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Small steps

Resurrecting the Ritter 7x17 has been a blast, and a frustration. So much to remember, learn and re-learn. Lots of problem solving and reaching out to others but I think we are finally getting to a point where the basics are sorted and we have some consistency in the various processes required.

I obviously had some handling issues with light leaks, but having switched to Ilford HP5 I was having development issues also. Nothing to do with the film but how I was developing it. I've always liked Rodinal as a developer. It's simple, economical and has a long shelf life. Whilst all admirable attributes the results are not as good as they could be and if you're going to the trouble and expense of ULF it's not a great choice. With the faster speed of HP5 and using a motorised base to spin the JOBO 2850 I was also getting dense patterns in the negative caused by waves in the tank.

I've built a manual roller with some cheap casters and now with a more random and slower rotation pattern these have gone. I've also switch to Moersch Finol developer. It's a staining developer much like Moersch Tanol that I used back in the day for negative for Pt/Pd printing. Finol is recommended for rotational development and is producing clean and crisp negatives that are perfect for scanning.

There's always room to improve and make changes but it's a starting point we can hopefully build upon. So now it's time to start exploring some creativity and see what can be created with the 7x17 format. I don't want to just make postcard scenes which are it's panoramic strength but try and create images that "stretch" the format.

It will take time and experimentation but only one way of finding out...

Ritter 7x17

Ilford HP5 @ ISO 200

355mm G-Claron

30sec @ f/64

Moersch Finol

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