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  #1  
Old 23rd December 2008, 06:39 PM
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Paul Mitchell Paul Mitchell is offline
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Default Processor advice

So far my temperature control when developing film has been somewhat haphazard and am thinking of investing in a temperature controlled processor i.e. http://www.novadarkroom.com/product/...Processor.html

Just wondered if anyone here uses one (or similar) and the pro's and cons of its usage.

PS - I also already have a Combiplan tank which would also fit

Paul
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Old 23rd December 2008, 07:00 PM
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Personally I think that unit would only be of use for colour processing which use higher temperatures and then it wouldn't be of any use for E6 5 bath because it only has 3 bottle holders.

Why do I think that? Because if you use a kitchen washing up bowl it is just as good. You fill the washing up bowl with water at the required processing temperature. The volume of water in the bowl is such that it will take at least 20 minutes for it to change temperature, especially if your room temp is around 20 deg C and your processing temp is 20 deg C.
Then you mix your chemicals into some of those plastic bottles using water from the bowl, put the lid on, and float the bottle in the bowl. So you now have a water bath keeping your chemicals at correct temp.
As for your processing tank, well if your room is at around 20 deg C, then when you pour chemicals into the bath, they will not drop in temp. However, you can measure temp of liquid when you pour out. It may be a deg or even two lower than when it went in depending on ambient temperature. But if that is the same everytime you develop, then it is consistant and that is what is important. So if your ambient room temperature is consistant when doing your film development, then you don't need a heated processing machine for B+W film.
For colour things are a bit different because of the temperature differential between chemicals and room temperature. There will be some temp drop off. But even then, if your bowl of water is at 38 dec C to start with after mixing chems and floating bottles in bowl, then drop off in temp will be minimal and you can stand your tank in the bowl if the bowl water level is correct to allow that. Floating tank in bowl is not a good idea.
So a kitchen washing up bowl will do exactly the same for you and is a lot cheaper.
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Old 23rd December 2008, 07:13 PM
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When I was doing colour processing I brought a 100w fish tank heater from a pet shop and used that to maintain my water bath temperature much as Rob has suggested below.
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Old 23rd December 2008, 07:17 PM
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I use a Jobo TBE which is similar with a film tank , four one litre bottles and four 260ml beakers .
I just tend to make up one litre of dev,stop and fix and keep it all warm whilst I load the reels then put them into the tank . I picked mine up cheap on Ebay and in all honesty it would'nt be the end of the world if it stopped working as it's more of a conveniance than something I could'nt live with out .
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Old 23rd December 2008, 07:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave View Post
When I was doing colour processing I brought a 100w fish tank heater from a pet shop and used that to maintain my water bath temperature much as Rob has suggested below.
I tried one of those nova units for doing that. I was always very wary of sticking something electric in water and then putting my hands in it. And sure enough the unit cracked one day. Never used one since. Also they are very low output and are fine for long term temp stability, but no good for heating up to temp as they take hours. Also temp adjustment is fickle. i.e. you can spend forever trying to get the damn thing to stabilise at your chosen temp.
A bowl and thermometer only takes a couple minutes under kitchen taps to get to correct temp.
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Old 23rd December 2008, 07:33 PM
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Originally Posted by percepts View Post
I tried one of those nova units for doing that. I was always very wary of sticking something electric in water and then putting my hands in it. And sure enough the unit cracked one day. Never used one since. Also they are very low output and are fine for long term temp stability, but no good for heating up to temp as they take hours. Also temp adjustment is fickle. i.e. you can spend forever trying to get the damn thing to stabilise at your chosen temp.
A bowl and thermometer only takes a couple minutes under kitchen taps to get to correct temp.
The fish were always quite happy with mine; never complained, not once. :wink:
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Old 23rd December 2008, 07:40 PM
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Quote:
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The fish were always quite happy with mine; never complained, not once. :wink:
Yes but they are not earthed. I was:xmaseek:
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Old 23rd December 2008, 08:13 PM
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I occasionally use a dish/tray warmer. The bowl technique mentioned by Rob works fine, you then have the option that you can just leave it on the dish/tray warmer to help stabilise/maintain the temperature.

They 'pop up' on the Bay from time to time.
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Old 24th December 2008, 08:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Mitchell View Post
So far my temperature control when developing film has been somewhat haphazard and am thinking of investing in a temperature controlled processor i.e. http://www.novadarkroom.com/product/...Processor.html

Just wondered if anyone here uses one (or similar) and the pro's and cons of its usage.

PS - I also already have a Combiplan tank which would also fit

Paul
Also look at / consider Richard's (RH Designs) new Process Timer as it automatically compensates time with fluctuating dev temps.

Neil.
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Old 24th December 2008, 09:53 AM
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I currently mix all my chemicals beforehand in 1 litre open top cylinders and stand them in a sink of water at the correct temperature. I am sure this is where the problem of keeping the temperature consistent arises. I think I will invest in some cheap sealable containers and float them as suggested.

Thanks for all the advice chaps, you have helped me save about 300

Paul
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