agfa viradon toner : LUSENET : B&W Photo - Printing & Finishing : One Thread

can anyone give me some basic information on agfa viradon toner? i bought a bottle, but the only information included is a 50:1 suggested dilution ratio. specifically i'm wanting to know what sorts of colors--in comparison to kodak selenium and sepia toners--on ilford multigrade IV FB regular-tone paper, both with and without bleaching. i'd also like to know whether it improves archival stability. finally, is it chemically similar to kodak polytoner? it smells and looks the same to me.

--brad daly

-- brad daly (, May 24, 2000


i'll just add a followup to my previous post. i did some test toning last night and got some really nice tones. i think maybe the 1:50 dilution is too strong. next time i think i'll use 1:100.

there's one problem though. i let the toned prints wash overnight in my printwasher. this morning when i was squeegeeing them off to put on racks and dry, i noticed a white, milky looking residue on several, but not all, of the prints. i can rub this residue off with my finger, and the print looks fine underneath. does anyone have any idea about this? i'm thinking maybe there was some sort of contaminant in the print washer.


-- brad daly (, May 25, 2000.

I have not used Viradon, but it sounds like a brown or sepia toner. These toners do sometimes leave a white sediment, but it can be wiped off with a soft cloth or sponge without harming the photo. These toners are generally considered to be stable and suitable for archival processing, as they provide a sort of protective coating for the silver grains in the emulsion, preventing oxidation.

-- Ed Buffaloe (, May 26, 2000.

It would be hard to give a answer when the other two variables are not memntoned: Time/Temp. You might want to change either one of these before you increase/decrease dilution of the toner. Have you tried Kodak's Poly-Toner? It works well with most papers. As for the white residue, have you checked for residual hypo before toning? Just a few thoughts. Regards, Pat

-- pat j. krentz (, May 26, 2000.

Brad...I gave Viradon Toner a good try about 2 years ago. I got wonderful tones with both bleached and unbleached prints using Agfa, Kodak and Ilford RC paper (tonality seemed best in that order of paper). After much frustration I stopped using Viradon because of the white milky coating you described. That coating would appear on the prints for no logical reason. I ruined several trays because the same coating would contaminate the tray the Viradon was in, it was unremoveable. I tried using new fixer and a thorough washing for every print, Sometimes that worked, sometimes not. What I did find was that the print MUST BE agitated as soon as it is put in the Viradon solution. Agitation had to be constant during the total toning period. If you didn't agitate the print would appear to smoke under the surface of the Viradon, I guess something was leaching out of the prints emulsion into the Viradon. This smoking would turn the clear, orange colored Viradon solution into a milky orange solution; it looked like orange juice. Brad I emailed Agfa about this problem. I got an initial reply but I did not follow it upI just gave up! Let me know if your going to try and sort this out as Viradon is so lovely that I should really try and get a handle on it too.

-- Jim Vanson (, May 28, 2000.

thanks to everyone for the information about viradon and its problems. i'll try the distilled-water procedure when i get a chance. oddly, it seems, the city where i live, birmingham, alabama, is known for having really good water. a lot of photographers i know use tap-water for mixing film developer, and nearly everyone uses tap-water for stop bath and fixer. nonetheless, i'll see if that's the problem.

i failed to mention last time that the only prints that developed the milky scum were 8x10s--all my 11x14s were fine. i suspect there might have been some kind of washing problem. i was 8x10s in an 11x14 versalab printwasher. it works great with 11x14s, but 8x10s sometimes pop up between the print weights. versalab should supply the washer with 4 weights instead of just 2, as is suspect nearly everyone who uses the 11x14 model washes 8x10s as well.

-- brad daly (, June 01, 2000.

I've had good luck with Viradon and Ilford MGWT.

A couple of things....Viradon gets browner/yellower with _more_ dilution, the opposite of what would normally be expected. Also the print really needs to have a complete washing before toning. I've had no problems with paper of various sizes washed in the Versalab, of course being careful that they don't float up between weights.

Strange how Ilford MGWT floats and MG doesn't.

If what you want is a rich dark brown tone, use Ilford MGWT and tone in selenium toner 1:4 for 6-8 minutes. Viradon turned out to be too light and golden for me.

-- John Hicks (, June 01, 2000.

Forgot something; be sure to give the print a bath in sodium sulfite / HCA after the toner.

-- John Hicks (, June 02, 2000.

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