Monday, November 28, 2011

The Fenomenal developer. A universal fine grain developer

During the last weeks I have tested a new developer mix, the Fenomenal.

It consists of basic ingredients like phenidone, ascorbic acid, sodium sulfite and a small part of parodinal.
The reason for adding the parodinal is that I wasn't competely satisfied with the contrast without it.

Mixing it is a two step operation since you will need Parodinal.

Parodinal is mixed in this way:
75ml boiled and cooled water
Add 8g of lye (NaOh) pearls one gram at the time. (Red devil)Keep it cool! Temperature will rise.
20g sodium sulfite.
6g tylenol/paracetamol. Crush 12 tablets to fine powder.
Use the rest of the water to wash the rest of the powder out of your mortar if needed.
Add this water to get 100ml in your bottle.

Be sure that each ingredient is completely dissolved before adding next.

Use a plastic bottle so you can squeeze as much air out of it as possible before you cap it.
Shake the bottle to make sure the crushed tablets are dissolved.

Let this bottle rest for at least 72 hours. Don't shake it, don't open it during that period.

After the 72 hours has passed, you have Parodinal.
It can be used as Rodinal, but in this case it is needed in the Fenomenal developer.

Since this developer contains phenidone and KBr, you are adviced to make solutions containg this chemicals.

KBr: To 100ml water add 10g KBr. Each 10ml of this is 1g KBr.

Phenidone: To 100ml methylated spirits add 1g phenidone. Each 10ml of this is 0.1g phenidone.
Ok, now it's time to mix a serious developer.

800ml boiled and cooled water.
100g sodium sulfite
6g ascorbic acid
0.15g phenidone. Use 15ml of the phenidone solution.
5ml parodinal. This is 1:200 mix.
20g borax
0.5g KBr. Use 5ml of the KBr solutuion.
Water to 1000ml.

This is a very potent developer. In fact so potent that I prefer to dilute it 1:1 with water.
Take half of it (500ml) and dilute with 500ml boiled cooled water.

This batch of 1000ml is your working solution.

Use as D76. Start time as D76. Fomapan 100 needs 6.5 min@20C.
For each film, add 6% develpment time.

This makes this table.

Film no.
Multiply time by
1 1
2 1,06
3 1,12
4 1,19
5 1,26
6 1,34
7 1,42
8 1,5
9 1,59
10 1,69
11 1,79
12 1,9
13 2,01
14 2,13
15 2,26
16 2,4
17 2,54
18 2,69
19 2,85
20 3,03

The table is valid for a 1000ml working solution.

If you choose to use a 500ml working solution, you have to skip every other entry in the table.
Film no. 2 time is multiplied with 1.12, and so on.

Based on my tests you can develop 10 films in this one liter working solution.
That is 20 films from the initial mix.

Keeping qualities seems to be good. I haven't seen any degradation of activity during the testing period, but it is a bit early to conclude yet. The high level of sodium sulfite and relatively low pH of the borax alkali makes it a bit more stable than developers that have higher pH.

Some sample pictures.

No adjustment of contrast or brightness done on this triplet.
Exposure is +1EV, +-0EV and -1EV

This is the image that is exposed according to the meter.
No adjustment of contrast, brightness and sharpness. No grain reduction in the scanner process.

I mixed a 500ml working solution to do the initial testing. This to reach developer exhaustion earlier. This is the fifth film developed in this 500ml working solution.This equals the in 1000ml working solution. The table for extending time for each film developed seems to work just fine. Since I use just 500ml, I jump two steps in the table for each film.

Go ahead, mix yourself a batch of this developer. In my humble opinion it is a great developer.

1 comment:

  1. I made a typo in the parodinal formula.
    I wrote 5g of lye, but the correct amount is 8g.
    It is corrected so the present version is correct.