Glycin/Metol Developer : LUSENET : B&W Photo - Film & Processing : One Thread

I've been experimenting with glycin/metol combinations and getting pretty good results, sharp but a little grainy, high speed (half a stop over Xtol?), nice mid-tones, high lights that don't run away. I recently added some salt per Patrick Ganiers article in Phototechniques and that really helped the grain quite a bit. This combination is pretty good with 35mm TMY, D400, HP5+. 4X5 TMY looks really nice. My last version is: 1 tsp Glycin, 1 tsp Metol, 8 tsp Sodium Sulfite, 4 tsp sodium chloride to make one liter.

Is anyone here using or have experience with FX2 or TFX2 from Phototographers Formulary or any similar Glycin/Metol combinaton? I've read a few archived posts here about FX2 but I'd like to know more.

-- Henry Ambrose (, January 08, 2002


I use FX2 quite a bit, mostly with Pan F but also with APX100. It provides about a 2/3 true increase in film speed. I use it as a stand develop with a development time of 60 minutes at 68 degrees F and no agitation. I have also tried it with Tri-X a couple of times with uncertain results. It did not look that bad exposed at EI 640 but did not look quite right either.

-- Bert Krages (, January 10, 2002.

A few years ago I did some experimenting with FX-2 and TFX-2. I have a particular fondness for the rich midrange tones glycin is capable of and I liked these developers for that reason. I did find that grain was more pronounced that I liked with 35mm, although obviously it was not an issue with 4x5.

It's been awhile since I looked at the formula for FX-2, but it seems to me the ratio of glycin to metol is more like 10:1, not 1:1 as in your formula. My suspicion is your developer is not utilizing the glycin much at all because the metol is doing all the work and therefore providing nearly all the density. My guess is your formula should perform about like D-23, or with NaCl added, like Microdol-x. Another thing, FX-2 uses potassium carbonate as the activator. In your formula, SS is doing that job. That works okay with metol, producing a fairly soft working developer, but glycin needs more of a kick. So even if you add more glycin to your formula, I don't think the pH will be high enough to activate glycin.

I don't have the formula for FX-2 handy, but if you can't find it elsewhere, email me and I'll get it for you. You also might want to pick up Steven Anchell's excellent Film Developing Cookbook, which lists many formulas (including FX-2) along with a trove of interesting and useful information you would be hardpressed to find elsewhere. Also, check out Ed Buffaloe's tips on developers at his site,

-- Ted Kaufman (, January 10, 2002.

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