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08-26-2009, 09:08 AM   #1
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First Fixers

need a fix?

In continuation of the First Developer thread, i would like to hear from the veterans what would be a good fixer to use for the newbies.

08-26-2009, 09:45 AM   #2
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I bought Ilford Rapid Fixer in a 500ml bottle. Why? A dollar cheaper than Kodak's equivalent liquid fixer at B&H, and as liquid I didn't have to mix powder. The Kodak powders I think work out to be cheapest.
08-26-2009, 11:16 AM   #3
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I use the Kodak powdered fixer. Yes, it is the cheapest.

Chris
08-26-2009, 12:57 PM   #4
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I pretty much always have used the Kodak, myself. I've still yet to get to this new Silvergrain eco-stuff I've mentioned obtaining. (Sort of wanting to see how a non-hardening fixer suits me: if it doesn't, I can use it for prints.)

08-26-2009, 01:23 PM   #5
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Ilford rapid here. I like liquid.
08-26-2009, 09:23 PM   #6
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Maybe a dumb question...

But does the fixer have much of an impact on the final look of the photo?

Does some fixers produce more grain then others? Can they change the character of the shot like the choice of developers can?
08-26-2009, 10:23 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by KungPOW Quote
But does the fixer have much of an impact on the final look of the photo?
no effect that I'm aware of.

I buy Ilford in the 5lt size as it works out much cheaper and I don't try to make it go further than I should! The longevity of your prints (and film) depends on it!
08-26-2009, 11:24 PM   #8
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Any rapid fixer will do.
In the 80s and 90s I mixed my own slow fixer with thiosulphate and bisulfate.

Then I used the "Sprint" brand with no problem.

08-27-2009, 07:39 AM   #9
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If you want to tone your negatives use a non-hardening fixer.

Chris
08-27-2009, 08:10 AM   #10
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Here's a dumb question: Why ever tone a negative when you can tone prints?
08-27-2009, 09:47 AM   #11
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Selenium toner is sometimes used to increase contrast (density), making a more easily printed negative.

Chris
08-27-2009, 02:14 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by KungPOW Quote
Maybe a dumb question...

But does the fixer have much of an impact on the final look of the photo?

Does some fixers produce more grain then others? Can they change the character of the shot like the choice of developers can?
As I have found out recently, if you under fix or use fix that is too weak, you can end up with opaque negs.
08-27-2009, 02:30 PM   #13
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Fixer can be reused but with use will become exhausted and must be replaced.
Keep track of how much you have used it, use test strips or a chemical test to check it.

Chris

Last edited by ChrisPlatt; 08-27-2009 at 02:39 PM.
08-27-2009, 04:08 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by ChrisPlatt Quote
Fixer can be reused but with use will become exhausted and must be replaced.
Keep track of how much you have used it, use test strips or a chemical test to check it.

Chris
I tend to fix for four solid minutes, just to be sure (with the Ilford liquid), and then make a mark on a piece of masking tape stuck on the bottle. When I reach 25 uses, I throw it and the stop bath out (well--I've been storing them up to bring to the chemical-disposal days at the dump, but I always forget to go, so the old stuff is in jugs under my sink) and make new batches.
08-27-2009, 06:12 PM   #15
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"

Any decent rapid fixer will work. I bought 5L of Illford Hypam last time; probably enough for a couple years. Mixed 1+4 or so.

Kodak fixer works too but has a hardener, and you have to mix it up.

Don't believe capacity numbers, they can only be ballpark figures at best. If you trust them you either end up throwing out good fixer or ending up with unfixed negatives. I use it till it doesn't work. After a couple minutes, pull the film out and have a look. The rebate/frame lines should be perfectly clear. If not put it back in for another couple minutes. Usually takes only 1-2 minutes and increases very quickly when the fix gets exhausted. I have tested and found that you can leave film in fresh rapid fixer for a long time (at least 30min) without noticeable effect on the developed image.

Another thing I like to do is put a clip of the same film in the top of the tank. Then I can check that and when that is clear, I can be sure the film inside is clear. Don't use 35mm leader though, because the heavy exposure causes it to "print out" and take much longer to fix.
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