Type 55

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I want to find out the exact process of saving the neg in the type 55 polaroid film. I've read a few different things on the web and understand that sodium sulfite plays a part. Where's a good place to get this chemical? What's the easiest procedure for doing this?

-- Jason Janik (janikphoto@yahoo.com), August 03, 2001


Polaroid provides instructions for clearing the negative with the film. Sodium sulfite is available at a good camera store, mail order photo store, or from Photographer's Formulary. A good overall resource is Ansel Adams "Polaroid Land Photography" book. It's out of print, but available used on Ebay, from Alibris, or other sources. It quite helpful in learning how to expose and develop correctly, as well as other Polaroid nuiances.

-- J. Wolfe (bigbad810@hotmail.com), August 03, 2001.

Ansel Adam's "Polaroid Manual" is very good. From what I gathered from reading this book is that exposure of Type 55 is important. He meters for the highlights and lets the lower zones fall where they fall.

He wrote "It should be understood that the only control in the use of the Type 55 P/N material lies in the exposure, and this must be adjusted to give the optimum rendering in the print of the important high values of the subject. In this respect the exposure is rather critical; 1/3 or 1/2 stop more exposure than optimum can result in burn-out and loss of textural value. The highest textural Zone is about Zone VII, and burn-out is at about Zone VII1/2 (at an ASA speed of 100).... the lowest textural Zone of the print scale is III1/2. More exposure can be given, which will help the shadow values of the negative - but this will adversely affect the quality of the print."

In his Examples book, "The effective ASA speed for the Type 55 P/N print was about 80; for this negative it was about ASA 20". He states that you should test each batch to find these effective speeds. I personally just use an ASA of between 50 and 25 for the negative and meter the highlight on Zone VII. Seems to work fairly well.

Now to answer you question, once you process the 55 P/N in dim light, I separate the print from the negative and rinse the negative under running water. I rinse both sides and you can actually see the developer deposit slough off. I then dunk the negative in an 18% or so Sodium Sulfite solution. Rinse off again in water, then Photo-Flo and hang to dry. Hope this helps.

-- Cal Eng (caleng@inficad.com), August 04, 2001.

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