My Developer Options for Ilford Harman Direct Positive Black and White Paper

April 04, 2016  •  4 Comments

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I love the simplicity of Ilford Harman Direct Positive Black and White Fiber Paper.  I like the classic look of this medium and it is an added benefit that the paper is fiber opening up a wide array of creative options via toning techniques.  

I am sharing the developers that I use along with the details that have proven to provide me with repeatable and consistent results.  I tested Diafine, Rodinal, Ilford Multigrade and Dektol.  Based on my desire to achieve maximum black (DMAX) I settled on Ilford Multigrade and Rodinal.  For repeatable consistency, I decided to test in my Jobo system.  I use a larger Jobo unit in my darkroom and a smaller version when I am on the road and in the field.  I like to develop my prints after I expose them.  This is especially helpful when I am in the field so that I can get feedback and make adjustments if I prefer to do so.

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My development details are listed below:

Ilford Multigrade 1:15 20C Jobo 6min
OR
Rodinal at 1:10 20C Jobo 8min

2830 Jobo Print Drum for 8x10 (100ml per 8x10 sheet)
Ilford at 1:15 - (93ml water + 7ml dev)
Rodinal at 1:10 – (90ml water + 10ml dev)

2840 Jobo Print Drum for 11x14 (120ml per 11x14 sheet)
Ilford at 1:15 - (112ml water + 8ml dev)
Rodinal at 1:10 – (108ml water + 12ml dev)

8x10 paper at B&H Photo is $56.22 USD for 25 sheets and 11x14 is $43.33 for 10 sheets.  Since there is no need for a negative and paper, I find the cost very reasonable at $2.25 USD per sheet for 8x10 and $4.33 for 11x14.  

I look forward to your comments and questions.

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-Tim Layton 

Tim Layton
Darkroom & Large Format Photography
Platinum Histograph Heirloom Prints & MiniaturesTM

Comments

Tim Layton Fine Art
Hi Gerlad, thanks for your comment. Thanks for the insights on the other developers!
Gerald Figal(non-registered)
I've tried all of those developers listed on DPP except Diafine. I would add to that list Kodak Selectol Soft -- it does a good job drawing out midtones without preflashing. But it's only my second favorite--Caffenol is hands-down the best, imo. It's only drawback is that it exhausts very quickly when using it on paper. But, it's very cheap to make with OTC ingredients.
raytoei(non-registered)
just read up on this iso 1 ~ 3 paper.
fascinating.
Rolf Schmolling(non-registered)
Hi Tim,

thanks for sharing… the main question remains: how do you rate the paper? ISO 5, 10, 25? Interesting that one can develop paper in Rodinal… R.
No comments posted.
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