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ILFORD FILM FAQ’S

Film and single use cameras

How long after exposing can I leave my film before processing?

For best results, we always advise processing soon after exposure although in practice most films can be left for several months. One exception is ILFORD PANF Plus, we would always advise processing this film as soon as possible and certainly within 3 months of the film being exposed.

How do I account for film reciprocity during long exposures?

This information can be found in the Film Reciprocity Failure Compensation technical data sheet

Where can I find out about film development times?

Development times for film products can be found in our film development chart and in the product specific technical information sheets.

What film product is best for scanning?

If you wish to take advantage of infrared dust and scratch correction (Digital ICE) then we would recommend ILFORD XP2S which is a colour process B&W film. Digital ICE will not work with conventional Black and white films.

Conventional B&W films can still be scanned but you must disable Digital ICE. You can then do retouching of dust separately in a graphics program. We would also recommend reducing any auto sharpening employed by the scanner software as this may enhance any visible grain. You will want to experiment with which settings work best for you.

Can I use ILFORD Washaid with film?

As with other hypo clearing agents, ILFORD WASHAID can be used with film.

However, if your film is fixed in a non-hardening fixer (like ILFORD HYPAM or ILFORD RAPID fixer) a hypo clear is not required.

After such fixing, the film can be washed in running water for 5 to 10 minutes or washed using the ILFORD PHOTO „Film Washing Sequence“ details of which can be found in any of our film product fact sheets, several of which are downloadable from our site.

What’s the difference between ILFORD “Plus” and “Delta” films?

ILFORD PLUS films (like HP5 PLUS) are an improved version of conventional technology black and white films. Their grain structure is similar to the traditional B&W films used for over a century.

ILFORD DELTA PROFESSIONAL films use a newer crystal structure called Core-Shell. These new technology crystals capture light more efficiently, offer a smoother tonal range, finer grain and greater sharpness than conventional technology films. DELTA PROFESSIONAL films, however, are generally less flexible when it comes to exposure and processing conditions than the plus range of films.

Should I pre-soak my films?

We do not recommend pre-soaking films prior to development since there is a small chance it can lead to uneven development.

What are your recommendations for fixing films?

We recommend the use of a non-hardening rapid fixer for fixing all of our B&W films.

Mixed at film strength, conventional technology films, like ILFORD PLUS films, Kodak Tri-X, Agfa APX 400, etc., should be fixed for 2 to 4 minutes. New technology films, like ILFORD DELTA PROFESSIONAL, Kodak T-Max, Fuji Neopan, etc., should be fixed for 3 to 5 minutes. The wide range of times are given to accommodate the reduced activity of the fixer as it is reused (e.g. fresh fixer: 2 minutes, fixer nearing exhaustion: 4 minutes).

For more detailed information please see the product technical information.

Can I use a safelight for handling my films?

We do not recommend any safelight for use with our standard films as they are sensitive to all the colours of light that we can see. 

One exception is our ORTHO Copy plus Film which can be used with a deep red safelight (ILFORD 906)

Why do I find it difficult to see numbers on the roll film wrapper through the red camera window?

Usually, the frame numbers on our roll film wrappers can be viewed in any camera viewing window, but in some older cameras that have dark red viewer windows, the numbers can be difficult to see.

The printing density on our wrappers is carefully controlled so it doesn’t cause text and number ghosting, where they are transposed onto the actual film after being processed. We have chosen a printing density which represents a compromise between good visibility and being safe when in contact with the film.

What would you recommend for negative sleeves (ie what brand)?

Some popular brands to consider are Printfile, Kenro and Clearfile. But there are many others.

Can I still use my old film it’s out of date?

We do not recommend using films beyond their expiry date since performance is unlikely to be optimum.  However, it is impossible to know the conditions under which a film will be stored during its lifetime. i.e refrigerated films may last much longer. If a film has not been refrigerated, then the expiry date is a useful guide.

How do I dispose of my ILFORD film?

There are no special requirements for disposal of photographic film. Please check with local recycling regulations regarding packaging and metal cassettes.

 

Single Use Cameras

How do I open single-use cameras to safely remove the film?

You need to avoid touching the capacitor which is exposed if the camera back comes off. It’s not dangerous, but it could give you an unpleasant shock when touched – if it’s charged.

To get the film out – you don’t need to take the entire back off. The method we would advise is based on you looking at the back of the camera – as then the exposed film will be on the right-hand side, and with a little bit of persuasion the camera part covering the film actually breaks off to reveal the cassette.  To do this :-

  1. Make sure the film is fully wound into the cassette, keep winding the wheel until the film is fully rewound.
  2. Very carefully use a flat blade screwdriver to lever open the right-hand side of the back. You should start to see the cassette in there.
  3. Position the screwdriver between the cassette and the back – and lever the cover up. It should break and hinge open.

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