Developer shelf life : LUSENET : B&W Photo - Film & Processing : One Thread

How long might I expect stock solution of HC110 to keep? It is in a half full brown jug.

Also, is there a way to determine if the developer is shot without wasting a roll of film?

-- Jim Kish (, September 13, 2000


You could do a clip test. Shoot a roll of junk. Clip off about 4-6 inches in and develop this. See if it looks OK, if not, replace the developer.

Most people using HC-110 don't make a stock solution up, they just mix from the straight stuff. And that gets around the shelf life.

-- Terry Carraway (, September 14, 2000.

I have always mixed HC110 into a stock solution and then used it from there. I don't like trying to work with a syrup at high ratio mixtures.

The Kodak data says that the shelf life for stock solution in a half- full, tightly closed bottle is two months. When the bottle is full, the shelf life is six months.

What I did when I used HC110 from stock is I stored it in a collapsible bottle. These bottles cost about $5 or so, and are available in many sizes.

-- Brian C. Miller (, September 15, 2000.


DO realize that the collapseable bottles have a big problem. They are not gas impermeable. The thin plastic required to fold, allows oxygen to diffuse through the bottle. So while you do gain with the lack of oxygen IN the bottle, you lose with the oxygen diffusing through the sides.

Glass works best. To handle the excess space, glass marbles work well, or Tetnal (Jobo) has a spray that displaces the air in the bottle to protect the developer.

-- Terry Carraway (, September 16, 2000.

The Tetenal protective spray is called Protectan. Highly recommended!

Rodinal keeps for a long time. I have a bottle that I started to use two years ago, and it's still fresh. That without the protectan spray.

-- Patric (, September 18, 2000.


The collapsible bottles I use have the same plastic as the straight- sided bottles, so oxygen is probably a problem with all of my chemicals. I don't use glass because of its fragility. The idea of using marbles is quite good.

Anyways, I don't keep developer anywhere near it's maximum shelf life. I like to mix it up in small lots.

-- Brian C. Miller (, September 20, 2000.

There are also glass safety bottles. These are glass bottles that have a plastic coating. It is easier to grip and retains the glass fragments and the contents if they are dropped.

Another thing to watch is the cap. There are differenc types of cap seals. Most cheaper bottles have a cardboard seal, that does not seal out oxygen. The better ones are foil or teflon.

-- Terry Carraway (, September 21, 2000.

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