2006 20:18:38 GMT, "Richard Knoppow"

    #
    ##> On Sun, 08 Oct 2006 21:25:17 GMT, "Richard Knoppow"
    #>
    #> ------------------------------
    #> #>
    #> # Most conventional fixer formulas can be converted to
    #> #"rapid" fixer by replacing the Sodium Thiosulfate with
    #> #Ammonium Thiosulfate in the correct amount.
    #> # The simplest fixer formula is just the thiosulfate and
    #> #Sodium Sulfide. 5 grams per liter of Sulfide is enough to
    #> #protect the Thiosulfate but some additional will prevent
    #> #staining by carried over developer, around 15 grams per
    #> #liter.
    #>
    #> $$$$$$$it pays to learn the difference between sulfites
    #> and sulfides.
    #>
    #>
    #
    # I know the difference, evidently you can't tell typing
    #errors from actual mistakes.

    you made just typo twice at least. you do not pay attention. it makes
    your advices less reliable.
    #
    #
    #> ------------------------------X
    #>
    #> # Ammonium fixing baths do have some Ammonia odor. The
    #> #neutral fixers have less than acid fixers but it is still
    #> #there.
    #>
    #> acid fixers have less of ammonia odour than neutral and
    #> alkaline. Pure
    #> chemistry. In acid solution ammonia tends to form ammonium
    #> ions
    #> (odourless).

    no comments here? no typo? just plain wrong.

    #>
    #> ----------------------------X
    #>
    #>
    #> my advice - just stick to plain thiosulfate/sulfiTe
    #> solutions. Modern
    #> materials do NOT need extra hardening.
    #>
    #> Use sulfite bath afterwards.
    #>
    #>
    #> Ammonium thiosulfate works faster than sodium equivalent,
    #> but smells.
    #> Isnt it smarter and safer to use sodium salts and extend
    #> fixing time
    #> by 50%? Cheaper too.
    #
    # The literature indicates that Ammonium Thiosulfate is
    #less sensitive to accumulated Iodide ions than Sodium
    #Thiosulfate. This may have an advantage in fixing film which
    #usually has a large content of Silver Iodide. There may be
    #little advantage for paper where there is less Silver Iodide
    #although variable contrast emulsions are supposed to have
    #quite a bit.

    some call it manipulation, what you are saying is not a whole truth.
    you manipulate with in general true statements.
    sensitivity to accumulated iodides is not an issue here. you should
    stop fixing BEFORE it becomes the issue.
    Large content of silver iodide in emulsion? what percentage as
    compared with chlorides and bromides?
    which paper contain silver iodide in an emulsion?
    supposed to have - quite unscientific expression. have you got numbers
    ready?
    can you quote dependable source or just hearsay?

    # There is probably little advantage except shorter fixing
    #time for Ammonium thiosulfate in a two bath system.
    # An advantage of neutral or alkaline Ammonium Thiosulfate
    #fixer is that it does not bleach.

    it is not a problem if you do not extend fixing time above the
    required.

    Acid Ammonium fixer is a
    #mild bleach for metallic silver and can cause problems where
    #fixing time is carefully controlled. In fact, Kodak's
    #recommendation for removing dichroic fog is acid rapid fixer
    #with Citric acid (15 grams per liter of working solution)
    #added.

    you are excellent in quoting literature, can you back up your
    quotations with real data from real experiments?
     
    nailer, Oct 11, 2006
    #11
  12. Shakti V. via PhotoKB.com

    Peter Irwin Guest

    I know. I just indicated that 5302 clears much
    faster than camera films, therefore should also
    probably have a shorter fixing time. Since 5302
    resembles paper emulsion, I suspect that paper
    fixes in less than half the time required
    by typical camera films.

    ...Prints
    This also supports the idea that paper fixes
    faster than film. I find it hard to credit
    the idea that sodium hypo would be ten times
    slower than ammonium hypo unless it has been
    seriously overworked. People do overwork
    paper fixer because it is hard to tell by
    looking when the fixer starts to lose activity.
    If you use sodium hypo then a two bath fixer
    looks like a really good idea. I'd just be
    really surprised if two minutes in each bath
    weren't long enough.

    Peter.
     
    Peter Irwin, Oct 11, 2006
    #12
  13. Of all the posters in this newsgroup, Richard is the
    one I trust the most. And I don't think I am alone
    with this opinion.
     
    Nicholas O. Lindan, Oct 11, 2006
    #13
  14. Nicholas O. Lindan spake thus:
    I second that emotion.
     
    David Nebenzahl, Oct 11, 2006
    #14
  15. Shakti V. via PhotoKB.com

    UC Guest

    I have never had any problem with using ordinary Rapid Fixer with
    hardener. I recommend it, preceded by an acid stop bath. Way back in
    1964, Popular Photography ran a test to see whether any ill effects
    could be traced to the use of acid stop bath. Under microscopic
    enlargement, no adverse effect could be discerned. Acid stop bath is
    recommended.
     
