Agitation pattern for Nikor 4x5 tank : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

Recently I bought a Nikor 4x5 daylight developing tank.I have experimented with different agitation patterns but have not been able to get evenly developed negatives. Has anyone figured out an agitaion pattern that works? Thanks Art Nichols

-- Arthur Nichols (, October 07, 2000


Be sure you prosoak with distilled water for at least 3 minutes. A drop of photo-flo in the prosoak won't hurt and may help.

-- Bill Mitchell (, October 07, 2000.

Hi, you may not be getting even development because of your developer-film combo. Which developer are you using? When you agitate a 4x5 in a tank this really seems to make a difference. Some developers like a front to back agitation and some seem to like a side to side, and some even like a combination of the two. Pre-soaking your film will help, however your developing time may change because of it.

-- jacque staskon (, October 08, 2000.

Did you get the tank that has room for twelve 4x5 negatives that are loaded vertically and coil out from the center?

How is it that they're uneven? Do they show some sort of pattern? Are you pre-soaking now? How are you currently agitating? How many sheets of film are you loading at one time? What developer film combination are you using?

-- neil poulsen (, October 08, 2000.

In response to your answers and questions: I am using FP4+ and X-Tol diluted 1 to 3.The tank that I have holds 12 sheets but I never load more than 6 at a time. I have tried both vertical inversions and swishing type agitaion. The swiching type was really a disaster. I have had better luck with vertiacl inversions but I experience more density build up in the center area where the films come together, because I think that air bubbles are moving through the hole in the top plate and are conentrated more in the center than on the edges. I will continue experiment but if I don't start to get better results I may seitch over to a Jobo. Thanks again

-- Arthur Nichols (, October 08, 2000.

I use a rocking motion, for about 10 seconds, once per minute. I've had excellent results with Tri-X and HC110 dilution B.

-- David Brown (, October 08, 2000.

I use the Nikor tank for 2 < X 3 < (12ea) & 4x5 (6ea) sheet film it works very well. 1) Load it with the emulsion side in. 2) I presoak the film for 1 to 2 Min to reduce the shock of the developer slowly poring in & it is slow. 3) Developer is pre measured to just cover the film. 4) I use D-76 1:1, MD-11 1:1, and now use Sprint ( a liquid developer that "inhibits agitation streaks" the developer is the same as D-76 1:1. 5) I bang the tank on the bottom of the sink 5x and agitate as with a normal tank upside down 4x with a slow gentle motion you can feel the liquid moving in the tank. 6) To wash the film I put in to normal film hangars and then in to a tank I made from an old tank, water in from bottom then out the top. I wish that I felt confident to develop 12 4X5 at a time but it is only just over 1000ml so I do not do it.

-- John Burch (, October 11, 2000.

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