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I'm new to film development and previously managed to develop two rolls of Kodak Tri-x 400 (let's call roll A and B) using reversal processing: D-11, dichromate bleach, D-72. Today I tried to develop another roll of Kodak Tmax 100 (roll C). But the result was not good:

  1. roll C is very dark (my camera was set to DX ISO 100 when taking the pictures) though most of the photos were properly exposed, and I even used last 10 photos to test different compensation: 0, +0.1, +1, all are about the same darkness. Therefore, the contrast is way lower than roll A and B.

  2. what's worse, I noticed some artifacts (see the photo below, you can notice the abnormal color around all dark parts) in the dark region of many photos. Suspect it was so dark so something got wrong during the reversal process.

  3. The phenomenon in 2 also happened to some photos of roll A, but not roll B.

  4. I believe most of the photos are properly exposed (I could get some decent photos if I had used negative film development, I guess).

Here are two sample photos from roll A:

Most photos are good: Most photos are good

But are sporadically with artifacts in dark zone: With weird artifacts

Here is a sample photo from roll B (looking good): All photos are good, including portraits in similar light conditions: The dark part looks natural

Here are the samples from roll C (too dark, artifacts around dark region):

Was properly exposed, taken on a day with good light condition: Was properly exposed, taken on a day with good light condition Bad portrait because of the artifacts (look at the hair), also noticed the artifacts are in the previous photo: Bad portrait because of the artifacts Too dark, also suffer from the artifact problem: Too dark, also suffer from the artifact problem

TL;DR: I tried reversal processing using D-11, dichromate bleach and D-72, but (1) got very dark photos when switched from ISO 400 to 100 (both were properly exposed), and (2) also got annoying artifacts in dark zone when it becomes really dark. But for the same formula, roll B is well developed. roll A is the same type of roll as roll B, but with different ISO from roll C.

EDIT: I recalled that I did notice greenish color in the problematic area during the second exposure (after bleaching and clearing). Does that mean the clearing is not enough and some parts were still contaminated by dichromate?

  • Did you use the same development times for the Kodak Tmax 100? That is unlikely to work as expected. – jarnbjo Aug 28 '17 at 12:41
  • @jarnbjo Yes, I did. But what about the artifacts..? – Determinant Aug 28 '17 at 15:47
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    The artifacts look like very normal solarization, which in a reversal process can be caused both by overexposure, underexposure or many errors in either of the two development steps (duration, temperature or developer concentration). – jarnbjo Aug 29 '17 at 18:09
  • @jarnbjo I did opened the tank during the second development, but then closed the lid again. I thought it would be ok because before the second dev, the film should be fully exposed. With the exposed positive image, all the silver halide should be consumed so it won't really change anything if you even operate the second development with light, right? – Determinant Aug 29 '17 at 22:03
  • After completing the bleach bath, you can do all further steps of the reversal process in full brightness. Opening the tank during second development will have no influence on the result. – jarnbjo Aug 29 '17 at 23:40
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Difficult to trouble shoot but my best guess -- the dichromate bleach was exhausted or contaminated.

  • I also suspect this. Do you mean it might be contaminated by the second developer? (I did wash for long after the first dev, so it does not seem likely to be contaminated by the first) Also, by "exhausted", do you mean I might not supply enough bleach? – Determinant Aug 28 '17 at 15:43
  • I did notice greenish color in the problematic area during the second exposure (after bleaching and clearing). Does that mean the clearing is not enough and some parts were contaminated by dichromate? – Determinant Aug 28 '17 at 15:58

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