    UC, Oct 11, 2006
    #15
  16. Shakti V. via PhotoKB.com

    Rod Smith Guest

    I just reviewed Anchell's recommendations. He specifies a 10-minute fixing
    time (or split-bath method with 5 minutes in each bath) for most of the
    sodium thiosulfate fixers in his book. A notable exception is plain hypo
    (formula 133, 480g of sodium thiosulfate in 2l of water), which he says
    will fix a print in 30 seconds. I suspect he's published times that err on
    the side of overfixing rather than underfixing.
     
    Rod Smith, Oct 12, 2006
    #16
  17. Shakti V. via PhotoKB.com

    Tom Phillips Guest

     
    Tom Phillips, Oct 12, 2006
    #17
  18. Shakti V. via PhotoKB.com

    Tom Phillips Guest

    It probably is, but fix times also vary with papers.
    General recommendations of 3-5 minutes in each bath
    equals 10 minutes in a single bath for FB prints. I
    find Tmax needs 6 minutes in fresh fixer, but other
    films have shorter fixing times. The times when using
    film strength fix with papers also varies with the
    paper so testing (both for clearing times and exhausted
    fixer) is always a good idea. In any case as with film
    I always fix my prints about twice the clearing time.
     
    Tom Phillips, Oct 12, 2006
    #18
  19. Shakti V. via PhotoKB.com

    Lloyd Erlick Guest


    October 11, 2006, from Lloyd Erlick,

    I agree. I've used both, on both films and
    papers, and it seems quite obvious to me that
    ammonium thiosulfate type fixers are not ten
    times as fast as sodium thiosulfate based
    fixers.

    In any case, what does it matter to a low
    volume user like most non-commercial
    photographers? Even the smell alone is not
    worth it just to get a bit faster fixing.

    The remark above about overworked fixing
    baths is highly relevant, however. Sodium
    based fixer has a lower capacity, and if
    mixed in batches that are not larger than
    necessary, can be used up in relatively few
    darkroom sessions. The temptation to overwork
    ammonium type fixers is far greater, since it
    can fix more, and it costs more, too. A
    sodium fixer can be used up and discarded and
    replaced very easily.

    The easiest sodium thiosulfate fixer is the
    one Ansel Adams published in the Appendix to
    "The Print". He calls it plain fixer. It
    consists of sodium thiosulfate and sodium
    sulfite. And water. I've used it as my
    exclusive fixer for years. Film and paper. I
    keep a simple tally of the number of 8x10s or
    equivalent paper area or rolls of film
    through it, and discard when it gets to
    two-thirds of its supposed capacity of 25
    8x10s per liter. It's extremely cheap, and
    extremely easy to prepare. I use a two-bath
    system, and I don't bother to promote bath
    two to bath one when I make up a fresh batch.
    I just discard and make up both, it's so
    cheap and easy. There is absolutely no odour.
    To get even the slightest whiff, one has to
    stick the nose into the fixer container. And
    then it's a pleasant aroma, at that.

    The famous remark is that the smell of fixer
    in the morning is like the smell of
    creativity, and to me that smell is from a
    sodium fixer.

    The usual comeback regarding sodium
    thiosulfate fixer is that it can't properly
    fix modern film that has more iodide than
    sodium thiosulfate can fix, or some such.
    I've developed several thousand rolls of
    Kodak T-Max 400 (TMY) film with sodium
    thiosulfate fixer, and have never seen a
    problem. I'm the sort of person that used a
    double fixer bath system even when I was
    using commercial rapid fixer. So dealing with
    the 'iodide problem' with a double bath of
    sodium fix is hardly a problem.

    I'm not disputing the educational advantages
    of learning to mix up various rapid fixers.
    But my experience has shown me that Adams'
    plain fixer is fine for all fixing in a
    usual, non-specialized-process type of
    darkroom. For day to day working at making
    prints and developing film, I like a fixer
    that is cheap, effortless and quick to
    prepare, and odourless.

    I use distilled water for my fixer. I use
    anhydrous forms of sodium thiosulfate and
    sodium sulfite, because they are cheaper in
    the long run and especially because they
    dissolve easily in water at room temperature,
    so there is no temperature-adjustment phase
    to the effort.

    In fact, if two and a half liters of water at
    room temperature are dumped into a jug, and
    500 grams of sodium thiosulfate anhydrous
    plus 45-60 grams of sodium sulfite anhydrous
    are dumped in after it, the agitation of the
    final half liter of water being dumped in
    after all that will be enough to dissolve the
    whole works before the other chores of
    getting ready are finished, with no further
    attention.

    I've written whole pontifications on this
    subject, and others, on my website. Click on
    the 'technical' button in the table of
    contents.

    (I'd be surprised if two minutes in each
    fixer bath weren't enough, too. In fact, I
    use three minutes in each bath for all my
    fixing of both film and paper. The caveat,
    again, is that the fix must never be
    overworked. The same caveat applies to any
    type of fix used for any purpose, so it's not
    as if it's extra work associated with sodium
    thiosulfate.)

    regards,
    --le
    ________________________________
    Lloyd Erlick Portraits, Toronto.
    website: www.heylloyd.com
    telephone: 416-686-0326
    email:
    ________________________________
    --
     
    Lloyd Erlick, Oct 12, 2006
    #19
  20. Shakti V. via PhotoKB.com

    nailer Guest

    to all Richard K. groupies -
    read the text from Lloyd.
    This is an excellent example of simple answer, without posturing, but
    containing both a common knowledge and the author's experience.
    The original poster does not need any more than LLoyd's reply.
    And it does not contain any "typos".
    Excellent work.



