Developping lith film : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

I would like to use lith negative film in old field cameras of various sizes (9x12, 13x18 and 18x24 cm) because lith foils can be easily cutted to the size and placed in the film-holder leaving on the red light into the dark room. Can somebody suggest a good developper solution for avoiding the extremely strong contrast wich is tipical of this negative? I think that Rodinal diluted 1+50 could work (in effexct I did try, the results are not so good, perhaps I have to change the developping time), but probably some other product or home-made formulation will work better. Thank you Franco

-- Franco Rallo (, February 08, 1999


Hi Franco it's true you can work that stuff under a red light, but from past my experience (mistakes) make sure it is not too close to the red light. it does fog. i've fogged more lith under a red light than i have pancromatic under a green light. i use Rodinal 50+1 also, with Ilford ortho plus. time seems to be about 8 min., but i do it by inspection. after 4 or 5 min. look for the highlights which come out dark, and then think about stopping it before it gets too contrasty. you will get the hang of it. i have not had success cutting film. i don't know what the secret to cutting film is.

-- david clark (, February 09, 1999.

I used to use HC 110 at about 1:64 to 1:100. Develop very gently until the darks start to show. Make your inspection by viewing the base side of the film, since the emulsion side will appear to be correct under the safelight, but will be too light when you turn on the lights.

-- Tony Brent (, February 09, 1999.

I make enlarged interpositives and negatives with lith film. The best developer I've found, thanks to an article in the current issue of The World Journal of Post Factory Photography, is D 76 diluted 1-3 at around 70 degrees. Develop for about five minutes to six minutes. The only problem is that the developer exhausts very quickly, usually after the second or third positive/negative, so it wouldn't be good if you have a large volume of work. However, it does an excellent job.

-- Brian Ellis (, February 09, 1999.

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