    #On Wed, 11 Oct 2006 12:47:07 +0000 (UTC),
    #
    #>I find it hard to credit
    #>the idea that sodium hypo would be ten times
    #>slower than ammonium hypo unless it has been
    #>seriously overworked. People do overwork
    #>paper fixer because it is hard to tell by
    #>looking when the fixer starts to lose activity.
    #>If you use sodium hypo then a two bath fixer
    #>looks like a really good idea. I'd just be
    #>really surprised if two minutes in each bath
    #>weren't long enough.
    #
    #
    #October 11, 2006, from Lloyd Erlick,
    #
    #I agree. I've used both, on both films and
    #papers, and it seems quite obvious to me that
    #ammonium thiosulfate type fixers are not ten
    #times as fast as sodium thiosulfate based
    #fixers.
    #
    #In any case, what does it matter to a low
    #volume user like most non-commercial
    #photographers? Even the smell alone is not
    #worth it just to get a bit faster fixing.
    #
    #The remark above about overworked fixing
    #baths is highly relevant, however. Sodium
    #based fixer has a lower capacity, and if
    #mixed in batches that are not larger than
    #necessary, can be used up in relatively few
    #darkroom sessions. The temptation to overwork
    #ammonium type fixers is far greater, since it
    #can fix more, and it costs more, too. A
    #sodium fixer can be used up and discarded and
    #replaced very easily.
    #
    #The easiest sodium thiosulfate fixer is the
    #one Ansel Adams published in the Appendix to
    #"The Print". He calls it plain fixer. It
    #consists of sodium thiosulfate and sodium
    #sulfite. And water. I've used it as my
    #exclusive fixer for years. Film and paper. I
    #keep a simple tally of the number of 8x10s or
    #equivalent paper area or rolls of film
    #through it, and discard when it gets to
    #two-thirds of its supposed capacity of 25
    #8x10s per liter. It's extremely cheap, and
    #extremely easy to prepare. I use a two-bath
    #system, and I don't bother to promote bath
    #two to bath one when I make up a fresh batch.
    #I just discard and make up both, it's so
    #cheap and easy. There is absolutely no odour.
    #To get even the slightest whiff, one has to
    #stick the nose into the fixer container. And
    #then it's a pleasant aroma, at that.
    #
    #The famous remark is that the smell of fixer
    #in the morning is like the smell of
    #creativity, and to me that smell is from a
    #sodium fixer.
    #
    #The usual comeback regarding sodium
    #thiosulfate fixer is that it can't properly
    #fix modern film that has more iodide than
    #sodium thiosulfate can fix, or some such.
    #I've developed several thousand rolls of
    #Kodak T-Max 400 (TMY) film with sodium
    #thiosulfate fixer, and have never seen a
    #problem. I'm the sort of person that used a
    #double fixer bath system even when I was
    #using commercial rapid fixer. So dealing with
    #the 'iodide problem' with a double bath of
    #sodium fix is hardly a problem.
    #
    #I'm not disputing the educational advantages
    #of learning to mix up various rapid fixers.
    #But my experience has shown me that Adams'
    #plain fixer is fine for all fixing in a
    #usual, non-specialized-process type of
    #darkroom. For day to day working at making
    #prints and developing film, I like a fixer
    #that is cheap, effortless and quick to
    #prepare, and odourless.
    #
    #I use distilled water for my fixer. I use
    #anhydrous forms of sodium thiosulfate and
    #sodium sulfite, because they are cheaper in
    #the long run and especially because they
    #dissolve easily in water at room temperature,
    #so there is no temperature-adjustment phase
    #to the effort.
    #
    #In fact, if two and a half liters of water at
    #room temperature are dumped into a jug, and
    #500 grams of sodium thiosulfate anhydrous
    #plus 45-60 grams of sodium sulfite anhydrous
    #are dumped in after it, the agitation of the
    #final half liter of water being dumped in
    #after all that will be enough to dissolve the
    #whole works before the other chores of
    #getting ready are finished, with no further
    #attention.
    #
    #I've written whole pontifications on this
    #subject, and others, on my website. Click on
    #the 'technical' button in the table of
    #contents.
    #
    #(I'd be surprised if two minutes in each
    #fixer bath weren't enough, too. In fact, I
    #use three minutes in each bath for all my
    #fixing of both film and paper. The caveat,
    #again, is that the fix must never be
    #overworked. The same caveat applies to any
    #type of fix used for any purpose, so it's not
    #as if it's extra work associated with sodium
    #thiosulfate.)
    #
    #regards,
    #--le
    #________________________________
    #Lloyd Erlick Portraits, Toronto.
    #website: www.heylloyd.com
    #telephone: 416-686-0326
    #email:
    #________________________________
     
    nailer, Oct 12, 2006
    #20
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